"Can reading to a dog raise children's reading levels? According to studies on the subject a young student's reading scores can advance significantly – two to four grade levels – by reading to a dog for just 20 minutes a week throughout the school year (40 weeks).
The American Library Association estimates that there are 27 million functionally illiterate adults in the United States. The national "America Reads'' program notes that 40 percent of fourth graders read below their grade level, and that children who don't master reading by the third grade risk falling further behind.
Children who read to pets have less absenteeism, visit the library more often, and improve their grades on report cards. Also, children with low self-esteem are often more willing to interact with an animal than with another person. Pets can also teach children empathy and compassion.
"When children were asked to read aloud under three conditions (to a peer, to an adult, and to a therapy dog), the presence of a therapy dog reduced children's blood pressure and heart rate to normal levels and diminished other observable signs of anxiety," Renck Jalongo said. "Working with animals is remarkably effective with students who have attentional difficulties, disruptive behaviors, or a general lack of interest in reading."
More at: http://www.everydayhealth.com/pet-health/dogs-boost-kids-reading-skills.aspx?xid=nl_EverydayHealthPetHealth_20100
Ray, Jay and I fought the old patio door to get it out. We had to take the white vinyl trim off, all the way around, and then loosen the blue vinyl siding. Then we could get to the nails that held the door flange.
My late DH had installed that door, and he always put roofing nails on the edge of the flange, not through the flange. That helped a lot.
The vinyl siding and trim needs to be re-installed, but by 2.00 PM we had all had enough for today.