Can a dog increase read learning levels in children? Some studies confirm that the dog can help children to learn better at school. Dogs can significantly increase the reading level of a child. It’s only 20 minutes a week for the whole school year.
The American Library Association estimates that there are 27 million illiterate adults in the United States.
Children who read for pets have less absenteeism, visit the library more often, and improve their votes on the pages. In addition, children with low self-esteem are often more likely to interact with an animal than with another person. Pets can also teach children empathy and compassion.
Why Are The Children Being Driven To Read?
“We were not inventing the concept of a child reading a pet, but we were the first to use it in a facility,”
said Kathy Klotz, executive director of Reading Education Assistance Dogs Program.
“There is no doubt that children are very anxious to read to a dog.”
Parents do not necessarily have to wait for a program like this to be included in their children’s school project. They can do it at home immediately, provided the dog is trained and able to keep calm for at least 20 minutes while reading.
Several schools in America have implemented training programs for trained dogs to encourage children’s reading, but it is still a chimera. Up to now, only about 3,000 children have participated in the program since 1999.
Mary Renck Jalongo has studied this program and has recently written an article on the well-known magazine “Childhood Education”.
- “When children were asked to read aloud in three different situations (to another child, an adult, and a trained dog), the dog’s presence reduced blood pressure and heart rate to normal levels and decreased other signs of anxiety.”
- “Working with animals is extraordinarily effective with students who have difficulty in attention, aggressive behavior, or a general lack of interest in reading.”
A Special Bond
The special relationship between troubled children and animals has not gone unnoticed to Samuel B. Ross, founder of Green Chimneys in Brewster, New York, a special treatment program for children with emotional, behavioral and learning problems. The 75-hectare farm can count about 300 animals for 192 children between the ages of 6 and 18. All these children were not accepted in a public school.
- “Children heal animals, and animals heal children,” said Ross.
- “They find that they are also able to do something productive after they had been told they were incapable. Here, they find out that’s not true.”
So researchers approved that Dogs can significantly increase the reading level of a child.
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