Within the framework of animal-assisted education, representatives of various animal species support educators in their work.
They help the children to implement educational goals more easily and to strengthen their social, cognitive and emotional skills.
What are the advantages of promoting reading a book with a dog?
The dog’s task is to take away the students’ fear and inhibitions about reading, to strengthen their self-confidence and to motivate them to read. Because only those who practice reading regularly can improve.
An animal listener has some useful characteristics compared to humans
A dog never criticizes
Knowing that the dog never laughs at mistakes, evaluates reading performance or already has a ready-made judgement, takes away the students’ fear of reading and lets them read aloud in a completely uninhibited way.
Children who tend to be shy and reserved in class benefit particularly from this. Over time, the children develop more and more self-confidence in reading situations, which they can then fall back on even without a dog.
A dog does not interrupt reading
A dog magnanimously overlooks minor mistakes. This keeps the students in the flow of reading and is not constantly torn out by improvements.
A dog motivates to read
Since there are practically no failures when reading to the dog, children who otherwise have little pleasure in reading develop more fun with books and are motivated by the matter. After all, they want to surprise their listener next time with new stories and improved reading skills. The dog is a positive reinforcer, so to speak, which again links reading with beautiful impressions and a sense of achievement.
A dog relaxes the reading situation
When reading aloud, the children can pet the dog and feel its closeness. This makes the situation even more relaxing. Without tension and stress, students find it much easier to read fluently. The positive effect of pets against stress has now been scientifically proven.
Which dogs are suitable when reading a book?
Whether a dog is suitable as a “reading dog” depends less on the breed than on the individual character traits. The dog should have strong character, people-related, friendly, and fond of children.
Reading promotion with a dog can only be successful if the dog enjoys what it is doing and the reading hours are not stressful for it.
As a dog owner, you should know how to live with dogs. After the reading time, the dogs need exercise and activity to compensate.