NHAITC logo vector   

December, 2013

Food For Thought

In This Issue
Ag Lit for 2014
New Board Members
AITC & The Grange
Newsletter Ideas
Help Support NHAITC
Make a Donation 
Like us on Facebook



As we approach the end of the year many people are thinking about holiday shopping and gift giving. Mailboxes are stuffed with catalogs and solicitation letters from non-profit organizations asking for donations. There is a reason why organizations send those letters. Non-profits that provide services in education, environmental conservation, community services, support for the underserved, etc. depend on donations from the public to meet their mission. NH Agriculture in the Classroom is no different. If you have received an invitation from us to contribute, we hope that you will do so. If you have not, please consider this the paper-saving method of letting you know we need your support.  You may donate using the PayPal button in this newsletter or by sending a check to the address below.  Contributions are tax deductible.


Donations to NHAITC help us develop programs to take into schools, purchase resources that are used by educators, create outreach materials to get more teachers, volunteers and supporters involved. With a part-time coordinator and no overhead (thanks to the NH Farm Bureau), your donations are utilized on direct services and make a big difference.


As the organization prepares to welcome a new coordinator, organize the 2014 Agriculture Literature program (see article to the right), launch the Hopkinton Farm Quest booklet in May, develop curriculum focused on invasive forest pests and more, the coming months will be busy and exciting. We hope you will help us start the New Year with a strong financial base as well.


Thanks to all who donated to and bid at the Silent Auction in November. We appreciate all who have supported us in the past and look forward to working with you in the months to come.


Best wishes,


NH Agriculture in the Classroom

State Coordinator's Office



295 Sheep Davis Road

Concord, NH  03301


Deb Robie, Grafton County Coordinator

Chickens and Eggs for 2014


It is time to start planning our 2014 Agriculture Literacy program. This is the time when volunteers visit schools across the state to read a book with an agricultural theme to children. Presenters also share information about the particular topic, often bringing in live animals, props and activities. Programs will be scheduled for March to coincide with National Agriculture Day on March 25.


This year the book is Down on the Farm: Chickens by Hannah Ray.  It illustrates chicken biology and life style, where eggs come from, how various cultures use eggs, and more. Copies of the book will be donated to school libraries after each program. Funding from Pete and Gerry's Organic Eggs (www.peteandgerrys.com) will help to cover some of the costs of the books.


If you would like to volunteer to read and present to a class in your community please contact us. You don't need to be an expert on chickens to help but if you have knowledge or interest in this area we'd love to have you involved. If you are a teacher who would like to be visited by one of our volunteers, let us know.


It is sure to be an egg-citing year for this program. We think there will be a lot to crow about!

New Board Members 

NH Ag in the Classroom has just welcomed two new board members to the team. They are profiled below. We are thrilled to have them join the existing board which includes Bob Spoerl from NH Department of Resources and Economic Development (DRED) Forest and Lands; Maria Vander Woude with Granite State Association of FFA; Gail McWilliam Jellie from NH Department of Agriculture, Markets and Food; Andy Andersen, retired Ag Educator and logger; Lin L'Heureux educator and farmer; Barbara Lawler with NH Beekeepers Association; and Kris Mossey with NH Farmers Market Association and an apple farmer.


Jillian Hall works for UNH Cooperative Extension as the Strafford County Program Coordinator for 4-H Youth Development. She is a lifelong 4-Her and enjoys working with children and agriculture. She earned her Master's degree in education in 2012 from Harvard Graduate School of Education, with a focus in rural education topics. She has also been involved with Mass Ag in the Classroom. Jill was an active program presenter for the 2013 Ag Literature program, reading to numerous schools throughout Strafford County.


Alden Dill will be representing the NH Farm Bureau on the NHAITC board. He grew up on a farm and his parents were active in Farm Bureau. Alden was involved in 4-H throughout his youth. He and his wife operate the Dill Farm in Deerfield where they have been producing hay and maple products for about 8 years. Recently they added beef cattle to their operation and have 10 head. Alden is also an insurance agent focusing on farm insurance. Having 2 small children has given him reason to reengage with agricultural education. He has been a presenter at the UNH School to Farm Days for several years, helping to staff the Maple station.

 National Grange comes to NH
The National Grange held its 147th convention in Manchester NH in mid-November. NH Ag in the Classroom teamed up with National Ag in the Classroom to staff an exhibit to promote our programs. Visitors from across the country and the state were able to learn more about the work that we do to help students learn about farms and farming and the role that agriculture plays in their lives.


It was a great opportunity to work with our national organization. We'd like to thank George Mayo from Maryland Agriculture in the Classroom, current President of National Agriculture in the Classroom, Willie Grenier from Maine Ag in the Classroom and Debra Spielmaker from Utah State, the National Project Director for either making the trip to NH or providing the materials for the exhibit. Deb Robie represented NHAITC at the event and reported that great contacts were made with new friends and old. We hope that this connection will be a base for future collaboration between NHAITC, National AITC and local and national Grange activities. Stay tuned.


To learn more about the Grange and what they do visit: http://www.nationalgrange.org

or http://www.nhgrange.org

Newsletter Topics
Due to the transition of our staff, the content of this newsletter is less focused on curriculum and resources than usual.  However, with the start of the new year and the hiring of new staff we look forward to returning to a full and rich topic-focused newsletter.  Our goal is to provide ideas, resources and links for educators of various grades to help make it easy for you to integrate agriculture into your existing curriculum. 
You can help us be a better resource.  Let us know what topics you are interested in.  Send any subject ideas, needs or suggestions to the address listed to the left.  We look forward to hearing from you.
NH Agriculture in the Classroom | 295 Sheep Davis Rd | Concord, New Hampshire 03301