This is the first in a series of what will be three fun and informative math workbooks for kids who love horses. The math concepts in this workbook are targeted at the grade 4 level with an added splash of math at the grade 5 level. The horse information is of interest to all horse lovers, no matter what their age. Both US customary and metric units are used throughout the book.
Level 1 Workbook
A Day in the Life
Most horse crazy kids would love to go to horseback riding summer camp. What time do campers have to get up each morning? When do they groom, go for a riding lesson, and eat dinner? What is it like to compete in your first schooling show? Preparations begin the night before, with you cleaning your saddle and bridle. For all these activities, you need to know how to write out and tell time.
A Trip to the Tack Store
What are the basic items you need to groom a horse, and how much do they cost? How do you measure yourself to get the right size helmet? Many kids would love a pair of cowgirl or cowboy boots. How much money would they have to save to buy a pair? Kids need to understand money before they go shopping at the tack store!
How do you measure the height of a horse? Horses are big animals, how can we determine how much they weigh? How do we calculate a horse’s heart and respiration rates? Judging a horse’s conformation requires a careful analysis of how different body measurements compare to each other. For example the total length of a horse should be three times the length of that horse’s neck length. Math anyone?
Kids learn about different types of feed, how much to feed and how much feeding a horse costs. Keeping horses safely requires knowing how much room they require, both in the barn and out in the field. When caring for a horse it helps to keep the horse’s records using a calendar; when should the farrier come, when is the next worming due, when is that first schooling show of the season? All this is important information and necessary in keeping a horse healthy, and all of it requires math.
Have you ever watched riders walk the course before a jumping event? As they walk, they’re making mathematical calculations determining how many strides their horse will take between jumps and figuring out the best angle of approach for each jump. Barrel racing involves knowledge about speed and timing, and riding the best angle around the barrel to yield the fastest turn. In this section kids get a glimpse of the important role math plays in equestrian sporting events.
Horse Facts and Math Games
Playing games is a great way to learn. In this section kids learn about many of the different colours of horses. They help a girl and her pony find their way home—counting by 3s. Addition and subtraction operations help break the code to reveal the word that means ‘the study of the horse’ and more!
Things to Make and Do
This section offers useful activities that just happen to rely on an understanding of math. Recipes for horse treats, shampoo and fly spray involve fractions and measurement. Instructions for how to make a haynet out of bailing twine and a fly fringe to attach to a horse’s halter depend on measurement and pattern recognition. Kids will also learn how to make a blanket for their horse model! Fun and useful math for kids who love horses.
Summary and Answers Pages
A Summary page is included at the end of each section. The page describes the Horsemanship and Math used in the section. An Answers section is provided at the back of the book enabling kids to check their own answers.
“I think that real-world motivation is extremely important, because if a person decides that they really want to learn something, then they will.”
Po-Shen Loh, Associate Math Professor, Carnegie Mellon University