NEW PARIS — National Trail Local School District FFA held its third annual Elementary Ag Day on Friday, May 7.
Trail operates its FFA program in cooperation with the Miami Valley Career Technology Center, according to advisor Carmen Kennel, who is a satellite instructor working for MVCTC. Ag Day is held each spring; previous events took place in 2018 and 2019, according to Kennel, and focused on Ohio’s dairy and poultry industries.
Ag Day is organized each year by tenth through twelfth-grade students taking National Trail’s Ag Business course, according to Kennel, who said that organizing the event helps students practice problem-solving, leadership skills, and communicating with peers and school staff.
“They learn practical life skills like organizing things and overcoming obstacles – you think you have a plan and then ‘Oops,’ you have to go to Plan B,” Kennel said.
This year’s agricultural literacy committee, made up of 12 students, chose the pig industry to be the focus of Friday’s event. Ag Day exhibits were divided into four topics, with each topic comprising four stations, in order to limit the number of students congregating in large groups in light of COVID-19, according to Kennel.
Students at Crafts stations made pig faces using scissors, string and pink paper plates, while others got to tour a petting zoo featuring pigs, baby chickens and goats. Other students learned about all the products made from pigs, while still others viewed a classroom video presentation on pig-farming facilities.
Kennel felt the pig industry was an important subject for FFA members to educate their fellow students about.
“Just here within our school district we have several farmers who raise pork, so I thought it was important for the students to know about that,” Kennel said.
The pig industry is also significant because it falls in line with many FFA students’ individual interests, according to Kennel.
“We have several students who exhibit pigs at the county fair,” Kennel said. “So they’re very passionate, and they like to talk about them with younger students.”
Reach Anthony Baker at 937-683-4057 or on Facebook @mproperenglish