Ag in the Classroom


What is Ag in the Classroom?

Agriculture in the Classroom (AITC) is a statewide educational program. Its goal is to help students and teachers gain awareness of agriculture in their daily lives. By having agriculture educators come into classrooms, camps, afterschool programs, clubs and more, students learn about the agriculture industry and take part in hands-on activities that enrich the lesson.

Richland County Farm Bureau currently provides AITC visits to all 4th and 5th grade classrooms at Richland County Elementary School, St. Joseph School and East Orchard Academy approximately once a month during the school year.  We strive to help children make connections between items they use (such as pencils, t-shirts, and lunch) and activities they do in everyday life (like playing soccer and riding the bus) and agriculture by providing interesting and interactive learning opportunities.  We also provide resources and workshops to help educators incorporate agriculture into science, math, reading, writing and social studies.

For more information on our Ag in the Classroom Program,

please contact Donna Zwilling AT (618) 393-4116. 



Creating fact or hogwash statements for a game about hogs, making cheese using milk and vinegar, and causing food color to dance around in a pan of milk are just a small part of what happened in Richland County Ag in the Classroom lessons in January.

Fifth graders at RCES, St. Joseph School and 4th-7th graders at East Orchard Academy linked together the dairy value chain. They identified the eight key steps that milk goes through to get from the farm to the consumer, which is the dairy value chain. They then created a paper chain using slips of paper with pictures of each step which they labeled and put together.  The lesson ended by learning that milk is roughly 87% water and 13% fats and protein. This combination can cause food coloring that is dropped into milk move around when soap is added to the mixture.

Fourth graders at RCES and St. Joseph School discovered that pizza is not just Italian food. Pizza is a combination of ingredients that originated from all over the world.  Students were given a picture of a pizza ingredient and determined whether it was from the Old World (Europe, Africa & Asia) or from the New World (North, Central & South America).  They discovered that wheat originated in what is now Turkey, tomatoes in Central/South America and olives, they are probably the most Italian topping for a pizza, since they originated in the Mediterranean. The lesson was topped off by making the most popular pizza topping, cheese!

St. Joseph third graders and East Orchard second and third graders went hog wild with a game called “Truth or Hogwash.”  After listening to the book Pigs, by Gail Gibbons. The students were given a Pork Ag Mag, slips of paper and a category such as Life Cycle and Nutrition.  They were challenged to create true or hogwash (false) statements about pigs.  The statements were then used to play a game.