Farm girl teaches urban students about ‘Life on the Farm’

By Ann Oswald, 2011 Pork Mentor

The students were filing in with their teachers and looking for a place to sit. The building was humming with noise. There were voices of many excited students, the mooing of a cow and baaing from a sheep. We as exhibitors were visiting and getting ready for our presentations. Life on the Farm, a day of exploration.

Presenting about the swine industry to hundreds of elementary students with my mom made for an enjoyable day. We were able to share a great deal of information with the students which included the life cycle of a hog, where they live, what they eat, how they are used for meat and other products, as well as some interesting facts.

Having grown up on a farm, I sometimes take what I know for granted. For example, there were many students as well as one teacher who did not know what soybeans were. They were astounded to learn that pigs really don’t sweat. Also, they were very interested in the cuts of meat and where they come from on a hog. I could see from the children’s faces and the questions that they asked that many had no idea about where their food comes from or how it is raised and grown. From this I was reminded how important it is to inform children as well as adults about the farm and how we raise our animals and crops. Doing so while the children are young is even better as they are able to go out and tell other people.

 The day was an absolute joy and I really liked being able to be part of it. Having a background in elementary education made it even better as I was comfortable talking with the students. I am very thankful that I had this opportunity to share about the farm life my family lives and loves. Our animals matter to us and we were able to teach children about it which will grow our society’s appreciation for our farms and animals.