New York Agriculture in the Classroom
The Empire Educator
A newsletter for New York's educators interested and committed to teaching through agriculture
Kids Growing Food Mini Grant Applications - Due Nov 15
The Kids Growing Food Mini Grant was started with the intent of increasing students' understanding and appreciation for nutrition, agriculture, and the environment. kidsgrowingfoodSchool gardens are an excellent tool in helping to integrate these things into the class curriculum and to create an exciting learning experience for students. Apply for a Kids Growing Food Mini Grant and your school could receive support and materials to help start, or continue, your school's garden. These mini grants are offered by NYAITC and applications are due November 15, 2013. Explore more information here.
North Country Junior Iron Chef Competition
The North Country Junior Iron Chef competition allows Middle and High school students the opportunity to develop healthy recipes with the potential for use in school cafeterias using local foods.  Teams of three to five students can register for this exciting hands on experience.  Registration opens November 1, 2013.  The competition will be held March 8, 2014 at Potsdam Central A.A. Kingston Middle School. Find out more or register here.
My American Farm Kiosk Contest
Participate in the 'My American Farm' Photo Challenge! You have the chance to win a game kiosk for your State or County Farm Bureau. The kiosk is an offline game center with classic 'My American Farm' games and is perfect for festivals and events. To enter, simply write why you love 'My American Farm' on the designed sheet and post a snapshot before Dec 1st. Find the instructions and other information here. Explore more of what 'My American Farm' has to offer on their website.
Educator Resources
Ideas and Inspiration
Edible Plant Parts Lesson Plan
Geared towards second and third graders, this
lesson plan provides an opportunity for students and teachers to examine plant parts through hands-on activities. It also offers the chance to learn about where and how food is produced and helps to reinforce the importance of having healthy foods in the diet.
Hold a Taste Testing
Dime Rosser, 7, a student at Clinton Elementary School, takes a look at kale. Photo courtesy of Spencer Ainsley, Poughkeepsie Journal.Should you consider holding a taste testing at your school? "'Taste Tests' give children an opportunity to try new, healthy foods and, equally important, they give schools good information about how to introduce healthy, new foods on the school menu" according to Deborah Kane (USDA Farm to School Program).  Find out more about how Poughkeepsie, NY has been utilizing taste tests in one elementary school and how you can as well.
Corn is Maize: The Gift of the Indians
By Aliki
Focus on harvest, plants, and Native American Heritage Month by reading this interesting story about corn's history and use.  Engage students from kindergarten though fourth grade by reading about how corn grows, how Native Americans first used it, and how  they shared their knowledge of the plant with settlers. Find more information here.
From Peanuts to Peanut Butter
By Melvin Berger
Celebrate Peanut Butter Lover's monproduct phototh by learning more about the process of making peanut butter from peanuts! From Peanuts to Peanut Butter is geared towards students from kindergarten to first grade and includes great graphics and is easy to read. 
Food for the Settler
By Bobbie Kalman
product photo
Learn about the ways of the settlers in this fascinating book filled with information about  what the settlers learned from natives and how they caught food, grew food, and prepared food.  Learn more about the book here.
Web Resources
Where does your Thanksgiving Dinner grow?
Have you ever wondered where your Thanksgiving Dinner comes from? Take an opportunity to find out with your class. Utilize these production maps of Thanksgiving day foods to find out where they are produced or learn some fun facts about common Thanksgiving dishes.
Upcoming Events
North Country Iron Chef Competition-Registration Opens November 1, 2013
  • Middle and High school competition for students to create a healthy recipe and compete against other teams
  • Learn more and register here 
Cornell Vet School Admissions Presentation and Tour
November 8, 2013   3:00 pm-5:00 pm
  • Admissions presentations and Tours offered this fall for interested students. 
  • Register now
Kids Growing Food Mini Grant Applications Due
November 15, 2013
  • Find more information and the application here.
New York Farm Bureau Scholarship Applications Due
November 18, 2013
  • High School seniors with a family or student Farm Bureau membership and  an interest in pursuing agriculture may apply
  • Applications due November 18, 2013
  • Learn more or apply here 
Featured News
Kids Growing Foods Mini
Grant Applications

North Country Junior Iron Chef Competition
My American Farm Kiosk Contest
This Month in Ag


Native American Indian Heritage Month


Peanut Butter Lover's Month

Thanksgiving-November 28

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Did You Know?
Over 250 million Turkeys will be raised in the United States this year.
About 50 million of those Turkeys will be consumed for Thanksgiving.

NY Agriculture in the Classroom | 607-255-9253 | [email protected] |
29A Plant Science
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853