Written by J. Anne Huss, who earned an undergraduate degree in equine science, this ebook, an interactive unit study, comprises 15 units, a Final Projects section, a Parent Guide, and a Fun Book. The engaging text, graphics, and internet links provide a thorough and well-thought-out equine study for horse enthusiasts.
Units cover such topics as “History of the Horse,” “Coat Colors and Markings,” “Anatomy of the Horse,” “Social and Learning Behavior,” and “Foaling and Foal Management.” Huss’s writing style is appealing, and she makes excellent use of illustrations, photographs, and diagrams as teaching tools. She also includes internet links to online videos, websites, and, in one case, a story, further enriching a child’s experience.
Each unit concludes with a review, including multiple choice and/or true/false questions; short answer exercises; diagrams to label; and essay questions. Not all types appear in every review. The essay questions can be answered either in short paragraph form or broadened by further research for older students. These are perfect opportunities for interest-led research papers.
The Final Projects section suggests several activities, both for children who have their own ponies or horses and children who don’t. These include taking field trips; creative a video or PowerPoint presentation; discovering the field of equine science; and, of course, taking a riding lesson or going on a trail ride. There are several options for further exploration, complete with internet links.
I greatly appreciate the Parent Guide, which provides answers to all assessments, including the essay questions. This is really helpful for non-equine parents like me. Not only can we better evaluate our children’s responses, but we’re learning as well!
The study also includes a separate 32-page Fun Book with diagrams to label, detailed line drawings of tack for both Western and English disciplines, and informative coloring pages. These are fun and educational on their own; but they’d also make wonderful additions to a lapbook, notebook, mini-book, or poster your child may want to create.
The Science of Horses is best suited for middle school students and up; however, you could adapt the units for horsey elementary-aged children. In fact, one of this study’s strengths is its adaptability. Don’t care for review questions or quizzes? Ask your child to narrate, or focus on the essays as written or oral narrations. Are your children notebookers or lapbookers? This study would translate well into that style of learning.
We are really happy with The Science of Horses at my house. Just the other day, my daughter asked excitedly, “Mom, did you know that General Lee and General Grant both rode Saddlebred horses in the Civil War?”
No, I didn’t. But I do now!
written by Ellen