I recently took a class on farming present and past and one of the assignments was to create an online version of the lesson. I chose to do it as blog post. Please come along and join the activities. It’s based on this lesson plan. It assumes Zoom meetings that have groups pre-set up. We won’t have those available, but please watch and join in the rest of the activities.
Farm Bureau: “Farming today is just as important as it was in the past. Farmers have always produced food, but their methods of production change throughout time. Machines make it easier and more efficient to plant, care for, and harvest crops. Machines do a lot of work that people and animals used to do, and they do it faster and more accurately. Before tractors, farmers mainly used horses to help with difficult work. Once tractors became economically feasible for each farmer to own, the number of horses decreased and the number of tractors increased. Farmers today continue to produce the food needed by humans and livestock, as well as producing other resources, just as they did in the past, but with new technology and innovation.”
Although the goals are the same farm life is very different from what it was 100 years ago. In the survey below each question starts with something that would have been done in the past with the second option being something that is done in the present. Complete the survey and see if you’d rather be a farmer now or then!
E-mail me at email@example.com when you’d rather be a farmer.
On Friday afternoon at 2pm we’ll be doing a live Zoom class meeting. We’ll be going through the presentation “Iowa Agriculture: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow.”
After the presentation you’ll be put in Friday group rooms on Zoom to discuss and fill out a Know-Want to Know-Learned diagram. You can draw it and scan it or type it up. Everyone will be expected to turn in the diagram. E-mail it to firstname.lastname@example.org
A farmer’s job is to manage a farm. They may own everything on the farm, they may work for the owner, or they may be contracting growing. Contract growing is owning the farm, but raising things on contract for someone else. There are farmers who raise acres of crops. Crops are plants grown to be sold for use as food or other products. There are also farmers who focus on livestock. Livestock are animals raised on a farm to be sold as food and to make many other products that you use.
The chores or everyday jobs that have to be done on a farm depends on the time of year and what is raised on the farm. On farms that raise crops farmers often use machines that do particular jobs to help them get the most yield. At harvest time, machines like combines are used. A combine gathers a crop and cuts, sorts, and cleans the plant that is being harvested. Yields are the amount produced on a farm each year. Yields are given as per acre. Each acre is 43,560 square feet (a little smaller than a football field).
In your groups we’re going to watch the video and then work with your group to come up with definitions for these terms. Fill them out on the Google doc.
Read: Farming Then & Now by Scott Foresman (We’re going to have to look into how we can share it. We might have to do it live on Zoom.)
Before the next live Zoom watch these 2 videos.
Next up is a vocabulary live quiz. We’re going to have a list of people’s names and vocabulary terms. There will be two sets of each vocabulary word. The instructor will draw one student and one vocabulary word. We’ll go through all the vocabulary twice.
Download two circle Venn Diagram or draw one. Look at comparing farming yesterday and today. As part of our live Zoom we’ll share screen and go through the photo album looking to identify farming yesterday and today. Use this website to explore and help fill out your Venn Diagram.
During this time’s Zoom session, we’ll also bring in farmer Myron XXXXX to answer questions about his farming operation today and how it has changed over the years.
Whether you decide you’d rather be a farmer in the past or in the present, write a 3 paragraph answer explaining your choice.
- Paragraph 1 : Which answer you’d pick and why you didn’t pick the other option.
- Paragraph 2: Reasons you answered the way you did.
- Paragraph 3: Summing up why you feel the way you do.
After you write your reply, e-mail it to email@example.com
Check out these Agriculture Fun Facts.
Find the standards for this lesson at the bottom of this lesson plan.
I hope you have a enjoyed this lesson and found it useful to learn more about agriculture in Iowa.