Hartlepool pupils show off their signing skills

Primary school children showed off their sign language skills to the whole school in a special event which raised awareness about hearing loss.

Friday, 11th March 2016, 1:57 pm
Updated Friday, 11th March 2016, 2:02 pm
Holy Trinity School pupils, from left, Vaughan Kelly, Leison Smith and Cleo Roberts taking part in the Sing and Sign service.

Every child at Holy Trinity in Seaton Carew learned how to sign the words to the song Reach Out Your Hand and gave a fantastic performance during a collective worship.

They had spent five weeks learning the sign language in the sponsored Sing2Sign event which raised £131.50 for the charity SignHealth.

The performance was filmed for the school’s website for anyone who could not be there in person.

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Susan Wiles, a teaching assistant, said: “The idea was to raise awareness of the hardship of deaf children, not just in school, but throughout life and the difficulties they face outside school every day like crossing the road and trying to join in conversations.”

The worship was led by teacher Jessica Finnigan and attended by specialist deaf teacher Gemma Scott who works regularly with Holy Trinity.

Miss Wiles added: “The Sign Language Club were at the front and the whole school joined in with the song. It has been a whole school event.”

As an all-inclusive school Holy Trinity has had a Sign Language Club for several years and during collective worship in school some of the hymns sung are accompanied by sign language.

Miss Wiles said: “The children already know how signing links to everyday life. The children here are very accepting, not just about deafness but also about people being unique individuals and accepting people for who they are.”

The Sign2Sign event idea originated from the Headteachers Forum.