If you love both libraries and dogs you will adore “Madeline Finn and the Library Dog” by Lisa Papp. Madeline is a frustrated little girl who claims that she hates to read. Every time she has to read aloud in class, she messes up words and doesn’t earn a gold star.
Madeline’s mother does all she can to help her daughter feel more confident about her reading skills. One day she takes Madeline to their local library where Madeline meets Bonnie. Bonnie is a large white shepherd dog. She is an excellent listener and doesn’t care if Madeline messes up the words sometimes.
Soon Madeline and Bonnie are reading together every Saturday at the library. Madeline’s confidence soars as she practices her reading. Then one day in class she pretends she is reading to Bonnie, and she earns her first gold star. She races to show Bonnie her gold star, and Bonnie has a wonderful surprise for Madeline in return.
This book is excellent for struggling readers. It shows that if you practice and persist, you can improve. This is also an great book for pet lovers because Bonnie is a sweet character who helps Madeline in so many ways.
The Columbia Public Library has a program very similar to the one explored in “Madeline Finn and the Library Dog.” On the second Monday each month from 5:30-7:30 p.m. the Columbia Public Library hosts Reading to Rover with Ann Gafke’s Teacher’s Pet Therapy Dogs in the Children’s Program Room. Your child can come and read to the dogs, get a free bookmark and make a new furry friend.