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Persuasive Writing Project Aims to Help Shelter Animals Get Adopted

boy reads to doggirl with posterA  bedtime story is always a great thing before falling asleep and some dogs and cats at the SPCA Serving Erie County got that special treatment from third-graders in two classes from Windermere Boulevard.

During the two-hour family open house night at the SPCA Serving Erie County, third-graders in Sue Strefeler’s and Amy Fakterowitz’/Shannon DeMarco's classes bonded with the bunnies, cats, dogs and turtles they met. The event was the culmination of their persuasive writing unit and was the start of a new friendship between the SPCA and Windermere.

Ms. Fakterowitz was inspired by a Washington Post article about a class project to help shelter animals get adopted. She wanted to see if she could start a similar project at Windermere Boulevard where students write persuasive letters to help convince people to adopt a pet from the SPCA Serving Erie County.

The persuasive writing unit had many facets. Students learned about the SPCA through a visit at school from a SPCA humane educator. In class, they learned how to conduct research to gather factors about caring for and fostering animals. They put art skills to work to translate their research facts into colorful posters that were displayed at the SPCA during the open house.

The posters emphasized the benefits of adopting or fostering a pet from the SPCA and information was presented from the perspective of the animals that need to be adopted and cared for. 

At the open house, students could see the cats and dogs available for adoption, read to them, meet some of the Paws for Love therapy dogs and tour the barn and wildlife areas at the SPCA.

check presentationThe classes presented a check for $418 to the SPCA that they collected through a two-week coin drive. 

When Katherine Gillette-Cockerill, SPCA Humane Educator, visited Windermere she brought Kathy, the rex rabbit, and taught the students what the SPCA Serving Erie County does, the various types of animals they help and what the students can do to help animals. She provided each classroom with a set of humane-themed books and a list of writing prompt ideas. Each student had a chance to pet Kathy and they learned they must have calm bodies, quiet voices and approach her from the side so she sees them.

Library media specialist Chad Moser helped the students create two videos, one to foster pets and another to adopt pets. 


  girl with bunny