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Monthly news & updates
September 2022 | Issue #132
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White-Reinhardt Grants
The White-Reinhardt 2023 Spring Grant applications are LIVE!

The White-Reinhardt Grant Program funds projects that will increase agricultural literacy. County and state Farm Bureaus may apply for up to $1,000 grants for education programs for grades K-12 in order to initiate new ag literacy programs or expand existing programs. Grants are available on a competitive basis. Applications are due October 15th.

The White-Reinhardt Fund for Education is a special project of the Foundation in cooperation with the AFB Women’s Leadership Committee. It was established to honor two former chairs of that committee, Berta White and Linda Reinhardt, who were leaders in the national effort to improve agricultural literacy. Learn more and apply here.
2023 Teacher of the Year Applications OPEN
Each year at the annual meeting, MAITC recognizes an outstanding Maine elementary or secondary school teacher who uses agricultural education materials and/or activities in the classroom to teach core subjects.
The winning teacher is then required to submit—with our help—an application for a National AITC Excellence in Teaching about Agriculture Award and attends the National AITC Conference.
Applications are due October 3, 2022 .
The application (and more info) can be found on our website.
Annual Meeting
Our Annual Meeting will be held Thursday, October 27th at 5:30pm at the Maine State Grange in Augusta. RSVP to
Maine Nutrition Council Virtual Educational Event
Wednesday, September 28th, 2-4pm

This 2-hour virtual webinar will include two presentations by Health at Every Size (HAES) and Intuitive Eating experts, followed by a question and answer session.

Timeline for the event:
  • 2:00-2:10pm : Maine Nutrition Council (MNC) Overview
  • 2:10-2:55pm : "Introduction to Health at Every Size" presented by Brianna Fortin, MS, RD, LD
  • 2:55-3:40pm : "Intuitive Eating in the Treatment of Binge Eating Disorder and Compulsive Eating" presented by Amy Taylor Grimm, RD, LD
  • 3:40-4:00pm : Q&A

Maine Farm and Sea to School
The Maine Farm & Sea to School Institute launched a few weeks ago! Maine Agriculture in the Classroom has had the pleasure of being part of organizing the institute, presenting sessions at the three-day Academy, and providing classroom resources and support to the teams involved.
Check out some of the press about the institute:
Call for Workshop Proposals!
The National Agriculture in the Classroom Organization is now accepting workshop proposals for the 2023 National Conference "Beyond The Beaches" set for Orlando, Florida,
June 26-29, 2023.

This premier professional development event for Pre-K through 12th-grade teachers, volunteers, and professionals in agricultural literacy will provide tools, techniques, and inspiration to include food and agriculture as a lens for learning. We encourage you to submit a proposal if you have lessons and resources to share!
Proposals must demonstrate how the workshop uses agricultural concepts to meet the National Agricultural Literacy Outcomes (NALOs) and teach reading, writing, math, nutrition, science, STEM, social studies and other subject areas. Proposals must reach elementary, middle school, high school, or all grade levels.

The selected workshop's primary presenter will receive $50 off their conference registration. Applicants will be notified in December of workshop selections.
School Garden Support Organization Webinars
The School Garden Support Organization Network is hosting a series of webinars launching this month. Check out the dates and topics below: Find more info here.
Harvest of the Month - September is Maine Tomatoes!
Check out our Tomato Resource Page for lessons, activities, books, and more!

Click here for the great Harvest of the Month (HOM) materials - posters, fact sheets, recipes, social media promo, and more!

Search the Ag Literacy Curriculum Matrix for even MORE resources!

All of our HOM Resource Pages can be found on our Teach ME site under "Teaching Units"
UMaine Cooperative Extension’s Building Agricultural Literacy Through an Immersive Culinary Experience Grant Update 
2022 PDAL Culinary Arts Summer Institute

Culinary Arts Instructors from Career Technical Education programs across Maine embarked on an amazing journey July 25 - July 29, 2022 to learn about Maine's tasty local food systems. This event is part of the USDA NIFA funded Professional Development in Agricultural Literacy(PDAL) Building Agriculture Literacy through an Immersive Culinary Experience grant awarded to UMaine Cooperative Extension.

The four day tour included the following visits:
Cooke Aquaculture, Machiasport- tour of their Atlantic Salmon Farm and Processing; Wyman's Tour, Cherryfield- tour of the Blueberry Barrens; Maine Coast Sea Vegetable, Hancock- tour of their facility followed by a culinary experience where we cooked in their demo kitchen with Seaweed and other ingredients from Maine; Four Season Farm, Harborside- Maine farming legend Eliot Coleman led us on a tour of the farm and greenhouse; Pineland Farms Dairy, Bangor- Cheesemaker Mark Whitney led us on a tour of the cheesemaking process. MOFGA, Unity- The MOFGA staff led us on a tour of the Heritage Apple Orchard. MOFGA's kitchen was the host for our Meet and Greet cooking event where CTE chefs and farmers cooked up dinner using local ingredients we accumulated along the trip; Maine Grains, Skowhegan- tour of the grain mill culminating in a live dough making and wood fired pizza cooking experience; Mook Sea Farm, Walpole- tour to learn about oyster aquaculture; Maine Tasting Center, Wiscasset- Dana Morse and Jaclyn Robidoux from University of Maine Sea Grant facilitated a culinary exploration of bivalve aquaculture in an interactive lesson followed by another dynamic hands-on cooking experience in the demonstration kitchen; Broad Arrow Farm, Bristol- tour of pasture raised poultry and pork, demonstration of pork breakdown; Pine Ridge Acres, Cumberland- tour of farm's pastured beef operation.

FMI: contact Kathy Savoie at
Teacher Resources Section
Edible Plant Parts Lesson Series. Grades K-2. These lessons allow students and teachers to examine the six basic plant parts—roots, stems, leaves, flowers, fruits, and seeds—in a unique way. Through hands-on activities, students will learn about the different plant parts, as well as how to include fruits and vegetables into their daily meals as part of a healthy diet. Students will also learn about agriculture and the people who produce our food. Lessons in the series:

A Search for the Source. Students determine that agriculture provides nearly all of the products we rely on in any given day by participating in a relay where they match an everyday item with its "source." There is an associated lesson kit available for purchase from the ag classroom store.

Edible Numbers. Grades 3-5. Students develop a working vocabulary regarding food, categorize foods by their sources, examine grocery ads, learn about food production, and apply what they learned by analyzing foods they eat at a particular meal.

Chain of Food. Grades 6-8. Students will explore the path food takes along the Farm-to-Table Continuum. They will begin on the farm and investigate food safety issues during processing, transportation, at restaurants and supermarkets, and finally, in their own homes. Teams will identify how food can become contaminated along the continuum and develop and present strategies for preventing contamination at each step.

Enlightened Concessions. Grades 6-8. Through project-based learning, students conduct surveys with their peers at school about healthy food products they think will be marketable for school concessions. Based on surveys and research, they choose an in-demand product to test in class and then present to a guest panel as a healthy choice.

Before the Plate. Grades 9-12. Students will view the 2018 documentary Before the Plate and follow Canadian chef John Horne as he journeys to the source of ten primary food ingredients used in his restaurant. Using critical thinking skills, students will explore the farm-to-table journey of food. This lesson covers a socioscientific issue and aims to provide students with tools to evaluate science within the context of social and economic points of view.

Looking for more? Explore the Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix HERE
Activities & Resources
Before the Plate Website. The Before the Plate website contains information about the Before the Plate documentary and videos and explanations for each step of the farm-to-fork process for beef, potatoes, honey, milk, and sunflowers. 

How It's Made Documentary Series. Although this television series is no longer being aired, the YouTube videos provide invaluable footage of factory production. A wide variety of foods and other products created from raw agricultural materials are explored in five-minute segments. Browse the "Food Collections" playlist to learn about a variety of foods from farm-to-fork.

Discover Dairy Classroom Enrichment Resources. Virtual farm tours, learning library, books about dairy foods and dairy farms, games and activities, downloadable classroom materials, and so much more! They have a new app, too!

Purple Plow Fall 2022 Save the Soil Challenge. With the challenge of losing over 3 billion tons of fertile topsoil each year, your team has been selected to design a prototype and construct a system that will reduce topsoil erosion. Students can help conserve natural resources locally and protect local ecosystems by addressing current and historical problems associated with the erosion of topsoil that limits the ability to grow food. After thoughtful research to evaluate how these challenges exist globally and locally, students will design, test, and demonstrate a solution that reduces topsoil erosion for their unique location or situation to help conserve productive soil. The final product will be a model which demonstrates a measurable reduction in soil erosion.

Adopt a Cow! Looking for a classroom pet? How about adopting a COW?! The Discover Dairy “Adopt a Cow” program is an exciting, year-long experience for your classroom. Throughout the program, you’ll get an inside look at dairy farming and be paired with a calf from a dairy farm in the United States. You’ll find out what her name is, when her birthday is, where she lives, and how the farmer takes care of her. You’ll also receive progress updates, photos of the cow, live chats from the farm, activity sheets for your students, suggested lessons that follow Common CORE standards, and even opportunities to write letters to your calf! And the best part? It is completely FREE! Find more info and register here. Register by September 15th! Check out the flyer here.
Maple Curriculum Support: Tapping into Maple Tradition - Lessons for K-12 Classrooms.

Looking for field trips? Check out Real 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.

This document is a compilation of agriculture related resources to be used in virtual and remote learning.

Pictures, videos, and words are hyperlinked throughout the document.
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 StaffordDonate Here.
Our Mission Statement
"To promote the understanding of agriculture and natural resources among students, educators, and the general public"  
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