Summer Graduate Course:
Growing Agriculture in Your Classroom
|Beginning workshop:||Tuesday, July 2, 2013|
|Ending workshop:||Thursday, August 15, 2013|
|Time:||9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.|
|Course Flyer||Click Here to View & Print|
|Registration Form||Click Here to View & Print|
|Comments||Read Comments from Teachers about our workshops and conferences|
Our popular 3 Credit Summer Graduate Course for educators returns for an eight year in the summer of 2013. Massachusetts Agriculture in the Classroom, collaborating with Fitchburg State College, will offer this three-credit graduate course, titled "Growing Agriculture in the Classroom," using Massachusetts farms as classrooms. Teachers will participate in agricultural-literacy training through fun, hands-on study and investigation of agriculture education resources. It will help enhance curriculum and assist with connections to the curriculum standard.
The course will meet on Tuesdays, July 2nd and Thursday August 15 at the Brigham Hill Community Farm in North Grafton from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Each participant must attend both sessions and also participate in six additional workshops during the summer, selected from approximately twelve workshops on a variety of topics in locations across the state.
Participants will keep a journal of their agricultural journey and developing a classroom project, which they will present to their peers on August 15. Farm workshops may cover topics such as nutrition; plant science; soils; water; economics; technology; ag-history; farm animals; energy, sustainable agriculture and more.
This course will assist new educators and those who want to expand their offerings to integrate agriculture into the classroom. Participants will learn how to create community partnerships; link the classroom to the farm; expand math, science, social studies, art, nutrition and other educational knowledge using agricultural examples, and explore technology and engineering techniques.
The fee for this eight-day course is $500 and includes all materials; farm workshops; some meals and three graduate credits or 67 professional development points from Fitchburg State College. Participants will be paired with a MAC board member to give long-term access to agricultural resources and support.
Schedule of Summer Workshops
Wednesday, July 3
Herbs for the Classroom and School Garden, Plant Propagation and Nursery Operations at Tranquil Lake Nursery, Rehoboth
Spend Tuesday, July 3, at Tranquil Lake Nursery in Rehoboth, learning about herbs for the classroom and school garden. Debi Hogan will take you through the gardens, greenhouses and growing fields showing a variety of herb plants and herbal hands-on activities that are sure to be a hit with students in the classroom or garden. She’ll also review basic botany and care of plants in the classroom or school garden. Following lunch, nursery owner Warren Leach will show you how to propagate many different plants from annuals, to tender perennials, perennials, shrubs and trees. He'll also take a closer look at plants that you can add to your school garden or schoolyard that will provide the food for wildlife from insects to birds and animals. The day will end with a tour of the nursery and gardens and the fields filled with 3,600 varieties of daylilies at peak bloom in July.
Tuesday, July 9
Massachusetts Agricultural History: Through Tools and Practices at Storrowtown Village Museum in West Springfield
Step back in time to the authentic recreation of a 19th century village, consisting of nine historical buildings assembled around a traditional Green at Storrowton Village Museum in West Springfield on Tuesday, July 9th. Learn about the history of Massachusetts agriculture with a focus on the tools that were used on the farm with retired Museum Educator and Director John Ott. Then tour the village to learn more about early New England Life through hands-on activities with Storrowtown Museum Director Dennis Picard and the other costumed interpreters. Discover the tools they used, the food they grew, the animals they raised, the clothing they wore and how they prepared meals and preserved food as you sample the many educational opportunities for your students at the museum.
Thursday, July 11
Cutting Edge Technology on a New England Size Dairy Farm at Great Brook Farm in Carlisle
Great Brook Farm in Carlisle is part of the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation. Dairy Farmer Mark Duffy has operated the farm for the past twenty six years, and previously ran a dairy farm in New Hampshire. On Thursday, July 11 you will have the opportunity to tour this state-of-the-art dairy farm that milks 60-70 cows daily and manages a herd of 140. Learn about the technology that makes up the smart barn, robotic milking operation and cutting edge gray water management system, while you also hear about the life of the dairy cow and explore the compost operations. You will also learn about composting in the school and classroom with activities connected to the standards, with Teresa Strong, Science Specialist for the Charles-Kent Elementary School in Charlestown and our 2011 Massachusetts Agriculture in the Classroom Teacher of the Year.
Tuesday, July 16
Exploring Soils in the Classroom and School Garden, Vegetable Farming, Farmstands & Horses at Verrill Farm in Concord.
Spend the morning learning about the importance of soils with Ken Oles, retired 5th grade teacher and Master Gardener on Tuesday July 16th. He’ll offer a sampling of fun and easy hands-on activities to identify and describe soil characteristics such as texture, drainage, color and parent material. Following a lunch from the farmstand at Verrill Farm in Concord, we’ll tour the farm with owners Steve Verrill and daughter Jennifer. Converted from a dairy operation 23 years ago, this farmstand and bakery, vegetable farm and horse stable keep agriculture alive and growing at this busy farm.
Thursday, July 18
Summer School Gardening Conference
Our first Summer Gardening Conference will be held on Thursday, July 18 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Holden Christian Academy in Holden. All workshops will offer connections from the School Garden to the Classroom and the Curriculum. Learn how this school has modeled their whole curriculum on the garden and learn from educators at other schools how they integrate the garden into the curriculum. Three workshops will run concurrently through the day. There will also be the opportunity to harvest and prepare lunch from the school garden. Read more.
Tuesday July 23
Dairy Goats, Fiber and Cheese at Turkey Haven Farm, Pascoag, RI
On Tuesday, July 23rd travel across the border to Pascoag, RI and Turkey Haven Farm, the small family farm of Mansfield teacher and our 2009 MAC Teacher of the Year Bob Cote. Spend the morning trying your hand at making cheese and learning about fibers, raising and caring for dairy goats and sheep and the digestive system and diets of small ruminants. Board member Brenda Loescher from Leicester from is affiliated with Amburgey Farm, will offer a fiber demonstration. Following a farm lunch, we’ll tour the farm to meet the goats, sheep and chickens and an organic farm garden. Bob will also offer connections to the Next Generation Science Standards.
Thursday, July 25
Honeybees, Beekeeping and Pollination at Warm Colors Apiary in South Deerfield
Travel to Warm Colors Apiary in South Deerfield on Thursday, July 25th where we’ll spend the day focusing on honeybees, beekeeping and pollination with activities for the classroom with local beekeeper and President of Massachusetts Beekeepers Association Dan Conlon. Learn about the life of the honeybee, management of the hive, and how the beekeepers tend for the bees and also collect the honey. He will also share the various ways that insects pollinate plants and the many products that can be made from honey and beeswax.
Tuesday, July 30
Sharing STEM Connections in the School Garden at
The Williston Northampton School, Easthampton
Gardens are great laboratories for generating STEM connections. Beyond the abundance of life science topics, engaging students in designing ways to grow and preserve more food sustainably during the school year fosters a climate of problem solving that creatively uses low and high technology, engineering skills and mathematics. Join seventh grade teacher, Jane Lucia at The Williston Northampton School in Easthampton on Tuesday, July 30 for a day of sharing authentic STEM opportunities that grow out of the garden laboratory. See how students transformed marginal land and lawn into a community garden. Compare the effectiveness of several types of composters. Observe the use of a soda can solar heater to enhance food dehydration. Gain hands-on experience with low tunnel construction, digital data collection, and other inquiry-based garden investigations. Enrich others by sharing ideas from your own school garden experiences.
Thursday, August 1
Cranberries, IPM, Water and Habitat at Slocum Gibbs Cranberry Farm, Carver
Spend the day at Slocum Gibbs Cranberry Farm in Carver exploring cranberries, bogs, wetlands and Integrated Pest Management. We’ll spend the morning investigating the on-line cranberry curriculum from the Cape Cod Cranberry Growers Association with Communications Manager, Dawn Gates Allen, and try out some activities for the classroom. Then take a tutorial on integrated pest management as it applies to growing cranberry. Meet the insect scouts and visit the lab, see 20 years of record keeping and learn how and when sprays are judiciously applied.
During the afternoon, we’ll tour several of the bogs with owner John Garretson, a third generation cranberry farmer. Learn about these unique native fruits, bog construction and maintenance, harvest methods, marketing and the history of cranberries in Massachusetts. We’ll also focus on water quality, conservation and management and will have the chance to explore the irrigation system and computer controlled pumps
Tuesday, August 6
Gardening, Food System & Food Preservation at Heifer International's Learning Center at Overlook Farm in Rutland
Tuesday, August 6 takes us to Heifer International’s Learning Center at Overlook Farm in Rutland. Spend the morning brushing up on your gardening skills with Garden Educator Liz Joseph. Learn about the foods that are grown in the Center's garden and how they are used in the Culinary Program. We will also tour the Appalachia Site and prepare a Village Meal while learning about Heifer Project International's work with U.S. food systems as well as their efforts worldwide. In the afternoon, move into the kitchen to learn about food safety and food preservation with Overlook Farm's Culinary Associate Liz Ellis.
Thursday, August 8
Orchards, Cider Mills and Fibers at Dowse Orchards and Iron Horse Farm in Sherborn
On Thursday, August 8, we’ll start the day at Dowse Orchards in Sherborn, where the Dowse family has been farming for more than 200 years. Owners Alex and Jonathan Dowse will offer an overview of tree fruit farming in Massachusetts and will highlight techniques for growing and managing, harvesting and storing these crops. We’ll tour the orchards, farmstand, vegetables fields and Christmas tree operation. Teacher Ken Oles will offer an overview of literature related to apples. A highlight will be a visit to the Cider Mill where the current presses have been operating since 1947. In the afternoon, we’ll explore fibers with Deborah Smith from Iron Horse Farm. She raises the fiber animals that she uses for her arts business. Learn about the animals and the value and uses for the many types of fibers produced on her farm.
Tuesday, August 13
Pollination and Gardening at the School at Worcester Poly Technic Institute and Worcester Public Schools
Meet in the new pollinator centered garden at Worcester PolyTechnic Institute on Tuesday, August 13 to learn about the design and the native plants that have been installed to attract numerous different pollinators. Try out a number of lessons involving native plants/native pollinator interactions, pollinator diversity in the garden and the effects of proper pollination on plants with instructors Ally Hunter and Dr. Gegear. Then connect with the K-12 STEM Educators at the school. In the afternoon, we’ll visit a local school garden supported by the School Gardening staff of the Regional Environmental Council to hear about the connections from the garden to the curriculum, and adaptations for an urban setting.
Using Massachusetts Farms as your classroom, learn how agriculture can enhance your curriculum, enthrall your students and make connections to the Curriculum Standards. Workshops offer hands-on, open-ended experiences, activities and resources related to a variety of agricultural topics. Participants will:
- Learn that agriculture is a vital and important part of Massachusetts' economy, community resources and history and then create community partnerships with local farms.
- Learn how to use agriculture in your classroom to create fun and relevant lessons that connect to the curriculum standards.
- Strengthen your science background with fun hands on activities and use agriculture as the medium to teach science processing skills.
- Receive resources and hands-on activities related to agricultural topics and learn how to use them in the classroom and outdoor setting.
- Receive training in using various teaching technologies and website links where you can find answers to questions.
MAC & Fitchburg State College