2024 Teacher of the Year: Amanda Stanko

We're excited to announce our 2024 IAITC Teacher of the Year -- Amanda Stanko!

Pictured below L to R: Kevin Daugherty, Director, IL Center for Ag Engagement; Amanda Stanko, STEM Teacher at Corpus Christi Catholic School; Carrie Vogel, McLean County Ag Literacy Coordinator

2024 Teacher of the Year: Amanda Stanko

The Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom (IAITC) program is pleased to announce the 2024 Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom Teacher of the Year, Amanda Stanko, of Corpus Christi Catholic School, Bloomington, McLean County, Illinois. Stanko will be recognized at the 2023 Illinois Farm Bureau Annual Meeting in Chicago and will receive a trip to the 2024 National Agriculture in the Classroom Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. She will also be the Illinois nominee for the USDA National Excellence in Teaching Agriculture Award.

As the STEM teacher at Corpus Christi, she works with over 275 K-6th grade students challenging these non-ag students to think outside the box utilizing real world problems and solutions. Amanda’s lessons include everything from plant life cycles, to utilizing farm products daily, to growing a ‘Giving Garden’ to support the school cafeteria and local food bank.   Students learn at an appropriate level with Kindergartners making butter with their adopted cow, and 6th graders testing and amending soil after each growing season. Her passion for integrating agriculture has led her to enroll in a Master of Agricultural Education program with the hope of providing an FFA chapter at her school in the future.


Rows of Resources: Corn and Soybean Activities

Thanks to April showers aplenty this year, most Illinois farmers will spend the first part of this month planting rows and rows of Illinois' top agriculture commodities: corn and soybeans, and we will follow suit by sharing rows and rows of our favorite corn and soybean resources!

STEM and Inquiry in Agriculture

Fun, hands-on activities to get students thinking and problem solving by carrying out STEM and inquiry challenges with connections to agriculture.

Everything Earth Day: Earth Day & Sustainability Resources

As the weather warms into spring, many teachers and students are antsy to start getting back outside during the school day. Over 95% of primary and secondary schools across the country do just that on April 22nd each year - Earth Day! This month on the blog, we will highlight our favorite Earth Day and Sustainability activities that you can use to help you celebrate.