State Summary 2015 — Virginia
Sprouting Success curriculum What’s in the Barn curriculum Three Sisters curriculum My Virginia Plate book My Virginia Plate curriculum poster unit Virginia Regions video series Virginia Agriculture in the Classroom facebook page Two newsletters were sent out to teachers which included information articles, lesson plans, and book suggestions. Topics were Dairy Cows and Biofuels. http://www.agintheclass.org/Teachers/Newsletters.aspx
Major Program Accomplishments or Outputs
Virginia AITC conducted 83 professional development trainings servicing a formal and informal educators. Trainings are incorporated in university teacher preparation programs, regional summer series, schools, state and national education conferences. Two curriculum units were developed and implemented during 2015. The spring theme was What’s in the Barn and the summer/fall theme was Sprouting Success.
The fifth annual Agriculture Literacy Week was held in conjunction with National Agriculture Week and was recognized state-wide by a proclamation from the governor. The 2015 Book of the Year was My Virginia Plate by Tammy Maxey. 20000 books were read to over 58,000 students. This project continues to expand with volunteers from FFA, Southern States, Farm Credit, Virginia Farm Bureau, Virginia government officials and Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
Major Program Impacts or Outcomes
Approximately 2000 educators and volunteers attended AITC professional development trainings in 2015. Those attending report that they will impacted approximately 49,000 children within the year. 96% of educators participating in AITC programming stated that they would recommend the workshop to another teacher. Further, over 98% reported that the workshop had changed their opinion and attitude towards agriculture. 93% of participants report that they plan to share their newly acquired agricultural knowledge with another educator.
Nearly 11,000 visits were made to the AITC website. The lesson plan page remains the most popular page, offering teachers curriculum units, student work pages, and over 200 lesson plans.
Approximately 58,000 students were visited and read to during Agriculture Literacy Week. These students learned about fruit and vegetable life cycles as well as how various insects affect pollination and pest control. Additionally, Farm Bureau Women's Committee volunteers reached 58,000 students through a variety of other events, which were supported by AITC.
Two newsletters were each sent to 1480 elementary schools (all public and large private in the state) on the topics of Dairy Cows and Biofuels and are available online at www.agintheclass.org.
School grants were awarded to 29 locations providing an opportunity for 5200 children to have an agricultural experience.
The GROW pilot direct to student project provides 5000 children an opportunity to learn about agriculture.
Tammy Maxey joined Virginia Farm Bureau’s Agriculture in the Classroom the program in 2006. As Sr. Education Program Coordinator she serves and the educational leader. Her achievements in Virginia include authoring two agriculture literacy books for the program. Tammy is a master educator with nearly 20 years of in public education experience serving as an elementary and middle school teacher and as a middle school principal.
She holds a Post-Master’s Certificate in Principalship from Virginia Commonwealth University and a B.S. degree in Special Education. In addition she holds a M.S. degree from Virginia Tech in Vocational Technical Education.
Tammy has been active on the national level with NAITCO and currently serves as a Southern Region Representative. Additionally she serves on the American Farm Bureau Foundation Board as the Agriculture in the Classroom representative. Tammy and her husband Greg operate a small beef cattle farm in Amelia County.