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WIU agriculture student Raelynn Thompson introduces two second graders to some of the animals at the WIU livestock center.
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WIU agriculture students Will Taylor and Jared Lamle work with Lincoln School second graders this week as part of the Macomb School District's Adopt-A-Classroom program.
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Lincolnl School second graders had the chance to feed animals at the WIU livestock center this week.
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WIU agriculture students Cody Dawson and Luke Wechter introduce a group of second graders to shearing sheep.
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WIU agriculture students Madison Corzatt and Renee McGrew, along with School of Agriculture Director Andy Baker, show the students a horse at the center.
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Second graders were given a tour of the new WIU greenhouses by Agriculture Professor Win Phippen, who talked to them about various aspects of plants and food production.
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WIU School of Ag Adopts Class of Macomb Second Graders

April 26, 2018

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MACOMB, IL – A group of Macomb second graders visited the Western Illinois University livestock center and greenhouses Tuesday as part of the Macomb School District's Adopt-A-Classroom program.

The 19 students from Anna Mercer's Lincoln School class came to campus for a day of activities, which included learning about plants and growing food, having hands-on experience with livestock and farm machinery and taking a hayrack ride to visit other parts of the School of Agriculture program.

Throughout the year, students from WIU's School of Agriculture visited Mercer's classroom to work with the children on agriculture-related projects. WIU Agriculture Instructor Jana Knupp said throughout the school year, WIU students have worked with the second graders on projects such as planting seeds, food production and livestock lessons.

While the students were in the livestock center, WIU agriculture students helped them brush calves, pet and shear sheep, climb on tractors and learn about baby pigs.

WIU senior agriculture science major Will Taylor, of Flora, IN, said the hands-on interaction with students and teaching youth about agriculture brings a new perspective to his education.

"It adds value and a passion for agriculture advocacy," he said. "It's fun to interact with the kids and see their passion for animals and agriculture grow."

WIU senior Mikaela Fringer, an animal science major from Madera, CA, said she enjoys gathering experience teaching younger children.

"Teaching the younger generation is a stepping stone to teaching at a higher level someday," she said.

The event was sponsored by the WIU School of Agriculture, the Hoof and Horn Club, the Collegiate Farm Bureau chapter and WIU's Ag-Vocators organization.

"The WIU School of Agriculture enjoys the opportunity to connect with the community and educate them about agriculture," said Knupp.

Those interested in visiting the WIU farm can contact Knupp at

Posted By: Jodi Pospeschil (
Office of University Communications & Marketing