Spring is around the corner!! We all prepare for spring in our own ways. Farmers are ordering seed, thinking about working on equipment, and birth of livestock. You are preparing for testing, end of the year, and SPRING BREAK! I am preparing too. I am preparing my maternity leave and departure from Extension. L As I have said before this was a hard decision for me, but I am ready for a new challenge. I still look forward to being in the classroom either as a full time teacher or a substitute!
Many of you have asked me how things will change. Here is what I know. Things are in the works to hire someone to continue providing the Ag in the Classroom program. It is my hope that someone will be hired before I go on leave (hopefully in April). If not then before my official leave date of July 31 from Extension. I will do my absolute best to prepare this person to continue with the presentations, newsletters, distribution of materials, etc. for you and your students. I am a very organized person so I am leaving lots of well detailed notes of contacts and more!
Until my leave I will continue to provide materials, ideas, contacts, and the remainder of the presentations I have scheduled. If you need ANYTHING please contact me! I will be very glad to help you!
Have a great February!
- Grapefruit Month
- Sweet Potato Month
- World AG Expo (12-14)
- National FFA Week (16-23)
March is a big month for Agriculture. National Agriculture Week is March 17-23. This year's
theme is "Generations Nourishing Generations" This is a great time to celebrate agriculture in your school. If you would like ideas for classroom or school wide activities to help celebrate please contact Aimee at 815-268-4051. Here are a couple of ideas to get you started!
- Invite a farmer in to tell you his story.
- Ag Olympics Games
- Agriculture Trivia Feud
- Quick and Easy Make and Takes
- Farm Petting Zoo
- Agriculture Career Day
I am getting very excited for the Agriculture Careers Night to be held on Tuesday, February 12 at the Ford-Iroquois Extension office. This is geared toward Junior High and High School students and their parents who are wanting to learn more about the different ag careers that are vital to society and need people to fill them.
That evening from 5-6 p.m. attendees will have an opportunity to visit with colleges that offer agriculture programs including University of Illinois, Illinois State University, Western Illinois University, Kankakee Community College, Joliet Junior College, Lake Land Community College and Parkland College. At 6 p.m. we will begin with a program that will feature a question and answer session with an agribusiness panel of people in our community serving in various agriculture careers. Come find out what ag careers are out there and how you can prepare yourself while still in high school for one of these careers.
We do ask that those attending please register by calling 815-268-4051 or visit our website at http://web.extension.illinois.edu/cfiv/ to ensure there are enough materials and space.
The 2013 National Ag in the Classroom conference will be here before you know it! It is going to be held in Minneapolis, Minnesota on June 25-28. This is an EXCELLENT conference with speakers, tours, and more! If you have attended a Summer Ag Institute and loved it you will love this even more. Deb Talbert (Iroquois West) and I have attended one before and gained a lot wonderful information.
This year the CHS Foundation is offering scholarships in the amount of $375 to teachers planning on attending. You must be a teacher to apply and currently be employed by a school district. The $375 is enough to cover your registration, so all you would need to pay for is your transportation and lodging (most meals are included in the registration). Registration deadline is
March 1 and the winners will be announced on March 15. The application is an online application that will only take you a few minutes! It can be found at http://www.agclassroom.org/conference2013/scholarship.htm
Are you a runner or a walker? If so you may be interested in participating in the Illinois Farm Bureau's 5K Go & Grow. The date is set for May 11 at the Illinois Farm Bureau Headquarters in Bloomington, IL. It is a race and family fun event raising money for Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom. Day events include a 5K, one mile walk, children's Cock-A-Doodle Dash, post race/walk open house with hot breakfast, photos, hands on learning for the kids and more!! Information will be up soon at www.iaafoundation.org. If you wish to participate please let Aimee or David Treece at the Ford-Iroquois Farm Bureau know because our local Farm Bureau may be able to help with the registration costs!
Illinois Ag in the Classroom is always coming up with new resources for you to use in your classroom! Here are two new booklets you may find useful. For more information on where to find these contact Aimee.
Have Book Will Travel
This is the theme for the 2013 iREAD Summer Reading Program. This booklet features apple activities for Johnny Appleseed who traveled the countryside planting seeds. Also use some of the activities to learn what commodities are grown in what states. Have you ever used the Book "What the World Eats" or "The Hungry Planet". Use these books and the activities in this booklet to explore what people in other countries eat. There are also activities on maps, foods around the world and more.
Once Upon A Garden
Do you do a gardening unit? If so you will want to check out this booklet. There are different themes such as a pizza garden, peanut butter and jelly garden, alphabet garden, cabbage garden, sunflower garden, soybean garden (edamame vs. conventional soybeans), and community garden. This booklet also features gardening vocabulary, gardening needs and care, and how to make a biodegradable planter.
The 2013 "Women Changing the Face of Agriculture" career fair event is sponsored by the Illinois Agri-Women
The career fair is open to high school and college age female students with an interest in a career in Agriculture, as well as their teachers, school counselors, or group leaders/advisors. The event will be held March 8th, 2013, at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. They expect around 400 attendees, and over 100 female representatives from numerous agricultural-related businesses and groups to share information, network, and interact with students. Several community colleges and universities will also have representation at the event.For more information and to register, please see their website at www.womenchangingthefaceofagriculture.com