As a family started viewing “The New Three Little Pigs” everyone was full attention to the story, regardless of age. Mom remarked, “It holds kids’ attention because it is different than what they usually see.” Using a combination of live action and animation, classic children’s stories, deaf actors, voice over and subtitles, DawnSignPress shows their “commitment to developing materials for teaching ASL using up-to-date linguistic knowledge and incorporating video materials,” according to their website. Judging from children and parents’ interest, I believe they are doing just that!
“The New Three Little Pigs” opens with Tom, Larry and Sunny having purchased land for their houses. Tom uses hay because it is “easy and fast” and leaves plenty of time for watching TV. Larry is on the cheap side so skips using nails to hold his wood house together while diligent sister Sunny appreciates quality, building her house of brick. Sir William Wolff, outfitted in tails and a top hat, watches construction and waits to collect mortgage and interest payments from his properties. This classic tale is enhanced with modern details of investments, video games, and phone calls warning the next pig of the wolf’s arrival, while the traditional “huff and puff and blow your house down” is cleverly intact. Sunny is the role model in this trio of pigs as she values hard work and quality results. Pulling the family together through her inspiring work ethic, she starts her own little business that even includes the wolf by the story’s end. Kids and mom loved the story and were showing off signs they were learning throughout the story. “Fun Signs” at the end reinforced main words integral to the story–wolf, pig, wood, hay, brick and more–to enhance learning. Mom, a first grade teacher was excited to use this story as a fun way to introduce her students to American Sign Language. Judging from all that we learned, this is an effective fun tool for kids and adults to learn another language and communicate with their peers who are deaf or hard of hearing!
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