Henry Hepburn

Having a ruff time? Go and see the therapet…

How man’s best friend has helped reluctant readers to flourish at one school

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Riggs is 8 and loves to be read to in school. Nothing unusual in that – except that Riggs is an English springer spaniel.

Since the start of the school year, in what is thought to be a first in Scotland, he has been helping children at Stirling’s Bannockburn Primary to discover a love of reading.

Children come to the school’s support-for-learning base for some one-to-one time with Riggs. What follows has been known to reduce passing teachers to tears.

These are pupils who, for various underlying reasons, have struggled badly with reading in the past. Whatever is behind their troubles – it ...

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