GIS students gain social skills, confidence with horseback riding

Students and teacher wearing coats and riding helmets standing next to a brown and white horse in a stable
Goshen Intermediate School students learned countless skills with equine therapy.

Students in Dana Piaquadio’s class at Goshen Intermediate School recently completed their final session at Winslow Therapeutic Center, a non-profit organization that offers equine-assisted services and therapies. Students received horseback riding lessons and learned how to care for, groom, and tack their horses.

According to Winslow’s website, horsemanship skills promote independence, help to develop social skills and confidence, teach empathy and respect, provide sensory input and encourage balance, and can increase muscle tone and strength.

To show their appreciation for the amazing opportunity, the students presented the staff at Winslow with a homemade photo album with thank you notes, photo memories and handprints drawing of horses.

“Not only did they learn about horses, but they learned how to stay calm and persevere when put in challenging situations,” Piaquadio said. “With great care and skill, my class was able to work through their own hurdles, a skill that will help them throughout their lives.”