Today was the first day of piloting some pet therapy intervention, with Howard Center's Laurel Robbins bringing in her therapy partner Teddy to support students in becoming more regulated and engaged in classrooms throughout SCS. This one picture below tells the story of our first day success!
Teddy has been trained and tested as a Therapy Dog. Laurel and Teddy are registered and certified through Therapy Dogs of Vermont. For more information visit www.therapydogs.org
Some of the positive impacts Therapy Dog teams can have on students include:
- Learning stress management
- Developing empathy
- Strengthening emotion regulation
- Decreasing anxiety
- Increasing sense of responsibility
- Achieving and maintaining mood stability
- Building social skills and perspective taking
- Gaining the ability to recognize and talk about feelings
While having a Therapy Dog at Shelburne Community School will provide incredible opportunities for kids in a variety of ways, the health and comfort of all of our students is paramount. Teddy is a hypoallergenic dog breed, but we recognize there may be other health or cultural concerns. Her work will be conducted in the main office area - both to help her focus on her work and also to assure that other children are not distracted or negatively impacted by having her in classrooms.