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Geiman Receives National Award for Agriculture Activity

Release Date: 1/6/2009 1:47:00 PM

Aaron Geiman, an agriculture teacher at North Carroll High School, was one of six individuals to receive the Ideas Unlimited Award from the National Association of Agricultural Educators (NAAE). The award was presented at the NAAE annual conference in Charlotte, North Carolina, in December.
With farming practices that began in the 1960s causing more environmental damage over the years, agriculturalists have started using techniques that are more precise in determining the needs of the land. With this in mind, Geiman uses an activity that allows his students to conduct a precision agriculture simulation on their school’s football field. Before beginning this experiment, students are trained on how to use the needed equipment properly. Following their training, students are split into groups. Each group collects geospatial data of the non-turf grass plants growing on the field using Garmin GPS receivers. Once students have collected the data for their assigned one square-foot plot, the data is combined into a class set.
Using the data, the students use colored markers to show the areas that have problems with weed density. With this information, the students collaborate on how much herbicide is needed and where it should be applied. They learn how a sprayer is programmed to spread the proper amount on each area and conduct a survey on the costs of various herbicides. The activity is a way for students to learn about new techniques that are better for the environment while having fun. 
“This activity is applicable to numerous agricultural courses and topics,” said Geiman. “This activity supports mathematics, science, technology, and communication curriculum standards, proving that agricultural education supports national and state academic assessment programs.”

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