Cream of the Crop

July 2005

1. California AITC Conference
Oct. 20-22, 2005 Sacramento
Have you registered yet? Don't delay--registration is filling fast! Register online and reserve a place on your favorite tour.
Register Online

2. Imagine this... Videos
It's not too early to start planning for this year's Imagine this... story writing contest for grades 3-8. One way to inspire students is to show them what happens to the winning stories: they become mini-movies! Videos of the winning stories-turned-animated-featurettes are available this month. California educators may request one free of charge--while supplies last. Pre-order yours on the Web site.

3. How Are We Doing?
It's time to evaluate the CFAITC Web site and we need your help. If you use the Web site every week or just once a year, if you are your school's go-to person for computer knowledge or if, when it comes to the Internet, you could "take it or leave it," then your feedback can help make out site better. And, your feedback could be worth $50!
If you are interested in evaluating our site, please contact us. The first five to respond will complete a short online survey between July 25 and August 12 and receive a $50 stipend in return. If you're not one of the first five, we'd still be interested in what you have to say!

4. Outstanding Educator of the Year
CFAITC's Outstanding Educator of the Year, Tina McEnroe, has been honored with the national 2005 Excellence in Teaching About Agriculture Award. This marks the fourth year running that a California winner has gone on to be recognized at the national level. Way to go, California teachers! And, congratulations Tina!
Are you utilizing concepts and teaching methods that meet state academic content standards using agriculture as a theme? Then apply for the 2006 Outstanding Educator of the Year award. Nominations are currently being accepted, and applications will be available in late summer.

5. Swing to Link Golf and Agriculture
Aug. 31, 2005 Poppy Hills Golf Course, Pebble Beach, CA
CFAITC's Swing to Link golf tournament raises money to fund our many resources and programs. But, you don't need a set of clubs to help us reach our goals! If you are available to volunteer on Wednesday, August 31, or if you have something to donate for the silent auction, please contact Lyn Hyatt at 800/700-AITC. We really appreciate the support!

6. The ABC's of Food, Hollywood-style
When he's not in the field, California Country Host Jim Morris speaks with educators and civic groups about the interesting match of agriculture and television and why it's a vital message for all Californians. The value and vitality of food from farm to feast is captured each week in California Farm Bureau's syndicated 30-minute television show. California Country can be an exciting, valuable learning tool for your classroom in more ways than one. Gather more information about the show, including distribution and video copies, and other educational opportunities.
For more information, contact Jim Morris at 916/561-5557. For best results, contact Jim with your request for a presentation well in advance. Openings are limited.

7. Teachers' Agricultural Seminar (TAS)
$45 July 12-15, 2005 Santa Paula
Ventura County elementary and middle school teachers and administrators are invited to participate in this four-day seminar at Faulkner Farm in Santa Paula. The seminar visits growers, orchards, processing plants, and school gardens, and focuses on hands-on lessons that incorporate agriculture into other classroom subjects.
Limited to 30. Two units of Continuing Education Credit are available from California Lutheran University for an additional fee.
For more information, visit

8. California Poultry Federation: "Cook Like a Californian" Chicken Recipe Contest
July 1 through Sept, 30, 2005
The California Poultry Federation is looking for creative home chefs to submit original chicken recipes in two categories: "Chicken Traditions with Flair" and "Chicken with an Ethnic Twist." Award levels in each category are $2500 for Grand Prize, $500 for second, and $250 for third. Several Buy California organizations are participating and will also award $500 if the winning recipe includes their ingredient. Commodities include California cheese, avocados, walnuts, figs, peaches, plums, nectarines, table grapes, tomatoes, pears, and canned cling peaches.
For more information, visit

9. WOW! The Wonders of Wetlands Workshop
$45 Aug. 5, 2005 Davis
Attend this workshop to learn how to integrate wetlands into teaching science, reading, math, art, and social studies. The workshop covers over 50 hands-on activities correlated to National Science Education Standards. Hosted by the Yolo Basin Foundation office in Davis.
For more information or to register contact Suzie Hershberger at 410/745-9620.

10. Intro to Ag Biotech - High School Educator Workshops
Free Aug 10-11, 2005 Gavilan College, Gilroy
Investigate the role of biotechnology in agriculture, explore historical context and modern day applications of ag biotech, receive exciting laboratory protocols and resource material, and understand the controversial issues surrounding the technology.
For more information, contact Shannon Bishop at 800/847-0373 or visit

11. Growing With Children Grant
Deadline: Sept. 1, 2005
The Western Growers Charitable Foundation invites schools to apply for school garden funds. Grants of up to $1,500 are available for supplies and curriculum related to starting or maintaining a garden.
For more information and application instructions, visit

12. Environmental Protection Agency: Kid's Page
The new EPA Web site "Drinking Water & Ground Water Kids' Stuff" contains games, activities, and animated classroom experiments for students K-12, as well as a teacher section.

13. Online Resource: Center for North American Herpetology
The Web site is a data bank for information about North American amphibians, turtles, reptiles, crocodilians, and promotes their study and conservation. How does wildlife and endangered species affect farmers and ranchers? How do pet and wildlife restrictions, including ownership and transportation across state and national borders, help protect agriculture and native species?