Hinchinbrook Farm is proud to have been chosen to partner with the Middle Level Connect Centre at Hebbville School. The MLCC provides students from several ‘feeder schools’ in Lunenburg County with a special program to help them with their cognitive difficulties in a protective environment that uses small student teacher ratios and directed learning, coupled with aspects of the Movement Method that was introduced to them by Hinchinbrook Farm this past summer.
The first lesson, provided as a pilot to 3 of the students, was held October 24, 2018. We used the horses, outdoor fresh air and their first ever horse-back ride as a way to focus their attention on the lesson of the day, which as ‘measuring’. Using standard length tools, the students measured the circumference of the riding ring, the time it took for a horse and rider to walk around the ring, the diameter of the ring and some short distance measurements. The students thought about time (since they had only an hour to work with and could be reminded of how many minutes were left) and compared distance results. They also had to work together to round up the horses and put the tack away when the lesson was over. None had ever ridden a horse and so they had to cope with fear of heights, learning their own body capability to lift themselves into the saddle and balance, while they played pitch and catch with a soccer ball while moving forward on horseback without holding on to the saddle or reins.
The goals of the program include improved academics and self-confidence, teamwork, positive reinforcement (they are taught to always praise the horse after he or she does what is asked of it), controlling personal behaviour and having fun in an outdoor learning environment. The program is being funded on a 50/50 sharing between the school and Hinchinbrook Farm. We hope to be able to demonstrate through improved school grades and anecdotal evidence of behaviour improvement that Horse Boy™ and the Movement Method™ can help the schools to overcome issues with challenging students.
Hinchinbrook Farm Society is fund raising to help continue this program in the new year when the pilot phase ends. Any support you can provide will help us continue to help these children.