The Ford-Iroquois Ag in the Classroom program will be offering a Summer Ag Institute this summer!! This year we will have a four day workshop (8:30-4pm) on Thursday, Friday, Monday, and Tuesday. It will start Thursday, June 12th and finishing on Tuesday, June 17th. We have been busy planning this great educational workshop for teachers grades pre-K through grade 12 in ANY discipline! We will encompass all different aspects of agriculture. Three of our four days we will be at the Farm Bureau office in Gilman, with our remaining day spent touring.
Teachers will be able to see new lessons from the state Ag in the Classroom program, and all will be paired with the Common Core standards and Next Generation Science Standards! We will be taking a day of tours through agribusinesses in Bloomington, as well as hearing from commodity groups and guest speakers. Teachers will have the chance to interact with a farmer panel to ask questions and gain a better understanding of what it is farmers do day to day, month to month. We will also be giving each participant TONS of educational resources, lesson extenders, hands on activity ideas, and of course plenty new knowledge of agriculture to take back to your classroom!
This year, the cost for the SAI will be $150, which will include everything you would need for the four days (meals, travel expenses to tours, resources given). There is also a scholarship through the Farm Bureau that can help offset the cost of attendance. This workshop will offer CPDU hours, as well as the opportunity to earn 2 grad credits from Aurora University (additional cost of $200).
Registration can be done online at https://web.extension.illinois.edu/registration/?RegistrationID=9989. If you prefer to register via a paper application, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can send you our application. Payment must be received in order for you to be considered "attending". We have a limit of 25 teachers, so if you are interested please register as soon as possible to save your spot for this fun filled four days of learning!
-National Garden Month
-Soy Foods Month
-National Landscape Architecture Month
-National Farm Animals Day (10)
-Earth Day (22)
-Arbor Day (25)
April brings a new topic of presentations for classrooms! In the next two months, we will be discussing Horticulture! Since this is what my degree is in, I'm very excited for this! Our lesson will cover the various aspects of horticulture, and will take a look at the pollination process with the help of the enemy of every white shirt, CHEETO'S!
We have a couple other activities that can be done, including a garden in a glove, or making a butterfly out of sandwich bags if you would be interested in that also! To schedule a presentation, please e-mail me at email@example.com and we will sign your class up!
I am now accepting reservations for kits to be checked out this coming school year. I have attached a list of the kits and resources that are available. The list may change a little with a few new resources coming out. The Chick It Out Kit will be on a first come first served basis. If you want this contact me NOW!! It fills up fast. Teachers who do not get it for the 2014-15 school year will be put on a waiting list for the next school year and will have first choice at dates. Call 815-268-4051 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your kits. If you have any questions please contact me. Sign up early to get the kits of your choice.
University of Illinois Extension has a Helping Children Succeed in School website. The site offers parents and caregivers practical steps to help children be successful in school and have good studying skills. In addition, it suggests ways for parents to communicate effectively with teachers and school personnel. You can visit the website at http://urbanext.illinois.edu/succeed
The Illinois Ag in the Classroom Grant forms are now available. These grants are open to teachers who want to incorporate agriculture in their classroom. Several have used these funds to create units in their classrooms, add books to their library, and more. The applications are not due until October, but now is the time to start thinking about what you would like to do if you had the extra money. Grants are worth $250. In addition to the general grants there are special grants for first year teachers and special book grants. For the grant application and judging criteria visit www.agintheclassroom.org under teacher resources and grants. Last year four of our teachers were awarded grants. You may apply for more than one grant (for example the general grant and a book grant).
Don't forget about the ready to use Smart Board lessons that are available on the Illinois Ag in the Classroom website. There are currently lessons on Beef from Pasture to Plate; Field Full of Horses; Agriculture and Money; Apples; Change for a Dollar; Commodity Cash Crash; Horses; Pumpkins; Sweet Traits (DNA), Tassel to Table (Corn) and Very Hungry Illinois Caterpillar (this one will be used in the April/May presentations for schools).
To access these lessons visit www.agintheclassroom.org under teacher resources and SMART Lessons.