Barbara Vokatis

Innovative Collaborations between Teachers and Therapy Dog Teams to Increase Children’s Writing Skills and Inspire Them for Life

Therapy Dogs

Introduction Is it possible to incorporate dog therapy in such a way that it will result in children’s increased motivation, engagement, and achievement in the area of literacy and especially writing, as well as empower children for life? In this article, I highlight positive results from an innovative experiment in which a collaborative team consisting […]

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We can change the world

Therapy Dogs

Today was a special day. We visited the second grade dog therapy/literacy lab class of second graders for the last time in this school year. During this time we also interviewed some students, asking them about what they liked about our visits this year. Children expressed that having a dog in the classroom gave them […]

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What else can we do?

Therapy Dogs

As the 21/22 school year is coming to the end, I have to reflect on what has happened this year in the second grade. What started as regular visits, involving petting Carmel and Carmel interacting with children, it turned into more thought-out and strategic integration of our therapy visits into the second grade curriculum, with […]

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“We want to write!”

Therapy Dogs

Is it possible to turn the whole classroom of second graders, including children who don’t like to write, into motivated, engaged, and enthusiastic graders? Yes, it is possible and realistic. This week, I couldn’t come to the second grade on Wednesday, which is our regular time, and had to come on Thursday. On Wednesday, when […]

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New Ideas to Enhance Teaching of Writing

Therapy Dogs

We all know that motivation is an extremely important ingredient of learning anything. How can we motivate children to write? Because to me good teaching is never prescriptive but rather needs to be creative, inspirational, and in tune with students’ needs, teachers really need to experiment with new teaching ideas. As a teacher and researcher, […]

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This Journey Only Gets Better

Therapy Dogs

What can improve education in this country and beyond? Expensive commercial literacy materials that claim to do the trick? Or maybe good teachers who are true experts and can make their own decisions based on responsive teaching? As a college professor and researcher, I can definitely tell the latter is the answer. But beyond that, […]

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And then, this happened in the classroom…

Therapy Dogs

Therapy dog sparks imagination in the classroom.

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Next Level Reading

Therapy Dogs

Therapy Dog Takes Teaching a Reading Strategy to Another Level

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A Reading Strategy

Therapy Dogs

Therapy Dog teaches children a reading strategy.