Deaf woman breaking down barriers

QUEENSLAND woman Lisa Mills is breaking down the barriers faced by deaf and hearing impaired children by launching an educational singing and sign language DVD despite being profoundly deaf herself.

Ms Mills, a performing artist and teacher, launched her DVD, Sing and Sign with Lisa, after seeing the benefits sign language provided to the children she was working with in her Honeybee Creations Studio.

"I was amazed at how the Dream English songs combined with my signing was engaging the children and benefiting them in so many different ways," Ms Mills said.

"Children were proving to me that they loved the (Dream English songs) and it was a refreshing change from traditional nursery rhymes."

Ms Mills said children were the best pupils when it came to learning sign language and her DVD is targeted at children aged seven months to seven years.

"I teach sign language (Auslan) to people of all ages from babies to seniors, but young children absorb sign language like sponges and it's wonderful to see," she said.

"The benefits of sign singing are endless as it encourages whole brain development but I also wanted the DVD to be creative and encourage children to be imaginative.

"I am extremely passionate about encouraging children to learn sign language and this musical DVD is one of the many things I have done to help promote deaf awareness, which is very close to my heart."

Ms Mills has received a fantastic response to her new DVD and will soon be able to put her skills as a baby signing teacher to good use with her first child due to be born this Saturday.

"He (the baby) will be using sign language as his first language because my husband is profoundly deaf and uses only sign language, therefore we communicate in sign language only at home," Ms Mills said.

"When he grows up he will become bilingual - proficient in both sign language and spoken English."

For more information about Lisa Mills or to order Sing and Sign with Lisa, visit http://www.honeybee-creations.com.



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