The American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture launched its new and enhanced version of “MyAmericanFarm.org,” a free online interactive gaming platform, that focuses on third- through fifth-grade students. The new version offers more agriculture-related games and activities for kids coupled with additional educator resources.
“My American Farm” was developed to engage millions of youth, teachers and parents through unique educational experiences, educator resources and fun family activities in an online environment.
“One of the main things we tried to do was not only provide these games, but also provide resources and ways to search the site so educators can find information easily by subject matter and agricultural themes and topics,” said Curtis Miller, director of education for the foundation. “We also have fun family activities for when kids come home from school and they have that time on the computer.”
The foundation has expanded the original five games in “MyAmericanFarm.org” to 12 and added in-the-classroom fieldtrip videos, e-comics, interactive quizzes and many other fun features. Some of the games include: “Ag Across America,” “Keys to Stewardship,” “Harvest This!” and “Farmers’ Market Challenge.”
Also new to the website is the feature “Passport to Sustainability,” a passport for students to download on their first visit to the site with printable rewards at the completion of each game. When they collect all 12 rewards they have a full passport.
“We realized we could do more to keep kids playing and learning,” said Miller. “The passport entices them to go through all of the games.”
Some of the fun family activities include step-by-step instructions on how to build a rain gauge and car trip bingo, which encourages kids to look for agricultural structures and animals during those long car rides.
All of the games and activities are subject-matter focused and agriculturally themed so that students learn through math, science, social studies, language arts and health. They learn about such topics as careers in agriculture and how farmers feed the world, care for their animals and take care of the environment. The games also appeal to a variety of different learning styles.
“Our overall goal for the game is to teach agricultural subject matter through entertainment,” said Miller. “We are reaching out to young people to teach them the connection between where their food is grown and where it is eaten in a platform they are interested in and can relate to.”
According to Miller, the new enhanced version of “My American Farm” would not be possible without sponsorship from Pioneer Hi-Bred, a DuPont business, which pledged $500,000 over three years to support the project.
“Pioneer is proud to be the title sponsor of this innovative agriculture literacy effort,” said Steve Brody, director of government, community and industrial relations for Pioneer.
The free games, activities and educator resources are available to everyone at www.myamericanfarm.org.