Donna Musick of Washington County has been named Virginia’s Agriculture in the Classroom Teacher of the Year. The award recognizes efforts by a teacher to incorporate agriculture into his or her core curriculum.
“Donna teaches agricultural-related topics in lessons as often as possible and believes in a hands-on learning environment,” said Tammy Maxey, AITC senior education program coordinator. “She involves community members to help educate her students on agriculture. In addition to her work in the classroom, she also incorporates agriculture into her school and community.”
Musick teaches math and science to sixth-graders at Damascus Middle School. She has created an agriculture dictionary and organizes special agriculture-themed days like “Ag-citing Fridays” in her classroom. Her students explore life cycles, economics and career and project planning through her agricultural emphasis, and she created her school’s Opportunity Ag Program, which has included incubating eggs and raising Angus calves.
A teacher for 20 years, Musick represents the Virginia AITC program as a facilitator at teacher conferences in her region and at the National AITC Conference. She lives on a beef cattle farm with her husband, Tom, and two nieces and is an active member of the Washington County Farm Bureau.
As Virginia AITC’s Teacher of the Year she will receive a scholarship to attend the 2016 National Agriculture in the Classroom Conference in June in Phoenix, Ariz., and a stipend for her classroom.
Agriculture in the Classroom is a national program that promotes greater understanding of agriculture through education. Virginia’s AITC program is administered by the Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom, a nonprofit organization that receives financial and administrative support from Virginia Farm Bureau Federation.