It’s A Bit of a Beef
By Theresa Balan, Elementary Science Curriculum Coordinator, Oklahoma City Public Schools
The United States is home to a large agriculture industry. We have been blessed with fertile land and a variety of landscapes. America is prosperous, but how many citizens know that agriculture is vital to our sustained growth and independence?
When we look back into history, it is evident that ancient civilizations did not begin until agriculture. Agriculture allowed cities to develop and allowed people to remain in one location. Without farming, large cities could not maintain their populations.
I have a bit of a beef. The students that I serve do not know where their food comes from. They believe that their food comes from the grocery store. If you probe them further, they cannot explain how the food got to the store. Our students’ lack of knowledge about the farm to table path is alarming to me.
My students live in an urban setting, so I understand that their experiences with agriculture have been limited, but isn’t it important for them to understand where their food comes from? These children are our future voters and lawmakers. How can they make informed decisions about agriculture if they do not understand the importance?
I feel it is imperative that our children understand where their food comes from and sound agricultural practices. There are so many misconceptions about agriculture that are unfounded. It is important to educate our children, so that they do not make decisions with misinformation. Our students need to know that our nation’s continued success depends on agriculture.
We agree with Theresa! That is why we are working hard to create resources for educators to help grow understanding of agriculture!
Theresa was a participant in our STEM on the Farm Experience. Read about Denise Johnson's experience here.