Can a new pet help a child learn responsibility? Sure! They can learn how to take a dog for a walk, for example, or make sure the cat’s food bowl gets filled every day, or make sure the goldfish tank gets cleaned out.
But, if you’re of the vein that it’ll just be dad who ends up walking the dog in the end, perhaps here’s another reason to take interest: a new book shows not only what a pet can teach us, but what the pet can teach people about other people. And, if that’s not enough, it shows how the interactions of humans and animals throughout history can shape our own actions, be it moral, ethical or otherwise.
The book is called The Educational Significance of Human and Non-Human Animal Interactions: Blurring the Species Line. and it edited by our own A.G. Rud, distinguished professor in the College of Education, along with Suzanne Rice, professor of educational leadership and policy studies at the University of Kansas.
The book contains chapters from scholars from across the country and an array of disciplines to examine the intersection of humans and animals. The topic is on the rise in education and the WSU College of Education has been involved in research on our campus
The book contains three sections exploring human animal interactions from various perspectives. One of them includes examining several K-12 educational practices in which animals play a role. That includes showing how animals serve as teachers to humans, and how animals have characteristics formerly thought to be only the domain of humans.