Cream of the Crop

December 2011

Teacher Feature - Sarah Allard
First grade teacher
Community Outreach Academy, Sacramento County

Do you have any advice for other teachers on implementing agriculture into the classroom?
I think the best advice is to just do it. Agriculture is everywhere and covers many standards in all grade levels. If you want to teach agriculture then just do it! Teaching is stressful with all of the testing and mandates from administrators—have some fun and teach what you love... you will cover the standards and your students (and you) will be much happier! read more...

1. Imagine this... Story Writing Contest
The Imagine this... deadline was November 1 and the 2011 Regional Winners have been announced and are posted on our website at On January 1, 2012 CFAITC will announce the six state winners. State-winning authors will have their stories published in an illustrated book and will be recognized at an awards ceremony during National Ag Week in March.

2. Seed Survivor
Bring the Seed Survivor Mobile to you school. This truck and trailer unit is a plant nutrient classroom on wheels. The Seed Survivor Mobile Unit is curriculum based with interactive learning experiences that teach elementary students about growing healthy plants and where their food comes from. The educational display will be visiting elementary schools throughout California through April. Please visit the following link to see specific dates and sign your school up.

3. California AITC Northern Conference
A hundred participants game to the Cow Palace in San Francisco to listen to speakers and presentations at our northern conference this year. If you were not able to make it, please visit the following link to see videos of our keynote speakers Dan Desmond and Michael Marks. While you are there, make sure to watch the video of Farmer Panel, where industry experts discussed the current agriculture issues.

4. Network for a Healthy California Conference
Are you a champion for change? Interested in nutrition education? Attend this conference March 5-6 in Sacramento to network with other champions and build on existing programs. "Accelerating the Movement: SNAP-Ed to NEOP" is the theme for the conference and will feature more than 75 speakers who will share their insights, tools, strategies, and evidence based success stories for making change happen in California. Free registration.

Reaching out
Story by Christine Souza

California is the nation's top agricultural producer, but that doesn't mean everyone living in the state has enough to eat. Members of the California Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers and Ranchers program aim to change that. read more...

Lesson Plan: A "Sour" Subject
Through this lessons students will be able to reinforce their skills of reading, observation, mathematical computation, and written expression by comparing a grapefruit to a lemon. A fun lesson on percentages! This lesson meets California science and math standards for grades 5-6 and can be adapted to meet the educational standards for a variety of grade levels.

Book: Farm by Elisha Cooper
There is so much to look at and learn about on a farm - animals, tractors, crops, and barns. This colorful book follows a family throughout the year describing activities performed on the farm. ISBN 978-0-545-07075-1

Resource: California Fruit Raps
A fun energetic sing along that teaches about different California fruits and suggests students to make some healthy choices by visiting the produce section at the market. An interactive CD and song book motivating students to eat California fruits.

Website: California Christmas Tree Association
This website has great tips on how to take care of your Christmas tree including home fire prevention and also a section to test your knowledge about Christmas trees.

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