‘Wyoming Agricultural Literacy Week’ March 10-15 | TSLN.com

‘Wyoming Agricultural Literacy Week’ March 10-15

Wyoming Governor Matt Mead has proclaimed the week of March 10th as “Wyoming Agricultural Literacy Week.” The proclamation is a part of the Wyoming Farm Bureau Young Farmer & Rancher Committee “Ag Books for Kids” program. The proclamation recognizes the importance of agriculture and educating school children through reading accurate books about agriculture. From left to right: Ken Hamilton, WyFB Executive Vice President, WyFB YF&R Committee Members Toni Swartz, Campbell County; Trayden and Raenell Taylor, Crook County; Stacy and Bryndal Berger, Albany County; Kerin Clark, WyFB; and Brett Moline, WyFB. Seated: Wyoming Governor Matt Mead. Renny MacKay photo; courtesy of Governor’s Office.

Recognizing the importance of the Wyoming agriculture industry and educating school children through reading, the week of March 10th 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 Young Farmer and Rancher Committee "Ag Books for Kids" project. 2014 marks the tenth year of the project. The Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation (WyFB) Young Farmer & Rancher (YF&R) Committee organizes the project and the county Farm Bureaus across the state donate agriculture books each year to the elementary school libraries across Wyoming.

During the proclamation signing and meeting with the Wyoming Farm Bureau Young Farmer & Rancher Committee on Feb. 26, the Governor emphasized the importance of educating about agriculture through literacy.

"Reading itself is so important," Governor Mead stated. "You first learn to read and then you read to learn."

Governor Mead highlighted the importance of reading agriculture books to learn more about this important industry. "As the world expands in population, there will be greater and greater demands on food," Governor Mead said. "So every kid should know about agriculture whether they go into agriculture for a career or not."

"To know about agriculture and know where food comes from will make you a better citizen because you'll recognize how important it is to make sure we can continue to feed ourselves in the world for the rest of time," He continued.

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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."

"I am thankful for Governor Mead's support of our intent of the proclamation of having a "Wyoming Agricultural Literacy Week," WyFB YF&R State Chair Raenell Taylor said. "Engaging youth in and about agriculture is simply investing in our future of agriculture."

Three contests are offered for Wyoming students to encourage use of the book and provide application opportunities for what is learned from reading the book. The 2014 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 2014 book "Pigs and Pork in the Story of Agriculture" by Susan Anderson and JoAnne Buggey. Next, visit http://www.wyfb.org and click on the education tab for contest rules and details. For questions, kclark@wyfb.org or 307.532.2002. The county contest deadline is April 10, 2014.

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.

–Wyo. Farm Bureau