Ag industry asks for children’s books about modern farms

newspaperIf children are influenced by the books they read, and they influence the decisions of their parents, then conveying accurate information about agriculture has never been more important.

That’s why Kevin Daugherty of Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom and representatives from the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture attended Book Expo America in May to talk with publishers about a need for accurate and modern agriculture books.

Instead of Old MacDonald Had a Farm, AITC representatives are advocating for children’s stories likeNew MacDonald Has a Drone.

“I could not have been more pleased by the outcome of all the meetings,” Daugherty said. “[The publishers] found we were not trying to dictate to them or their authors but genuinely want to help tell the story of agriculture.

“We will enhance their product with supplemental materials and get the books into the hands of even more teachers, librarians and students.”

The AFBFA has been a leader in advocating for accurate agriculture books and providing authors with opportunities for agricultural experiences, said Tammy Maxey, Virginia Agriculture in the Classroomsenior education program manager.

“When authors experience agriculture’s story first hand, it provides them with a great perspective that results in giving the reader a view of modern-day agriculture,” Maxey said. “Providing a modern view of what a farmer and a farm really look like is important to teaching children the value of food and fiber production.”

The AFBFA maintains a database of more than 500 works that accurately cover agricultural topics atagfoundation.org/recommended-pubs.

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