The Sidney Sun-Telegraph - Serving proudly since 1873 as the beautiful Nebraska Panhandle's first newspaper

By Forrest Hershberger
Sidney Sun-Telegraph 

Fourth Grade Closes Project


Don Ogle

Parents and fourth and fifth grade students watch the video finale of the classes' 150 Project, where students interviewed and reported on people in 150 Ag related jobs across the state. The presentation capped a two-year effort by students.

Fourth grade students closed out a two-year project this week, showing their work on the last of 150 agriculture-related jobs.

During the presentation, this year's fourth graders were joined at Central Elementary by fifth graders, who last year started the project, inspired by Nebraska's sesquicentennial (150 year) celebration.

Throughout the project, students studied the state's birthday, hearing from state leaders in person and over video feeds, including Gov. Pete Ricketts' address on the sesquicentennial to the state legislature. As part of their final presentation and celebration, they heard from Nebraska Senator Steve Erdman, who represents the area in District 47, who told the youngsters he appreciated their work in understanding and learning about agriculture.

The bigger part of the project was when students interviewed people from across the state whose jobs were related to agriculture, Nebraska's leading industry.

A big part of their lessons came from Dan and MarileeRowan of Gurley, who still farm land homesteaded by the family. The Rowan family started farming in the area when Frank and Lotti claimed a 160-acre homestead, plus 160 acres under the Timber

Claim Act.

The classes "adopted" the Rowans, who shared not only their own farming experience, but also stories of the hard work their family put in as homesteaders.

Through the experience, Fourth Grade Teacher Judi Roach said the students not only learned a lot, but also displayed talents that some didn't know were there.

Roach said among the learning was how people came to their jobs. She said "not everyone came into their job the same way. Some go to college, some on the job training, some go to trade school."

Roach also said through the interactions, students have also learned new vocabulary, and also more about different parts of Nebraska. Both are areas where students might not have seen such intense learning had it not been for the project.

Students also learned how to work together and work on projects as a group, plus, "some of them really shined on their artwork.

"And I think now they understand the importance of ag related jobs in Nebraska."


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