Betty – Our School Dog
Since her arrival at our school in 2020, we have used Betty in a wide range of activities and the results are remarkable.
Here are just a few of the ways she has helped our children…
- To improve reading confidence; children who have found it challenging to read aloud in front of peers have been supported to read to Betty outside of their classroom instead.
- To reduce anxiety…children who have been a bit nervous about coming into school, Betty gives them a helping paw and walks with them to the classroom!
- Children who felt unable to speak directly to a member of staff about their concerns have been able to talk to Betty about what’s on their mind, with a caring adult listening in the background.
- Betty helps to improve children’s ability to think of others
- We’ve been able to develop empathy skills in our students using Betty. We’ve supported students to follow care routines and guidelines for her, teaching them to put her needs before their own.
- We’ve taught children about the need to use a calm and quiet voice and small movements in order to get a positive response from Betty. This enables children to consider how our reactions make others feel.
- Betty provides companionship and a friendly welcome to school
- Our weekly Betty Award, which is the offer of time with our school dog is an incentive for positive behaviour.
- Betty provides our children with an endlessly non-judgemental response to everything they do and say. She allows children to be themselves without comment or judgement and, through her, they grow in confidence with their peers.
Our days generally begin with a smile when Betty is here…and when days begin with a smile, everyone in our school community is happy! Betty looks forward to meeting you!