Communication includes all words, sounds, gestures, behaviours, photos, and texts that an individual may use to share an idea with another person. 

People with Down syndrome develop communication differently than their peers. This section covers speech, language, social communication, play, and augmentative and alternative communication methods.


Speech refers to the sound that people can make with their vocal cords. It is distinct from language, which refers to the words people know and use.

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Language has two very broad areas: the words and concepts a person understands, also called receptive language, and the words and concepts a person can convey to others, also called expressive language.

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Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) is an umbrella term to describe any communication device, strategy, or system that supports or replaces natural spoken speech.

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Social Communication

Social communication refers to how we interact with others.

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