16 October 2017

Dog leads assemblies at Brookvale

Paw-fect pupils at Brookvale Primary School were all ears today (16 October) when Poppy the dog shared her amazing ‘tail’ at a bone-a fide assembly.

Different strokes: Poppy has been teaching children about acceptance and differences

The adorable six-year-old miniature Dachshund’s owner, teacher Sarah Griffiths, talked to children about the importance of resilience and change and being happy, based on Poppy’s inspirational story.

Poppy lost the use of her legs and became incontinent after being diagnosed with a spinal condition a year ago. However, after a crucial operation and remarkable recovery, she’s riding high in a custom-made wheelchair and co-ordinating pink nappy.

Poppy and Sarah in assembly

Year 5 pupil Inayah (aged 9) said:

It was a really good assembly. Poppy taught us that we can all be different.”

Classmate Darosa (aged 10) added:

She is really cute and very brave. We learned that people don’t always accept differences – but we do at this school.”

Pupils at both the Arthur Terry Learning Partnership’s Mere Green and Brookvale schools are benefitting from her uplifting assemblies – another example of ATLP collar-boration.

Year 5 teacher Sarah with her dog Poppy


Sarah said:

The children love to see Poppy and she adores coming into school and interacting with the pupils – she can still wag her tail, so I know she’s excited.

She used to be a PAT dog (Pets as therapy) and we went into elderly homes, where she had such a positive impact on residents. Now she helps children learn about a range of topics including overcoming challenges, acceptance of others and other important values we instil in all our children.

On top of all that, you can’t beat the presence of a pooch in pink for getting tongues wagging among pupils – her visits always spark their imaginations.”