Local kids practice reading skills to shelter animals

Published: Mar. 11, 2020 at 4:06 AM PDT
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Northern Nevada kids are getting the chance to improve their reading skills, but not at the place you might expect. According to the Nevada Humane Society (NHS), its Books and Buddies program is gaining popularity.

Children work on their developmental skills by reading to the shelter animals. The shelter said it books large groups every month and it benefits the pets too. Megan McCalister with NHS said, "It is a great way to learn the importance of community service while making a huge difference for our animals."

Lina Andres, a local teacher, said Books and Buddies is a valuable community program.

Andres said, "In my personal opinion reading is the foundation for all other learning." She added, "The kids are learning about pets and this just works out great for us."

During these reading sessions the kids are joined by their parents. Clint Morgan said it’s a great way for kids to learn how to read in a relaxed environment.

Morgan said, “The dog isn't going to judge them, they just want to be loved and be around them and there is no pressure on them, so I think they really enjoy it."

Another parent, Dillon Arambulo said it teaches his daughter about community service. "This is more than just reading, kind of getting involved, trying to get these dogs a new home and all that."

While kids are sounding out their vowels, it gives the animals a chance to work on their shelter presence. McCalister said, "If a child is sitting in front of them for a while, they end up being comfortable with that person there."

She continued, "So if a dog is barking a lot when you stand in front of its kennel it's going to be less adoptable, people don't want to take home a barking crazy dog, so if the dog is calm in front of the kennel, it does make them more adoptable."

Copyright KOLO-TV 2020

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