The National Film Unit

From 1941 to 1950, the National Film Unit produced the Weekly Review and from 1952 to 1971, the Pictorial Parade. Government owned, the Unit’s work included visits to schools to show the country positive stories about the future of New Zealand and the good work that was being done. This included visits to Sumner and St Dominic’s School for Deaf Children.

A Deaf Child in the Family, 1969

Source: New Zealand Deaf News, 1969, Vol. 6, No. 2.

A 40 minute long documentary about deaf children and their special education needs. Encourages families to support their deaf child but not to spoil them. Footage includes scenes at the three deaf schools in New Zealand and teacher trainees learning special needs at Christchurch Teachers College. Also features deaf people doing a variety of jobs in later life.

A Deaf Child in the Family (1969), was produced by the National Film Unit for a voluntary organisation – the New Zealand Teaching Films to Help Deaf Children Society – a group specially formed to fund the film which cost $5000. 

Film screenings of “A Deaf Child in the Family” were held over New Zealand, such as that organised by the Manawatu Association of Parents of Deaf Children who held a film evening at the Regent Theatre on April 29, 1969. Members from the Manawatu Deaf Society were invited to the 6:30pm screening, and Daniel Beech said it was “most enjoyable”.

NB. SignDNA currently holds a reel of the film, awaiting to be digitised.

Can also be found in

  1. 1950
    Donated by Archives New Zealand Image of Archives New Zealand

    National Film Unit visits St Dominics School for the Deaf

    The Government’s National Film Unit follows the City District Health Nurse as she visits students at St Dominic’s School for the Deaf.

  2. 1955
    Donated by Archives New Zealand Image of Archives New Zealand

    National Film Unit visits Sumner School for the Deaf – 75th Jubilee

    The National Film Unit visits Sumner School for the Deaf to report on progress in the education of deaf children and to check out the school's 75th Jubilee celebrations.

  3. 1947
    Donated by Archives New Zealand Image of Archives New Zealand

    National Film Unit visits Sumner School for the Deaf – Student life

    The National Film Unit visits Sumner School for the Deaf to film a typical day at the school.