Melissa Malzkuhn

Story time is a classic part of the school day for the nation’s youngest learners. Before they can read, preschoolers and early elementary school students sit with teachers and watch and listen as stories are narrated to them. Besides learning new vocabulary words and starting to connect written and spoken language, they learn to love stories and build a foundation for reading that can serve them for the rest of their lives.

Melissa Malzkuhn has developed a new way for deaf children to get the same benefits of story time through an app. Malzkuhn is the founder and creative director of the Motion Light Lab in the Science of Learning Center on Visual Language and Visual Learning (VL2) at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C. The VL2 Storybook Apps, available as individual books in the Apple app store, bring together English and American Sign Language so young children can connect the two languages.

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