Past Grant Recipients
Fall 2018 Oklahoma Pork Council Grant Winners
Shannon Brackeen, Broadmoore Elementary, Moore, OK $500
Grant funds will be used to purchase fresh produce and materials necessary to teach a learning unit about "The Foods We Eat," incorporating various lessons from Oklahoma Ag in the Classroom. Students will research and learn about food they already eat, try some new foods, and learn how to prepare foods using basic kitchen skills. My school has an Edible Learning Lab (Indoor Gardening), where students grow and learn about plants and the food we eat and the lab is open to all teachers and students in the district for use. This year, we are making extensive use of Ag in the Classroom lesson plans for a unit of learning specific to cooking and kitchen skills. This unit will be part of a Gifted and Talented Curriculum, serving more than approximately 100 students from three different area schools. Students will spend two and a half hours of class time a week for two to three months devoted to the unit skills. Activities will be used from the following OAITC lessons: The Art of Growing Things; Asparagus: The Mighty Spear; A Bean is a Seed; Bread in a Bag; By the Pound; Corn Cob Toys; Case of the Missing Pumpkin; The Nightshades Tomatoes, Potatoes and Peppers; Oklahoma Roots and Leafy Greens; and Oklahoma Stone Soup.
Debra Deskin, Orvis Risner and Charles Haskell Elementary, Edmond, OK $500
Funding will be primarily used to purchase pocket-size coding robots (Ozobots) that will be utilized with various Ag in the Classroom lessons: Cherokee Farming; The Real Reader: A Cowboy's Life; Choctaw Farming; Oklahoma Cattle Trails Map; and Hit the Trail. Such lessons will highlight the great cattles trails that crossed our great state (Indian Territiory) beginning in 1866, following the Civil War. The coding robots are programmed to be dependent upon student-drawn lines and paths, of which these paths will document cattle trails, such as Shawnee or Chisholm Trail. Along with the historical cattle trails of Indian Territory, the Ozobots will also document the treacherous path the Cherokees took towards Indian Territory during the Trail of Tears. Map skills are of great importance with this, along with comparing the farming practices before and after the Indian Removal. Experimentation of heirloom seeds will be tied with this area of study, along with in depth analysis of farming practices from this time period.
Ronna Haney, Stuart Elementary, Stuart, OK $500
The funds from this grant will be used to provide cross-curricular library books for our elementary students. My students meet daily for History and Reading classes. During my class, I try to focus on different types of activities. I try to utilize many hands-on activities which challenge our students to think outside of the box, create, and use critical reading & thinking skills. I love to expose my students to new perspectives and viewpoints. Oklahoma Ag in the Classroom offers us a chance to explore interests and discover new ones. Each week the students and I will discuss an Oklahoma Ag in the Classroom lesson and complete activities. This grant will aid in the purchase of library books which complement each lesson. Books provided by this grant will supplement my curriculum and allow my students to increase oral reading, engage in pair & share reading between my 8th graders and the 1st grade class, and increase reading comprehension and fluency. The books purchased with this grant will be used in conjunction with these lessons for oral reading, independent reading, and pair & share activities: "Black Mesa;" "Busting the Prairie, Planning a Homestead Community;" "Cotton Pickin';" "Dear George;" "The Indian Allotment Act;" "Dark Days on the Prairie;" and "Thomas Jefferson's Useful Plants"
Charlotte Mills, The Academy of Classical Christian Studies, Oklahoma City, OK $500
The Academy of Classical Christian Studies plans to build four 8ftx4ft garden boxes. As a school with two campuses of middle school students over 25 miles apart, we hope to bring our middle school students together with gardens. We plan to have two garden boxes located at each campus but the gardens will have one common goal. For example, one campus will grow tomatoes and bell peppers and the other campus will grow jalapenos, onions, and cilantro (recipe from Oklahoma Ag in the Classroom). Together the two campuses can make Fresh Chunky Salsa. One campus alone cannot meet the overall goal without the other thus, instilling in our students a sense of teamwork. Once the garden items are harvested, we plan to bring the middle school students together to make the salsa. Depending on the harvest, we plan to can the salsa and sell the jars of our creation to raise money for a local food bank and/or donate the unused food items to the local food bank. Our goal will be to try different food items as the seasons change so in the fall we can focus on making Oklahoma Stone Soup (recipe from Oklahoma Ag in the Classroom) with the same idea of selling the soup to raise money for a local food bank. Students will be introduced to a variety of STEM concepts as they build the garden boxes. Students will be introduced to math with the lesson "A Lending Hand," with a focus on the math behind selling food from a farm. Students will be involved in the budgeting, building, sketching, and science behind gardening by making their own garden. Students will research plants using the lesson "A Growing Market" as a guide to research plants to be planted in the school garden.
Shelley Mitchell, Oklahoma State Extension, Stillwater, OK $500
As I travel to different classrooms around the state, doing presentations at school Ag Days, STEM Days, and youth conferences (Women in Science, ScienceFest, etc.), I like to focus on healthy eating via horticulture! Many students have no idea where their food comes from, or how it grows (if they know it grows!), and have not tasted fresh fruits or vegetables beyond bananas, apples, carrots, and oranges. Depending upon the age of the students, I plan to use the Oklahoma Ag in the Classroom lessons: Plant Parts We Eat, How to Pick the Best, Fruit or Vegetable, and Melon Meiosis. We will discuss what plant parts we are eating depending upon the fruit or vegetable at hand, learn how to pick the best specimens for purchase at a farmer's market or grocery store, and then do taste tests to determine what different fruits and vegetables taste like. For the older students, we will do Melon Meiosis and determine how seedless watermelon are produced, then look at photos of how other seedless fruit are produced. Students will experiment to discover whether foods are fruit or vegetable (via dissection), compare and contrast to determine which fruits or vegetables are best to buy (for nutrient content, safety, and freshness), and expand their palate by trying new (to them) fruits and vegetables. Older students will discover the different ways in which seedless fruit is produced, as well as model meiosis and mitosis in diploid, triploid, and tetraploid watermelons.
Tammy Will, Morrison Junior High, Morrison, OK $500
Benjamin Franklin said "Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn." Being immersed into a environment where you are "involved" allows a person to readily assimulate information. The main goal of this project is to show students what a real farm experience is like. One way to do that is to take a field trip but that is not always possible or monitarily feasible within the school environment or budget. So why not bring the farm to my students? Using a 360 degree camera will give students the feeling of actually participating in the farming operation tour. The technology will provide opportunities for many students across Oklahoma to be able to experience what a particular farmer executes during his or her work that day. With the 360 Degree Samsung Camera, the students will get an immersive experience! The camera will show all views around the area as if you were standing on the soil or in a tractor with a farmer. Normally, a camera just shows you a narrow angle in front of you. Currently, I describe farm commodities and practices to my students in my classes and make the best connections in their thinking as my husband is a full time farmer. Yet, connecting real world farming through an immersive experience with my students will be more exciting! My STEM class will be involved in this project as they will help organize the project by researching Oklahoma's agriculture commodities, specialty crops, and agriculture products. They will assist in communication with farmers across the state. My students will assist in organizing the video schedule, filming different farm operations and play an important role in uploading the video into YouTube. These funds will allow me to purchase the necessary equipment to create real-world 360 degree videos of farmers in their jobs. The videos will be used as a supplemental teaching tool for several Oklahoma AITC lessons. My plan is to partner with AITC to produce and post the videos so that teachers across our state may use them in their classrooms to teach agriculture literacy. The 360 degree videos will be an immersive experience for students to learn about what different jobs farmers do! The Agriculture Videos will be used to support the following AITC Lessons: Circles in the Landscape: Irrigating Oklahoma Crops 6-12th grades; The Magic of Agriculture 7-8th grades; Making the Most of Milk 7-12th grades; Norman Borlaug, Hunger Fighter 7-8th grades; What is Drought? 6-8th grades; Bubbles in Cabbage Juice (Chemistry Emphasis) 8th grade.