Discussing a range of topics and facilitation techniques related to agriscience, Kim O’Byrne, a teacher at Mayfield High School, and Rachel Knight, a teacher at Centennial High School, joined agriculture teachers from around the country for a two-day National Agriscience Teacher Ambassador Facilitator Training Bootcamp in Orlando, FL.
“As we’re sending these facilitators out to be teachers of teachers, that’s a departure from their normal day in the classroom” said Wes Crawford, an agriscience teacher from Oregon who is also a National Agriscience Teacher Ambassador Mentor Facilitator who co-lead the training. “While they bring a wealth of knowledge, we need to help them be even more impactful, so when they’re done with other teachers from across the United States, those teachers can go back and be purposeful in implementing agriscience and inquiry in their own classrooms.”
The training was designed to prepare the select group of teachers to become facilitators for agriscience professional development workshops which are scheduled to take place throughout the country. Before an agriscience teacher can train to be a National Agriscience Teacher Ambassador Facilitator, they must first become a National Agriscience Teacher Ambassador.
The National Agriscience Teacher Ambassador Academy selects agriscience teachers via a rigorous application system, and through a week-long program, gives them the tools to increase the science rigor and inquiry teaching in their classrooms. Teachers who complete training to become National Agriscience Teacher Ambassadors also commit to spreading those concepts to other teachers.
Over the past 15 years, the National Agriscience Teacher Ambassador program has trained 345 teacher ambassadors who have delivered thousands of hours of professional development to teachers related to science rigor and inquiry teaching techniques.
An even more select group of National Agriscience Teacher Ambassadors are selected for training as facilitators. Their role is to oversee the interactive sessions given by ambassadors and to make sure the core messages of the program are delivered.
Teachers from 10 different states were selected to attend the bootcamp. Both O’Byrne and Knight have previously earned the prestigious National Agriscience Teacher of the Year Award from the National Association of Agricultural Educators (NAAE).