Today is the fifth annual National Teach Ag Day, which celebrates current agriculture teachers and aims to encourage students to consider careers as agriculture educators.
Nationwide, high school agriculture programs are growing, according to a recent story in the U.S. News and World Report. Some states like Minnesota and Nebraska are facing a shortage of agricultural educators, which has prompted colleges to offer scholarships for aspiring agricultural teachers. The NAAE reports that in 2013, more than 950 new teaching jobs became available for agricultural educators in 44 states, but only 460 new teachers were looking for agricultural education jobs.
The day is organized by the Teach Ag Campaign, an initiative of the National Council for Agricultural Education and the National Association of Agricultural Educators (NAAE).
The NAAE website offers extensive resources to help educators celebrate National Ag day, including lesson plans, games, and activities organized by grade levels. The activities encourage students to test their knowledge of agriculture, research college agricultural education programs, and learn more about agricultural education careers. A webcast from 1-3 EDT today will celebrate the day with panels that will highlight current teachers and provide more information about teaching agriculture.
Happy National Teach Ag Day!
A version of this news article first appeared in the Rural Education blog.