Local dairy farmers worked with American Dairy Association North East to develop three free standards-based lesson plans about dairy farming and dairy foods to give teachers and students clear and factual information about modern dairy farming. More than 125,000 teachers who reach 5.1 million students across our six-state region received the printed lesson plans. In addition, educators downloaded the electronic version of the lessons 33,612 times.
Geared toward elementary, middle and high school students, the lessons feature local dairy farmers and offer a personal approach to helping students make the connection between the food they eat and the farmers who produce it. Each plan included a teacher guide, student activity sheets, and a colorful classroom poster.
“As a dairy farmer and a teacher, I know how important it is to get accurate, science-based information into our classrooms so students can make a positive connection with how their food is produced,â€_x009d_ said Johanna Bossard, whose farm was featured in the high school lessons, and who shared them with other teachers. “Hopefully, that will help them become lifelong milk drinkers and dairy supporters.â€_x009d_
Elementary school lesson, “Dairy Math,â€_x009d_ was sent to 52,000 teachers in 10,500 schools. The lessons featured dairy farmers Marilyn Hershey of Ar-Joy Farm, Cochranville, Pa.; Kim Nelson of Kel Vista Holsteins, West Winfield, N.Y.; and the Kenny family, Kenny Farm, Enon Valley, Pa.
“Great connection to my farm-to-store unit; and integrated math skills, as well,â€_x009d_ said Darla Kauffman, teacher at Greenwood Elementary School, Millerstown, Pa., who used the curriculum.
Middle school lesson, “Science on the Farm,â€_x009d_ was provided to 52,500 teachers in 10,500 schools. The lessons featured dairy farmers from the Kurtz family of Kurtland Farm, Elverson, Pa.; the Lamb family of Oakfield Corners Dairy and Lamb Farms, Oakfield, N.Y.; and the Young family of Twin Birch Farms, Skaneateles, N.Y.
“Great eye-opener, especially for New York City children who rarely know where their food comes from, let alone how technology plays a role,â€_x009d_ said Joveda Jones, middle school teacher at Manhattan Christian Academy, New York, N.Y., who incorporated the lessons.
High school lesson, “Farming for the Future,â€_x009d_ was sent to 20,875 teachers in 4,175 schools. The lessons featured dairy farmers Bret Bossard of Barbland Dairy, Fabius, N.Y.; the Reinford family of Reinford Farms, Mifflintown, Pa.; and Caroline Zimmerman of Dry Creek Farm, Martinsburg, Pa.
“Fits in great with topic of sustainability in my environmental classes,â€_x009d_ said Erica Wisniewski, teacher at PA Northwestern Collegiate Academy, Erie, Pa., who used the lesson plans in her classes.