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FarmChat®

FarmChat® is a unique program that utilizes technology (Skype, FaceTime and other software platforms) to bring the farm experience directly into school classrooms. Using a lap top at the school and a mobile device at the farm, students connect with and directly speak with the farmer. Students can see the farm and ask the farmer questions. They can even virtually ride along in the combine or tour a livestock barn all from the safety and security of their classroom.

FarmChat® programs can be initiated by farmers interested in sharing what they do. They can be initiated by teachers wanting to teach their students about crops and livestock. Or they can be initiated by Agriculture in the Classroom coordinators, FFA members, and other groups.

See the FarmChat FAQ document for additional information or contact Cindy Hall at chall@iowaagliteracy.org.

FarmChat® Resources

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Links

  • National Ag in the Classroom
  • Pizz-A-Thon - Pizza-A-Thon is an easy to implement, multi-day curriculum that engages students in exciting team activities to create and market a pizza business. Students explore, experiment and discover - linking food to careers, farming, soil and conservation. It employs critical thinking skills and presentation skills.
  • Farm to School: Growing Minds - Great lesson plans make any new classroom project a cinch! These Farm to School activities are easily incorporated into state and national curriculum.
  • From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil - Make science relevant for your students with a topic that affects them every day – soil. Discovery Education and Nutrients for Life Foundation have loads of interactive lesson plans available to help students learn about the science of soil. Plus, any resources ordered are free of charge.
  • Addressing Misconceptions in Agriculture - Take a look at some of the common misconceptions about agriculture and discover the truth and facts!
  • Market to Market - Iowa Public Television connecting students and educators with stories about the business, technology, and science of agriculture. Gain a deeper understanding of the people, issues and events that shape agriculture today!
  • Soils for Teachers - Soil plays a vital role in sustaining human welfare and assuring future agricultural productivity and environmental stability. Check out these K-12 lessons to help students learn all about soils.
  • Journey 2050 - How will we sustainably feed over 9 billion people by the year 2050? Find out with this virtual simulation.
  • Integrated Pest Management - Find a compilation of K-12 lessons linking entomology and IPM to math, science, social studies, and language arts.
  • All About Corn - A great series of interactive online modules with nearly five hours of programming on everything about corn, targeted to high school and undergraduate students.
  • Iowa Pathways - Iowa Pathways is a learning environment that challenges students to create their own story of Iowa history and agriculture as they explore the people, places, events and ideas. Students choose topics that interest them as they examine relationships among Iowa concepts.
  • Explore More - Explore More is a resource for students to unravel issues and make informed decisions about water quality, genetic energy, environmental sustainability, and future sources of energy. Video, interactive simulations, background essays, webquests and lesson plans help teachers connect local concepts to the classroom.
  • Trouble at Grainly Farms - Can your students identify and solve the problem at Grainly Farms? This interactive case study for grades 7-12 incorporates scientific concepts such as natural selection, adaptation, inheritance of traits, integrated pest management and nematodes. Students apply their understanding of scientific concepts and suggest a plan to deal with the trouble at Grainly Farms.
  • Beef...It’s What’s for Dinner - The Iowa Beef Industry Council is pleased to offer highly qualified peer-reviewed educational materials to Iowa teachers.
  • Plant Pathways to Science - Keeping plants healthy is important whether you are a large scale food producer or a home gardener. Use these lessons to teach students all about plant diseases and how to treat them.
  • Learning Fields - Living History Farms provides a digital way to learn how agriculture has changed over the past 300 years in Iowa. Explore crops, livestock, power, and people in agriculture.
  • Camp Silos - Online educational resource for grades 4-8 with information related to early agricultural technology, pioneer farm life, and the story of corn.
  • Corn Use Education - Corn takes many forms and gets used in many ways! These basic facts and information for consumers about corn production, processing and uses are great references. Be sure to check out the fun kid’s pages too!
  • Everything but the Oink: - It is really important to provide your students with a nutritious and delicious education. To help you teach kids how well pork fits into a balanced and healthy diet, check out these ideas and activities you can use in your classroom, guaranteed to keep them hungry for more!
  • Norman Borlaug Heritage Foundation - Help your students celebrate a famous and influential Iowan – Norman Borlaug – who is helped usher in the Green Revolution and save a million lives. Lesson plans, children’s books, and more.
  • C6 BioFarm - Biofuels will provide 27% of the world’s transportation fuels by 2050. Learn the difference between new carbon and old carbon with this app based game!
  • Science of Agriculture -Short animations, interactives and videos teach math & science concepts crucial to the study of agriculture.

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