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Auslan brings stories to life at library

Stephanie Johnston and Anne Moore deliver the first inclusive Storytime for the Bega Valley Shire Library Service.
Stephanie Johnston and Anne Moore deliver the first inclusive Storytime for the Bega Valley Shire Library Service

19 August 2020

It’s the tale of a little dragon who lost his spark, and the first book of many that will help Deaf and hard of hearing kids to find joy in storytime.

Jim Averbeck’s ‘OH NO Little Dragon!’ became the first book off the Bega Valley Shire Library shelf to be read aloud and delivered in Auslan sign language last week.

Long-running Storytime legend, Anne Moore said the inclusive book reading brings the universal language of story-telling to children who would usually miss out.

“It feels fantastic to be able to offer a Storytime experience to kids who might otherwise not be able to participate,” she said.

“Being part of the Library Service Storytime is a great way to boost children’s literacy and communication skills, as well as their general understanding of the world.

“Stories help children understand everything from the importance of relationships to the value of making right choices, and it’s sad to think that some kids miss out because they are Deaf or hard of hearing.

“We are very thankful to Stephanie Johnston for joining us in the Storytime video and opening the world of narratives to a greater audience.

“Working with Steph on this Storytime was a lot of fun and we will definitely be looking at further collaborations in the near future,” Ms Moore said.

Sticking with the dragon theme, a second book, ‘Don’t You Dare, Dragon!’ by Annie Kubler was read and signed using Auslan during the same Storytime video.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, all Storytime programs are delivered online. The library posts a new Storytime every Thursday at 10:30am on its website and Facebook page.

To view the first inclusive video, go to the Storytime and Rhymetime webpage.


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