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Equine Facilitated Educational Programme


The aim of our Equine Facilitated Educational Programme is the development of a range of social and emotional learning competencies.

Every week between 9.30am and 12.30pm between young people work alongside staff members and a number of ponies.   There is a strong emphasis on the five core competencies including:

  • self-awareness
  • social awareness
  • self-management and organisation
  • responsible problem solving
  • relationship management

What does the research say about Social & Emotional Learning Programmes?

The integration of Social and Emotional Learning Programmes (SEL) in educational settings is receiving particular attention given the growing body of evaluation literature that links participation in SEL programmes with improvements in young people’s behavior and academic performance (Zins, Bloodworth, Weissberg, & Walberg, 2004; Elias & Arnold, 2006; Durlak, 2011).

The Importance of Social & Emotional Learning

The recognition of the importance of SEL focused interventions and programmes within the educational setting is based on the evidence from a growing number of studies which have shown that attending to academic achievement, to the exclusion of nurturing the social and emotional needs, can be unsuccessful – particularly for young people at risk (Beckar & Luther, 2002; Zins, 2003).

Furthermore, placing sole emphasis on academic performance in isolation may in fact result in intensifying current stress related problems and could further alienate pupils – especially those already deemed to be at risk of disengaging from the educational setting.

For more information please contact

Siofra Hayes Moriarty tel: 0877458091 or eal@festinalente.ie

Social and Emotional Learning