Learning From the Legends in the Field

Today, this geeky teacher has the honor of being part of the Colorado Centennial Farms ceremony at the Colorado State Fair. I would guess that the majority of readers could take an educated guess at what it may be, but how many of you actually know about a Centennial Farm in your community?

The Centennial Farm program in Colorado holds a long heritage of recognizing the agricultural heritage of Colorado through farms that have been in families continuously for over 100 years. The program overview includes:

"What is a Colorado Centennial Farm? In 1986 a collaborative effort among then Governor Richard D. Lamm, the Colorado Historical Society (now History Colorado), and the Colorado Department of Agriculture created the Colorado Centennial Farms program to recognize the important role agriculture has played in our state's history and economic development.  Today, the program is administered by the State Historical Fund, a program of History Colorado.  Colorado Centennial Farms is the first program of its kind in the nation to give Historic Structure Awards to families who have successfully preserved historic buildings on their farms and ranches.  The National Trust for Historic Preservation provides this additional recognition." 

Then you may ask-- why is a geeky teacher placing information about 100 year old farms on a technology website? Because it opens up the conversation about a great set of resources on agriculture - a subject that can encompass all subject areas- and teaches heritage at the same time! Below we have annotated a short list of  resources that provide online resources to teach about agriculture in the classroom, and as a follow up we will be sharing some neat ideas on how to integrate ranching and farming in the classroom setting with technology later this fall when the pumpkins come out,  in honor of the Colorado State Fair and our Centennial Farms. This list is far from inclusive, but it is a starting point for conversation and consideration when planning lessons. Why not join in? 

Colorado Centennial Farms: A list of Centennial Farms in Colorado and information about the program.

Colorado Foundation for Agriculture: Probably the premier site for agriculture resources in Colorado and they publish the Colorado Reader and have AMAZING resources on agriculture for the classroom.

History Colorado COMPASS program: Allows teachers and students to research historic farms and ranches in Colorado that are logged into the state COMPASS database. Membership is free for educators.

Smithsonian Agriculture and Heritage Archive: Share stories of living on a farm and ranch in the United States for this national archival project. 

Colorado Beef Council: Resources on Cattle in Colorado history as well as beef and ranching. 

Colorado Cattlewoman's Association: Resources on ranching and host of the Youth Beef Spokesperson Contest

Colorado 4-H: Activities and youth programming related to a variety of subjects with a core focus on agriculture and environmental sciences. 

National Ag in the Classroom: Resources and a national conference on agriculture in the classroom.

Brand new baby at the fair!
Can you find Governor Hickenlooper?
Lyman Edgar-- Our Colorado Centennial Farmer
( He's turning 100 and owns a Centennial Farm)
being recognized by the Centennial Farm Program
and the Governor.

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