Teachers Explore Fields of Opportunity

Fifteen local teachers had the chance to explore “Fields of Opportunity” with a focus on agricultural careers at the2021 Summer Ag in the Classroom Workshop held in early June.

“Agriculture offers more than 300 career fields,” says Bridget Caldwell, McLean County Ag in the Classroom coordinator. “We want to provide teachers with experiences and resources to connect agriculture to the subjects they teach.”

Tours and hands-on experiences offered ways for teachers to incorporate food and farming with science, technology, engineering, math and literature learning standards.

Participants toured a variety of farms and ag-related businesses including Dean’s Bacon & Beef, 4 Peanuts Produce, O’Rourke Family Gardens, Epiphany Farms, der Bauernhof Farms, Illinois State University Research Farm, Finding Eminence Farm, King Farms, Illinois State University Horticulture Center, Fell Arboretum, Yuton Elevator and Rader Family Farms.

Teachers also had the chance to drive a tractor or combine courtesy of Birkey’s Farm Store.

The workshop provided teachers with professional development credit hours and the option to earn two hours of graduate level credit through University of St. Francis.

Katie Buckley, University of Illinois Extension Educator, McLean County helped coordinate
the workshop. To learn more about Extension’s STEAM in the Classroom program, click here.