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Manchester schools to help break world ‘singing and signing’ record

By Karl Dyer

Manchester schools will help break the world record for the most people singing and signing a song at the same time.

Seven primary schools from across the city have signed up to take part in the record breaking attempt to help raise awareness of SignHealth – a national healthcare charity for Deaf people.

British schools smashed the previous record of 13,418 people when 94,489 children took part earlier this year and now the sign2sing project hopes to get 150,000 children involved on 8 February.

Steve Powell, Chief Executive of SignHealth, said: “More than 500 schools have signed up so far and we’re delighted six in Manchester are involved in the event too.”

“News of the event is already spreading rapidly and we are hoping to smash our current record,” he said. “While also raising awareness of deafness and the work we are doing at SignHealth.”

Primarily aimed at four to eleven-year-olds, the children will learn a song especially composed for the event called ‘Sign2Sing’.

Linden Road Primary School in Denton, who have six hearing impaired children, regularly involve the whole school in learning to sign.

Elaine Chapman, the school’s music co-ordinator and choir leader, said they feel it is vital to raise awareness.

“We see it as an important part of their education to empathise with someone with a disability.

“We are really looking forward to being part of Sign2Sing, raising awareness of hearing impairment issues and hopefully breaking a world record!”

Dave Rose, Teacher of the Deaf at Alma Park Primary School in Levenshulme, said his pupils are also looking forward to getting involved after taking part in this year’s successful attempt.

“For a month prior to the last event all the children, staff and parents in the school learned to sign and sing,” he said. “It was a fabulous event.”

Other Manchester schools that are taking part include Blackley’s Holy Trinity Church of England Primary, Chorlton-on-Medlock’s Plymouth Grove Primary, Moston’s St Dunstan’s Roman Catholic Primary, West Didsbury’s The Birches Specialist Support Primary and Kirkway Children’s Centre in Middleton.

As well as breaking the world record once more the event will also raise money through sponsorship while each child taking part is encouraged to donate £1.

For more information on the event and SignHealth visit www.sign2sing.org.uk

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