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Church of England Community Academy Trust

Makaton Signing

What is Makaton?

Makaton is a unique language programme that uses symbols, signs and speech to enable people to communicate. It supports the development of essential communication skills such as attention and listening, comprehension, memory, recall and organisation of language and expression.

Being able to communicate is one of the most important skills we need in life. Almost everything we do involves communication; everyday tasks such as learning at school, asking for food and drink, sorting out problems, making friends and having fun. These all rely on our ability to communicate with each other.

With Makaton, signs are used, with speech, in spoken word order. This helps provide extra clues about what someone is saying. Using signs can help people who have no speech or whose speech is unclear. Using symbols can help people who have limited speech and those who cannot, or prefer not to sign.

For those who have experienced the frustration of being unable to communicate meaningfully or effectively, Makaton really can help. Makaton takes away that frustration and enables individuals to connect with other people and the world around them. This opens up all kinds of possibilities.


You can find out more about Makaton from the charity website.  There you can create an account (free to set up) and download free resources.     

Topics covered by our free downloads include:

  • Vocabulary
    • health
    • animals, food and places
    • events and special days
    • religion and festivals
    • wordlists
  • Songs and stories
  • Activities and games
    • special days
    • people and characters
    • life skills
    • food and transport
    • nature