So, I was approached by a friend this summer who was getting her dog certified as a therapy dog through Therapy Dogs International. He finished his training and is now certified to read with kids. I spoke to my principal about letting him come to school to read with the kids, and he loved it the idea! We started two weeks ago and now Yogi and his handler, Mary (my friend) come every Wednesday for two hours at a time. We schedule the kids in 15 minute intervals, with a 15 minute break for Yogi. The kids are loving it and are constantly asking me when they get to read with him again!
Officially, Yogi is part of "Tail Waggin' Tutors" which allows therapy dogs to come into schools and work with struggling readers. These students are often shy, nervous, apprehensive, you name it, when it comes to reading. This program allows the kids to read to Yogi in a non-threatening atmosphere and help build their confidence. My hope is to get more therapy dogs at our school to help our students!
I asked students to write a quick blog post about their experience with Yogi. Specifically, what their favorite part was and why, and would they like to read with him again?
Here is what they wrote!
Reading to Yogi is fun and the end of the story is fun because Yogi is so funny and I pat him in the fur, I do want to read to Yogi again because it is so fun when he moves around and he lays down.
My favorite thing of reading with Yogi was he listened all the time and the time when I laughed it was when he went to sleep and it was fun. I would like to read to him again because it was fun and I
wanted to spend more time with Yogi,
My favorite part was when I sat down on the grass and Yogi started to lick me. It was my favorite part because he was super cool because he got on top of me. Yes, I want to read with him again because he is soft and big and when I was reading I felt his soft fur.
My favorite part of reading with Yogi was when he would snuff me because it tickled. I would like to read to him again because he was a good dog and I really like him.
My favorite part of reading with Yogi is when I was reading and he was in my lap. When I was reading he was sleeping. I would like to read with him because he is cute and big and I like Yogi.
My favorite part of reading to Yogi was when he laid on my lap and fell asleep. He woke up and he wagged his tail. I would like to read with him again because it was fun to read to him. It was very fun.
My favorite part of reading with Yogi is when Yogi put his paw on my book because Yogi likes my book and was like "read the book!" I would like to see him again because he is a sweet dog.
I look forward to a fun school year with Yogi and can't wait to watch my kids build their confidence in reading throughout the year. If any of you can get this program, or one like it, in your school, I highly recommenced it!
Check back for more Yogi updates throughout the year!