By: Julie Taylor, Education Coordinator, Indiana Farm Bureau Inc.
Fairs. Farm Bureaus across the nation will sponsor, staff, present and sell at them, but it can be hard to find that special something to keep fairgoers engaged while promoting a positive image of agriculture.
Cue My American Farm. Indiana Farm Bureau dedicated a 20 x 20 foot section of our building at the Indiana State Fair since 2014 to feature the interactive and educational resource. We used a donation from the Spriestersbach Farm Corporation, which is a local foundation that was established to support agricultural education, to purchase six touch screen all-in-one HP computers, as well as two sets of folding patio tables with umbrellas and chairs in kid-friendly primary colors. We also printed pull-up banners using the artwork from the My American Farm website.
During the 2014 and 2015 state fairs, INFB partnered with the Indiana State Fair to staff this hands-on technology area during the 17-day fair. Each school-age child who completed at least two games received a stamp in their MAF passport and a small prize.
We have reached roughly 3,000 school-age children in the two years we have used My American Farm at the fair.
Why My American Farm?
We wanted something that moms, dads, kids and teachers could access at home so they could continue to learn about the role agriculture plays in their daily lives. My American Farm is the perfect platform to achieve this goal. It’s free and easy to install, and there are dozens of coordinating resources – worksheets, puzzles, even food science and other STEM-related activities – perfect for use in the classroom.
This year we are adding sample lessons and promotional materials for families and teachers to take home as well as featuring it as a field trip stop for the Indiana State Fair’s fieldtrip program.
Interested in using My American Farm at your fair?
Check out our other great resources for fairs!