November Highlights from MN Ag in the Classroom

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MAITC Newsletter Banner 6.2.2017
Turkey Virtual Field Trip

Virtual Field Trip: Meadowlark Turkey Farm

November is the time for sweaters, pumpkin spice lattes, and turkey. Yes, turkey. Since Minnesota produces the most turkeys in the United States, Minnesota Agriculture in the Classroom (MAITC) has decided to highlight turkey and Minnesota turkey farmers in a variety of different ways this month. Although turkey is a staple at the dinner table during the Thanksgiving season, not many Minnesotans have the opportunity to visit a turkey farm. That's why MAITC is taking a virtual field trip to Meadowlark Turkey Farm in Melrose, Minnesota.

Meet Meadowlark Turkey Farm owners Jon and Ashley Klaphake, tour their farm and ask questions live!  To access the virtual field trip, tune in on our MAITC Facebook page on November 20th at 10 AM CST. The Facebook Live video stream will last approximately 20-30 minutes. If listeners are unable to tune in during the live event, the video will be posted on the Minnesota Ag in the Classroom Facebook page and YouTube for later viewing.

Teacher Feature: Ms. Pat Tax

Agricultural Science Teacher and FFA Advisor, Pierz High School,  Pierz, MN

Ms. Tax is a recipient of a 2018-19 CHS Classroom Grant through the National Agriculture in the Classroom Organization!

Pat Tax

How has agriculture and the Minnesota Agriculture in the Classroom Program impacted your students and instruction? MAITC has helped me so much!  I use the Ag Mag lessons to help my high school students connect with our nearby elementary school and teach lessons from them. We also use the AgMags when my FFA students host or assist in hosting community events. Students enjoy the “hands on” learning and sometimes are amazed at the application of lessons that they may have gotten in another delivery, but are understanding it when applied in the agriculture sector.

Describe the grant project that you will put the CHS Classroom grant funds toward.

We are really excited to continue in our quest to provide a habitat that is educational, attractive and functional. Our courtyard is centrally located in our 7-12th grade high school and is a focal point because of its location. We had students that re purposed the paving bricks that were removed from the front of the building and had them placed in the courtyard. We are going to research the importance of pollinators and why we want to help them. Then we are going to determine what pollinators need to thrive--specifically plant needs. We will purchase seed and plants according to our findings. We also intend to distribute seeds to our community along with note cards explaining what we as a community can do to help our pollinators.

Students in the Pierz High School Courtyard

Ms. Tax's students pose in the courtyard they will be transforming into a pollinator habitat.


Follow MAITC on Instagram!

MAITC is on Facebook, Pinterest and now Instagram!  Follow us at mn_ag_class to see updates to resources, exciting events and many more opportunities with MAITC!


New MAITC Podcast: What's Growing On In Minnesota?

Storytelling has an uncanny ability to bring people in and teach a lesson. To help support teachers and put a face and a story behind the lessons in our Curriculum Matrix and the resources we provide, MAITC has created a podcast called “What’s Growing on in Minnesota?”. This monthly podcast is specifically targeted for teachers or agriculture enthusiasts that want to learn more about agricultural topics and how to utilize our resources to teach others about agriculture.

Check out last month's podcast focused on “Harvest’ and what harvest looks like on a Minnesota farm. Stay tuned for our November podcast featuring Minnesota turkey farmer Ashley Klaphake.

To access this podcast, visit our SoundCloud page by searching Minnesota Ag in the Classroom or at this link:

Explore our Virtual Barn

Virtual Barn Image

What is the virtual barn? Just like farmers keep their prized possessions (animals and crops for feed) in a barn, we're collecting very important information in our virtual barn - input from educators!  After using a MAITC lesson or resource, visit our virtual barn to share your feedback.  By providing feedback, not only are you entered to win one of our awesome Monthly Theme Kits (these feature a lesson and everything you'll need to do the lesson in your classroom) but you're also helping us improve and spread the word about agricultural literacy.

Thanksgiving Lessons and Activity Ideas

Looking for a Thanksgiving or turkey themed lesson?  Check these out!

group of turkeys

A Rafter of Turkeys

3rd-5th grade students will learn about the domestication and life cycle of the turkey, recognize how turkeys are raised on farms, and identify turkey products.


Geography of Thanksgiving Dinner

In this lesson, 6th-8th grade students will identify common Thanksgiving foods and their farm source, determine if those foods can be produced locally, and locate the common origins of their Thanksgiving day dinner.

Ag Trivia

Congratulations to our September Trivia winner Julie Kovacik!  Julie was the first to respond with the answer "First Kiss" as the name of the University of Minnesota's newest apple.  Julie, along with, Collen Carlson, Kevin Wassenaar, Dan Skogen and Amy Mastin were the first five to respond.

November Trivia Question: Turkeys make unique sounds!  Only tom (male) turkeys gobble.  What sound do hens (females) make?

Send your answer to All correct responders within the first 24 hours after the newsletter is sent, will be entered in a drawing to win a MAITC reusable bag!