Furever as Friends Dogs Lend a Paw – and Their Ears – to Thomas Jefferson Elementary School Kindergarten Students
WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP – The kindergarten students in Mrs. Nicole Ferrante’s class at Thomas Jefferson Elementary School added a little something extra to their reading practice on Friday, May 31, 2019. Some four-legged friends and their owners, members of the Furever as Friends organization, came out to the school to provide a comforting ear to the young readers. The visit was organized by senior members of the Washington Township High School P.A.W.S. Club, as part of a Senior Service Day activity.
The students, broken up into small groups, gathered around Angel, Oakley and Jersey – dogs who are no strangers to this type of thing. One-by-one, the students in the group read short stories and books to the dogs and their owners. Simultaneously, the other students could use a brush to massage the dogs’ fur, or just pet them gently.
Furever as Friends has partnered with the Washington Township High School P.A.W.S. club and travels around holding a program for reluctant readers called S.M.I.L.E. (Silent Mentors in Literacy Education). The Gloucester County non-profit organization uses certified pets to provide therapy for young readers, exam preparation for students of all ages, and as calming influences in assisted living centers and hospitals.