Dubois Co. elementary school holds book reading for classmate
JASPER, Ind. (WFIE) - Thursday marks one year since 8-year-old Tate Seibert received his cochlear implant.
On Wednesday morning, Tate took center stage in the Ireland Elementary School gym addressing his classmates, and introducing two special women, Marilyn and Ann.
Marilyn Leinenbach is Tate’s great-aunt.
She, along with Anne Raymond, have experience writing children’s books, and Tate’s story offered yet another opportunity to dig into a unique perspective through the eyes of a child.
“We thought, why not?” says Leinenbach.
“Mark approached us, because he knew we had written a couple of books about children with challenges and succeeding, and so he wanted Tate’s story to be told,” explains Raymond.
So, sitting next to Marylin, Tate took over the first page.
“Hi, my name is Tate. I’m seven years old. I have a cochlear implant to help me hear,” Tate reads, “my mommy told me that when I was born, my ears didn’t work very well.”
From there, Maylin took over, reading through the book as Ireland Elementary looked on, hearing about the “Super Hear-O” their friend had become.
Tate’s parents, Becky and Mark, know his journey better than anybody.
Mark has a cochlear implant as well, so it was a special moment for the Seiberts to watch their son not only go in front of his classmates, but tell his story.
“We just felt like there wasn’t any good books out there from a child’s point of view about what hearing loss is like,” says Mark, “living with it, and cochlear implants so it’s really cool to spread the word and how all the students support him. It’s very exciting.”
As for Tate, who signed 90 copies of his book on Tuesday night before announcing that each classroom would get one, including the library, he’s just enjoying the ride.
“I can hear a lot better now,” says Tate, exclaiming, “yeah!” when asked if he was happy that he received the implant.
Tate and his family know that as time goes on, there’ll be more challenges to deal with regarding his hearing loss.
Wednesday morning wasn’t about that though. It was about showcasing a book about Tate’s, and giving his classmates as well as parents of those kids just a glimpse into the journey he’s been on.
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