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March 06, 2012 05:03 PM

Rosa Parks Students Meet Their Adopted Farmer

Brandon, SD

Most fourth graders know that milk comes from cows; however, many have never actually seen how the process works.

Fourth graders at Rosa Parks Elementary School have been watching videos from a South Dakota farmer they adopted. On Tuesday, they not only got to meet her, but they also got an up-close look at where the milk in their milk carton comes from.

On any other day, these kids would be just 4th grade students, but Tuesday, they're dressing to take on a dirty job.

"We’re going to see how the milk gets processed and all that," Rosa Parks 4th Grader Morgan Wieker said.

They're at a dairy farm for an up-close look at where milk comes from and to meet the farmer they've been corresponding with.

"I tell them every month something about my farm; I show them something through video," Olga Reuvekamp said.

Reuvekamp has a large dairy operation in Brookings, but Tuesday, she's borrowing the Ode farm in Brandon to give the kids hands on lesson.

"He milks the cows three times a day," Reuvekamp said.

From where the machines are prepped to where the cows are milked to the smell that comes along with the farm.

"It’s very stinky," Kaden Nelson said.

The kids are getting the whole experience.

"The kids were just super excited about meeting Olga and seeing the farm through their own eyes and not just the TV," Stephanie Jones said.

Teachers say it's important for kids to not only see that milk carton in school, but to also see the cows, what they eat, how they're milked and how milk gets into that carton.

"Most of our kids actually have never been on a farm and are experiencing some really interesting things they probably wouldn't experience in their life," Jones said.

The lesson is part of their science standards, a lesson Reuvekamp hopes they take home.

"I think it's really cool to see the cows and see what they do in the machinery," Nelson said.

"I hope they learned where their food comes from, where the milk comes from and how passionate we are about it.  And how safe our products are, and that's what they get out of it.  And that it's fun to be a farmer and it's good to be a cow at our farm," Reuvekamp said.

The Rosa Parks fourth graders speak Spanish for about 15 minutes each day. Reuvekamp incorporated Spanish into some of her video lessons through some of her workers.

The farm visit was put together by Ag United of South Dakota.

  • Education
  • Elementary
  • Brandon, SD
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