By Tamara Wolfe, Agriculture Awareness Intern
Literacy is the foundation for all learning, which is why Saskatchewan celebrates Canadian Agriculture Literacy Month (CALM) every March in classrooms across the province. CALM connects students and teachers with producers and industry members across the province. It’s a great time to connect with students and teachers, share exciting stories about food, and talk about agriculture.
Agriculture Minister David Marit kicked off CALM this year by reading to a Grade 3 classroom in Regina. “It’s important for everyone to understand how their food is produced because the continued success of the agriculture industry relies heavily on their support and understanding,” said Minister Marit. “This month is an opportunity to build trust in agriculture by teaching children about modern food production and answering their questions.” The students were very engaged and asked many questions about the agriculture industry – everything from his preferred brand of equipment to the benefits of soil fertility and the best cookie ingredients.
This year, classrooms across the province learned about food waste. Volunteers gave presentations outlining some key points on food waste, as well as some activities to get students thinking about the greater impact of food waste and what they can do to make a difference. Teachers received resources and follow-up activities to help explore this issue further with students.
CALM provides the opportunity for students to meet the people who grow their food – putting a face to the food we eat. It is our chance to talk about agriculture’s past, present and future, to answer questions students have about our industry, and to share our love of agriculture.
Many thanks to all those who volunteered for CALM. Events like CALM help our industry set the tone for how youth feel about agriculture and food. In order to ensure our youth have a positive perception of agriculture, we need to connect them to agriculture and share our food stories with them. We also need to ensure that the future generation is interested in our industry to ensure we have passionate, engaged leaders who will continue to grow and enhance the agriculture industry.
Happy Canadian Agriculture Literacy Month!