The Wisconsin Farm Bureau Foundation, through the Wisconsin Farm Bureau’s Ag in the Classroom program, has awarded 18 Teacher Mini-Grants to Wisconsin teachers to use in agricultural literacy lessons and activities. The grants provide opportunities for teachers to obtain funding that may not be available through their local school budgets.
The following teachers were awarded grants that will be used this school year:
Brenda Fernholz, NOW Elementary School, Ontario: Awarded $100 for “Egg Hatching” project. Used as part of the farming and life cycle unit, kindergarten students will be able to identify the stages of a chicken’s life cycle as well as other farm animals. They will investigate a variety of farms and engage in journaling about their experience.
Cheri Oglesby, St. Rose Elementary, Cuba City: Awarded $100 for “Life on the Farm, Work and Play” project. Pre-K students and their parents will experience an evening of chores and fun on the farm. Students will learn about caring for animals which includes feeding calves’ goats, donkey and ducks. The evening will also include fun farm activities.
George Klink, Elmwood Elementary School, Elmwood: Awarded $100 for “Raspberry Farm” project. In coordination with high school horticulture students, fourth graders will plant raspberry plants and investigate how different environmental conditions influence plant growth.
Gretchen Frendt, St. Paul Lutheran School, Cumberland: Awarded $100 for “Nature’s Sweetness” project. Pre-K students will learn about growing sugar maple trees and the process of tapping maple trees, collecting sap and making maple syrup.
Heather Gayton, Adams-Friendship Elementary School, Adams: Awarded $100 for “Farm to Table Ed-Venture” project. Students will research Wisconsin agriculture products and construct a farm to table booth where they will facilitate presentations, discussion and hands on activities for a summer school program.
Jennifer Schultz, Baraboo High School, Baraboo: Awarded $100 for “What is Ag?” project. High School agriculture students will educate elementary aged students about agriculture and the importance in plays in the community.
Joel Putz, Immanuel Lutheran School, Manitowoc: Awarded $100 for “March-May” project. Using a grow light system to help grow plants, second grade students will look at plant anatomy, soil, composting and nutrition.
John Slipek, Abbotsford Elementary School, Abbotsford: Awarded $100 for “Growing Lettuce for Dinner” project. Using the high school greenhouse, second grade students will grow a variety of vegetables and make observations as they monitor germination, environmental factors and grow rates.
Karen Williams, Riverside Middle School, Watertown: Awarded $100 for “A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words” project. Middle School family and consumer science students will gain an understanding of where their food comes from by looking at products and capturing photos of how the products go from the farm to the table.
Kathy Garske, Amherst Elementary School, Amherst: Awarded $100 for “It Came from a Cow” project. As part of a solids and liquids unit, second grade students will gain an understanding of how various products are made from milk.
Leah McKelvey, Barrie Elementary School, Fort Atkinson: Awarded $100 for “Barrie School Garden” project. Students will start a school garden that will promote healthy eating, physical activity, appreciation and understanding of agriculture and encourage environmental stewardship. Produce from the garden will be used for “Taste it Tuesdays” in the school cafeteria and an after school garden club will be formed.
Mary Cooper, St. Mary’s School, Richland Center: Awarded $100 for “From Seeds to Salads” project. Fifth grade students will discuss conditions suitable for the growth of plants; identify major parts of the plant and plants’ needs and plant seeds while observing, measuring and recording plant growth.
Matt Peetz, Dana Westedt and Amy Bass, Pineview Elementary School, Reedsburg: Awarded $100 for “Let’s Keep Growing” project. Elementary students will be introduced and encouraged to be more knowledgeable about where their food comes from by starting seeds, recording growth and transplanting them into the school garden.
Rachel Sauvola, New Richmond High School, New Richmond: Awarded $100 for “Veggie of the Month” project. High school students will engage elementary aged students in learning about different vegetables each month. During school lunch, students are encouraged to try the vegetable and answer trivia questions about the vegetable.
Sandy Cordes, Little Wolf Junior High School, Manawa: Awarded $100 for “Greenhouse” project. In working with special needs students, a small greenhouse will be used to learn how to grow produce and flowers for themselves. This will provide an opportunity for hands on learning while developing sensory skills.
Shannon Lyon, Fort Atkinson High School, Fort Atkinson: Awarded $99.90 for “Agriculture Literacy for Our Youth” project. High school students will work with elementary students to increase agricultural literacy and showcase the importance of agriculture and the connection it has to multiple subject areas.
Shari Graffunder and Sheila Burris, River Valley Schools, Spring Green: Awarded $100 for “Egg Carton Basket” project. Elementary students will learn to plant seedlings, care for plants and share them within the community.
Whitney Barnes, Bay Port High School, Green Bay: Awarded $100 for “Food for America” project. High School agriculture students will research top Wisconsin agricultural commodities and develop presentations to educate fourth grade students about agriculture.
The Wisconsin Farm Bureau’s Ag in the Classroom program also has matching grants available to groups and organizations that conduct agricultural literacy projects. Applications are due by April 1 and can be downloaded at www.wisagclassroom.org or by contacting Wendy Kannel at 608.828.5719 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Farm Bureau’s Ag in the Classroom program provides teachers and students K-12 with an understanding of how their food is produced. The program seeks to work within existing curricula to provide basic information on our nation’s largest industry: Agriculture. Wisconsin’s Ag in the Classroom program is carried out by a network of local educators, volunteers and representatives from agricultural organizations and businesses. The goal of the program is to help students gain a greater awareness of the role of agriculture in the economy and society, so that they may become citizens who support wise agricultural policies.