Animal Assisted Therapy
They are temporarily on hold while we re-locate to a bigger and better location for our sensory gym.
As an experienced interventionist, equestrian and mother of children with special needs; and in consultation with occupational therapists, special education coordinators, physiotherapists and behaviour consultants we have developed a curriculum that helps Children with a broad spectrum of special needs. (I.e. Children that live with, but not limited to; Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Downs Syndrome, Oppositional defiance disorder, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity disorder etc. As well as those who may have emotional or behavioral disorders from circumstances such as abuse, neglect or abandonment.)
Our 6 week sessions can help build children's Self-worth, self-esteem, independence Social, Emotional and Communication skills, just to name a few. Along with development of gross motor skills and stimulation for proprioceptive awareness. By allowing the child to interact through tasks such as grooming, handling, leading and feeding and pairing with our animals; their new found independence and confidence will carry over to school, family and social settings. We keep enrollment down to six children per session, ensuring they get to spend special "Therapeutic Time" with the horses and animals. Quite often a child with special needs doesn't have a best friend. Our therapy animals and miniature horses do not judge, they seem to understand, allowing a trusting friendship to develop.
A program designed to target emotional regulation and non-verbal communication. Through the animals natural demeanors; children will learn how to look for non-verbal cues and form a close bond and relationship which will transfer over to general peer interactions.
Items we work on during class:
- Agility courses to help gain confidence, focus and learning how to work together with their four legged or furry friend.
- Learning the safety measures required around small and large animals sets in great practical life and logical thinking practices which easily continues through home and community life.
- Care and maintenance of the animals which teaches the responsibility and helps form the deep and stimulating bond
- Games such as " what is he saying"; where the kids learn how to read body cues from a variety of animals and then transfer it to human behaviors and communication styles.
- Getting creative; this is where we get to add our artistic side; the children will be decorating the animals with the intent of describing their mood and personality.
- Learning new facts about each of the animals and their breed/species will help inspire the concept of research but also empathy of thinking about others points of view.
- Putting together tack and equipment for our animals is also a great fine motor development and coordination development task all why practicing patience and turn taking.
- Ending the series in a " activity challenge" with all of the combined skills we have learned is also a great, fun way of practicing good sportsmanship and building team encouragement!
*Autism funding, home school funding, cash, cheque, visa, MasterCard and other payment forms welcome*