April 2018 Teacher Feature

Agriculture is one of the most important industries, according to Christi Schertz, this month’s featured teacher, because it affects student’s lives with how their food is produced and provided, and the jobs that are available to Kansas students in the future.

Schertz is a teacher in the Triplains school district in Winona, where she teaches 3rd, 4th, and 5th grades. Her own elementary teachers inspired her because they were always great and inspiring to her, leading Schertz to want to “impact students in the way they impacted me.”

Growing up with parents that owned an second generation implement dealership, Schertz has always had a passion for the agricultural industry. She and her family run a fifth-generation farm in Western Kansas, and Schertz understands the critical importance the industry plays in her student’s daily lives, and the importance of agriculture in classrooms.

As an educator, Schertz integrates agriculture into her classroom in many different ways. Since she teaches all subjects in a rural school, she finds a way to incorporate agriculture into each subject. For example, when teaching students science, Schertz utilizes a school greenhouse, which acts as a laboratory for her plant and water science lessons. She says her students enjoy learning about agriculture because the lessons are hands on and interactive.

However, one of the crowning jewels for Schertz’s classroom is the piglet project. This year, they had four baby piglets in the classroom for a week and a half, and students were in charge of feeding them every two hours. Schertz taught the students how to measure out the milk and mix the bottles. Students were scheduled and were in charge of making the bottles, feeding the piglets, and cleaning up afterwards.

One piece of advice that Schertz offers to other teachers is to attend any workshops you can. They provide so many helpful resources and model lesson plans for all teachers for a lot of different subject areas and grade levels. Also, Schertz recommends perusing the KFAC website and the lesson plans and curriculum that is already created for teachers looking to implement agriculture into their classrooms!

Check out the “This Little Piggy” Lesson Plan.

KFAC is excited to feature Christi Schertz for the April 2018 Teacher Feature! Congratulations!

Schertz can be reached at chschertz@st-tel.net.