New Ag Curriculum Meant to Educate Consumers

New Ag Curriculum Meant to Educate Consumers


[Macon, GA/John Holcomb – Reporting]
School is finally back in session here in Georgia, and with a new school year comes
new opportunities for kids to learn and develop themselves for their future. This year, one of those new opportunities
comes in the form of a new agriculture education curriculum that was signed by Governor Deal
during the 2018 Georgia FFA convention. The bill, Senate Bill 330 creates a three-year
pilot program designed to incorporate ag education into elementary schools. Twenty pilot schools were selected all across
the state, and one of those was Heard Elementary in Macon, Georgia. [Carole Cote/Principal, Heard Elementary School]
We feel very privileged and honored to be able to offer this ag program to our students. It’s in its infancy, but we are very excited
about where we’re going to go with it and the opportunities that it’s going to provide
our children, not just the learning opportunities with knowledge about science and how plants
grow, but also how they learn to work together to be problem solvers and to work collaboratively
so that they’ll be prepared for middle, high school, and their workforce once they go on. [John]
After being selected as one of the schools, it was time to find a teacher. They ended up finding the perfect fit in Carol
Baker-Dunn. Someone that has been in and around ag her
entire life. This is her first-year teaching but says she’s
excited to teach someone that’s so important and so vital for kids to understand. [Carol Baker-Dunn/Ag Teacher, Heard Elementary
School] Ag is one of the few things that touches everything
that we do. From being able to drive up and down, not
only to sit down at the table and eat, but the clothes we wear, the money we spend, the
items that we buy. From the football fields to the baseball fields
and back and forth. So ag touches everything. [John]
The goal of the program and curriculum is of course to teach kids basic ag knowledge,
but they also hope to show kids that there’s a more to ag than working in a field. [Carole]
It’s not just growing in the garden, which is very important, but it’s also the production,
the marketing, the business aspects. How do you market your produce or your meat
products, and then how do you manage that money, so we just felt like with time, as
we grow the program, it was going to provide our students with such a great learning opportunity. [John]
In the end, they are hoping to spark someone’s passion by exposing them to something they
might otherwise never would have been exposed to. [Carol Baker-Dunn]
I want to instill a passion and a worth ethic in them for them to be able to carry this
to the next level in the middle school. For the middle school teachers, ag teachers
to continue to grow the programs and touch the children to where they have a passion
where it just feeds right into the high school and from high school into college. To where these students can go into either
some kind of production ag, or they end up with their own family farm, or they’re learning
how to be the politician and the advocators to stand up for our family farms in Washington. [John]
Reporting in Macon for the Farm Monitor, I’m John Holcomb.

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