Economics instructor recognized for incorporating ag concepts into curriculum
Jessica Culver, an economics instructor at Ozark High School, has been named the 2021 Arkansas Farm Bureau Ag in the Classroom Outstanding Teacher.
Matt Jackson, Arkansas Farm Bureau’s Director of Education, along with Franklin County Farm Bureau insurance agent Susan Holman, High School principal Jordan Price and Superintendent Jim Ford, made the presentation to Culver at the school April 12.
Culver received a check for $1,500. Due to lingering concerns over Covid-19 she will attend the National Ag in the Classroom Conference in Saratoga Springs, New York next year as the state’s National Ag in the Classroom nominee.
Left to right, back row: Students Jameson Hall, Carter Crane and Bryar Yates.
Left to right, front row: Farm Bureau Insurance Agent Susan Hollman, ArFB’s
Matt Jackson, Culver, Principal Jordan Price, and Ozark Public Schools Superintendent Jim Ford.
“Economics plays a vital role in the success or failure of a farm,” Jackson said in explaining why Culver was recognized this year. “Having a teacher who understands this and developed projects for her students which combine agricultural concepts with economics was notable. This allowed her students to build an understanding of the profit-loss margins farmers deal with in today’s economy and Jessica has done an outstanding job of this.”
Culver has been teaching economics and social studies at Ozark High School for 15 years and won the Economics Arkansas Bessie B. Moore Award for Excellence in Economics Education for her 2019-2020 project, “The Economics of World War II and a Modern Pandemic.” In that unit she had students plant “victory gardens” in the school greenhouse to better understand the war.
“Living and teaching in a rural, high-poverty school it is important to me that I give my students connections that bring the subject matter to life within the classroom,” Culver said in explaining her project. “Agriculture is already such a meaningful topic for students in a rural, farm-based community, so adding agriculture to my subject matter of economics was a great way to bring economics to life.”
Arkansas Farm Bureau is a nonprofit, private advocacy organization of more than 190,000 families throughout the state working to improve farm and rural life.
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