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Story Dogs

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http://storydogs.org.au/

Our Mission
To make reading fun for children, so they become confident lifelong readers.
No child should be left behind in literacy.

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Story Dogs Facts

We help over 430 children each week.
In 53 schools throughout NSW, QLD, VIC and TAS.
With 86 current Dog Teams.
59 Dog Teams are sponsored.

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The Magic

When children read to a dog, the outcomes are amazing! It’s non-judgemental, children’s focus improves, literacy skills increase and confidence soars. The non-judgmental, loving nature of dogs gives this program its magic and helps children relax, open up, try harder and have fun reading to a friendly and calm dog.

Story Dogs is based on the successful American literacy program Reading Education Assistance Dogs (R.E.A.D.). The R.E.A.D program was launched in 1999 in Utah USA, as the first comprehensive literacy program built around the appealing idea of children and young adolescents reading to dogs.

Reading sessions take place in a quiet area of the school grounds, such as the library or outside the classroom. A reading session is approximately 20 minutes long, where each child is one-on-one with the dog team. Books are chosen to suit the student´s reading level. During the session, the handler often speaks through the dog, such as; “Sam doesn’t understand what is happening on this page, could you help him out?” The child becomes the teacher; and their confidence soars!

Our volunteers come with fun, interesting books, specifically chosen for the reading level of each child. The students also have input into what they read. We encourage the students to write letters to the dogs at home, thereby encouraging literacy skills.

The Nuts and Bolts

The dogs

Learning to read is often less about intellectual limitation than about overcoming fears. “Fear can destroy intelligence,” says educator William Ayers. Animals are ideal reading companions because they promote relaxation and lower blood pressure, do not judge, laugh or criticise and allow children to proceed at their own pace.

The volunteers

Story Dogs handlers are volunteers trained to teach emergent readers. This ensures the handler will not judge the child and will help in a non threatening way. We are fully insured and our handlers have ‘Working With Children’ checks as per each states regulations.

Which children are chosen for the program?

The children are usually Year 2 students generally between the ages 7- 8 years old who are chosen by the school. Story Dogs does not assess the children in any way as the sessions are designed to be as non-threatening as possible. We rely on assessment results taken throughout the year by the school. Parental consent is required before a child can participate in the program.

Students love the experience and do not really think that it is actually a learning task; just fun!

Kristi Purvis, Teacher, Centaur Primary

Good morning with an Oktoberfest Pet slide show tribute!

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Why is Oktoberfest called “Oktoberfest” when it actually begins in September?

The historical background: the first Oktoberfest was held in the year 1810 in honor of the Bavarian Crown Prince Ludwig’s marriage to Princess Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen. The festivities began on October 12, 1810 and ended on October 17th with a horse race. In the following years, the celebrations were repeated and, later, the festival was prolonged and moved forward into September.

By moving the festivities up, it allowed for better weather conditions. Because the September nights were warmer, the visitors were able to enjoy the gardens outside the tents and the stroll over “die Wiesen” or the fields much longer without feeling chilly. Historically, the last Oktoberfest weekend was in October and this tradition continues into present times.

When will the Oktoberfest 2015 take place?

On Saturday, September 19th, the Schottenhamel tent is the place to be, if you want to catch the official opening ceremonies. At noon, the Mayor of Munich will have the honor of tapping the first keg of Oktoberfest beer. Once the barrel has been tapped, all visitors will then be allowed to quench their thirst. It pays to arrive early in order to experience the festivities up close and personal and it’s quite common for visitors to come around 9 am to secure good seats. The festival will last until October 4th.

What are the opening hours?
Beer Serving Hours
Opening day 12.00 noon – 10.30 pm
Weekdays 10.00 am – 10.30 pm
Saturday, Sunday & holiday 09.00 am – 10.30 pm
Daily closing hour 11.30 pm ‘Käfers Wiesnschänke’ and ‘Weinzelt’ open until 1.00 am

Opening hours of stalls
Opening day 10.00 noon – midnight
Monday – Thursday 10 am – 11.30 pm
Friday 10.00 am – 12.00 midnight
Saturday 9 am – midnight
Sunday 9 am – 11.30 pm

Fairground attractions & sideshows
Opening day 12.00 noon – midnight
Monday – Thursday 10 am – 11.30 pm
Friday, Saturday 10.00 am – midnight
Sunday 10 am – 11.30 pm

End of Oktoberfest
Sunday, October 4th, 2015 11.30 pm

Do I have to pay an entrance fee?

No, the entry to the area and all beer-tents is free.

Is smoking allowed in the beer tents?

No. Since August 2010 there is a new no-smoking law in Bavaria which interdicts smoking in all kind of bars, pubs and restaurants including beer tents. Contravention is punished by not being served or from 2011 on also by a fine.

What is “Die Wiesn”?
The locals in Munich fondly refer to Oktoberfest as “die Wiesn” because of its location, Theresienwiese, which was named after Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen.

Is there a program of events to observe during this folk’s festival?
The main highlight of the Wiesn events and an important must-see is the Oktoberfest Costume and Riflemen’s Parade. The parade happens every year on the first Wiesn Sunday.

Other important events are the Parade of Oktoberfest Landlords and Breweries, the Official Tapping of the Keg, the Oktoberfest Mass , “Böllerschießen” (handheld canon salute) in front of the Bavaria statue and – this year- an agricultural festival.

More info here.

wiki here.