Teachers will become the students during this year’s Summer Agricultural Institute sponsored by West Virginia University Extension Service, Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design, and West Virginia Farm Bureau. The Institute gives educators the materials and know-how to teach their students about agriculture through a variety of school subject areas.
The two-day seminar, sometimes known as “Ag in the Classroom,” will be held June 12-13 at the Hilton Garden Inn, located in the Suncrest Town Center in Morgantown. Registration deadline is May 30.
Free teaching materials are included with registration, and offer practical hands-on lessons and ways to apply ag-related, classroom education.
On the first day of the event, participants will travel to North Elementary in Monongalia County, Firefly Creamery and Market, the Deep Creek Lavender Farm and to Crellin Elementary School to view farm, garden and research projects.
“This trip helps give educators insight to implement farm and agriculture-related learning into their school curriculum,” said Jean Woloshuk, West Virginia University Extension Service 4-H youth agriculture specialist.
By applying agriculture into school curriculums, educators help their students learn about the science behind how plants grow, where their food comes from and help give them the fundamental knowledge about the importance of sustainable, local food sources.
The second day offers educators sessions on a variety of topics which include pests, the impacts of ground cover and soil erosion, the importance of soil’s role to keep plants healthy and thriving, and much more.
During the event, attendees also can learn the important role that agriculture plays in both West Virginia and the United States, and how to educate students about farming and agriculture through science, technology, engineering, math, writing and more.
“Agriculture can be used to educate students through many school subjects you might not expect,” said Woloshuk.
“Using agriculture to teach school subjects has been used throughout the state, and across the country,” she added. “Applying classroom lessons to real life concepts makes learning more effective and fun.”
Along with training and education about agriculture in the classroom, attendees can also learn about careers in agriculture, and about how the latest technology is being used in farm and agriculture education and industry.
The seminar offers three credit hours of graduate or professional development credits available from WVU. Registration with both the West Virginia Farm Bureau and WVU is required.
Registration fees for the two-day event vary from $75-$205, depending on lodging preferences and available discounts.
Professional development credit registration can be completed online at online.wvu.edu/Registration/forms/ProfDev.pdf.
Scholarships are available for qualified registrants, for more information call 1-800-398-4630, ext. 306.
For more information regarding the 2014 Agricultural Institute for Educators, contact Jean Woloshuk at 304-293-2708 or Jean.Woloshuk@mail.wvu.edu.
CONTACT: Cassie Waugh, WVU Extension Service
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