Filling a gap in education

Colorado Reader provides agriculture and natural resource learning opportunities for students

A fourth grader at Naturita Elementary School (Naturita, Colo.) patiently awaits his turn to answer a question posed as part of the discussion around the Colorado Reader.

As a group of students in Norwood, Colo., shuffle into Catherine Kolbert’s seventh grade science class making their way to their desks, a topic scrawled on the whiteboard prompts the first bit of discussion for the period.

“Name an energy source used to generate electricity.”

The students shout out answers such as “hydro,” “coal” and “solar” as they hastily scan the Colorado Readers in front of them in an attempt to locate additional responses. The Colorado Reader — an eight-page student activity newspaper focused on agriculture and natural resources, specifically electricity for this edition — was distributed to the students the day prior in preparation for the current  discussion and subsequent lesson on electricity.

A similar scene is taking place in more than 1,500 Colorado classrooms as students from fourth to seventh grade learn about electricity through the information provided in the Colorado Reader.

Published and distributed at no cost to educators by the Colorado Foundation for Agriculture (CFA), the Colorado Reader was originally produced based on the fact that less than five percent of textbook content was related to agriculture and natural resources.

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