It’s time to harvest at Green T. Lindon Elementary School in Youngsville. And the school’s first graders know exactly what they’re picking.
A garden is just one of the ways teacher Michele Levis incorporates agriculture into her lessons.
“The process of it growing. The process of taking care of it. The process of eating good foods and trying things. That’s been one of my favorite things about the garden,” says Levis.
Levis says that being a first-grade teacher has the added benefit of watching her students grow in their learning. “They start not knowing anything and by the end, it’s amazing to see what they can do.”
And what these children do, under Levis’ direction, is get their hands dirty and try pretty much anything they grow.
“The other day, we were growing onions. And one of the kids said, ‘Miss Levis, I want to try this,’ ” says Levis. “And I said, ‘sure go ahead.’ ” And they broke it off and they literally ate green onions straight off the plant.”
It’s for growing these young minds that Levis is the 2019 Louisiana Farm Bureau Ag in the Classroom Teacher of the Year.
“I couldn’t figure out what in the world would make my little garden win something like that,” says Levis. “To me it feels like my little garden, but I’m just completely blown away by this and very proud.”
This marks the third time that a Lafayette Parish school teacher wins the Louisiana Farm Bureau Ag in the Classroom Teacher Award.
For winning, Levis receives an I-pad and an all-expense paid trip to the National Ag in the Classroom Conference held from June 18-21 in Little Rock, Arkansas.