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National Agriculture in the Classroom

Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix

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Agricultural Pests
The crops we eat are constantly at risk of harm from pests. But what are these pests? In this activity, students will develop a definition of an agricultural pest that is meaningful to them and identify categories of pests such as insects, rodents, mollusks, weeds, and diseases.
Are there ingredients from GE Plants in my Food?
In this activity, students will examine a variety of foods and their ingredients to determine which foods contain ingredients that may have come from genetically engineered plants.
Genetic Engineering (Grades 9-12)
In addition to selective breeding, genetic engineering tools are used by plant breeders to solve some agricultural challenges such as producing enough food to feed a growing global population or minimizing production impacts on our environment. Some plants have been engineered to be more nutritious, more resistant to pests, or more drought tolerant. In this activity, students will review the process of bacterial transformation and then look at the processes involved in creating genetically engineered plants.
New Plant Variety Safety Evaluation Project
Students will explore data collection for a hypothetical new potato variety to be evaluated for safety. They will also use a flow chart to evaluate whether the new variety is as safe and nutritious as comparable food or if additional information is needed to make a decision.
Nutrient Supply Activity
In this activity, students will explore the global problem of hunger and nutrient availability along with techniques that are being used to improve nutrient supplies where shortages exist. Students will also exercise their ability to identify credible information sources.
Targeted Genome Editing
In this activity, high school students develop an understanding of the CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing system and create an infographic (or poster or model) to demonstrate their understanding of the system.
The Making of a New Apple Cultivar
This high school activity introduces students to apple growing and shows them how selective breeding is used to benefit both the apple grower and consumer by producing a new and better-quality apple.