Thursday, August 7, 2014

Supervising an Agricultural Experience

Today I had the unique opportunity to accompany Mr. Clark and Mrs. Pontius, advisers of the Greenwood FFA chapter and my future cooperating teachers during my student teaching experience, on three SAE visits.
So, what is an SAE and why would you want to visit one, you ask?  For those who are unfamiliar, an SAE is a Supervised Agricultural Experience; an FFA member maintains record books on an agricultural project of their choice.  Generally, projects can include employment opportunities with an agricultural business, raising livestock, or doing agricultural research.  Throughout the year, the Ag Teacher will visit students who complete their projects outside of the classroom to monitor progress, help students prepare for a livestock show, etc.  For more information on SAE's, check out this link!

Mr. Clark, Mrs. Pontius, Jane, and her brother Zane
discussing record books
So we began our morning bright and early, and the place we went was an absolute pig pen!  No really... it was a pig pen!  One of the Greenwood FFA members, Jane, is preparing to show two pigs at the upcoming county fair.  We hauled the department scale to the family farm to weigh her pigs and make sure they were on track to be shown.

Our second stop was with two members who are working together to prepare two steers for the livestock show at the fair.  Through talking to the girls, I came to find out that Kilian, a seasoned show kid, was introducing Courtney to the world of steers.  In return, Courtney is teaching Kilian what showing horses is all about.  Collaboration at its finest!
Being that I have no showing experience, it was great to see show preparation firsthand!  It was great to hear my future students get excited about taking their animals to the fair and to see the anticipation, waiting to see all of their hard work finally pay off.
Kilian with Mr. Clark and her steer

After we returned to the school for the day and I saw all of the classroom preparation going on, teachers preparing rooms, shop getting revamped, my first instinct was to ask what I could do to help get ready because our kiddos will be here soon!  But then I remembered, I have a few more classes to take at Penn State so I had to restrain myself from completely going full on teacher mode.  I am just so pumped to get into that classroom and do SAE visits of my own!  But I know it will be some day soon... well, if I can be patient that long!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

A Little Background

Hey friends!  Thanks for joining me on my journey to becoming the ultimate Agriculture Educator!  A little about myself: I am a senior at Penn State University, studying Agriculture and Extension Education and will be completing my student teaching internship at Greenwood High School in Millerstown, PA during the Spring of 2015.  I hope be teaching Agricultural Sciences after graduation for a few years before returning to school for my Master's degree in Agriculture Education.  I also recently returned from a month-long study abroad experience in The Republic of Korea.  Our group studied the School-Based Agriculture Education in Korea and it was one of the most influential experiences I have had in my life.  Check out our experiences here!

As I begin my journey into the professional world of Agriculture Education, I will be keeping track of all of my different encounters and adventures here.  The upcoming semester will be trying for sure but I have never been so excited to go back to school!  Stay tuned to hear more about my journey of a lifetime!