In between Valentine's Day celebrations and longing for spring, we often dedicate time in February to learning about Illinois History and celebrating Illinois' important contributions to our country and its agriculture. In this month's blog, we will highlight some of our favorite Illinois lessons, from everyone's favorite 16th U.S. President to the history and scale of our booming agriculture industry.
Livestock Learning: Beef and Pork Resources for January
The weather outside may be frightful for growing field and garden crops, but our livestock farmers are still hard at work all winter long raising animals to provide us with food and fiber. This month, we will celebrate beef and pork farmers by highlighting some of our favorite activities, printable resources, and ag-accurate books about these important livestock!
Check out these fun facts about beef cattle:
Cattle can eat up to 40 pounds of food a day which includes grass, hay, corn, and silage!
Beef cattle only sleep about 4 hours a day!
The U.S. supplies 19% of the world's beef supply with 10% of the world's cattle.
The average American eats 11 steaks per year!
One cowhide can produce 11 basketballs, 144 baseballs, or 20 footballs.
Check out these fun facts about pigs:
In Illinois, there are over 2100 pig farms that raise more than 5.25 million pigs.
Pigs cannot sweat! That's why you often see them "wallowing in the mud" - to cool off.
Bacon is one of the oldest meats consumed in history.
Pork accounts for 40% of all meat consumed worldwide, making it the most consumed animal protein.
You may have heard a football nicknamed a "pig skin." This nickname is incorrect, because footballs are actually made from beef hide, not pig hide!
Read more about Beef and Pork
Read more about two of our favorite cloven-hooved animals with our non-fiction text resources. Check out our Ag Mags (4-8 grade), Readers (8-12 grade), Facts for Little Readers (K-1) and Ag-Venture Worksheets (to be paired with Ag Mags)!
Lessons for Littles
Cattle and pigs are very important to our food supply chain, and are fun to learn about, too! Check out some of our favorite lessons for littles about beef and pork.
Make Some Mini Maga"zine"s!
Our brand new "zine"s (mini magazines) are a fun, creative way to learn about various agriculture topics. Check them out at the buttons below!
Download our printable folding instructions or watch our instruction video to learn how to fold your "zines" from IAITC.
Lessons for Big Kids
We haven't forgotten about the big kids! Check out these amazing lessons to teach older students all about the digestive system of cattle.
These are a few of our favorite... books!
More External Resources
Still looking for more? Check out these other great educational resources from our industry partners.
Check out Illinois Ag in the Classroom's iREAD 2024 Summer Reading Companion, complete with ag-accurate book recommendations and accompanying IAITC lessons all aligned with iREAD's summer 2024 theme: Read, Renew, Repeat!
Tis the season to be thankful! Check out all of our lessons, videos, and other resources all related to the December holidays!