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New York Agriculture in the Classroom


Lesson Plans & Resources

Next Generation Beef Toolkits

Introduce your students to real New York farmers through a selection of educator toolkits. Each toolkit is designed to provide a series of lessons, hands-on learning experiences, and videos featuring farms across the state which will illustrate how academic concepts come to life in real-world applications. Aligned to the Next Generation Science Standards, these tools will help your students view their world through food production.

June Dairy Month - Flat Bessie

Celebrate Dairy Month by decorating Flat Bessie! Bessie will travel from school to school meeting classrooms and picking up information. At the end of her journey, Bessie will be displayed in your region’s Taste NY Market! Contact Jessica Henesy at with questions.

Decorate the Flat Bessie outline with:

  • Favorite dairy facts
  • Favorite dairy snacks
  • Memories of being on a dairy farm
  • Your favorite photos of dairy farmers, cows, and treats

Consider pairing your Flat Bessie project with the lessons below for a full Dairy Month experience!

A Day Without Dairy (Grades 3-5)

In this lessons, students create, read, and interpret graphs relating to the economic importance of the dairy industry and are challenged to understand the economic consequences of a day without dairy.

Cheesemaking: From Liquid to Solid (Grades 3-5)

Students will make fresh mozzarella cheese and discover the science (changing a liquid to a solid), art, and craft involved in the development of specialty cheese.

It's a MOO-stery! (Grades K-2) | (Grades 3-5)

Students will make observations about historic tools used on a dairy farm to store and process milk into cheese and butter.

Sun, to Moo, to You! (Grades 3-5)

In this lesson, students investigate the transfer of energy in the process of making milk, discover that there are different forms of energy, determine that living things need energy to survive, and identify the sun as the primary source of energy.

Discover Christmas Trees Curriculum

Discover Christmas Trees is a curriculum designed for grades K-8, and it will introduce your students to the important aspects of the conifer and Christmas tree industry in NYS. The lessons span the subject areas of ELA, mathematics, social studies, and science and offer learning extensions and book suggestions to continue to build student knowledge of our natural world. Every lesson is aligned to NYS and Common Core Learning Standards. Courtesy of the New York State Christmas Tree Farmers Association.

Beef for the Classroom

Teachers who are cooking with their students can apply to have their beef purchases for classroom use reimbursed. Schools may be reimbursed up to $100 for beef purchases within reasonable limits related to class size and cut of beef purchased. The application process is easy, and lessons and resources are provided to every teacher who receives a grant.

Maple Syrup Resources

The Western New York Maple Producers Association is proud to present their new maple syrup production lessons for use in your classroom. Integrate the ideas and concepts of maple syrup production in the context of social studies, mathematics, ELA, and science. Find worksheets, hands-on activities, Smart Board presentations, and videos to enhance your curriculum.

NYAITC Resources

NYAITC Celebrating Black History Month through Influential Agriculturalists

February is Black History Month and there have been many agriculturalists who have persevered through adversity and given their talents to move the vocation of agriculture forward. Learn more about a few influential agriculturalists and connect with resources to teach about them in your classroom.