General Article

Education and Science: Preparing Our Future Farmers

Countries rely on agriculture to sustain their population, and in some cases even their economy. The problem with this is that not enough children are joining the agricultural industry, so it is time we focused on teaching our children about agriculture.

The role of science in agriculture

Young people in modern times have an affinity for and attraction to technology and science, so we need to make use of these by teaching them. A good starting place would be to make use of computers and the internet to get a hold of research on agricultural practices and how science plays a role here. There are also pre-set lessons available online which cover this topic very nicely.

Climate and crop types

One of the major scientific factors affecting agriculture is climate. For instance, certain crops like almonds are known to require lots of water, so you wouldn’t try to grow them in very hot and dry areas. Wheat and sunflowers, on the other hand, grow well in drier climates. With the internet at their fingertips, children can be given the task of researching certain climates and the appropriate crops for them on the internet, implementing both technology and science into teaching agriculture.

Weather and crop growth

After looking at what types of crops suit which climates, weather is the next factor. With the correct analytical tools and programmes – and the internet, as always – you can show the children exactly how weather patterns affect crop growth. There are precise graphs which track how much growth was experienced on certain farms on a day-by-day basis. This comes with a record of which days had rain, and how much rain there was. This helps to show exactly how the weather conditions – beyond just rain – affect the growth of crops.

This may seem a bit technical for kids and completely above their heads, but they should not be underestimated. Children are remarkably capable when it comes to learning with technology, and so long as they have a base to build on, that will already boost to interested population

Impact of technology

One more factor you can introduce to children is the impact of different types of technology. They can be taken to farms and brought into contact with agricultural services and products providers to see what all is available, how it works, and how it impacts on the agricultural industry. This gives children a concrete view of agricultural technology and science, which helps them to understand it at their own developmental level. Also, this give them a great view of all the extra, advanced factors involved in agriculture which go beyond the dull, dirty profession they often – wrongly – believe agriculture to be. We just need to show them that it fits a lot better with their tech-centric lifestyles than they thought.

You can contact agricultural services and products providers to give you the best tools available to make use of this area of interest. A good SA farming directory will give you all the necessary contacts for this.