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Category Archives: Agriculture Education

Agriculture Education and Wiggles and Giggles

We had a fun time with the young ones from Wiggles and Giggles this morning as they explored the farm and the pumpkin patch.

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This afternoon we headed to Elyria Christian School to visit with their 2nd graders. They are participating in the In the Class and On the Farm (ICOF) agriculture education program. This afternoon we discussed the definition of agriculture, and we discovered the many ways that we are each affected by agriculture every day. Just ask them, they’ll let you know!

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See you Monday for your day on the farm, second graders!

Grammy’s Pumpkin Patch – McPherson, KS 2013

 
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Posted by on October 2, 2013 in Agriculture Education

 

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Dairy On the Farm

I am excited to welcome Southwest Dairy to the pumpkin patch on October 27. They will have their mobile classroom at Johnstown Farm from 1:00 to 5:00 on the last Sunday of the season!

Grammy’s Pumpkin Patch – McPherson, KS 2013

 

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We Got Worms!

We got worms-red wrigglers to be exact. We took a rode trip today to Belvue, Kansas, to visit with Debbie Anderson at Rising Mist Organic Farm. Our mission was to begin the adventure of vermicomposting- “vermi” meaning worm, so, yes, worm composting. Why worms? For their poop, of course!  Worm poop, technically castings, are high in soil nutrients, helpful as an organic pesticide, and great study for our homeschool classroom.

Debbie has been in the worm business for over the years. She’s even written a book about worm composting. She is a wealth of knowledge on how we could “worm” our way into vermicomposting (sorry, that was a bad pun).

We enjoyed a tour of Rising Mist. I had never seen a worm nursery before. While the worms were hard at work, the owners were also hard at work preparing their bountiful and beautiful produce. Their secret is, of course, rich organic soil full of worm castings.

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Grammy’s Pumpkin Patch – McPherson, KS 2013

 
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Posted by on August 30, 2013 in Agriculture Education

 

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When Pigs Fly

This was my first time to attend the annual When Pigs Fly event at the McPherson Airport. It was fantastic! The day was packed with activities for every age. Of course, the BBQ contest caught my attention right off. Even at 8 am, the place smelled amazing, making it difficult to wait for lunchtime. Rides from horses to helicopters were available too.

When we were approached by the committee to bring the Grammy’s Barrel Train and Build-N-Blast, we excited. The event is a fundraiser for scholarships in the field of agriculture, so being the agriculture education nerds that we all are, we loved the idea. Thanks to all the other volunteers and patrons, the day a success!

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Grammy’s Pumpkin Patch McPherson Kansas 2013

 

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Agriculture Education

“Agriculture is the process of preparing the soil to raise crops and livestock!” Just ask any 2nd grader from Washington Elementary, St. Joseph, or Elyria, and they will tell you.  These were the three schools whose 2nd graders participated in our “In the Class and On the Farm (ICOF)” program for 2012. The program was made possible largely through grants and donations from Kansas Farm Bureau.  Several local businesses also partnered with Grammy’s Pumpkin Patch to sponsor the agriculture education program – Krehbiel’s Specialty Meats, Kiwanis Club of McPherson, Artshirt, and Tractor Supply Co. Due to the increasing tightening of school budgets, we are so thankful that these businesses and community groups value ag education!

My family has been greatly blessed to grow up with personal access to a farm. We realize that this is not true for a growing number of students, even within McPherson county. Statistics show that, on average, the elementary student is two generations removed from the farm. Along with this gap, comes a growing disconnect between the field and the table for most students.We believe that everyone deserves to be informed consumers of all products (food, textile, etc). We also believe that to be an informed consumer, one must be made aware of true agriculture. What better way to teach than on the farm?

The curriculum is two-fold. Angie and myself, both Kansas certified teachers, go into the classroom to teach the basic “what, why, and so what?” about Kansas agriculture. We begin by posing the question, “Who in here has been affected by agriculture today?” We are usually met with 3 or 4 hands per class. Most responses include petting or feeding the family pet, seeing a cow on the way to school, or dreaming of barnyard animals. The next couple of hours are spent defining agriculture, learning how each and every person is affected by agriculture every day, and learning specifically about Kansas’s Top Crops. All of these lessons are hands-on and align with state teaching standards.

   

The second part of the ICOF program is a day of common core lessons taught through the lens of agriculture that takes place on Johnstown Farm during the pumpkin harvest season.

                                     

These were some packed full days – certainly some of my favorites from the season. We hope to see all three schools back next year, and also be able to extend the program to other 2nd grade classrooms. Thanks again to Kansas Farm Bureau, Krehbiel’s Specialty Meats, Kiwanis Club of McPherson, TSC, and Artshirt!

Grammy’s Pumpkin Patch 2012 – McPherson, KS
 

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