Dog Learns to Read to Help Children With Their Own Reading Skills

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A chocolate Labrador retriever is helping children gain the confidence to read by also recognizing words.

Named Fernie, the 2-year-old dog was brought to classes in the UK to act as a therapy dog, helping children build confidence with their reading skills. He would comfort the children while they read aloud, resting his head on their lap and not judge them. But since starting at a school in Brisol, Fernie’s handler, Nik Gardner, wanted to see if the dog too could read.

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So, Gardner worked with the dog to recognize words on flashcards. Fernie can read the words “sit,” “down,” “roll over” and “spin.” And Gardner believes this helps children’s confidence.

“It means that if the dog can read the flash cards and do what it says, then it sends a message to children, that if the dog can do it, it is a good motivation for them to learn how to read as well. ”

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