Three groups from The Westminster School came out to The Red Barn for a field trip this past week! The students are currently reading the book Misty of Chincoteague, and luckily we happen to have our very own Chincoteague pony: Salty. About 50 total kids visited over the course of three days, which means we’ve been very busy this past week.
Around 15 kids came each day, so we further divided them up into four groups. That enabled each child to have plenty of opportunities for the hands-on activities we planned. One station involved grooming and parts of the horse, with Black Flight and Ziggy being the stars of the morning. Another included discussing and cleaning different parts of tack and other riding equipment before meeting Salty and learning a bit about his story as a Chincoteague Pony. Yet another station revolved around barn chores, with the kids mucking stalls and learning the hard work involved with caring for a horse. The final station was arts and crafts, where they learned simple ways to draw a horse.
One purpose of having a variety of activities was so the kids could learn all the different vocabulary involved with taking care of horses. For example, they now know what to visualize when they read a word pertaining to a specific piece of tack or about the process of grooming a horse. They also now understand how much hard work and dedication goes into looking after a horse. Most importantly, they gained valuable hands-on experience while having fun.
Westminster brought a group of students for a similar camp last year as well. Hopefully this will become an annual camp, as we loved having them out. They were a blast to be around and extremely hard workers when it came to helping with chores. We hope to see them again next year for even more fun and learning!