Dogs who help us!
This week in preschool we learnt about all about dogs who help us. We spoke all about special breeds of dogs such as a Labrador, Golden retriever and the German Shepherd dogs who are mainly used in the UK for Guide dogs. Preschool learnt that an assistance dog is a dog that is professionally trained to guide, protect, and help disabled people. We learnt that there are three kinds of assistance dogs: (1) a guide dog helps blind people; (2) a hearing dog helps the deaf and hard of hearing; and (3) a service dog helps people with disabilities other than blindness or deafness. We learnt that these dogs are specially trained and are very clever!
Preschool enjoyed watching a short clip on the touch and tilt to see exactly how these dogs help us. We saw a young girl who has cerebral palsy and how her guide dog helps her. We also watched a short clip with a man who is blind and we saw that his dog helps him to cross the road only when it is safe to do so. The children asked some questions such as “how do the dog know it is safe?” and “how can the dog cross the road?” We answered their questions and then extended on our learning opportunities by role playing to be guide dogs helping the blind people. We placed a table in the middle of our circle to make it a bit trickier for the children to understand the concept, explaining that the child who was not blindfolded needed to help their blindfolded friend around the table, just as the guide dog would for the blind.
To further extend on our knowledge around dogs, we learnt about a few other dog breeds and their differences. We had some children pick out a dog of their choice from a group of factual cards, so they find out more about them. We looked at Chihuahuas, Dingos, Huskies, Dalmatians, Pugs, Poodles and read on some of their personalities that differ from another, whilst some may have similarities. The children were thrilled to learn that a Dingo dog is a popular dog in Australia and was happy to mention some of their Australian peers amongst them too. This led to the children discovering the word ‘intelligent’, after being told that both poodles and huskies are well-known breeds for their high intelligence.
We then got practical by creating our own dog faces on paper, cutting out pieces and sticking the features down whilst having their own dog picture beside them as a guidance for their creation. The children really enjoyed learning about different types of dogs and getting hands on with making their own, to gain a better understanding.