Ag. Literacy Newsletter
In This Issue
Krone Family Awarded Volunteer of the Year
Randy, Toni, Ethan and Ellie Krone were recognized at the Illinois Farm Bureau Annual Meeting December 1, 2012, as the Illinois Ag in the Classroom Volunteer of the Year. They shared the award with families from two other counties. The award is based on nominations from county ag literacy coordinators who choose nominees on the basis of long term projects and dedication to the ag literacy mission and goals.
The Krone family exemplifies those requirements. They have been working with the Sangamon County Farm Bureau since Randy and Toni were involved in the young leaders and now Ethan and Ellie have taken up the torch in that group.
Here are some of the many ways they have been involved:
Randy and Toni were instrumental in the building of the Sangamon County Agventure Barn. Since building the Agventure Barn in 2001, the Krone family has cared for the animals that go out on the school tour for a week in the spring and a week in the fall. They also provide several animals for the school tour. Every member of the Krone family has volunteered their time to go to schools with the tour to help educate the students touring the Agventure barn. The family has hosted the Sangamon, Menard, Mason Summer Agriculture Institute every year since 2005, except in 2010 when it was canceled. The family has been regular hosts to Springfield Christian School's Kindergarten classes for a yearly "Day on the Farm". Members of the family have made and donated items to be auctioned at the Illinois Farm Bureau's Annual Meeting which benefits Illinois Ag in the Classroom. Ellie worked to make a corn toss game for the Ag Literacy Program to use at the Sangamon County Fair. The family has made regular and generous contributions to the Sangamon-Menard Agricultural Education Partnership. They have impacted over 30,000 students and over 1,300 teachers from records dating back to 2001.
So if you see them out and about please congratulate the Krone family on this well deserved award. Many thanks for their dedication and commitment to agriculture and education!!
Popping Good Times!!
Kindergarten classes in the area were lucky in November to learn a little more about corn. We talked about and looked at examples of the three main types of corn: field corn, sweet corn, and popcorn and then did science experiments popping different colors of popcorn. Below are some pictures of Mrs. Kelly's class at Fairview Elementary.
The book I shared with them is one of my favorites by Tomie dePaola. Aptly entitled, The Popcorn Book.
We then used a hot air popper to pop yellow, white, and black popcorn kernels.Then the students used their observational powers to sort the three types of popcorn into piles noticing the difference in color, size, shape, and even taste.
Menard County Ag Discovery Day
The 7th annual Menard County Ag Discovery Day was held for all county 5th graders in September. Students heard presentations from a variety of speakers. I spoke about soybeans and the combines that harvest them. Thanks to Steven's Implement who donated the combine and tractor for the day!! Students also competed in a trivia contest at the end of the event and the winning class from each school went home with a tree to plant at their school.
Books, Books, Books!!
Christmas time is around the corner and you might be looking for a few good agriculturally relevant books to make gifts of this Christmas Season. So here is a list of my new and old favorites that you and yours might enjoy!!
1. Pumpkins by Ken Robbins
2. Seed Sprout Pumpkin Pie by Jill Esbaum
3. Apples for Everyone by Jill Esbaum
4. The Vegetables We Eat by Gail Gibbons
(really anything by Gail Gibbons!!)
4. Saving Strawberry Farm by Deborah Hopkinson
5. Grandpa's Tractor by Michael Garland
6. The Sandwich Swap by Queeen Rania
7. Yucky Worms by Vivian French
8. Christmas Tree Farm by Ann Purmell
9. Who Grew My Soup by Tom Darbyshire
10. Feeding the Sheep by Leda Shubert
Well I can't believe that my baby is almost a year old or that this is my 10th year working for the Sangamon-Menard Agricultural Education Partnership!!! When I started back in 2003 I was not familiar with the teachers in the area or a large number of the farmers. Today I call many my friends and am proud of the program that has grown along with me. I have gone from begging teachers to have me in their classrooms to feeling incredibly bad about having to turn teachers and schools away. I was also lucky enough to meet my husband while working here and our daughter Lydia is just the light of my life. It is great when you can work in a place, feel you are making a difference, and enjoy the people you work for and with.
I'd like to wish everyone a happy, healthy, and productive holiday season. Here's to a wonderful (and hopefully drought free) 2013!!!