State & National Teacher Award 2005
Using current information and diverse teaching techniques helps Alzina Barnhill of Cook Elementary address the different learning styles of the students. She developed Agricultural Vocabulary Flash Cards to ensure her students understood agricultural terms. She created riddles to help assess the students' understanding of the terms. Her focus is to help children understand how the food goes from seed to grocery store, including the many people involved along the way who receive a portion of the final cost. Mrs. Barnhill took her students to a local farm, and grew plants in the classroom as real-world connections for the students. She provided students instruction about where our food comes from, processing, distribution, science, and the environmental issues of food and fiber production.
Mrs. Barnhill teaches concepts and objectives concerning natural resources and conservation. She added to her students' experiences by virtually taking her fourth grade class on a global journey of discovery halfway around the world and gave them an opportunity to discuss nutrition in the U.S. and Japan. Mrs. Barnhill is a firm believer that with agriculture curriculum, the "hands-on experience increase retention."