A Qualitative Study of Agricultural Lessons Used by Texas Teachers in Elementary Classrooms
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Research shows that many citizens have misconceptions about the source of their food and fiber. Several organizations have developed agriculture-based curriculum in an effort to increase agricultural literacy. Although there are a number of resources available to teachers, it is unclear which resources are being used and how often they are being used. The purpose of this study was to examine the perceptions of Texas elementary school teachers toward the use of agriculture-based lessons as a resource in teaching elementary science. To answer research questions, a qualitative approach was implemented using snowball sampling and interviews. The interviews sought to determine basic demographics and identify the agricultural resources being used. Findings from the study were compiled based on the Pillars of Agricultural Literacy. It was found that participants in this study focused on plant aspects of agriculture and most commonly used Agriculture in the Classroom, Learn, Grow, Eat, and Go, and several non-agricultural resources such as Pinterest and Teachers Pay Teachers. Based on data gathered from the study, it is recommended that further study should be conducted to determine why certain resources are being used more frequently, how to increase use of agriculture-based lessons, and what other avenues of distribution could be used. It would also be beneficial to solicit the expertise of classroom teachers when developing curriculum to better align and increase rigor of lessons. Participants seemed to be favorable in using agriculture-based curriculum but did voice that modifications need to be made. There is opportunity for further research in this area that could benefit teachers and curriculum developers moving forward.
Pate, Leigha D (2018). A Qualitative Study of Agricultural Lessons Used by Texas Teachers in Elementary Classrooms. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from