March has been proclaimed Agriculture Literacy Month, and Humboldt and area is at the epicentre of the learning and the celebration. The provincial government release notes that Agriculture Literacy Month connects students of all ages to agriculture through presentations led by industry volunteers.
"Connecting our youth to agriculture is an important piece of strengthening Saskatchewan's agriculture sector," Agriculture Minister David Marit said. "Presentations from industry experts can help educate children on the work that goes into producing the high-quality food that our province is known for."
A network of volunteers and ag industry experts will connect with students in the province’s classroom helping them to explore the importance of modern farming and looking at the land in a different way.
"Thank you to the many volunteers who will be visiting schools across the province to assist students in learning about such an important industry," Education Minster Dustin Duncan said. "Agriculture literacy is about teaching our youth that agriculture is about much more than just growing food, it is also about land management, natural resources such as our water and soil systems, sustainable practices and technological innovations."
A key agency in the education of youth in Saskatchewan is Agriculture in the Classroom (AITC). Executive Director Sara Shymko outlines some of the programs and local schools participating in the area.
“After some virtual presentations over the last few years, we’re really excited to be back in person. We’ve got seven schools - Humboldt, St. Brieux, Wakaw, Wadena, Foam Lake, Viscount and Cudworth - that are all involved in the programming this year. Teachers involved in the program will all get resources on the theme of stewardship in agriculture, as well as a visit from somebody in and around the area. Canadian Agricultural Literacy Month is a great opportunity to build these connections with people working in agriculture, and really put a face to the food.”
Kids in the region are surrounded by farmland, and while many are directly connected to the industry, some are a bit removed. Their innate curiosity will find ready answers with the experts who come to their schools, says Shymko.
The website is filled with amazing interactive resources that teachers can connect to and make part of their classroom activities.
“Right now, some of our most exciting resources are ‘Mission Superhuman,’ which is a game for grades 6-7 students to explore food and nutrition as they battle villains who are taking over Saskatchewan’s food supply.”
Other resources include a seed kit, a living necklace and a soil kit. All are available for order on the website at https://aitc.sk.ca.
We’ll be checking in with local classrooms during Agriculture Literacy Month as students learn more about the abundance of their environment.