The Southlake Library is partnering with therapy dog, Malbec, and his owner, Jill Ritzer, to improve reading and communication skills while teaching children to love reading books. Malbec, a Portuguese water dog, is helping kids one book at a time. He loves having a book read to him. When kids are reading to him, they know he is listening by the way he sits or lays patiently and wags his tail.
“Malbec creates a comfortable place for the children and does not judge when you read, he just enjoys listening to your stories,” says Ritzer.
What better way to practice your reading and communication skills, than with a dog in a comfortable environment? Malbec is great at working with children not only on building confidence through reading and communication but motivating readers to hit the books.
Ritzer became very passionate about education and building a strong community of readers thanks to the help of her sisters who share the same enthusiasm for reading and education. She combined her love for dogs and her passion for reading to create a positive program that attracts many from all over the DFW Metroplex.
She is excited to share the joy Malbec brings her with everyone else – “It’s all about the children. I really enjoy seeing the progress they make,” she says. “Children are so excited to read to Malbec, I can see the children progress, as they come running in ready to share with Malbec about what’s happening next in their books”.
Want to sign your beginning or struggling reader up to read with Malbec? If so, email the library at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve a 15 minute spot.
Malbec’s summer schedule is as follows: June 11 & 18; July 2 & 16; August 6 & 20 – from 10 AM to 11:15 AM.
For more information please visit kids library page on the website.