Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando’s education curriculum includes reading programs that aim to help children discover the joy of reading while developing literacy skills and confidence in a safe and comfortable environment. Reading to and with pets allows children to develop self-esteem as well as improve their enunciation, vocabulary, and expressive oral reading skills. Unlike their peers or teachers, who can be intimidating to children who lack confidence in their reading skills, animals are very non-threatening, helping children learn while gaining confidence. Contact our education department at (407) 248-1746 for more information.
Whiskers & Words
Serving grades one through eight, Whiskers & Words allows children to visit the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando’s shelters with their parent or guardian and read to our shelter cats. The program is beneficial for both the children, by fostering confidence and reading skills, and the cats, by providing a soothing and rhythmic sound of a human voice, which comforts them. This program is open to all children, with or without a learning disability, as well as children with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Asperger Syndrome. Each reading session lasts for 15 minutes.
Serving grades Kindergarten through third, our Wagging Tales program brings therapy dogs to schools in Orange, Seminole, and Osceola Counties. In groups of five to ten students, Pet Alliance volunteers engage reading sessions with the students and the therapy dog, in a calm, quiet environment. This program is also open to students with or without learning disabilities, and consists of two 30-minute reading sessions for each hour-long visit.