Deaf charity’s online lesson for children goes live
2nd January 2013
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Monkey Manor has been created by Digital Giving for the national deaf healthcare charity, SignHealth as part of its annual fundraiser, sign2sing. It can be accessed via

Steve Powell, Chief Executive at SignHealth, explained: “sign2sing is our world record breaking attempt for the most people signing and singing a song at the same time and takes place on February 6 (2013). Pupils from Warwick have already signed up to take part.

 “This year we wanted to increase deaf awareness among the younger generation and believe Monkey Manor does this in a fun and engaging way.”

 Monkey Manor features the children’s book character Olli the monkey, who loves to use sign language and goes to school at the Manor.

Steve continued: “Children can play on the interactive website and join Olli in his classroom to learn how to fingerspell the alphabet. They can hear the sign2sing song in his music room.

“It’s a great way for youngsters to learn about sign language and research has shown that when hearing children learn to sign their confidence, self-esteem, self expression and communication skills all improve.”

Teachers can register for the record breaking attempt and download digital resources, which include a free whiteboard app. 

Steve added: “sign2sing is all about communication and the whiteboard app will make it easy for teachers to teach the signs and song in an engaging way.

“The digital approach to sign2sing is breaking new ground for us and all the participants but we think this is the best way to get our message across.”

Monkey Manor has been created by Digital Giving Ltd, which is the leading cause-related entertainment provider. It was formed in 2010 to bring the power and benefits of mobile and digital communications and engagement to the third sector.

Although Monkey Manor is fun and entertainment-led, schoolchildren will be steered to access important communication messages, tips and information as part of the experience.

Steve said: “It’s the first time, as far as we’re aware, that sign language has been animated in the UK, so it’s been a real challenge for Digital Giving to get the signs to be accurate and clear, but we have ended up with a truly unique and fun tool to engage hearing and deaf audiences.”

sign2sing is SignHealth’s world record breaking attempt for the most people signing and singing a song at the same time while also raising money for the charity from a suggested £1 donation from everyone taking part.

The project is in its third year and the current record is 114,277. So far more than 850 schools, including Aylesford School and Sixth Form College on Shelley Avenue in Warwick, have signed up to join in with the event.

“Any schools in Warwick that decide to take part will be joining hundreds of schools all over the country and some in other countries at GMT 2.45pm on Wednesday, February 6 when they attempt to break the world record.

“We’re hoping more schools from the town sign up for the event.”

SignHealth is hoping to smash its previous two records and involve more than 175,000 youngsters.

The money raised from the event will be used to continue the charity’s work helping to improve the mental and physical health and well-being of deaf people, including deaf children.

Schools wishing to take part are invited to register their interest via  


For more information about sign2sing, please visit the website above or contact SignHealth on 01494 687600. Alternatively, sign2sing is on Twitter at and on Facebook at


About the Author

Stuart T

Member since: 9th July 2012

I'm a keen guitar player & musician who plays in our family band. Our highlight so far was playing to 10,000 people at Fairports Cropredy Convention in 2010 & featuring on Bob Harris's Sky Arts prog.

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