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A review of Animal-Assisted Therapy and related terms such as "Animal-Assisted Activities" is presented as an introduction to the exploration of additional equine applications with children. Animal-Assisted Therapy has been studied, but Animal-Assisted Activities with children facing normal developmental struggles has not received much attention. Definitions and research for various animal activities and therapies are reviewed. Subsequent focus will be on equines helping children via Animal-Assisted Activities to meet normal developmental challenges. Creating parallels using a horse is an avenue to working with children, aiding them in the process of introspection, self-monitoring, self-efficacy, self-esteem, metacognitions, and overcoming angst associated with normal development hurdles. Horses can give accurate and unbiased feedback via their reactions to a child's behavior, thus increasing self-awareness of the impact of behavior on others. There are many different modalities utilizing equines, all of which have positive impacts on the individual.

Original Citation

Graham, L. & Lindsey, A. (2017). Horses Helping Children Grow. Journal of Instructional Pedagogies 19. 1-11.