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National Agriculture in the Classroom


Summary 2021 — Iowa

State Contact

Ms. Kelly Foss
Iowa Agriculture Literacy Foundation
P.O. Box 14458
Des Moines, IA 50306-3458
P: 515.331.4182

Innovative Programming Conducted and Educational Resources Developed

  • Iowa Ag Todays, issues 1 and 2 (rewrite and redesign, not yet available)
  • Pizzathon student contest and corresponding lesson plans,
  • Read Across Iowa program,
  • A Bushel of Stories student contest and corresponding lesson plans,
  • My Family’s Dairy Farm book and corresponding lesson plans,

Major Program Impacts or Outcomes

  • Students: recognition of agriculture careers and how they are connected to agriculture (discussion of agriculture in their area, harvest, etc.); developed a deeper understanding of agroecosystems vs. natural ecosystems and how they work together/influence each other; complex nature and multitasking of agriculture and the importance of sustainability balance (Journey 2050 discussion)
  • Teachers: discovered gaps in their classroom libraries in terms of agriculture literature, ways agriculture was portrayed, and current agriculture technologies (discussion); identified the differences between large commodity and specialty farms, recognized the innerworkings and differences of each (workshop discussions and fieldtrips); increased discussion and incorporation of agriculture into their current curriculums (unit development); developed a deeper understanding of NALOs and their connections to state standards and national standards (discussion and lesson development)
  • Preservice educators: began thinking about how to incorporate agriculture into their future classrooms (discussions through “teacher talk”); connection to diversity of agriculture and importance of connecting agriculture to the food students eat and clothes students wear (discussion and analyzing of literature); identification and usefulness of resources available to them to incorporate agriculture in their classrooms, and how to modify current lessons to expand their own learning and future student learning

Program Leader Biosketch

I have been involved in the Iowa Agriculture Literacy Foundation for seven years and began as the intern in 2016. In the spring of 2016, I graduated from Iowa State University with a degree in Journalism and Mass Communications with minors in Agronomy and Animal Science, and I am currently pursuing a MPS in Design Management and Communications from Georgetown University.