Friday, April 24, 2020

Project-based Learning at Home

Here's an agbyte that is tasty AND fun! Complete a project-based learning activity at home to find the perfect recipe for an ice pop. This plan is shared from the NSTA website.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

How Important Are Plants?

An #agbyte to read. Wesley suffers rejection from classmates until he puts his school lessons to use and founds his own civilization around a staple crop that blows in on the wind. He turns over a plot of earth, and plants begin to grow. They soon tower above him and bear a curious-looking fruit. As Wesley experiments, he finds that the plant will provide food, clothing, shelter, and even recreation. Wesley's innovations make a perfect tie-in for teaching about goods and services in the community and how agriculture creates jobs and influences development. His whimsical garden is also sure to pique students curiosity about growing plants, making this a nice introduction to any plant-related lesson.

See the lesson plans connected to this book on the Matrix!

Monday, April 20, 2020

Weekly Learning Activities!

Each week the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture is posting a collection of ag literacy learning activities to do at home. There are lots to choose from for all ages and covering topics in multiple subject areas. Keep your eye out for them each Monday!

Friday, April 17, 2020

Can You Spot the Technology on a Modern Dairy Farm?

Watch the virtual tour of a dairy farm where they highlight all the technology that is used to produce milk!

Explore more dairy topics on the Matrix!

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

On This Day in History...

On this day (April 14th) in 1935 the sky turned black on America's high southern plains. Sand-filled winds scoured the paint off houses and cars, trains derailed, and electricity coursed through the air. Sand and dirt fell like snow.
Use this book and the associated lesson plans to teach about America's most catastrophic natural event: the Dust Bowl.
Visit the Matrix for more resources about the Dust Bowl.

Friday, April 10, 2020

Farmers 2050... Some Friday Fun!

It's time for some Friday fun! Who wants a game that is educational, free, fun, and doesn't have in-app advertisements or purchases? 💁‍♀️💁‍♂️
"Farmers 2050" has all of that! Grow crops, raise livestock, craft and sell goods, and engage with global partners as you practice sustainable agriculture!
It's free and available on the App Store or Google Play. Share how this game can provide engaging context for online learning!

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Technology and the Future of Agriculture

Now more than ever we are relying on technology. Technology is connecting teachers and students during school closures and providing the ability for family and friends to keep in contact during times of social distancing to curb the spread of disease. How about technology on the farm? Take a look at this video highlighting technology in agriculture.

What tools and technology are used on a dairy farm?
What are three ways technology improves the production of food on farms?
  • 6th-8th Grade: Complete the Technology and Innovation Find Someone Who... game. Rather than finding classmates, have students reach out to friends and family through social media, texting, or phone calls and then write a reflection about how the use of these technologies impact daily life.
How does technology impact our day-to-day lives?
  • 9th-12th Grade: Complete the Journey 2050: Technology and Innovations eLearning lesson (PDF or Google Doc).
Describe the role technology and innovations have in the future of agriculture.

Visit the National Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix for hundreds of free K-12 lesson plans aligned to National education standards. Visit the eLearning site for resources adapted specifically for online learning.

Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Potatoes... Where Do They Grow?

Potatoes! We like them baked, mashed, and deep fried as french fries or potato chips!

Digging into the geography and science will make you a more savvy consumer and "spud-smart." Time to begin the investigation!

Where do potatoes grow? Above ground or below? What type of climate?

Why do farmers grow potatoes from sections of potato instead of from the seed produced by the flower?

Do potatoes come from the top or the bottom of a plant?
  • 3rd-5th Grade: Use the Powerful Potato lesson to explore life science and observe a potato growing with and without soil! The book, No Small Potatoes is also a great addition.
How does geography impact the growth of potatoes?
If you could only consume locally grown foods, would potatoes be part of your diet?
  • 9th-12th Grade: Think about genetics in relation to the potato. Farmers grow potatoes from sections of the potato. Is this a form of sexual or asexual plant propagation? Potato plants do produce a flower, containing seeds... why don't farmers plant these seeds? (The answer is in the video!)
What form of plant propagation produces a crop genetically identical to the parent crop?

Visit the National Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix for hundreds of free K-12 lesson plans aligned to National education standards. Visit the eLearning site for resources adapted specifically for online learning.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Elementary Science, Embryology, and Life Cycles from Zinnia and Dot

An agbyte to read! This the story of two feuding hens who lose all but one egg to a weasel that sneaks in while they're busy squabbling. Now they really have something to fight about. Whose is the egg that's left? Will friendship triumph over vanity?

Use this book to engage young students before a lesson on chickens, eggs, or embryology. See all of the related resources on the Matrix!

Why are chickens raised on farms? (To raise hens that lay eggs and for meat)

Where do chickens (and all birds) begin their life cycle? (in an egg)

To find more resources adapted to online learning, visit our eLearning website.

Monday, April 6, 2020

Makin' it Monday! .... Bread

Bread in a Bag

There’s nothing quite like the smell of freshly baked bread. Bread in a Bag is an activity perfect for learning at home. Make the following connections to curriculum:

  • K-2nd Grade: Pair this activity with the lesson The Little Red Hen to explore wheat production and bread making. 
Flour is made by grinding up wheat... where does wheat come from?

  • 3rd-5th Grade: Make 2 loaves of bread. Do a science experiment and change one variable to see how it impacts the end result. For example, compare regular vs. quick-rising yeast or allow one loaf to rise in an extra warm place and the other in a cooler place.
Why is science important to the production of our food?

  • 6th-8th Grade: Research careers in the area of food science. How are science and the production of food related? Watch videos from IFT's (Institute of Food Technologists) Day in the Life of a Food Scientist playlist.
What are examples of careers in food science and why are they important to our food supply?

How does the processing of food (making flour into bread) add value to agricultural goods?

To find more resources adapted to online learning, visit our eLearning website.

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Something to Read... Proof That You Can Change the World

An agbyte to read! There is no better time than now to inspire kids with proof that they can change the world! See what the author, Andy Andrews has to say in this video about the book!
This book tells the story of Nobel Laureate, Norman Borlaug. Norman grew up as an average farm boy in Iowa, but later his work as a plant scientist reached far and wide to help improve the growth of wheat, rice, and corn all over the world. This book highlights the benefits of emerging science, but also has an underlying message to teach kids that, "Every choice you make, good or bad, can make a difference."

See the lessons on the Matrix this book can be paired with to meet specific education standards.

How are science and agriculture connected?
How do plant scientists help improve food crops to feed the world?
What food products come from wheat?