A deaf six-year-old was able to follow along with CBeebies Bedtime Stories for the first time after the show aired its first ever signed episode.
Mum Laura McCartney says her son Tom, who has complex medical needs, was over the mood when he watched Rob Delaney sign ‘Ten in a Bed’ by Penny Dale last week.
Delaney previously explained his family learned Makaton sign language to communicate with their late son Henry, who couldn’t speak due after a tracheotomy. In McCartney’s video, Tom can be seen waving his arms and standing up in his chair in excitement when the story is on.
“He was so surprised and delighted to see signing on a show he didn’t expect to,” McCartney tells HuffPost UK. “He could understand the story, and even sign along. It really held his attention and he’s watched it many more times as well. To see the excitement on his face was so magical.”
Tweeting Delaney and CBeebies, McCartney wrote: “Thank you so much for the amazing bedtime story! My son Tom was so excited as you can see. He has never been interested in bedtime stories before... thank you for using his language.”
Both Delaney and CBeebies replied to the mum’s tweet.
And so did many other hundreds of people who were touched by the heartwarming video.
McCartney says her son loves books and enjoys looking through the pages and seeing his parents signing to him to explain the story. But, she says regular TV can be a lot for a six-year-old to take while trying to watch his parents sign at the same time.
“That’s why the CBeebies Bedtime Stories hasn’t held so much interest for him till now,” she says. “Especially after a busy day, he’s too tired to put in all that communication work (as are we sometimes!).”
She adds: “Here’s hoping more shows and stories can have signing included now so Tom and other children who use signing can fully enjoy them.”