Seed survival mobile display visits schools to get kids interested in agriculture

awoolen@macon.comNovember 7, 2012 

WARNER ROBINS -- The third-graders lined up to get a cup and fill it with dirt.

“Make a peace sign for the holes and put it into the soil,” Robyn Carroll said.

Growing a sunflower seed is just one of the ways Agrium Inc. Seed Survivor mobile display unit gets children involved in agriculture.

“What are you going to do when you get home?” Carroll asked the students.

“Water it!” they yelled back.

Designed for third- and fourth-grade students, the trailer is a self-contained classroom with an awning outside for teaching as well as an indoor space for video games and interactive learning.

Most of the boys gravitated toward touch-screen computers which had games about agriculture. There was also a watershed with running water which students loved to play with.

“The goal was to teach students about the importance of agriculture and where food comes from,” said Lindsey Metheral, Agrium program coordinator.

The truck and trailer were at Russell Elementary School for two days as the first school in Georgia to receive the free program.

It also visited Kay Road Elementary and Byron Elementary schools in Peach County. Several other schools in Houston County have already signed up to be a part of the program during its stay in Georgia, which will run through November.

“They have been so engaged,” said Beth Stuerman, assistant principal of instruction at Russell Elementary.

Students learned about the different types of soil as well as what is needed to create soil. The teaching goes hand-in-hand with the curriculum for the targeted grades. A pre-kindergarten and special education class also received an adapted lesson.

In a given week, about 1,000 children will have gone through the program. Both rural and urban schools can benefit from the Seed Survivor unit.

“It is basically a field trip that comes to the school,” Metheral said.

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