Entire school learns sign language to welcome first ever deaf student

Entire school learns sign language to welcome first ever deaf student

If you're craving some heartwarming news, this will undoubtedly hit the spot. An entire school learned sign language to help welcome their first ever deaf student.

Youngsters at Dayton Consolidated School in Dayton, Maine, were taught 20 words and phrases to help six-year-old Morey Belanger settle in.

Teachers used a variety of methods to teach the children sign language. They erected posters with sign language pointers on the walls to help kids learn common phrases, and they even went so far as to hire a Cinderella impersonator to visit and sign to the youngsters while singing.

Principal Kimberly Sampietro has since asserted that Morey's arrival has expanded the horizons of both staff and students at Dayton Consolidated School.

Credit: Fox 5

"Morey — without even knowing it — has taught us so much," the principal told Fox 5. "She has brought a culture to our building that we didn’t have before."

Sampietro has ensured that Morey is fully catered to. She has installed a special hearing assistive system to help students with hearing impairments, and supplied extra-teacher training to incorporate sign language into lessons. She told the news station that many teachers have been using their spare time to learn how to sign, with the help of books and online tutorials.

All this has meant that Morey has had a seamless transition. "The kids have just really embraced her. They look up to her, they want her around, and they want to partner with her," Sampietro continued.

Naturally, the six-year-old's mother is overjoyed by the school's response. "I absolutely feel like it makes her feel welcomed, I think all the kids feel excited that they know another language and I think they think it’s fun," she said.