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Monthly news & updates
July 2022 | Issue #130
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2023 Teacher of the Year Applications OPEN
Each year at the annual meeting, MAITC recognizes an outstanding Maine elementary or secondary school teacher who uses agricultural education materials and/or activities in the classroom to teach core subjects.
The winning teacher is then required to submit—with our help—an application for a National AITC Excellence in Teaching about Agriculture Award and attends the National AITC Conference. Applications are due October 3, 2022 .
The application (and more info) can be found on our website.
IPM Investigations Program
Maine Agriculture in the Classroom is pleased to announce that the Classroom Integrated Pest Management Program will be continued during the school year 2022-23! Many thanks to the Agricultural License Plate and Davis Family Foundation for their support of this fantastic and successful program!

During school years 2020-21, 2021-22, and now 2022-23 retired educator, Bernie Welch, has shared his passion for low impact pest control and awareness about good bugs in school gardens and the environment in general. Students from grades K-12 are treated to an in-depth look at the insects and habitat right on their school grounds. Each participating school receives a kit full of tools to use plus access to a tremendous network of resources.

This program encourages students to explore and observe garden insects. Students use simple capture and identify devices, sketch insects in journals and attempt to identify them using provided insect garden keys. Students discuss findings and gain understanding in how such data can be useful for the school garden. More importantly students take these new skills home to use in their own garden! Although there is a focus on scientific method, garden record keeping and gaining insect habitat knowledge, there are plenty of healthy garden conversations that ensue along the way with healthy food and local food conversations an important part of the mix.

MAITC is now accepting registrations for up to 10 K-12 schools for fall 2022 and spring 2023. Both of the previous sessions have been full and we encourage schools to register early by filling out this google form.
Maine Farm and Sea to School
We hope you've been following along with all of the exciting updates happening with the Maine Farm to School Network and the Maine Farm and Sea to School Institute!
The institute will kick off this year with a three day Academy program held at The Ecology School in Saco, ME. This will include sessions and presentations from organizations and leaders, time for teams to work together and create their action plans, as well as a visit to nearby Harris Farm!

Interested in getting super involved?! Healthy Communities of the Capital Area, Maine Farm & Sea to School Network and Maine Farm to Institution’s fiscal & staffing home, is seeking a part-time program associate to coordinate Communications and Events for these local foods networks. Starting at 24 hrs/week, salary range $19.71-$21/hr with benefits. Learn more here.

Learning Opportunity: Racial Equity in Farm to School: Five-Part Series
The Farm to School Coalition of North Carolina and the Center for Environmental Farming's Farm to School Initiative are hosting a free five-session training series on Racial Equity in Farm to School. These free, 120 min workshops will be led by a team from we are. Register for one or all of them: they build on prior workshops while remaining accessible for new participants. 
  • July 19, 2022, 3 - 5 pm ET (Implicit Bias)
  • August 30, 2022, 3 - 5 pm ET (Language Analysis & Speak Up)
  • September 20, 2022, 3 - 5 pm ET (History and Policy) 
  • October 25, 2022, 3 - 5 pm ET (Curriculum and School Meals)
  • November 8, 2022, 3 - 5 pm ET (Community Praxis Sharing in Farm to School)
Summer Garden Tours!
This summer, Maine School Garden Network will be supporting school garden tours across the state. This idea stemmed in the School Garden Exchange google group (join here if you're not already in the group!) in hopes it becomes a Maine school garden tradition! Join in for a casual gathering with peers, see different gardening styles and come together for a potluck meal! Upcoming tours:
  • July 14th: Great Salt Bay Community School, Damariscotta, ME
  • August 5th: Rowe Elementary School, Portland, ME

Please email Rachel at if you want more info, plan on attending, or would like to host a gathering at your site in the future! 
School Garden Grown
Fair season is coming and we are ramping up to display School Garden Grown produce in exhibit halls across the state! We are looking for representation from as many Maine school gardens as possible in the exhibit halls! Not only can this be a great opportunity to show all the work being done with your students across Maine, participating at your local fair can give your students a sense of pride to be a part of the Maine agricultural community and a chance to win cash prizes! 
MSGN Program Organizer, Rachel Solomon, can offer you support as you navigate the process by providing information from your county’s fair book on rules for entering and when to submit entry forms. Click here for more information on the process. Please reach out to Rachel as soon as possible at if you plan to participate or have any questions. We can’t wait to see you at the fair!
Grant Opportunities!
Looking for funding for your agriculture curriculum project, FFA chapter, or school garden? Apply for a grant from Maine Agriculture in the Classroom! Visit our website for applications and more information. Grant applications are due August 22nd!

This grant will award a total of 20 programs $500 in funding to develop new or expand existing pollinator gardens. Any nonprofit organization, school district, university, government entity, or tax-exempt organization, like religious organizations and Tribal governments, in the United States and US Territories serving at least 15 youth is eligible to apply. Programs must be planning a new or expanding an existing youth garden designed to teach about the importance of pollinators. Previous winners of the Little Seeds Pollinator Pals Grant are not eligible. Applications are due July 15, 2022.
Harvest of the Month - July is Maine Summer Squash!
Check out our Summer Squash Resource Page for lessons, activities, books, and more!

Click here for the great Harvest of the Month (HOM) materials - posters, fact sheets, recipes, social media promo, and more!

Search the Ag Literacy Curriculum Matrix for even MORE resources!

All of our HOM Resource Pages can be found on our Teach ME site under "Teaching Units"
UMaine Cooperative Extension’s Building Agricultural Literacy Through an Immersive Culinary Experience Grant Update 
Attention High School CTE Culinary Arts Instructors:
MAITC and UMaine Cooperative Extension are offering mini-grant funds of up to $2,000 for agricultural literacy education programs at Maine High School Career Technical Education Culinary Arts Programs. The deadline for e-mail submission is 5:00 PM on October 1, 2022.
Follow this link for grant applications:
The application is simple: Provide a short description of your proposed project, estimated budget, timeline and how it will impact agricultural literacy education and/or promote the use of local foods in your Culinary Arts Program.
FMI: Contact Kathy Savoie at
Teacher Resources Section
Fabulous Flowers. K-2. The students examine the functions of flowers and determine that some flowers are edible.

Corn an A-maizing Plant: Food, Fuel, and Plastic. Grades 3-5. Students examine the growth, composition, history, and uses of corn through a close reading activity, discussion of renewable and non-renewable resources, and hands-on exploration of bioplastics made from corn.

Get Popping! Grades 3-5. Students discover how popcorn is grown and explore the phenomenon of how popcorn pops.

Growing America. Grades 6-8. Students determine corn anatomy and function of plant parts, identify stages of plant development in corn, and research how temperature plays a role in corn growth as they calculate growing degree units (GDUs) for a region.

Energy and Biofuels. Grades 9-12. Through a series of activities, students explore fermentation and ethanol production, observe the role of enzymes in fermentation, analyze nutrient values of dent corn, and discover how biofuels are made from plant oils.

Looking for more? Explore the Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix HERE
Activities & Resources
NEW RESOURCE! The Station App from Maine Math and Science Alliance. The Station is an augmented-reality app (for iOS) for community-based STEM learning and workforce development. Players can take on location-based quests where they can explore, observe, and discover their community through a whole new lens. In addition to gameplay, The Station includes a simple text-based editor (no coding required!) which allows users to easily create their own content at any location they choose.
Some highlights of quests created for the app include:
  • The history of the Whaleback Shell Midden in Damariscotta created by 8th graders at Great Salt Bay Community School.
  • Identifying apples in the MOFGA orchard that was played as one of the family activities at Great Maine Apple Day.
  • Learning about the unique features of the Bryant Pond 4H camp created by 9th graders at Telstar Academy in Bethel, ME, as a way to introduce incoming students to their new campus.
  • A tour of the outside space at the Maine Mineral and Gem Museum co-designed with a curator in order to expand the visitor experience beyond the inside space of the museum.

Crazy About Corn. This is a lively, fun-filled elementary education kit, including an educator's guide, activity books, a video, and free songs that will keep students interested while learning about pattern recognition, memory, counting, alphabetizing, geography, agriculture, and elementary scientific concepts. Use these resources to show students how amazing plants can be.
Maple Curriculum Support: Tapping into Maple Tradition - Lessons for K-12 Classrooms.

Looking for field trips? Check out Real Maine's Food, Farms, and Forest Search

ReTreeUS plants orchards in schools and provides educational programs that empower people to be healthy environmental stewards.

See the Maine Farm to School Census here. Are you participating?

Maine School Garden Network provides resources and technical assistance for all school gardens across Maine!

Search the National Ag in the Classroom Curriculum Matrix for resources

Fuel Up to Play 60 offers educators a wide array of resources they can use to help students make sustainable changes in their school environment.

Agroworld is an agricultural science e-zine developed for the secondary educator.

KidsGardening has ideas about plants and gardens, teacher resources, and grant opportunities.

The Chop Chop magazine and website has easy and healthy recipes.

American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture has curriculum, games, and resources available for educators and students.

This document is a compilation of agriculture related resources to be used in virtual and remote learning.

Pictures, videos, and words are hyperlinked throughout the document.
Funding from this plate has impacted up to 200,000 students annually with lessons, materials, volunteers and teacher training. Annually up to $60K is distributed in grants to schools, FFA, 4-H and other Non-profit programs for Ag education initiatives by the Maine Agriculture in the Classroom Council.
Donate today to The Maine Agriculture in the Classroom Association
The Non-profit, completely volunteer, portion of MAITC. These funds are used directly to support teacher scholarships and recognition, and support volunteer participation for Ag education programs. Your donation is completely tax deductible and you can make a one-time donation or a recurring monthly donation which will support the mission, "to promote the understanding of agriculture and natural resources among students, educators, and the general public." If you have any other questions or would like to join this group please contact the chairman, Maryjane StaffordDonate Here.
Our Mission Statement
"To promote the understanding of agriculture and natural resources among students, educators, and the general public"  
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