Starch Testing

Starch   Franklin County Ag in the Classroom has been providing a science experiment in a few 3rd, 4th and 5th grade classrooms in schools in September and October. The AITC calendar for the 2015-2016 school year highlights apples in September but has Apple Crunch Day on October 22, 2015.
This is a great time to explain variables with testing for starches – especially in apples.
Mrs. Lamczyk, AITC Coordinator, provided a variation of experiments in the classrooms.
The first classroom had cut up apples and potatoes from the grocery store to test for starch. Apples from the store are not ideal for testing due to the cold storage they have been through. The rest of the testing used items, such, as corn starch, bread and noodles.
A high concentration of iodine is dropped onto the items with a dropper or spray bottle to test for starch presence. The first test had the store-bought apples but the rest of the testing used fresh apples from an orchard. Students find out what items contain starch or learn about the variables that can change the starch content found in apples. This depends on the time of year they are picked and used.
This is just one of many “Sciences in your Shopping Cart” experiences that AITC can provide for free to schools. Mrs. Lamczyk visited over 8,000 students last year.
The Franklin County AITC would like to thank Ken and Mary Bolen for their donation of the apples, and to Sesser Animal Hospital for the iodine solution used in the experiments. AITC would not be able to provide all the free resources for all the hands on activities without community support.
Thank you to all who support Ag in the Classroom. If you are interested in learning more about Ag in the Classroom or how you can help support this program, please call Franklin County Farm Bureau at 618/435-3616.

Franklin County Ag in the Classroom Petting Zoo

Zoo   Franklin County Ag in the Classroom has been MOOOVING around for the beginning of the 2015-2016 school year. Ag in the Classroom Coordinator, Melissa Lamczyk, provided an educational petting zoo at the 25th Soil and Water Conservation Fair, Rend Lake College Foundation Big Truck Day, and the Sesser Oktoberfest.
Mrs. Lamczyk brought along “Milkshake”, a Herford/Angus cow, and “Max” and “June”, Boer goats and she talked about the life cycles, care, feed and nutrition of the animals. Students and audiences of all ages ask lots of questions about the animals. The question asked most was – “Is Milkshake is a milk cow”.
“Milkshake” is a crossbreed of Herford and Angus. She has a 6 month old bull calf that doesn’t travel along to the petting zoos because he’s about to be weaned from his mother. “Milkshake” was an orphaned calf that Melissa’s daughter, Marissa, bottle fed and has shown annually at the Franklin County 4-H Fair. “Milkshake” has been shown at several petting zoos.
“Max” is 6 months old and “June” is 3 months old and they are Boer meat goats. The goats are also some of Marissa’s 4-H projects. The difference in the ages show the difference in size and life cycle stages of a goat.
This was the goats’ first appearance at a petting zoos. “June” really liked the extra attention and goat treats that she received from the kids. “Max” was still a little shy and unsure of people but warmed up to eating treats by the middle of the day.
Many times children have a preconceived notion from adults and certain storybooks that some animals may bite or are mean but find out quickly that these particular animals are well cared for and very friendly. A few children even sat on “Milkshake’s” back for parents to take pictures. All were amazed at how calm and gentle she was. A petting zoo is a great way to get hands on education in an outdoor setting.

Harvest of Help Donations

The Franklin County Farm Bureau is sponsoring their annual Harvest of Help program to provide food to area food pantries. Farmers are being asked to contribute the return from one acre of land to this project. The proceeds will be shared with area food pantries.
Farmers are in the food production business, and they recognize that some families in our area are in need. The food pantries are doing a great job servicing these needs, but with the current economic stress, more food is needed to distribute through the area food pantries.
This project is announced as the fall harvest is underway. Although weather is always a concern it usually happens that Franklin County Farmers are blessed with a bountiful crop, and Farm Bureau wants to give area farmers an opportunity to share food with those in need.
Farmers are asked to contribute the proceeds of one area (net after expenses) to the Franklin County Farm Bureau Foundation. This contribution would be tax deductible for this not-for-profit 501c3 foundation.
All proceeds contributed to the Farm Bureau Harvest of Help Project would be distributed to food pantries within the county.
Please help to make this a great year for the Harvest for All by helping to give to those in need. If you have any questions please call the Franklin County Farm Bureau at (618) 435-3616. Or by mailing a check to P O Box 457, Benton, IL 62812.

We Are Looking For Silent Auction Donations

Franklin County Farm Bureau
Seeks “Silent Auction” Donations

The Franklin County Farm Bureau is seeking donations from businesses and individuals for items to auction at the Annual Meeting on November 30th. Money raised will help to fund the Ag In The Classroom Program and to help the Young Leaders to fund scholarships through the Franklin County Farm Bureau Foundation. All items will be tax deductible donations.
This is the fifth year that the Franklin County Farm Bureau has had this auction, last year we raised over $1,400 and hope to make this amount or more this year.
The Foundation welcomes any item for donation.
Please contact Melissa Lamczyk, Ag In The Classroom Coordinator or Gay Bowlin, Manager at (618) 435-3616 if you would like to make a donation. We may then make arrangements to pick up the item.
Thank you in advance for your help supporting the Franklin County Farm Bureau Foundation, the Ag In The Classroom Program and helping to provide scholarships for high school seniors.
If you are attending the Annual Meeting please stop by the Silent Auction tables and bid on items.
For more information on how you can help Franklin County students through the Franklin County Farm Bureau Foundation, please contact the office.