Cream of the Crop

April 2011

In this issue:
Teacher Feature - Laura Romo
1. Teacher Resource Guide
2. Imagine this...
3. USDA's Excellence in Teaching About Agriculture Award
4. Cattle Ranch & Wildflower Tour
5. California Ag Plate
6. 2011 Range Camp
7. Healthy Lifestyles Scholarship
8. Sacramento CWA Scholarship
9. CFAITC Conferences - Save the Dates!
News - Mentoring young farmers
Resources
County - Local Events

Teacher Feature - Laura Romo
6th Grade Teacher
Jefferson Leadership Academies, Long Beach
Los Angeles County

Tell us about a golden teaching moment.
Once, when I was teaching the life cycle of plants in second grade, students were comparing the stages of the cycle. Since it was the time to harvest some of the lettuce we had grown for our salad party, students were allowed to pull out the more mature lettuce. As one of my students pulled his lettuce out, he expressed in a loud voice, "Aha! Now I know why the dirt is so smooth, all these terrific worms are helping us!" That comment was the perfect lead-in to our next lesson. read more...

imagine this

1. Teacher Resource Guide
The 2011-2012 Teacher Resource Guide is now available. The new edition has 131 new resources, 70 new websites, and 173 new book recommendations. Each item has been reviewed by educators. Use these resources to seamlessly incorporate agriculture into your current teaching plan.
Request a hard copy (free to California educators), or use the website to browse, sort, and search the online database.

imagine this

2. Imagine this...
State-winning authors met the high school student illustrators of their stories at the awards ceremony and book launch in March. The entire ceremony was streamed live and a recording is available at ustream.tv. Videos of the students reading their stories are available on the Learn About Ag website. The books, Imagine this... Stories Inspired by Agriculture, can be ordered for $6 plus shipping.

3. USDA's Excellence in Teaching About Agriculture Award
California's Literacy for Life Teaching Award winner Sherrie Taylor Vann has been recognized as one of five teachers nationwide who will receive USDA's Excellence in Teaching About Agriculture Award. Congratulations! Learn more about how Sherrie uses agriculture in her classroom in Colusa County:

Are you innovative with agriculture in your classroom? Watch for Literacy for Life applications to open this fall and be recognized for your good work.

4. Cattle Ranch & Wildflower Tour
Apr. 30, 2011 - Alameda County
8:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Educators are invited to take this tour from the California Beef Council to learn more about the people who grow, cultivate and raise the food we eat. Includes a tour of a cattle ranch, lunch, free educational resources, panel discussion, chef demonstration and more. One Continuing Education Unit (CEU) is available through Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo Continuing Education.
For more information, and to register, contact Christie Van Egmond at (916) 925-2333 ext. 11, or visit www.calbeef.org.

5. California Ag Plate
Are you an agriculture advocate? What better way to promote agriculture than on your car since most of us see them every day. Reserve one of the new special interest license plates to show your commitment to ag. Funds raised go towards promoting agriculture education and leadership. Plates will be issued after 7,500 pledges have been received.
Reserve your plate today at www.calagplate.com, and tell your friends!

6. 2011 Range Camp
Application deadline: April 22, 2011
The 27th annual range and natural resources camp is June 19-24 at the University of California's Elkus Youth Ranch in Half Moon Bay. Students 15-18 years old can discover the science and management of natural resources from experienced professionals and university faculty. Sessions include riparian habitats, soils, forestry, plant identification, touring a working ranch, and more. The cost is $400, including meals and lodging.
For more information, visit casrm.rangelands.org.

7. Healthy Lifestyles Scholarship
Deadline: April 30, 2011
This scholarship of $5,000 is available to students in their senior year of high school or first year of college who can comprehensively answer why a healthy lifestyle is important in school.
For more information, visit www.fitnessexercises.tv

8. Sacramento CWA Scholarship
Deadline: June 1, 2011
High school seniors and continuing community college students in Amador, El Dorado, Placer, Sacramento, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba counties intending to pursue an agriculture-related career are invited to apply for a $500 scholarship from the Sacramento Valley Chapter of California Women for Agriculture. Two scholarships will be awarded.
Download the application from www.learnaboutag.org/cwa/scholarship2011.pdf or contact Kelly Benarth with questions.

8. CFAITC Conferences - Save the Dates!
Sept. 24, 2011, Agriscapes, Pomona
Oct. 19, 2011, Cow Palace, San Francisco

We are pleased to be able to offer two 1-day conference events during this, our 25th Anniversary year. Plans are in the works for a Southern CA AITC Conference, as well as a Northern CA AITC Conference just prior to San Francisco Farm Day. Save the dates and plan to participate!



Mentoring young farmers

According to the 2007 Ag Census from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, one in four farmers is 65 years of age or older and the percentage of farmers younger than 45 has dropped significantly to just more than 25 percent of American farmers. read more...

Lesson Plan: CROP Circle
The CROP (California Regions of Optimal Planting) Circle is an easy-to-use diagram that illustrates proper planting and harvesting times for 18 crops commonly found in California school gardens. Diagrams are available for six different regions, depending on your location in the state, with recommended planting and harvesting schedules that can be altered to better suit your individual microclimate or school calendar. Download

Book: Johnny Tractor and the Big Surprise by Judy Katschke
It's spring on the farm and it's time to plant sunflowers, but the seeds are nowhere to be found. Johnny Tractor and Allie Gator search the farm, finally finding a big surprise. ISBN 978-0-7624-2628-7

Resource: Gardening Curriculum
A national 4-H curriculum designed with six different units to teach gardening skills like planning, planting, garden care, harvesting and storage, and careers. Student Activity guides are available in four different levels A-D which correspond to grade levels 3-12. A leader/helper's guide is also available. www.n4hccs.org/afterschoolag

Website: Agripedia
An interactive website that presents facts, figures, demonstrations, examples, graphics, and more regarding the concepts, practices, and vocabulary of agriculture in a multimedia format using audio clips, graphics, text, and animation. This website offers quizzes to measure comprehension, games, webquests, and virtual fieldtrips. This website can be enjoyed by all grade levels. www.ca.uky.edu/agripedia

Local Events

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