Sprouting Success in the Classroom


SaiinsSummer Agricultural Institutes (SAI) are sprouting up all across the state. Since 1991, more than 9,000 Illinois educators have completed one of Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom (IAITC) Summer Ag Institutes. The course, designed for preschool to high school teachers, gives them the tools to expand their classroom curriculum to include agriculture... and lots of it.

Kevin Daugherty, Education Director for Illinois Farm Bureau, said the courses are beneficial for educators in numerous ways. "They receive graduate credit and professional development units for attending and gain plans for their classroom, free teaching materials, and insight on hot issues in agriculture from the experts. The hands-on experience and traveling workshops give them tools they could never learn in the classroom, making it easier to integrate agriculture into their classroom curriculum."

The institutes started in May and go through late July. Altogether, there are 33 Summer Ag Institutes, with 12 of them on special topics.

The IAITC program provides materials for teachers and classrooms to help teach kids about farming and food. The IAA Foundation helps raise funds for the IAITC program with special events held throughout the year.

For more information, check out the Summer Ag Institute Brochure or check with your county Farm Bureau to see where a SAI is going to next.

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