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To contribute to educational achievement of children ages 3-7, Southern Reins will be launching two programs under the TEACH Program umbrella to provide Equine Facilitated Learning.

Learning Readiness Program

Southern Reins is collaborating with Perea Preschool for a Pilot Program serving children age 3-4 in the fall of 2021.  The Pilot Program is generously funded from a grant received by the Urban Child Institute. In collaboration with their Director of Education and incorporating Tennessee Academic Standards, the lesson curriculum provides an equine-centered educational environment with a hands-on approach to reading, science, geography, social studies, and math. The program consists of weekly classroom visits of 1 hour in duration for a concurrent 6-week session. School site visits can take place indoors or outdoors for interactions with our United Kingdom Shetland ponies. Activities such as the five senses, horse breeds around the world, and math conversions relate to real life scenarios.  Because of their size and gentle nature, our ponies are perfect partners for weekly learning readiness visits; and provides a new and unique approach to engage students in learning.  

Reading Incentive Program

Our Reading Incentive Program is designed for elementary school children to provide motivation toward successful reading habits by integrating equine-assisted learning to improve literacy. This program is projected to begin serving Memphis inner city schools in the fall of 2022.  Modeled after the “Reading with Rosie” program created by Strides to Success, the goal of this research-based program is to increase a child’s motivation to read. The program will offer a curriculum incorporating Tennessee Academic Standards. By creating a positive association between stories of animals and reading, our Reading Incentive Program will offer a safe educational and interactive opportunity with an animal in the classroom that can improve a child's English language skills and their motivation to read.

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TEACH Program Equine Team

Clyde and May are our TEACH Program ambassadors.  


They are United Kingdom Shetland ponies who joined our program in 2020 from our friends at Personal Ponies.  

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Professional Staff

The TEACH Program is conducted under the direct supervision of  a PATH Intl. Registered Instructor or a PATH Intl. Certified Equine Specialist.  

For more information, contact Sara Zurenko, Program Director, at Sara.Zurenko@southernreins.org