“Equine Eats” Excites Kids About Horse Nutrition

Webberville, MI – Northfork Farms & Outback

Northfork’s Horse Club, NYHA spent their last general meeting discussing “Equine Eats”and getting kids excited about horse nutrition. A sometimes dull topic was brought to life through interactive games and a feed mixing contest!

“I knew we were successful when all of the girls kept leaning in to listen and shooting their hands into the air to answer questions,” says NYHA leader, Kara Grupe. “My goal was for the girls to leave the meeting with enough knowledge to know the basics of what a horse needs to eat to be healthy.”

Rather than lecture about the scientific details of feeding horses, Kara used hands-on games that required the kids to memorize, think critically, and work with a partner.

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Horse club members playing a game to learn the elements of horse nutrition. Learn more from “My Horse University

Next the girls learned about the different ways horses get the nutritional fuel they need. They began by learning the differences in types of hay.

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Learning to recognize different types of hay

Next came the crowd favorite of the evening, the Grain Mixing Contest! The girls were given common ingredients of horse feed, oats and corn, and small portions of treat foods, (apples, carrots, molasses, etc.).

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Getting ready for the Grain Mixing Contest!

Our “judge” was Northfork’s horse, ‘I Know I’m Invited’ aka Boo. Boo was given free choice to pick his favorite mixture. The girls were given three rounds to try to become Boo’s favorite grain chef.

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“Boo” was the equine judge of the feed mixing contest

To put their skills into practice, NYHA members will attend the Michigan Horse Expo as a club this Saturday, March 12th. They will go on a scavenger hunt throughout the maize of vendors to identify different types of feed and learn more about what products people are using to feed their horses.

“Most of our members do not own horses,”says Kara. “Yet I designed this month’s curriculum around the girls’ desire to become future horse owners. My goal was to give them enough information to be knowledgeable, and to teach the subject well enough that they could remember it years from now when they make decisions about feeding their horses.”

Next month’s meeting will take place on Friday, April 1st from 6-7:30pm at Northfork Farms. Interested members should contact NYHA Leader, Kara Grupe at kara@northforkoutback.com, or visit the NYHA website. 

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2 Responses to “Equine Eats” Excites Kids About Horse Nutrition

  1. HippoLogic says:

    This is such a great idea to teach children the diets of horses. It is such an important part to keep horses happy and healthy.
    I like that they had a specialist who judged the food samples.


    • Thanks, HippoLogic! Figuring out how to make the class engaging and educational for our young girls was a bit of a challenge, though we seemed to find the right balance of information without overloading them with details. A few of the girls and I walked around the Michigan Horse Expo last weekend, and whenever the girls saw a booth with bags of feed, they marched up, looked inside, and checked the nutrition label! Even if they didn’t absorb the details, watching them look and compare feeds let me know that the class made a successful impact. Stay tuned for future updates on our meetings!

      Liked by 1 person

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