Agriculture is transforming every day. How are you staying current in the classroom? Tedra Bean is the agriculture teacher at Belleville Henderson Central School, in Belleville, New York. One priority Bean has is keeping up with current and emerging agriculture career opportunities.
Although her program is steeped in tradition, Bean is not afraid to try new things. Since her school is located just a few short miles from Lake Ontario, aquaculture is a high-demand career option for her students. Each year she and her students raise 30-50 tilapia in order to learn the skills necessary to operate a fish hatchery. Through this program, Bean's students also learn about career opportunities in aquaculture, water quality, and aquaponics.
"By practicing these skills in high school, students will have the upper hand when it comes to being competitive in the job market," said Bean.
Bean contributes her drive to try new ideas and conduct classroom experiments to her training through the Curriculum for Agricultural Science Education and the DuPont National Agriscience Teacher Ambassador Academy (NATAA).
"I use techniques and lessons from both of these experiences in my every day curriculum in order to introduce students to the diverse areas of agriculture with increased rigor," said Bean. "My students have more opportunities for hands-on learning in the classroom, which they enjoy."
Bean has many goals for her agriculture program as she continues her career in the classroom. In the fall, her program began their first garden, which she plans to continue for years to come. Her program has also planted maple trees with hopes to delve into the maple syrup industry. No matter the content area, Bean's primary goal is to continue to try new ideas and improve student opportunities.
Bean was selected as the 2015 NAAE Region VI Outstanding Young Member award winner. The Outstanding Young Member award is sponsored by John Deere as a special project of the National FFA Foundation. Click here to view the other 2015 Outstanding Young Member award winners. For more information about this and our other awards, please visit this link.
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