Cream of the Crop

March 2009

1. Teacher Resource Guide 2009-2010 new
The new Teacher Resource Guide for the 2009-2010 school year is chock-full of resources and information. More than 100 entries, books and Web sites have been added to this comprehensive source of materials that can be used to easily bring agriculture into your classroom. Visit the CFAITC Web site to download the PDF, request a free book, and browse for recommended books, Web sites, and more. Books will be shipped at the end of March. A CD version is due out later this year.

2. Imagine this... Awards Ceremony and Book Launch
March 19, 2009, Sacramento
State-winning student authors and high school illustrators will gather in Sacramento on March 19, 2009 for an awards ceremony and to launch the new book, Imagine this... Stories Inspired by Agriculture 2008. Students from Delta High, Inderkum High, Rio Vista High, Sheldon High and Woodland High Schools used pencils, pens, research and their imaginations to create the colorful illustrations for each of the stories. Visit the CFAITC Web site to read the winning stories and, after launch, flip through an interactive version of the book and order your own copy. Books are $10 and will start shipping after National Ag Week, March 15-21, 2009.

3. What's Growin' On? Your Link to California Agriculture
Is your lunch local? Read about California grown products on page four of the 7th edition of What's Growin' On? and then log on to the Kids' Corner section of the CFAITC Web site to download a scavenger hunt. Students can take the worksheet with them to their farmers' market or grocery store and then return to the Web site to add their name to the Hall of Fame. Free class sets of both the 6th and 7th editions of the 16-page newspaper for third through eighth grade students are still available and can be ordered by filling out the request form.

4. Agriculture Book and Resource Suppliers
Visit these companies to find animal replicas, books, stencils, terrariums and everything in-between.

5. National Agriculture Week
March 15-21, 2009
National Agriculture Week is a time to recognize how agriculture affects our everyday lives and how critical it is for our future quality of life. How will you celebrate at your school? Event ideas from the Agriculture Council of America include pizza parties, adopting a legislator, and distributing fun facts and puzzles with school lunches. For more information and materials, visit

6. California Agriculture Day at the Capitol
March 24, 2009 11:30 a.m.
Celebrate at the Capitol! The grounds will be alive with farm animals, food and entertainment, all celebrating California's great agricultural bounty. Sponsored booths will share samples of California commodities and information with state legislators, legislative staffers, state agency representatives, the media and the general public.
For more information, visit

7. Kohl's "Kids Who Care" Scholarship Program
Nomination deadline: March 15, 2009
Nominate a young volunteer in your life (ages 6-18) for the opportunity to receive up to $5,000 in scholarships. Nominations should describe how the nominee has contributed to the community in a meaningful way by performing volunteer services that helped non-family members. The volunteer activity must have occurred within the last 12 months.
For more information, visit

8. Think Globally, Learn Locally
March 21, 2009, Monterey
The Monterey Bay Science Project, Monterey Bay Area Math Project and Life Lab Science Program present their 12th annual conference. Workshops focus on using local environments to engage young minds and include strands for environmental science, raising engagement for English language learners, and integrating science with math and literacy. The cost is $40 if registering before March 11.
For more information, and to register, visit

9. Spring Break Day Camp
April 6-10, 2009, Monterey
Children ages 7-11 are invited to join Life Lab on their on-site farm for spring gardening, cooking, and crafts. Theme days include plants day, habitat day, chickens and eggs day, birds, bees and butterflies day, and dirt day. The cost is $250.00 per session. Summer camps include Wildlands & Watering Cans Summer Day Camp and Farm and Wilderness Exploration.
For more information, and to register, visit

10. Water Awareness Poster Contest
Deadline: April 10, 2009
California students in fourth grade are invited to draw a poster for Water Awareness Month in May. The top three winners will receive savings bonds up to $150 and their teachers will receive a $100 credit towards classroom supplies. Break out the crayons, tempera paint, or even the computer mouse, to illustrate how "food grows where water flows!"
For more information, and to enter, visit

11. 2009 Childhood Obesity Conference
June 9-12, 2009 Los Angeles
Poster presentation application deadline: April 1, 2009
The Childhood Obesity conference is devoted to providing information about the most pressing and innovative issues related to childhood obesity, including issues that impact food access, nutrition, physical activity and the environment. The Poster Session offers an opportunity to spotlight your program's creative efforts to address Childhood Obesity. Poster presentations should display information on the interventions and strategies employed by your project.
For more information, visit

12. Future Scientists Mini-institutes and Corn Earworms
June 15-16, 2009, Riverside, CA
June 18-19, 2009, Parlier, CA
Science teachers are invited to apply to attend mini-institutes that focus on ecology/entomology (life cycle of the corn earworm) and investigation and experimentation. Participation includes attending a two-day workshop, using activities in the classroom with students for one semester, and then presenting findings with four students back at the lab in May 2010. Includes $300 stipend and lunches.
For more information, and an application, contact Craig Wilson at 979/458-4451.

The deadline for free corn earworms has been extended until the end of March. Visit for request form, lessons, and presentations of previous student experiments.