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EASD Press Releases

Dec 1st, 2011 | By | Category: Features, Front Page

Elizabethtown Agriculture Teacher Selected for Educator Award

 (l-r) Greg Curlin, President of NAAE; Mark Anderson; Debbie Yarnell, of Delmar Cengage Learning

(l-r) Greg Curlin, President of NAAE; Mark Anderson; Debbie Yarnell, of Delmar Cengage Learning

December 1, 2011— Elizabethtown Area High School agriculture teacher Mark Anderson is one of only seven individuals nationwide to receive the National Association of Agricultural Educators (NAAE) Ideas Unlimited Award at the NAAE annual convention in St. Louis.

In a response to the Pennsylvania Department of Education deeming the Agricultural Mechanics career pathway a high priority occupation, Anderson developed the Horseshoe Nail Cowboy. He started out researching for practical brazing projects but none fit his criteria of being small, simple, inexpensive, easily adaptable and fun. Anderson quickly decided to create one of his own after noticing an excess of horseshoe nails located around his barn.

The idea of the project is simple. Students weld horseshoe nails into a cowboy stick figure. Other items such as wiring and washers can be used as well to weld accessories such as lassos and cowboy hats. Through this project, students learn basic agricultural mechanics skills such as project layout and design, measuring, calculating a bill of materials, proper set up and shut down of an oxyacetylene welding rig, welding safety, hand-eye coordination, and proper torch handling. Costing less than three dollars each to make, this project is mass produced to serve as centerpieces for the FFA banquet, showcasing to parents and community members the connection between classroom instruction and the FFA.

After students construct a cowboy to meet their specific design, they write a five-line poem describing their cowboy. Anderson works with the English teacher to ensure proper grammar, spelling and rhyming is used. One of the most important components of this project to Anderson is that students are able to employ their creativity and artistic abilities. He feels this will further motivate students to learn and continue to succeed in his program. Anderson explains the project has been so successful that his program has even been asked to make Horseshoe Nail Cowboys to give to legislators at the Pennsylvania State FFA Leadership Conference breakfast and as door prizes for the Conestoga Country Club summer golf tournament.

Each of the seven regional winners Ideas Unlimited Award winners received a plaque and stipend to attend the NAAE convention in St Louis. Delmar Cengage Learning sponsors the Ideas Unlimited Award. NAAE is the professional association for agricultural educators. Its mission is “professionals providing agricultural education for the global community through visionary leadership, advocacy and service.” The NAAE office is located in Lexington, Ky.


Elizabethtown Area High Leaders to Hold Food Drive

November 30, 2011— Elizabethtown Area High School’s Key Club and Student Council are sponsoring a Cans for Christmas Food Drive. The collection will benefit the local food bank and is timed to coincide with the upcoming holiday season. The drive will begin Dec. 5 and run through Dec. 20.

Community members can donate canned food and other nonperishable food items. Donations can be dropped off at the school, 600 East High Street in Elizabethtown, through Dec. 20.

The Food Bank is in need of the following items:

• Canned tuna
• Canned meats and stews
• Soup
• Peanut butter
• Canned fruits and vegetables
• Packaged meals
• Packaged pasta and rice
• Canned and dried beans
• Pure fruit and vegetable juices
• Baby food, cereal and formula

High school student members of Key Club perform acts of service in their communities, such as cleaning up parks, collecting clothing and organizing food drives. They also learn leadership skills by running meetings; planning projects; and holding elected leadership positions at the club, district and international levels.

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