About 200 students from La Mesa, Monte Vista, and King elementaries spent a day in the sun, learning the "cowboy way" during the annual Cowboys in the School event at the Carmel Valley Trail and Saddle Club on Thursday, October 3rd.
Students caught a glimse of the vaquero life through music, roping stations, hat shaping stations, and several other demonstrations that make our past come alive.
It is during the fourth grade when California students learn about the Mission period, a crucial time in the state's history. These type of events no doubt make the lessons in the classroom feel more relevant.
During the school year, volunteers with the Monterey Cowboy Poetry & Music Festival work with local educators to introduce the concept of Cowboy Culture and the influence of the vaquero to a diverse group of elementary school students. This "Cowboy Way of Life" program helps to teach youth self-esteem, ethics, values, writing, art and history. Young people also participate in the "Open Mic" event during the festival weekend. Monterey County has a long historic cowboy tradition that is celebrated at the Festival events.
Photos courtesy of Wendy Brickman.