There were many new students this summer in the Pony Pals program but the winning comment by a first time rider who just landed in the saddle was:
WHERE DO I HOLD ON????
From the mouths of 5 year olds:
To work on control, I asked for a large circle to be made around me with the pony. Before going very far on the circumference, she headed right for me as I stood in the center. "What was that?" I asked in frustration.
"A circle with a line through it."
ON RELIGION: I asked some question to which there was no immediate reply. A moment later little her voice said, "My teacher told me God made our mouths to shut."
Irritated I countered with, "Well I believe in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy."
Immediately she responded adamantly, "There's no such thing as the Tooth
During her third lesson, I permitted her to work in a larger safe area than the 60' round pen. As a reminder I mentioned, "There are several ways to stop your pony. What's one that you can use?"
"Ask you for help."
ON CLEANING UP:
We had a nice gift made for the stable of a wooden rack with coat hooks on it. We hung it against a huge stack of hay so it would be most convenient to the area where we grab halters and lead shanks or hang things while we work with the horses and experience temperature changes during the day as we work the horses.
As the new rack was spotted for the first time, she spotted an empty hook and the query came, "What's that for?" To me the rack was obviously filled with halters and lead shanks though a few empty hooks remained.
"We can hang things there like more halters or sweatshirts or jackets."
"Or sweaters," as if we'd overlooked the thought.
ON BATHING THE HORSE:
As the child held the hose in one hand and the pony in the other, I returned to the spigot to allow the water to flow. Carefully she wet the horses legs and moved the hose over its barrel. I returned to the horse and took note that the remainder of the hose lay by the horse's feet. I explained that sometimes the water stops flowing and one reason was because there might be a kink in the hose. She said a kink was like a bend and the water couldn't go by. Correct I replied. "Why else might the water stop flowing?" I queried as I looked at the horse standing on the hose.
"Because you turned it off?"