The Teacher in Me…

I love to learn.  I love to teach.  When I was young, I had the notion that I wanted to spend my life being a classroom teacher.   This idea never materialized, but I do still hold true to my love of sharing what I know.

My love of knowledge is only as powerful as the amount of times that I choose to share it...

My love of knowledge is only as powerful as the amount of times that I choose to share it…

Not a week goes by that I do not get a request to do a public speaking engagement.  Because of my loyalties to my family and my farm, I have to turn down 75% of the requests.  It always hurts just a little when I have to say “no” because of my personal love of educating.

The traveling aspect is far more difficult for me than sharing my thoughts...

The traveling aspect is far more difficult for me than sharing my thoughts…

This week, I had three invitations that I felt compelled to honor.  I left home at 5:30 am Wednesday morning and drove 3 and ½ hours to Omaha, Nebraska where I spent the morning speaking to a high school class at Bryan High School, and the afternoon with a class of 3rd graders at Edward “Babe” Gomez Heritage Elementary.

The Bryan High School students...

The Bryan High School students…

The 3rd grade class was my family’s Agriculture in the Classroom Pen Pal (AITC) class and we have been writing letters and sharing pictures with one another all throughout the school year.  What a wonderful class of children and what a great teacher!

Our Ag in the Classroom students...

Our Ag in the Classroom students…

The AITC program is a nation-wide outreach program that connects farm families with urban classrooms so that children can better learn about agriculture.  Interacting “first hand” with these students is a truly gift.  Our family gets to know some wonderful young people every year, and the students are able to better learn how we grow cattle and crops on our farm.

The kids were fascinated with the cattle ear tags!

The kids were fascinated with the cattle ear tags!

On Thursday morning, I headed back to Lincoln, Nebraska to participate in a series of discussions with woman students involved in the Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship Program at the University of Nebraska.

The Engler Entrepreneurship panel discussion...

The Engler Entrepreneurship panel discussion…

I love to interact with college students—their passion and excitement is contagious, and it is one of my greatest joys to be able to mentor young adults who want to become involved in the beef community.  I am always thankful for the opportunity to share my knowledge with the next generation of cattle farmers.

Where my heart is...

Where my heart is…

Today as I return home, I am thinking of the future and all of the ways that I can continue to work for improvement both on my farm and in the larger community.

  I know that the personal sacrifices that I make to reach out to others are both my responsibility and my gift.  And, I am thankful for my family and my crew for picking up the “extra chores” that result from my temporary absence from our farm.

Waiting for breakfast...

Waiting for breakfast…

We should not judge people by their peak of excellence; but by the distance they have traveled from the point where they started…Henry Ward Beecher

10 Comments

Filed under Foodie Work!, General

10 responses to “The Teacher in Me…

  1. I think that it is wonderful that you take the time to educate students about the facts of beef. We have moved so far away from farming that kids have no idea where food comes from. We live in a farming community and my daughter married into one of the local farm families. My grandkids friends cannot understand why they have to work on some of there days off school, they work hard but when it is time for fun they have good family fun, today they are at Disney, tomorrow they will be hunting with there dad. These kids will learn how to work and that you must work to be able to do the other things, sorry I got way off the subject, keep teaching these young people about the wonders of farming.
    I got a note from the meat company Zaycon that they will have a sale in this area, did you get a chance to check out this company, I have not decided if I want to get involved with it or not.

    • Hi Ellie,

      I am so sorry that I never got back to you on Zaycon. I am not personally familiar with the operation, but I did read their website on the internet. My thoughts relative to their ground beef label are that most lean ground beef falls under the same guidelines that are listed for their product. For instance, the vast majority of beef has a grass diet until the animal weighs more than 700#–at that time they are also supplemented with grain in addition to grass; all of the major packing plants have HACCP plans to control for food safety and are federally inspected, all beef is federally inspected by USDA/FSIS prior to distribution—it is illegal to market beef that contains any residues of antibiotics or that has not been properly inspected/tested. Lean ground beef that contains LFTB is now labeled so if you choose to buy a product that does not contain it, you should be able to do that direct from your local grocery store. So, while I think that it looks as though their beef product is good—I am not entirely sure that it sets itself apart at all from the beef that you can likely buy locally from your grocery store. In other words, most of the details listed about the beef would be true of any regular beef that you buy in the grocery so if it were me, it would come down to whether or not I wanted to buy in bulk instead of buying in smaller parcels at my grocery store. Does that make sense?

      Again, I apologize for being so slow on this. Thanks for reminding me!

      All the best,
      Anne

  2. Thank you, I know you are very busy and cannot always get a question answered quickly. I don’t think the two of us could use 40lbs of ground beef in a good time frame. I do like the 1.79 a lb. I may talk to my daughter ana share with them. They have cattle but very few people here butcher there own beef. It is too expensive to feed them out and ready foe harvest. I do love your blog , it offers so much information. Itmis fun to see the girls grow and mature, really nice young ladies. Thanks again.

    • Thank you, Ellie! I am so glad that you enjoy the blog and find it educational. I enjoy sharing about my girls and our farm–it makes me smile. I always appreciate hearing from you.

      Good luck with your decision on the meat!
      Anne

  3. Another great post and you are a great educator 🙂 Those kids were lucky to have you share your knowledge with them and they seemed to enjoy it from the photos 🙂 I am always learning from you and enjoy new things think about 🙂 You can tell from your post your heart is your family and farm and then education, but you do them all so well and efficently 🙂

    • P.S. Hope you had a good vacation, it sounded like you did 🙂

      • We did have a great vacation. It is fun to watch my husband leave his worries at home and just have fun skiing–and, it is also especially great that the girls are old enough that we can ski as a family.

        Thank you so much for all of your support and compliments–they keep me going and blogging along! Good luck with your new little chicks.

        All the best from Nebraska,
        Anne

      • So happy to hear the vacation was a success for all 🙂 You deserve all the support I can give I wish there was more I could do. The chicks are doign well so far 🙂

  4. Sally Gibson

    Anne, I just found your very good Heart of Darkness essay in my file. Mrs. McNally loved it. (A 96) You will help me teach the IB seniors! The date of your essay? April 1993! They will laugh and make me feel old.
    Love, Mom

    • Glad that I can help from afar, Mom! Good luck with your students.

      AG made the State Geo Bee tournament, so we are headed to Omaha on the 5th of April for the competition. She’s becoming quite the “brain-iac”…

      Love,
      Anne

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