March 5-10 is Wyoming Ag Literacy Week
March 5, 2018
Recognizing the importance of Wyoming agriculture and educating school children through reading, the week of March 5th has been designated by Wyoming Governor Matt Mead as "Wyoming Agricultural Literacy Week."
Educating Wyoming school children about agriculture is the goal of the Wyoming Farm Bureau (WyFB) Young Farmer and Rancher (YF&R) Committee "Ag Books for Kids" project. 2018 marks the fourteenth year of the project. The WyFB YF&R Committee organizes the project and the county Farm Bureaus across the state donate agriculture books each year to Wyoming elementary school libraries.
During the proclamation signing each year the Governor emphasizes the importance of educating about agriculture through literacy.
"We have in times been challenged in our country's history because we couldn't fuel ourselves. That's a problem, but it would be a much greater problem if we couldn't feed ourselves," Governor Mead stated during the proclamation signing. "Imagine the leverage other countries would have on us if we had to ask them to keep our citizens fed; it would be a very difficult situation for our country."
“We have in times been challenged in our country’s history because we couldn’t fuel ourselves. That’s a problem, but it would be a much greater problem if we couldn’t feed ourselves.” Matt Mead, governor of Wyoming
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"Our dream is that forever in Wyoming agriculture will be strong," he concluded.
The "Wyoming Agriculture Literacy Week" proclamation reads: "Educating through literature is a top priority for school children; where reading is a fundamental standard in the education system."
The proclamation continues: "Many aspects of our daily lives, including the food we eat, clothes we wear, and medicine we depend on, are all intertwined and made possible because of agriculture. Wyoming agriculture also provides open spaces, scenic vistas and fresh air. Not only do Wyoming's farmers and ranchers provide us with the food we eat, but they are also the first environmental stewards, maintaining and improving the soil and natural resources to pass on to future generations."
Three contests are offered for Wyoming students to encourage use of the book and provide application opportunities for what is learned. The 2018 contests are: Coloring Contest for kindergarten and first graders; Poster Contest for second and third graders; and a Creative Writing Contest for fourth and fifth graders.
Wyoming students and teachers are encouraged to visit their school's elementary library to check out the 2018 book "Ranching…It's All About Family" by Rianna and Sheridan Chaney. Next, visit http://www.wyfb.org and click on the education tab for contest rules and details. The county contest deadline is April 6, 2018.
"It's exciting that the Wyoming Agriculture Literacy Proclamation has become a tradition and that we get to be a part of encouraging agriculture literacy in the state of Wyoming," said WyFB YF&R State Chair Stacy Berger. "Farm Bureau is passionate about sharing our stories of agriculture through accurate agriculture books and our local visits to schools."
The Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation is the state's largest general agriculture organization. The purpose of the YF&R program is to develop leaders for the betterment of agriculture and Farm Bureau.
–Wyoming Farm Bureau