Cream of the Crop

July 2010

In this issue:
Teacher Feature - Lee Ann Stangl
1. Imagine this... author at the California State Fair
2. Spinach Fact/Activity Sheet
3. Sergio de Alba Receives National Teaching Award
4. California AITC Conference - Call for Proposals
5. Meet the 2010 Foster Farms-Grown Presidential Turkeys
6. New Look for CFAITC.org
7. A Story Garden of Fun and Fantasy
8. Environmental Contest Launched in California
9. Pizza Ag Mag
10. NEA's Green Across America Grant
News - Water Reporting
Resources
County - Local Events

Teacher Feature
Lee Ann Stangl
Founder/Principal, Keyes to Learning Charter School
Stanislaus County

Give an example of how you use agriculture to teach in your classroom or in your program.
I think the greatest way to have students learn is from the experts. There are so many local resources available who like to visit and share with students that you could never run out of people and ideas.... read more...

1. Imagine this... author at the California State Fair
Monday, July 19, 2010 Noon
Imagine this... student author Emma Morris will be at the California State Fair on Monday, July 19, 2010. Stop by to get your book signed and hear how she was inspired by agriculture.

2. Spinach Fact/Activity Sheet
Our latest agricultural fact and activity sheet features spinach. Learn about how this leafy green is produced, where it is grown and its nutritional value. Then, get hands-on experience with lesson ideas.
To download, visit www.cfaitc.org/factsheets.

3. Sergio de Alba Receives National Teaching Award
In June, at the National Agriculture in the Classroom Conference in Baltimore, Maryland, Los Banos native Sergio de Alba was announced as a national recipient of USDA's Excellence in Teaching Award. Sergio received California's Literacy for Life teaching award earlier this year. He teaches at R.M. Miano Elementary in Merced County. Learn more about him in his Teacher Feature interview.

4. California AITC Conference - Call for Proposals
There are many opportunities to share your expertise, experience and/or educational resources with conference attendees. Do you have a workshop or Make 'n' Take idea? Would you like to host a "Taste of California" Luncheon table or exhibit? Do you have handouts or door prizes to donate? Visit www.cfaitc.org/conference to fill out the online form or download PDFs.

5. Meet the 2010 Foster Farms-Grown Presidential Turkeys
This year, California's very own Foster Farms has the great distinction of raising the 2010 Presidential Turkeys and, come November, will be presenting the National Turkey to President Obama for the official Thanksgiving pardon. This fall, Agriculture in the Classroom is excited to bring you a Presidential Turkey curriculum as well as a chance to have your school win a Presidential Turkey visit and meet with the grower and Chairman of the National Turkey Federation, who will be making the official presentation to President Obama. Six schools will be awarded with this special opportunity.
Watch the website, and subscribe to the feed, at www.cfaitc.org/turkeytour for touring dates, photos and updates, entry forms, and curriculum.

6. New Look for CFAITC.org
Our website has a new look! All of the same great content is still there, but now it's easier to find and more fun to use. Look around and let us know what you think!
Do you list your events and opportunities on the Event Calendar? This feature has been updated to be friendly for re-listing: it will remember your entries and auto-fill your descriptions and contact information. Give it a try today!

7. A Story Garden of Fun and Fantasy
This 12-part series in the Sonoma Valley Sun newspaper (through August) features folktales about plants retold by Jackie Baldwin. Free seeds, related to the weekly column, are available. Visit www.story-lovers.com to read the tales. For the seeds, write to the newspaper at 158 W. Napa, Sonoma, CA 95476 or call (707) 933-0101.

8. Environmental Contest Launched in California
"Caring for our Watersheds," sponsored by Agrium Inc. and the Center for Land-Based Learning, asks students "What can you do to improve your watershed?" Deadlines and awards for the contest will be announced shortly. For more information, visit www.CaringForOurWatersheds.com.

9. Pizza Ag Mag
This four-page, tabloid-style publication for grades 3-5 is available in sets of 30 for $5. It features articles such as "Crust Starts on the Farm" explaining how pizza crust is made from wheat and including facts about wheat production. The "Pizza History Timeline" goes all the way back to 4000 BC, when Egyptians first began making bread with yeast. The "Slice of Life" article features a young tomato farmer and a cheese production manager at a food company explaining how tomatoes are grown and how cheese is made, and how those farm products make their way into one of kids' favorite foods. To order, visit www.fb-orders.com/ageducate.

10. NEA's Green Across America Grant
Deadline: July 30, 2010
Educators are invited to apply for grants up to $1,000 to engage and inspire their K-12 students to increase sustainable, earth-friendly behavior in their neighborhoods and communities. For more information, and to apply, visit www.neamb.com/green.



News

Outreach work to continue on water report rule
By Dave Kranz

Amid confusion and concern among California water users about reporting requirements for surface water diversions and use, the State Water Resources Control Board has encouraged agricultural organizations to continue educating their members about a new state law—and has said its immediate goal is to help people comply with the law rather than to prosecute violations.... read more...

Resources

Lesson plan: Shake, Rattle & Roll
This simple lab introduces a basic method for analyzing soil composition. Students will investigate soil texture and properties, determining the type of soil found in the garden. This lesson meets California science and math standards for students in grades 1-3, and can be easily adapted for multiple grade levels. Download (PDF, 155 KB)

Book: Soil: Digging Into Earth's Vital Resource by Darlene Stille
Learn how soil management is crucial, as it is used in so many ways—from producing food to making homes and producing fibers. This book is part of a nine-book series. Other titles include Erosion: How Land Forms, How Land Changes, Minerals: From Apatite to Zinc, and Natural Resources: Using and Protecting Earth's Surface. Appropriate for upper elementary and middle school students. ISBN 978-0-7565-0857-9

Resource: Soil Biology Primer
The Soil Biology Primer introduces the living component of soil and how it contributes to agricultural productivity, and air and water quality. The primer includes information on the soil food web—the community of organisms living in soil—and how the web relates to soil health. Chapter topics include bacteria, fungi, protozoa, nematodes, arthropods and earthworms. For students in grades 8-12. Available for $16 from the Soil and Water Conservation Society. To order, visit www.swcs.org.

Website: Visit a working farm or ranch to bring classroom learning to life!
The UC Small Farm Program hosts a searchable, online directory of California agricultural tourism (agritourism) operations, for use by visitors looking for a farm or ranch to visit. California's farmers and ranchers invite you to visit, learn, taste and enjoy. www.calagtour.org

County - Local Events

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