Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Developing those qualities of leadership…

Recently, our district had our Forestry Contest.  After discussing the this opportunity with my students, one rather mischievous young man came up to me and said “Mr. Z, I competed in the forestry contest with the Career Center last year, I want to be on the team, and possibly help coach.”

Needless to say, I was a little startled.  During the first week, of the school year, I was warned about this student (for the sake of privacy, we’ll call him John).  One teacher went as far as to say he was “a lost cause.” 

Needless to say, my teaching partner and I allowed him to lead our practices.   I couldn’t help but laugh when I saw that how effective he was at preparing the other students for the contest! It was only until after the first practice that we found out that he had a summer job in the forestry industry, and he really enjoyed discussing forestry with others. 

In the short time the group had to prepare for this contest, our kids showed that they were dedicated to competing as best they could.  John and the rest of the students did very well at the contest, and all of them were very pleased with how they placed.  I was in high spirits knowing that a student that most of our teachers cast aside stepped up to the plate and helped 24 other students better themselves.

Does this one contest mean that John has changed forever? I don’t know, let’s hope so, but what I do know is that this CDE helped show a “troubled” student that he can help his peers, and he has the ability to lead a group effectively.

Agricultural Education and Career Development Events…Developing those qualities of leadership, which an FFA member should possess.

Posted by Adam

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Laying down "The Law"

I am blunt and get to the point. But usually through ridiculous stories. So enjoy that. My first thought is that I am in my second year of teaching, back at the school I graduated from. A little weird, but not like you might think. It's nice to know exactly who I can and can't yell at and how. I'm a person of small stature, so being loud is how I get heard. And sometimes, I use “The Law” to get heard. Positively and negatively.

A week or so ago I had to lay down “The Law.” “The Law,” is a 1 inch thick, 30 inch long wooden rod I found in our shop, that I labeled, “Ms. McGovern's The Law.” Now I know what you are thinking, “OMG, this lady beats her students!” No, no. Not the case. I am too small and solely use it for intimidation.

 But, I did already put a crack in The Law. On this particular day, I had a lot of things on my mind, Ag Ed related, and non-Ag Ed related. During my AgBusiness class, a student of mine said something so abstract and so off the wall, I laughed so hard I made no sound, and slapped The Law on the table. I was almost in tears and just turned around and slapped The Law on another table and kept on laughing. So what does The Law have to do with the point I am making today? After an extremely rough first year in the State-Up-North, I have learned to laugh and to loose your composure when necessary. You just have too. Kids need to see you are a human being too, and that sometimes you just need to laugh to stay sane. Stay Sane My Friends!

Post by Katy

Monday, September 20, 2010

Field trip to Farm Science Review

       So, I am getting things ready to take my students on a field trip to Farm Science Review held in London, OH. Farm Science Review is put on by The Ohio State University and is in its 48th year. There are several hundred test plots and millions of dollars worth of machinery brought every year!
       After discussing this field trip with other teachers this summer, I came up with an assignment for the students to complete while on the trip.  Some teachers just let their kids run loose for the whole day. I hate that. Those are the kids that are causing problems.
        Anyhow, so this assignment I have created should be very easy for the kids to complete. I told them it should only take them about 45 mins. to do if they did it right away.  All they have to do is:
  • Interview two vendors and get their picture with them.
  • Describe two pieces of machinery they saw.
  • When eating lunch, list how many of their food items contain some form of corn.
  • Visit The Ohio State University, College of Food, Agricutural, Environmental Science booth building and learn about the university.
       After showing a couple of the students, they were already complaining about it. Mostly because the assignment is front and back because I gave them room to write. One student commented, "Bender....this trip is suppose to be a vacation day from school to let us just chill out." I was like,"Uhh no. This is an extended learning opportunity for you."  Needless to say........I didn't get my point across. He left class still complaining, so I look forward to reading his assignment about the trip. 
        Why do kids complain so much just to do a little bit of work?  I don't remember being like that when I was in school. You get there, do the work and then be done with it!

Post by Drew

Monday, September 13, 2010

Who are the Wise Owls??

Who are the Wise Owls you ask? Well, they are a group of agricultural educators across the nation They are educators in career centers and comprehensive high schools alike. They are educators working with students almost everyday in and out of the classrooms.

Today, they are a group of colleagues working to connect with others and share their experiences for teaching, managing the local FFA chapter and juggling their personally lives away from school.

My name is Drew Bender and I am proud to be involved with education. I am a second year teacher in a single-teacher program in eastern Ohio. This blog will also feature other authors involved in Agricultural Education, they are:
  • Mike Derringer- A 4th year teacher in a two-teacher program at a comprehensive high school.
  • Alison Derringer- Former teacher in a single-teacher program. Married to Mike Derringer.
  • Katy McGovern- A 2nd year teacher in a single-teacher program at a comprehensive high school in western Ohio.
  • Adam Ziadeh- 1st year teacher in a two-teacher program at a comprehensive high school.
  • Meredith Gilbert- A 1st year teacher in a single teacher program at a comprehensive high school.