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National Agriculture in the Classroom

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Summary 2020 —

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VACANT

Innovative Programming Conducted and Educational Resources Developed

Innovative and dissemination practices in 2020 revolved around meeting the needs of teachers in a distance learning environment. We held our conference virtually, implemented our #LearnAboutAg@Home blog and began converting lessons and student worksheets to Google Slides. We started offering weekly FaceBook live presentations.

We developed the following resources:

  • Orange You Glad We Have Farmland https://learnaboutag.org/resources/grab/
  • Olive Fact and Activity Sheet https://learnaboutag.org/resources/fact/
  • All 42 Fact and Activity Sheets https://learnaboutag.org/resources/fact/
  • Blueberries Ag-Bite https://learnaboutag.org/resources/bites/
  • Making Recycled Paper Ag-Bite (updated) https://learnaboutag.org/resources/bites/
  • 18th Edition of What's Growin' On?- Props to Specialty Crops https://learnaboutag.org/resources/wgo/
  • Spanish Edition of What's Growin' On? Props to Specialty Crops https://learnaboutag.org/resources/wgo/
  • Extra Extra Classroom Extensions of 18th Edition of What's Growin' On? https://learnaboutag.org/resources/wgo/
  • Curriculum Cowabunga Boxes
  • Ports - the Gateway of Trade and Transport

Major Program Impacts or Outcomes

Pre- and post-surveys were conducted for a Specialty Crop Block Grant to produce the resource From Start to Finish - Producing, Preparing and Preserving California Specialty Crops. At pre-survey, 268 students score an overall mean of 2.8 out of 7.0 possible knowledge points. At post-survey, 179 score an overall mean of 4.9 on the same 7 knowledge items. This represents a highly significant 73.9 percent increase in knowledge scores after exposure to the From Start to Finish educational materials.

Pre- and post-surveys were conducted for a CalAgPlate grant to produce Pick-A-Peck, a program for students to taste and learn about specialty crops. Overall, participants demonstrated greater confidence in their agricultural knowledge. Across the board, participants responded "I don't know" less frequently on the post-test. Most notably, when asked how many different commodities are grown in California (Q1) 43 percent of participants selected "I don't know" on the pre-test, while only 4 percent participants selected "I don't know" on the post-test. CFAITC's Pick a Peck Program improved agricultural literacy and nutritional awareness in program participants. Participants showed statistically significant (P<.001) growth in their knowledge of how food is produced and transported, the nutritional values of different forms of produce, and the variety of agricultural products grown in California.

Program Leader Biosketch

Judy Culbertson, a 5th generation pear grower, grew up in Courtland, a small town just outside of Sacramento, California. Following high school, Judy graduated from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Agricultural Business Management.

In 1980, Judy joined the Agriculture in the Classroom program. Today she serves as the executive director for the California Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom. Judy hopes that through the Foundation, every student can gain an appreciation and curiosity for learning about where their food and fiber come from.

The dedication and belief Judy possesses in the value of agriculture and education does not stop with her role with the Foundation. For the last 34 years, Judy has represented the Foundation on a variety of local, statewide and national boards and committees along with dedicated involvement within her own community. Judy is the past chair of the California State Fair Ag Advisory Council and CFAITC is the co-chair of California Agriculture Day, located at the state capitol. She is also a member of the local Delta High School Ag Council and past president of the Sacramento River Delta Historical Society.