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New York Agriculture in the Classroom

Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix

Lesson Plans (19)

Aeroponic Engineering and Vertical Farming (Grades 6-8)

Students will use the Engineering Design Process to develop and construct an aeroponic garden to grow a food crop. Students will develop and apply an understanding of plant anatomy and physiology related to plant growth and ultimately discuss the possibilities and limitations of using vertical farming to produce our food. Grades 6-8

Can We Have Too Much of a Good Thing?

In this lesson students will understand that plants require nutrients in the proper concentrations. Students will discover that plants can be damaged or killed by either too many or too few nutrients. Grades 6-8

Digging Into Nutrients

In this lesson, students will gain background knowledge of the nutrient requirements of plants, how those nutrients are obtained by the plant, what farmers must do if the nutrients are not available in soils, and current issues related to agricultural production. Grades 6-8

Fertilizers and the Environment (Grades 6-8)

In this lesson students will recognize that fertile soil is a limited resource to produce food for a growing population, describe the role fertilizer plays to increase food productivity, distinguish between organic and commercial fertilizers, and recognize how excess nutrients are harmful to the environment. Grades 6-8

Flower Power (Grades 6-8)

Students observe the anatomical structures of flowers and explain a flower's role in plant growth and reproduction as well as their connection to our food supply. Grades 6-8

Growing America

Students determine corn anatomy and function of plant parts, identify stages of plant development in corn, and research how temperature plays a role in corn growth as they calculate growing degree units (GDUs) for a region. Grades 6-8

In Search of Essential Nutrients (Grades 6-8)

In this lesson students will learn the definition of an essential element, compare and contrast the essential nutrient requirements of plants and humans, explain why plants cannot use elemental nitrogen found in the atmosphere, and identify the sources for each essential nutrient needed by plants. Grades 6-8

It's a Dirty Job

In this lesson, students will create mini habitats to observe earthworm behavior and learn about the important role that earthworms play in decomposition and plant growth. Grades 6-8

Plant Nutrient Deficiencies (Grades 6-8)

Students discuss the definition of “fertilizer” and relate it to plant nutrition and the need to restore nutrient balance in agricultural soils. They discuss how people and crops can suffer from nutrient deficiencies. Students assume the roles of plant doctors and diagnose nutrient deficiencies in corn plants. Grades 6-8

Plant Parts and Functions

In this lesson students will learn about plant parts and how they function in plant growth and reproduction. Grades 6-8

Plant Propagation

Students will learn about two types of plant propagation – seed planting (sexual) and stem cuttings (asexual) and recognize the genetic differences in these processes, as well as the advantages and disadvantages of each method. Grades 6-8

Plant-Soil Interactions (Grades 6-8)

Students will recognize that plants remove nutrients from the soil, explain the roles of diffusion and active transport in moving nutrients from the soil to the plant, and relate the root and vascular systems of the plant to the human circulatory system. Grades 6-8

Plant-Soil Interactions (Grades 9-12)

Students will explain the roles of diffusion and active transport in moving nutrients from the soil to the plant, describe the formation of soil and soil horizons; and describe the events in the Great Dust Bowl, how they relate to soil horizons, and how those events affected agricultural practices. Grades 9-12

Properties of Soils (Grades 6-8)

Students examine the components of different soils and recognize how sand, silt, and clay particles affect air space and water absorption. Grades 6-8

The Right Diet for Your Plants

In this lesson, students will learn how to read a fertilizer label, understand the components of fertilizers, and explore factors for choosing the appropriate fertilizer for a given situation. Students will use their knowledge and conduct research on one type of soil supplement to design a persuasive product advertisement. Grades 6-8

The Right Solution

In this lesson, students will understand concepts about solutes, solvents, and parts per million as they learn how fertilizer solution is properly calculated and applied. Grades 6-8

Water Ops for Growing

Through project-based learning, students design and create a smart watering system for a small herb garden. Grades 6-8

Watersheds, Soil Profiles, and Erosion

Students develop an understanding of what factors impact water quality within watersheds, what soil types/profiles are most susceptible to erosion, and what factors impact water quality within watersheds and how to mitigate erosion on susceptible soils. Grades 6-8

What? No Soil?

After learning the five basic requirements of plant growth, students discuss terms related to hydroponics. Students then build and maintain hydroponic units from soda bottles. Grades 6-8

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