The main reason for TINY SIGNERS project is to create possibilities for the communication for deaf, hard of hearing and hearing children in the very early stages of their life and to overcome the gap which exists in this field in the majority of European countries. The overall objective of the project is to implement an innovative approach with hearing and deaf babies through the development and use of baby sign language and thus improve the quality of early communication and language learning in the participating countries of Slovenia, Austria and Lithuania and to further develop the community of the signing babies in the United Kingdom. In this view we will develop relevant materials, implement training courses for teachers, child care professionals and other experts involved in early child development as well as courses for parents and hearing and deaf babies. We will also set up structures which will integrate the courses into mainstream curriculum in the pre-school education to provide an efficient framework for the sustainability of the project at the national as well as European level. Based on the successful model developed in the UK, Yorkshire region, different approaches will be taken by the partners to adapt the results to their socio cultural contexts. Activities include also cultural and linguistic adaptation, pilot testing and initial steps towards accreditation of the transferred learning packages.The baby sign language courses will be developed on the bases of national sign languages in close cooperation with deaf communities, child care and special needs professionals, curriculum authorities, kindergartens and schools. By facilitating parents, carers and a next generation to use sign language, we hope to increase awareness and communication with deaf and impaired people in the corresponding communities and thus create an encouraging environment in which hearing as well as deaf babies and toddlers would thrive.
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