[caption id=”attachment_701” align=”aligncenter” width=”348”] Live animals joined the Laurentian Hills student population recently, as part of a unique learning opportunity around agriculture and where food comes from.[/caption]
Laurentian Hills Christian School dug into learning about agriculture early this school year with a bit of a different twist.
It began with the entire school’s attendance at the International Plowing Match (IPM) held 15 minutes down the road Sept. 18-22.
The IPM is one of Canada’s largest annual agricultural events, featuring everything from tractor square-dancing to live animal shows.
Over this week, the school is also featuring agricultural centres every afternoon, with groups of multi-grade students travelling from one to the next, learning about diverse aspects of growing and processing food. Topics range from the genetic modification of crops to learning the “life-story” of a glass of milk.
Live chickens and pigs have been part of the student population, and local farmers have visited to share their stories.
Principal Ian Timmerman says the decision was made to focus on agriculture this year when the school learned the IPM would be taking place nearby.
As the idea was discussed, it became clear just how urban most of the student population actually is, and that this could be a significant opportunity for them to learn more about where their food comes from.
From there, the decision was made to build the school’s theme around God’s care for people through creation, including how He provides through food and agriculture.
“There’s been lots of excitement,” Timmerman adds, noting the match was a big hit, but so are the centres.
“We’ve had lots of really good questions from the students,” says Timmerman. “They’re very curious.”
The focus on agriculture ties into the school’s larger intent to show students how everything in this world belongs to God and how people can understand His care for them through studying subjects such as agriculture and science.
As an example, just understanding the intricacy of how food grows and then contributes to people’s well-being “is one part of marveling at God’s creation and His creativity,” says Timmerman.
The agricultural centre lesson plans created by Laurentian Hills teachers will be uploaded to the eCurriculum site, for other schools interested in doing something similar.