All kids should have access to high quality children’s literature. Story Box Library (SBL) is committed to improving access to a diverse range of kids books, ensuring that all children can grow a love of reading and learning from a young age. By working to improve the overall cultural diversity and representation in our library, to implementing ongoing updates to our website features, SBL helps educators, librarians and parents get all kids excited about reading, regardless of age, learning level or background.

Thanks to a grant received from Telematics Trust and a partnership with Auslan consultancy, SBL is releasing a dedicated series of beloved stories with Auslan translations. You can find these stories as they are released in our digital collection here, and explore more about each below.

Auslan story releases

The following stories are available to watch on SBL now:

How To Make A Bird

Stunning imagery and moving language let imagination take flight in an ethereal primer on making a bird. Breathe deeply and take your time. The making of a bird is not a thing to be hurried.

Written by Meg McKinlay, illustrated by Matt Ottley, read by Kate Miller-Heidke for Melbourne Writers Festival. Translated into Auslan by Jason Alford.

Your Birthday Was The Best!

The story of a plucky young cockroach who gate-crashes a birthday party – with hilarious results. Funny, silly and surprisingly cute, Your Birthday Was the Best! is the perfect blend of downright gross and delightfully entertaining. Written by Maggie Hutchings, illustrated by Felicita Sala and read by Wayne Hope. Translated into Auslan by James Blyth.

Who’s Your Real Mum?

A beautiful story that celebrates nontraditional families and captures exactly what lies at the heart of family life — love. Gorgeously illustrated by Anna Zobel, written with a light and humorous touch by Bernadette Green, and read by Erin Wamala. Translated into Auslan by Meg Aumann.

Anemone Is Not The Enemy

All Anemone wants is a friend, but friends are hard to make when you accidentally sting everyone who comes near you.

Written and illustrated by Anna McGregor, read by Mel Buttle for Melbourne Writers Festival. 

Busy Beaks

From author, illustrator and storyteller Sarah Allen, Busy Beaks is full of splashing shorebirds, clattering cockatoos, parading penguins and greedy galahs, Busy Beaks is the perfect introduction to Australian birds of all shapes and sizes.

We Love You, Magoo

Magoo has his own ideas about what a dog should do – in the kitchen, in the car, at dinnertime and bedtime! But there are so many rules! So many things a dog can't do. From creator Briony Stewart, read by Michala Banas.

“Auslan interpretations of books really brings a book to life – showing many layers to the story, highlighting visual elements by using three dimensional space.” 

Read our interview with Evie, teacher librarian from Victorian College of the Deaf, and why accessibility in children’s literature matters.

Ellie’s Dragon

A moving story about the wonders of imagination and the nature of growing up from one of Australia’s most revered bookmakers.

Written and illustrated by Bob Graham, read by SBL Librarian Storyteller of the Year Winner 2020 and State Library Queensland librarian, Frankie Jaiyeola.

Norton And The Bear

Is imitation the sincerest form of flattery? Or is it just annoying?

This irresistible read-aloud helps children deal with the sensitive topics of conformity, individuality and belonging in an accessible, kid-friendly way.

Written and illustrated by Gabriel Evans, read by SBL Librarian Storyteller of the Year Winner 2020 and State Library Queensland librarian, Frankie Jaiyeola.

Not Cute

This is the romping, stomping, chomping tale of one stubbornly adorable marsupial. But beneath its many costumes, Not Cute is a simple story about self-acceptance, listening to others, and not succumbing to your own delusions.

Written and illustrated by Philip Bunting, read by Mel Buttle for Melbourne Writers’ Festival.

The Unwilling Twin

Like all twins, Jules and George do everything together. But after a long, hot day at the beach, even twins sometimes disagree ...

From multi-award-winning picture book creator Freya Blackwood comes a cheeky and charming story about the ups and downs of sibling love. Read by Alice Pung, for Melbourne Writers’ Festival.

Stay tuned, the following stories are set to be released on SBL in the coming days:

No! Never!

Georgie is a sweet little girl who always makes her parents happy... until she discovers one powerful phrase: No! Never!

Written by Libby Hathorn and Lisa Hathorn-Jarman, illustrated by Mel Pearce, and read by Michala Banas.

There’s No Such Thing

It wasn't a hungry giant or a blood-sucking spider or a fire-breathing dragon because there is NO SUCH THING…

Is there?

Written and illustrated by Heidi McKinnon and read by Captain Starlight, from the Starlight Foundation.


Set in the rugged Australian bush, this story is about a small calf who becomes separated from his family, who have been taken away in the back of a noisy truck. So begins the little calf’s journey to find them again. Written by Bruce Pascoe, illustrated by Charmaine Ledden-Lewis, and read by Emma Donovan for Melbourne Writers’ Festival.

Read more about how Story Box Library supports language learning and audio-visual development.