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Educators for the 2021 On the Farm STEM Teams announced


The future of agriculture is in the eyes and minds of the young people currently sitting in a desk. However, students are not the only ones learning new things and soaking in new ideas. With the On the Farm STEM event, high school educators collaborate to inform the design of resources that will prepare students for today’s science standards while making meaningful connections to agriculture. 

This week, the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture announced the educator teams to join immersive STEM training designed to further agriculture education in classrooms across the country.

This August during the On the Farm STEM event in Nashville, Tennessee, educator teams made up of classroom teachers, administrators, and specialists will engage with experts in both science education and the scientific community to design lessons and classroom materials that use agriculture to contextualize science.

“The On the Farm STEM experience is an incredibly important component of our program to connect students to agriculture through STEM education,” said Daniel Meloy, executive director of the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture. “We’re excited to have these educator teams participate in the training.”

The 2021 On the Farm STEM teams include a total of 33 participants, representing 14 educational institutions across six states.

  • Georgia – Yolanda Payne, team lead
  • Missouri – Tiska Rodgers, team lead
  • New Jersey – Christine Gertain, team lead
  • New York – Sarah McArdle, team lead
  • Tennessee – Christine Puza, team lead
  • Utah – Bekka Israelsen, team lead

Participants will begin their study with a three-part webinar series exploring the relevancy, authenticity, and scientific concepts of agriculture to better understand how to weave this context into their curriculum, and then will come together in Nashville to tour farms and ranches and investigate the science that drives beef production.

The professional development opportunity, co-created by the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture and NextGenScience with funding from the Beef Checkoff Program, was designed to bring science to life for participants with the help of American beef cattle ranchers, researchers, geneticists, nutritionists, and veterinarians.

These events build on the success of national On the Farm education events facilitated by the Foundation over the past five years. Educators can visit the On the Farm website for additional information and resources.

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