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Tulsa's John Paul Jones Elementary 3rd grade class has a new buddy

Posted at 8:40 AM, Nov 28, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-29 10:57:58-05

TULSA, Okla. — Third grade can be a hard time for kids, especially when they’re learning to read.

One Green Country school brought in a special helper to ease their challenges.

And now test scores have improved.

John Paul Jones Elementary created a specialized reading room for the third grade class students to read aloud.

Reading Specialist Lindsay Wilson says a lot of her students struggled with words in the past, but she's seen a lot of improvement lately.

“Every time we bring in a kid, they just fly through their books and I am so impressed it has been such a big difference," Wilson said.

Lindsey's third grade students always jump at the opportunity to read for their special helper.

“It feels kind of good because when I am reading by him it makes me feel more comfortable,” Camari Harris said.

That comfort comes from their four legged friend, who goes by the name of a state - Utah.

He brings smile to students eager to read.

“It’s amazing to read to him because I've never seen a dog this big,” Harris said.

78 pounds of pure love, the Samoyed therapy dog also builds confidence when they read to him.

“The students are really motivated to read the second they see Utah come in the building. They just get so excited , they want to be picked to come in and read to Utah,” Wilson said.

Lindsay Wilson says she’s never seen such enthusiasm from her students for their education until now.

Not only have they improved but she says her students are more excited about learning now that their confidence has grown.

“With the state reading test coming up, we are really trying to build their reading skills so they will be confident for that test. We try to pull those kids in. So that they can read in here. And practice their reading skills,” Wilson said.

“He’s very soft and he likes it when people read to him,” Kyla Lane said.

“Do not worry we will grow again. We will? Yay! Grow, grow, grow. Before we grow let’s clean this place up,” Harris said.

And without realizing it right now, these kids are growing too, thanks to man’s best friend.

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