If you are a parent of a young child in the UK or Ireland, odds are that you have come across Mr. Tumble at some stage. If you haven’t, you may be missing out.
Justin Fletcher, otherwise known as “Mr. Tumble” is an English actor, comedian and television presenter on the BBC pre-school television channel CBeebies. He has a TV programme called “Something Special”, which is designed to introduce children to Makaton signing—a language programme in the UK that uses signs together with speech and symbols—and is specifically aimed at children with delayed learning and communication difficulties.
It is currently the longest running CBeebies programme and the longest running preschool series in Britain. Mr. Tumble’s videos have been viewed over 450 million times on YouTube. He also performs live shows, which are very popular.
Mr. Tumble brings a positive, upbeat energy that young children naturally connect with. He is lively and engaging, and the accompanying songs are simple. The animation is bright and colourful, and the signing is intelligible and well done. Importantly, Mr. Tumble’s show is liked by, and features, children with additional needs and communication difficulties.
Parents may want to take note that Mr. Tumble uses British signing/Makaton, so this could confuse children who are used to other forms of signing and communication, such as Lámh in Ireland. Here are some of Mr. Tumble’s songs that we enjoy:
If you are a fan of other children’s entertainers who are doing great things for kids’ communication, please share them with us and other parents on our forum!