Ag in the Classroom Northview Elementary
Nancy Spires
Nancy Spires
Nancy Spires is teaches 2nd grade at Northview Elementary School, Jackson

She is the March featured teacher, nominated for her efforts in Ag in the Classroom and ag literacy. Thank you, Nancy.

What are your favorite Ohio commodities? As a class, we talk about what type of land, crops and animals that we see when we are out and about.  The students talk about seeing corn, beans, cows and pigs. We discuss how we see these crops and animals in our area and their importance. 

How and when did you first start teaching Ag in the Classroom and why is it important to you?  I have always tried to teach my students about the community and what kind of jobs and environment we live in. I feel that our children need to know about their surroundings and what we need to live, which turns into food and how we get it. 

How long have you been teaching students about agriculture? I have been blessed to teach in my district for the past 18 years and have incorporated agriculture in my lessons every year.  

What is your favorite program, resource or teaching event you have done and why? Honestly, my favorite program, resource or teaching event that I have participated in is “Ag Day.” One of my best “go-to” resources is Kim Harless, who works with our local Farm Bureau office and does an excellent job organizing this field trip for our students from multiple districts. I have attended every Ag Day field trip that has been provided for our second grade students. The teaching or learning begins with a T-shirt design contest where all the students are asked to draw a farm/agricultural picture. We begin talking about what they know and discussing the importance of agriculture in our everyday lives. This day is awesome! The children get to visit numerous stations where they learn about animals and see how they behave. They also learn about growing crops and have hands-on activities throughout these stations.The students are also taught about how to help the planet such as recycling.  

Do you have any advice for other teachers on how to implement agriculture into their classrooms? My advice to other teachers on how to implement agriculture into their classrooms is by using your resources such as community members. The students love to meet new people and hear about careers or ask questions as well as seeing the connection these individuals have with our weekly reading stories or units that we have been working on for the week. There are so many excellent resources that are only a phone call away!

Any Ag-ha moments in your classroom, where agriculture came alive for your students? One “Ag-ha” moment that I remember in my classroom was when we were discussing where our food comes from. One of my little girls looked and said “Wal-Mart”! Of course, this was the beginning of a learning adventure.

Describe an agriculture-based project you have been involved with lately. An agriculture-based project that I have been involved in and will continue to be would be our “Ag Day” Field Trip. This is one where I am just as excited as the students. I truly feel it is a fun-filled learning day for our teachers and students. 

I'm eternally grateful for the support Ohio Farm Bureau scholarships provided in helping me turn my dreams into reality.
Bethany Starlin's avatar
Bethany Starlin

Hocking County Farm Bureau

Available scholarships
I appreciate the benefit of having a strong voice in my corner. The extras that are included in membership are wonderful, but I'm a member because of the positive impact to my local and state agricultural communities.
Ernie Welch's avatar
Ernie Welch

Van Wert County Farm Bureau

Strong communities
I see the value and need to be engaged in the community I live in, to be a part of the decision-making process and to volunteer with organizations that help make our community better.
Matt Aultman's avatar
Matt Aultman

Darke County Farm Bureau

Leadership development
Farm Bureau involvement has taught me how to grow my professional and leadership experience outside of the workforce and how to do that in a community-centric way.
Jaclyn De Candio's avatar
Jaclyn De Candio

Clark County Farm Bureau

Young Ag Professionals program
With not growing up on a farm, I’d say I was a late bloomer to agriculture. I feel so fortunate that I found the agriculture industry. There are so many opportunities for growth.
Jenna Gregorich's avatar
Jenna Gregorich

Coshocton County Farm Bureau

Growing our Generation
Labor has always been an issue, mainly because we are a seasonal operation. So that's a challenge finding somebody who only wants to work three months out of a year, sometimes up to six months.
Mandy Way's avatar
Mandy Way

Way Farms

Business Solutions
Knowing that horticulture is under the agriculture umbrella and having Farm Bureau supporting horticulture like it does the rest of ag is very important.
Jared Hughes's avatar
Jared Hughes

Groovy Plants Ranch

Groovy Plants Ranch
If it wasn't for Farm Bureau, I personally, along with many others, would not have had the opportunity to meet with our representatives face to face in Washington.
Austin Heil's avatar
Austin Heil

Hardin County Farm Bureau

Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience
So many of the issues that OFBF and its members are advocating for are important to all Ohioans. I look at OFBF as an agricultural watchdog advocating for farmers and rural communities across Ohio.
Mary Smallsreed's avatar
Mary Smallsreed

Trumbull County Farm Bureau

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