Ag In The Classroom Program Announces Essay Topic

'First Peas to the Table' is selected as 2014 Book of the Year.

Published on: Sep 23, 2013

"Wisconsin gardens provide many food choices for us" is the topic of the essay contest from the Wisconsin Farm Bureau's Ag in the Classroom program.

"Our 2014 Book of the Year is "First Peas to the Table" by Susan Grigsby. The book and essay topic will allow us to educate students about where food comes from, learn about Thomas Jefferson and his gardening research, understanding how plants grow and making healthy food choices," said Darlene Arneson, Ag in the Classroom Coordinator. "We will again link the book, the accompanying lessons that we write for our Book of the Year, various Wisconsin educational resources and other Ag in the Classroom lessons into resources for teachers, students and volunteers to use in promoting and preparing essays."

Ag In The Classroom Program Announces Essay Topic
Ag In The Classroom Program Announces Essay Topic

Essay submissions must be between 100 to 300 words in length and will be judged on content, grammar, spelling and neatness. All contest rules, lesson plans and sample classroom activities are located at or by contacting Arneson at 608.828.5719 or Participating students and schools need to submit essays by April 1 to their county Farm Bureau essay coordinator. A list of coordinators is also available at

A state winner will be selected from nine district winners in May by the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation's Women's Committee. Each district winner will receive a classroom presentation in May for their homeroom or class. The contest is sponsored by the Frontier-Servco FS, We Energies and the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Foundation. Last year nearly 2,000 students participated in the essay contest.

In this year's Book of the Year selection, "First Peas to the Table", Susan Grigsby's lighthearted classroom story presents scientific and historical information in the story of Maya, who loves contests and is thrilled when her teacher says her class will plant a garden like Thomas Jefferson's. Maya and her classmates learn about gardening, journaling and helping others along the way. The hardcover books come with an activity/lesson plan packet that teachers, students and home school parents can use to enhance the reading experience. Book order forms are found at under "Order Forms".

Ag in the Classroom is designed to help students in kindergarten through high school to understand the importance of agriculture. It is coordinated by the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and by a grant from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.

Source: Wisconsin Farm Bureau