In exploring storytelling through illustration and text I developed a project as a portion of my thesis at the North Carolina State University, Master of Art + Design, Animation/Interactive Media. My passion has always been in the exploration of effective ways to share stories that resonate. New technologies have added a means to deliver stories to a broader audience, in my case the audience is an under-served one; particularly families of Deaf or hard of hearing children or any users of American Sign Language.
I have created interwoven stories that are populated by five lemurs. Static English text and illustration are the background for an animated narrator signing the empowering stories in ASL.
Since the groundbreaking conclusion of the USA National Academy of Education Commission on Reading in 1985, that “the single most important activity for building the knowledge required for eventual success in reading is reading aloud to children” the implications for parents and early childhood educators has been significant. The practice of shared reading activity is widely accepted as foundational in building developmental skills in literacy. Frequency of positive interactions with literacy related activities builds a child’s understanding of vocabulary, awareness of written language, letter identification, and word recognition skills.