Do you know that reading to animals can be beneficial to struggling readers and can boost children's literacy?
How does that work?
Let’s look at the most obvious benefits of reading to animals.
★ Struggling readers are often shy to read in front of others.
They fear embarrassment and lack confidence when reading aloud. With animals, there is no judgment! Kids can relax and even be proud of their reading skills.
★ Who doesn't like cute puppies (or any other animal)? Children get attached to the animal and look forward to reading to them. The thought of reading to an adorable pup is motivating and exciting to kids, and that is all they need to begin loving books!
★ Reading is an essential part of the school and the academical success. When a child struggles to read, the thought of going to school might be overwhelming. The nervousness and anxiety affect students' performance.
The involvement of animals in the whole process changes the child's attitude towards reading and school.
According to researchers at Tufts Institute for Human-Animal Interaction at Tufts University, "Second-grade students who read aloud to dogs in an afterschool program demonstrated improved attitudes about reading."
★ The benefits go both ways! Animals love the attention they receive - especially the shelter animals that don’t have homes. The interaction helps socializing them, which boost their chances for adoption. The act of helping the animals, gives kids a sense of purpose and accomplishment!
Final verdict: Reading to animals is beneficial and enjoyable for everyone!
If you don't have a pet at home, you can always visit a friend who has a friendly and safe animal. Check your local library and shelters. Many recognize the benefit of kids reading to animals and are offering such activities lately. And if that option is not available, suggest reading to a younger sibling or even to the favorite stuffed toy.