Reaching for the Reins
Reaching for the Reins
Stories of At-Risk Students Empowered by Serving Others through Equine Therapy
Perfect Bound Softcover
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Tara Carlsen wanted to help at-risk students learn without relying on stale, clinical teaching methods. Instead of trying to find solutions in the classroom, the mathematics teacher transplanted failing students from an alternative high school to a horse ranch. There, she encouraged them to reach for the reins, and she witnessed dramatic results.

Students who could not relate to their peers or teachers could relate to horses—and suddenly their futures looked a whole lot brighter. Carlsen and her students proceeded to take an inspiring journey, learning the basics of horsemanship through equine-assisted learning—a therapeutic approach to interpersonal development using horse-related activities.

After learning the basics, the students taught peers with special needs what they’d learned, drawing upon their own struggles and triumphs to help them achieve success. Punctuated with humor, heartbreak, and hard-won triumph, Reaching for the Reins chronicles the struggles and successes of these students over five years.

Preview coming soon.

Tara Carlsen has a bachelor’s degree in secondary education and a master’s in education leadership. She teaches mathematics at an alternative public high school in southwest Michigan, where she lives with her husband and horse. This is her first book.


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