My mom told me that some kids have gone back to school already and others will be going back soon. Have you gone back to school yet? I do my learning all year long so I am always in school!
Do you enjoy working on the homework your teachers give you? Homework gives you the opportunity to practice what you learned during your classes at school. My mom has me do homework every day! I like my homework and training sessions because I love to keep busy and especially like learning new things.
My mom and I work together on practicing my service dog skills and we also practice fun dog training exercises. We try to do a variety of things every day!
It is important for me to keep my service dog skills sharp so that I remember how to do them correctly. I know how to do about 50 different things! But my mom doesn’t need me to do all of them every day. I could get sloppy or forget how to do some of those tasks if we don’t practice them. When we are training she gives me lots of treats so I really like that part, too!
My mom and I also love training for dog sports like rally and obedience and TEAM. I will tell you more about these in future posts but for now, they are similar to extracurricular activities that you might do in addition to your schoolwork. For you, these might be things like baseball or gymnastics or playing a musical instrument. For me, these are different types of dog-related activities. We even go to dog shows sometimes!
My mom says that it is important for us to play and have fun together so that we don’t just do work all of the time. Do you take breaks and play in between doing your homework assignments? In addition to the training, we also play ball and other games. The practicing of skills and the training doesn’t feel like work at all to me but I’m glad we get to play, too!
Did you know that your teachers make lesson plans so that they know what they are going to be teaching you? My mom makes training plans. These are like lesson plans so that she knows what we will be working on each day. It is important that we vary the things we practice. It is easy to practice the things we know well and we could easily forget to work on the tasks or exercises that are more challenging.
When my mom is teaching me new things she breaks the steps down into little pieces. This makes it easier to learn each part before we put them all together. She writes down how I am doing, the progress I am making, and the parts that we need to practice more.
My mom also videos some of our training sessions as a way to check on our progress. This shows us working from a different perspective than the way she sees us while we are actually performing the exercises. The videos can show the little mistakes we make which can be so helpful and insightful.
My mom loves to read. She has a whole library of dog training books! She also takes online dog training classes. Reading books and taking these classes helps her learn more about the best ways to teach me things and how we can work together in better ways. She jots down notes so that she can remember the things she wants to add to her training plans.
There is a wonderful online dog training school where she takes these classes. It is called the Fenzi Dog Sports Academy. Do you remember not too long ago when I told you how it can sometimes be challenging for my mom to find someone to drive her places? Being able to take these online dog training classes gives her the opportunity to learn and do things with me without having to worry about transportation. We learn together and get to have fun right here at home!
My mom made a “Fill in the Blank” activity page for you to do. It is all about me! Isn’t that fun? You can print it out right HERE. Please remember to download the pages before you print them so they are formatted correctly.
The above image is what the “Fill in the Blank” activity page will look like when you print it. When you download and print the PDF there will be a second page that has the answers just in case you need a little help. But no peeking at the answers until you finish the puzzle!
Here is a short video that shows you a sample of a training session that we did recently. When watching it my mom saw a few mistakes she made. She has made note of them and will work on making adjustments in her handling. Even my mom is working hard to improve her skills! We both help each other learn. If you ask me I’d say we make a pretty good team!