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Ag in the Classroom awards grants to fund ag literacy projects

Wisconsin Farm Bureau Foundation
The Ag in the Classroom is a program to help students K-12 to understand the importance of agriculture.

The Wisconsin Farm Bureau Foundation’s Ag in the Classroom program has awarded $6,749 to schools and organizations to expand agricultural literacy. Groups, schools and organizations can apply for up to $500 as part of the Ag in the Classroom’s matching grant program to support a project, provided they have a source of matching funds. The 18 matching grant recipients are:

Bonduel Elementary Garden Committee, Elementary School Garden: $500, Bonduel

The Bonduel Elementary School is excited to create a green garden space. The goal is to do the kick-off on the first annual Wisconsin School Garden Day. A contest was given to each class to think of a name for their garden. The garden will include a fenced-in-area with raised beds for vegetables and flowers, a garden shed constructed by the tech ed students, along with picnic tables for outside classroom activities. Wood chips will provide a base for the walkways. This will be a natural, calming, learning oasis for the students and staff.

Brown County Dairy Promotions, Agricultural Literacy: $500, Green Bay

Brown County Dairy Promotions continues to promote the agriculture industry with a focus on dairy during the county breakfast on the farm. This event creates a better understanding of where food comes from and who grows it, builds awareness and a positive perception of agriculture through education. The grant will purchase educational barn banners, Ag Mags and agricultural career posters, food and farm fact products and other educational materials.

Building a Better Forest, Deep Mulch Gardening: $500, Independence

‘Building a Better Forest’ is an educational and active learning program for pre-K through 12th grade students and adults. This program will create meaningful experiences to help improve the well-being of individuals by teaching them how to grow vegetables and fruits. The deep mulch garden activities are helping students understand the basics of gardening. Students will define deep mulch gardening and explain why it is important. Students also will build mini gardens.

Chain Exploration Center, Growing Seeds, Growing Students: $500, Waupaca

The Chain Exploration School will establish and maintain an outdoor greenhouse. The school has an on-site community garden that provides learning opportunities for students and families. The grant will be used to provide additional materials such as seeds, hoses, shelves and soil for the garden.

Cows on the Concourse, Cows on the Concourse Event: $500, Madison

An annual event, Cows on the Concourse is a ‘dairy’ good time for families. Located near the Madison Capitol Square, this free event provides children and adults opportunities to get close to cows and calves, enjoy hot grilled cheese sandwiches and ice-cold milk and learn from educational stations staffed by Wisconsin dairy farmers and volunteers.

Easter Seals Wisconsin, Exploring Job Options in Rural Wisconsin: $500, Madison

Easter Seals Wisconsin Exploring Job Options in Rural Wisconsin program allows students to think about the hundreds of careers related to farming and agriculture. The grant will be used for classed to teach students with disabilities about the vast agricultural career opportunities in Wisconsin. These classes will encourage students to see how their interests could potentially fit into the agriculture industry, which is Wisconsin’s largest employer and industry.

Eau Claire Friends of the Fair, Blue Ribbon Kid’s Day: $500, Eau Claire

‘The Blue-Ribbon Kid’s Club’ will be a new educational activity at the Eau Claire County Fair showcasing agriculture in the Chippewa Valley. The Augusta FFA Alumni, A-1 Tent Rental and Eau Claire County Farm Bureau will work together to sponsor this two-day educational event. The grant will be used to buy supplies for hands-on learning stations and agricultural goodie bags for participants.

Envision Greater Fond du Lac Agri-Business Council, Day on the Farm: $500, Fond du Lac

Hundreds of kindergarten and first-grade students from Fond du Lac County schools will experience first-hand what happens on a farm. Students will participate in activities that will provide a closer look at the farm. Students will have access to farm animals, what the animals eat and how they are cared for. Students will receive a packet to share with others.

Glenwood City High School Ag Department, Learning to Grow Center Improvements: $500, Glenwood City

A few years ag, the Learning to Grow Center was the brainchild of a few horticulture students. Staff have designed the center with the idea of teaching young people how to grow food and eat healthy. The improvements to the site will add crop diversity, improved fruit management and weed control. Using the grant money, the goal is to expand the project purchasing trellising lumber, cables, cedar for raised beds, tomato trellising, fruit plants and weed barriers.

Iowa-Grant FFA Chapter, Agricultural Lab Stations: $500, Livingston

The Iowa-Grant FFA is purchasing eight stainless steel worktables to enhance the agricultural lessons being taught in animal science, crop science, food science and soil science classes for students in grades 9 thru 12. These new tables will provide lab stations for students to explore new concepts within the agricultural field.

Luck High School Ag Department, Cultivating Agriculture for Luck: $500, Luck

The Luck Agriculture Education Program offers Ag Day on the Lawn to promote agriculture to pre-K through 12th grade students who attend Luck Schools, along with community members and surrounding daycares. The funds will be used to purchase ag fact signs that will placed throughout the lawn during the event, along with agriculturally themed activities for the students to participate in while at the event.

Portage FFA Chapter, Food for America: $500, Portage

The Portage Community School District FFA is immersing area youth in agricultural education through two hands-on agricultural opportunities. In fall, more than 300 elementary school students will visit and tour an area farm and learn about the large world of agriculture. In the spring, FFA members will visit the elementary school classrooms and engage students in hands-on, student-designed lessons related to agriculture.

Rock County Ag in the Classroom, Ag in the Classroom Training of Trainers Model: $500, Janesville

The Ag in the Classroom Training of Trainers (ToT) Educator model is intended to engage experienced trainers in coaching new educators who are less experienced with Ag in the Classroom experiential educational opportunities and resources. Funds will be used to sponsor 10 educators to attend the Wisconsin Ag in the Classroom Sumer Bus Tour, provide them with copies of book of the year and related educational resources and for them to attend the Rock County Farm Bureau meeting.

D.C. Everest 4K at St. John’s Lutheran, Our Pollinating Partners: $299, Wausau

The grant will be used to help grow milk weed and hatch monarch butterflies in the classroom. The butterflies will be transferred to an outdoor classroom, which is called Timberland. Also, funds will be used to grow vegetables that will be transplanted into the outdoor classroom. Students will learn about science, math and art as they learn the importance of pollinators in our environment and food production.

Sigma Alpha Beta Delta at UW-Platteville, Agriculture Day on the Farm: $500, Platteville

Sigma Alpha Beta Delta is a professional women’s agricultural sorority built on the pillars of scholarship, leadership, fellowship and service. On Ag Day on the Farm, Sigma Alpha Beta Delta members teach fourth-grade students about agriculture at the University Pioneer Farm. A total of 10 stations are set up by sorority members and students can learn and explore each topic relating to agriculture, specifically agriculture in southwestern Wisconsin.

Taylor County Farm Bureau, C.O.W.S: $500, Medford

The Taylor County Farm Bureau is working with fourth-grade teachers in the county to enhance the Wisconsin unit on agriculture. The grant will be used to help fund donations of the book of the year, Ag Mags and food and farm fact resources including activity cards, junior books, pocket guides, pencils and other books. Also, local farmers share what they do on their farms.

Walworth County Fair Barnyard Adventures: Growing to Learn Raised Perennial Crop Beds, $500, Elkhorn

The Barnyard Adventure at the Walworth County Fair will feature new ‘Growing to Learn Raised Perennial Crop Garden Beds.’ The raised beds will feature a variety of perennial crops, including legumes and oilseeds. The funds will be used to purchase supplies including lumber and hardware to build the raised garden beds, composted, soil, perennial seeds, reusable signage and pamphlets.

Wanish Sugar Bush LLC, Sap to Syrup Workshop: $450, Colfax

The project will help provide an educational workshop for Chippewa County 4-H members to learn the process of making maple syrup. The workshop will give attendees a unique inside-view of collecting, processing and securing pure maple syrup. Attendees will explore the multi-step process to make maple syrup and how to improve the quality of the end-product.