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Monthly news & updates
February 2020| Issue #101
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More info on Upcoming Events
This year's Maine Nutrition Council conference, "Nutrition from the Sea" will be held at  Atlantic Oceanside Hotel & Event Center in Bar Harbor, ME on Wednesday April 8 , 2020. Please visit the  MNC website  for more information on the conference, pre-conference tour, and room block info.
Registration  is now open!
Maine School Garden Day will be Saturday, May 2nd at Reeds Brook Middle School in Hampden, ME.
This is a full day of workshops and networking for school garden enthusiasts!
Visit the MSGN website for more information on the event, scholarships available, and to register.
NELE Kids Day will be Thursday, May 14th , 2020 at the Windsor Fairgrounds from 9:30am to 1:30pm  
For more information or to register your school youth for this agricultural exhibition, please email  Cindy Kilgore
On The Farm STEM Experience - Professional Development
Experience STEM and health concepts brought to life by American beef cattle ranchers, researchers, nutritionists and veterinarians. The On the Farm program features free lessons, activities, online learning tools and enriching professional development events.
Who:  STEM educators who want to learn more about NGSS designed curriculum using the storyline process; especially ones that like hands-on, boots-on-the-ground learning!
What:  The American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture’s On the Farm STEM event. You will hear from beef farmers and ranchers, researchers, nutritionists and veterinarians through first-rate tours and visits. 
When:  July 7-10, 2020
Where:  Nashville, TN
How:  $650 travel credit, hotels and meals covered for all participants.

For more information and to apply, click HERE .
Applications Close: March 6, 2020
Applicants Notified: April 3, 2020
Apply for the Nutrien Sustainable Agriculture Youth Trip!
Nutrien, Ltd., the creator of farming educational platforms Journey 2050 and Farmers 2050 and a Canadian provider of crop inputs and services, has partnered with an organization called ‘ME to WE ‘ to offer youth interested in food security and sustainable agriculture the chance to volunteer in Narok County in Kenya in the Summer of 2020.   Students selected to participate will be able to take what they have learned in the Journey 2050 program and apply it during a once in a lifetime experience! To learn more and have students apply, visit their website .
New Instructional Culinary Videos
These culinary videos are a collaboration between the Maine Department of Education and Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry and cover a variety of topics including food safety, food preparation, time management and recipes using local ingredients. These videos were created for school nutrition professionals and other food serving institutions to assist in scratch cooking and utilizing local products. The goals of these videos are to increase skills and confidence in the kitchen.
For more information and to see all the videos, visit their website HERE.
Harvest of the Month - February is Maine Root Vegetables!
Check out the great HOM materials:

Check out our  teacher resources section below for lessons, books, videos, and other classroom resources!
Teacher Resources Section
People Need Plants . Grades PreK-2. Students will be able to identify parts of a plant and recognize the importance of plants in our daily diet. They will learn new vocabulary and use these in activities pertaining to their own eating habits.
Dig ‘Em Up . Grades K-2. In this lesson students will investigate the functions of roots, recognize the difference between a tap and fibrous root system, and identify the roots of some plants as edible.
Eat ‘Em Up . Grades K-2. In this lesson, students will review the plant parts that they eat, including roots, stems, flowers, leaves, fruit, and seeds. Students will choose a favorite fruit or vegetable to feature in a healthy recipe and prepare it with their families.
Eating Plants . Grades K-2. Students will identify the structure and function of six plant parts and classify fruits and vegetables according to which parts of the plants are edible.
Plant Tops and Bottoms . Grades K-2. Students will identify where fruits and vegetables belong on a MyPlate diagram and describe the major parts of plants - roots, stems, leaves, flowers and fruits according to if they are produced on the top or bottom of a plant.
Mixed Vegetables . Grades 2-5. Students will learn about the history of vegetables and locate their origin on a world map. They will be able to identify the growing seasons for these vegetables. Students will increase their awareness of the health benefits of vegetables while making a no-bake veggie pizza and participating in writing exercises.
Investigating Carrots . Grades 3-5. Students will work in small groups and, using a world map, will follow the journey of carrots from their point of origin to North America. They will research the nutritional and health benefits of carrots and combine this information with the history in an illustrated whole-class book about carrots. Students will prepare carrot questions to ask a farmer who participates in their local Framer’s Market.
Let’s Grow Carrots . Grades 3-5. Students will work in small groups to research the life cycle of a carrot and learn about the growing process from a local farmer. Groups will make a poster with the steps for planting carrots in containers; then students will plant carrots and care for them until ready to harvest. After harvesting, students will make a carrot snack for the class to enjoy.
Apple Science: Comparing Apples and Onions . Grades 3-5. Students will explore heredity concepts by comparing observable traits of apples and onions, collecting data on the traits of different apple varieties, and learning about apple production. Additional activities include hands-on methods for testing apple ripeness. 
FoodMASTER Middle: Vegetables . Grades 6-8. Students will learn the concept of pH, and the impact of acids and bases on plant pigments, explore the impact of acids and bases on plant cell structure, and discover the health benefits of consuming vegetables.
Plant Soil Interactions . Grades 9-12. Students will explain the roles of diffusion and active transport in moving nutrients from the soil to the plant, describe the formation of soil and soil horizons; and describe the events in the Great Dust Bowl, how they relate to soil horizons, and how those events affected agricultural practices.
A Gardener's Alphabet
Amazing Plant Powers: How Plants Fly, Fight, Hide, Hunt, & Change the World
Carrots Grow Underground
How Food gets from Farms to Store Shelves
Plants Feed Me
The Carrot Seed
The Giant Carrot
Tops & Bottoms
Good Enough to Eat
Grow! Raise! Catch!
The Vegetable Alphabet Book
Edible Plant Game . This game incorporates the knowledge students have gained about plant parts with the fact that plants provide people with the nutrients and energy needed for a healthy lifestyle. This activity will be most beneficial if conducted with students after they have been taught the individual plant parts. 

What Do Plants Need to Grow? This activity reviews the fundamentals required for plants to survive. This activity is best used after students have learned about a plants' basic necessities (air, water, light, and nutrients). The activity also demonstrates the many ways that humans rely on plants in everyday life.
Plant Part Chart . The fruits and vegetables we eat come from parts of a plant. Identify examples of roots, stems, leaves, flower, fruit, and seeds from every letter of the alphabet using this colorful 25" x 30" laminated poster. Order this poster online from

What is a Fruit? What is a Vegetable? Bulletin Boards . This set of bulletin boards teaches students about the differences between fruits and vegetables and offers many examples of each. The set also includes 36 laminated fruits and vegetables cards along with instructions for how they can be used in your classroom. It is available as a free download or hard copies can be purchased. Order this kit online from

Food Models . These full-color, life-size cardboard photographs of 200 commonly eaten foods are pictured in portion sizes with nutrition information presented in label format on the back. A perfect hands-on tool for teaching food and nutrition concepts! Included with your purchase are the Food Models and Leader Guide. Order this kit online from
Which color came first -- the purple or the orange carrot? Here's the quick crazy history of the carrot.
Are you interested in education, gardening, food sovereignty, food access, nutrition, childhood obesity, and agriculture? Becoming a  FoodCorps Service Member   might be right for you! Applications are open until March 13th! For more information, contact the State Program Manager: Ryan Parker .
Apply to attend the Northeast Farm to School Institute! Applications due February 14th! The Northeast Farm to School Institute is a unique year-long professional learning opportunity for selected school, early childhood, or district teams from New England and New York. Our Institute kicks off with a Summer Retreat held at Shelburne Farms in Shelburne, VT June 29–July 1, 2020. More info & Application HERE .
Maple Curriculum Support:  Tapping into Maple Tradition   - Lessons for K-12 Classrooms.

Looking for field trips? Check out Get Real Get Maine's Food, Farms, and Forest Search

ReTreeUS plants orchards in schools and provides educational programs that empower people to be healthy environmental stewards.

See the Maine Farm to School Census here . Are you participating?

Maine School Garden Network provides resources and technical assistance for all school gardens across Maine!

Search the National Ag in the Classroom Curriculum Matrix for resources

Fuel Up to Play 60 offers educators a wide array of resources they can use to help students make sustainable changes in their school environment.

Agroworld is an agricultural science e-zine developed for the secondary educator.

KidsGardening has ideas about plants and gardens, teacher resources, and grant opportunities.

The Chop Chop magazine and website has easy and healthy recipes.

American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture has curriculum, games, and resources available for educators and students.
Funding from this plate has impacted up to 200,000 students annually with lessons, materials, volunteers and teacher training. Annually up to $60K is distributed in grants to schools, FFA, 4-H and other Non-profit programs for Ag education initiatives by the Maine Agriculture in the Classroom Council.
Donate today  to The Maine Agriculture in the Classroom Association
The Non-profit, completely volunteer, portion of MAITC. These funds are used directly to support teacher scholarships and recognition, and support volunteer participation for Ag education programs. Your donation is completely tax deductible and you can make a one-time donation or a recurring monthly donation which will support the mission, "to promote the understanding of agriculture and natural resources among students, educators, and the general public." If you have any other questions or would like to join this group please contact the chairman,  Maryjane Stafford Donate Here .
Our Mission Statement
"To promote the understanding of agriculture and natural resources among students, educators, and the general public"  
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