Going to the Dogs
After three years, when program participation began to flag, we started kicking off each three month season with a BIG program that included a "Meet and Greet" with the dogs that really rekindled interest. Then, quite by accident since it was the only open program slot we had, our Hedgehog Librarian started a very popular 4-7 year old storytime that immediately preceded the dog program and our slots have been jammed since. It was a perfect marriage of a literacy program supporting beginning readers followed by a program that supported their reading skills. Win-win!
The kids have been thrilled. They love their furry listeners and the dogs love the kids (they barely give our librarians a glance when they prance in - they know who does the reading they love). Kids with hesitations, low self- esteem or other issues that impact their confidence in their reading skills get a non-judgemental ear and a definite boost. It has been a special literacy program and we are glad we can do it!