Rita the Learning Assistance Dog
At Veryan School we are lucky enough to have the assistance of Rita. Rita currently comes to school at various points throughout the term.
The main benefits of having a learning assistant dog in school:
•Children learn skills that result in better connection and relationships
•Physical benefits including lower blood pressure, reduced anxiety, increased self esteem, a tendency to forget about insecurities and limitations, increased immune system
•Socio-emotional support that facilitates coping, recovery, and resilience and offer comfort, affection, and a sense of security.
The presence of a companion dog, in Carne class especially, helped the new children to build trust in their new teacher in September and for those joining mid-year, in a relatively short period of time. Which meant children were more relaxed and motivated to engage in their learning far earlier into the term .
Additional child/ need specific benefits;
•Increased effectiveness of Thrive/TIS activities with the presence of the dog
•Physical therapy assisted by the dog for children with sensory processing needs