Indiana Farm Bureau, the state’s largest general farm organization, will launch a new Agriculture in the Classroom program this fall called “Adopt a Classroom.” This volunteer-driven program allows INFB to continue educating Indiana’s school children about agriculture despite adjustments to school programs due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Agriculture in the Classroom is a statewide program led by INFB which helps bring agriculture education into Indiana’s schools. In a typical year, volunteers visit classrooms to provide short lessons that teach children about agriculture. However, due to safety concerns surrounding COVID-19, many schools will be restricting visitors this fall and some classrooms may continue e-Learning programs.
This fall, with the launch of the Adopt a Classroom program, volunteers will interact with students virtually through live or recorded video lessons, letters and photos. Volunteers may also send classroom activity kits containing seeds, books, worksheets or activities that correspond with the virtual lessons. Agriculture in the Classroom volunteers may choose to send supplies in advance which can be used by students during a live lesson.
“We have a wide network of volunteers across the state who love teaching children about farming and where their food comes from,” said Lindi Kocher, INFB education coordinator. “We’re thrilled to be able to continue that important education virtually.”
Agriculture in the Classroom volunteers will be able to choose to adopt classrooms within their home counties, but the virtual nature of this program also makes it easier for volunteers to connect with classrooms across the state.
“The ability to connect virtually means that students in southern Indiana could visit a dairy farm in northern Indiana without ever leaving the classroom,” said Kocher.
For more information about the Agriculture in the Classroom Adopt a Classroom program, or to sign up to become a volunteer or enroll a classroom, visit www.infb.org/INFBAgEd/adoptaclassroom. For more information on Agriculture in the Classroom, visit www.infb.org/INFBAgEd.
“We hope the Adopt a Classroom program gives teachers another option for providing their students with a diverse education – whether those students are working from home or the classroom this fall,” Kocher added.