4-H, FFA, and Agriscience Curricular Resources on Oilseed Pennycress

Oilseed pennycress (Thlaspi arvense L.) is a crop in the early stages of release for production in parts of the U.S. This crop has potential to act as a winter annual crop with seeds to be harvested and pressed for oil extraction and use in biofuels. Because it is planted in the fall, overwinters, and is harvested for grain in the spring/early summer, planting it in rotations with corn and soybeans has potential to minimize the time a field is without a living crop during the winter. As part of the Integrated Pennycress Research Enabling Farm & Energy Resilience (IPREFER) program funded by USDA-NIFA, the multi-institution group has been generating curricular materials that help highlight the utility of this crop. Be sure to check back to this page as more materials will be generated and posted!

Agriscience Resources:

  • Pennycress staging guide (.ppt)
  • Pennycress Staging Lab (.docx)
    • Full-length publication in Crop, Forage & Turfgrass Management Journal
    • Connects plant growth stages to management decisions in the field. Lab also connects crop stage to growing degree day (GDD) accumulation, and if space allows, comparisons of how temperature affects crop stage and GDD accumulation.
  • Agronomic production – OH (.ppt)
    • Highlights experiences from Ohio on pennycress planting, growth, and harvest practices
  • Seed Depth Lab (.docx)
    • Allows students to compared small and large seeds to planting depth, and understand how/why depth of seed placement matters for emergence and growth.
  • Seed Dormancy Lab (.docx)
    • Allows students to observe how seed treatment affects germination of pennycress at varying points of domestication
  • Seed Treatment Case Study (.ppt)
    • Presentation highlights core aspects of Seed Science and Technology (i.e., dormancy, seed treatment and enhancements), and how these concepts were applied to increase pennycress germination and establishment.

4-H Project Book – Cover Crop Science (Illinois certified, pending national peer-review):

4-H Idea Starter – Crop Production (Ohio, Peer-reviewed):

Ag is STEM Materials – Session 3: Genes and Genetics

In this section you will find the resources from March 4, 2022 from our Ag is STEM session focusing on Genes and Genetics. This project was funded by the AFRI Education Workforce and Development Program from USDA-NIFA, Project 2021-67067-34217. Below you will find all materials associated with our pre-made modules presented at our third development session. Our focus is on providing professional development opportunities related to agriculture for K-12 teachers at three unique sessions. Modules and resources from Session 1: Ecology can be found here, and from Session 2: Nutrients can be found here.

  1. Introduction – Session 3 slideset (.pptx)
  2. Topic Area 1: Genetics and Breeding
  3. Topic Area 2: Herbicide Resistance in Weeds
  4. Additional Resources and Industry Professionals (google doc)

Ag is STEM Materials – Session 2: Nutrients

In this section you will find the resources from January 21, 2022 from our Ag is STEM session focusing on Nutrients. This project was funded by the AFRI Education Workforce and Development Program from USDA-NIFA, Project 2021-67067-34217. Below you will find all materials associated with our pre-made modules presented at our second development session. Our focus is on providing professional development opportunities related to agriculture for K-12 teachers at three unique sessions. Modules and resources from Session 1: Ecology can be found here.

  1. Introduction – Session 2 slideset (.pptx)
  2. Topic Area 1: Plant Nutrient Composition
  3. Topic Area 2: Fertilizers
  4. Topic Area 3: Hydroponics
  5. Additional Resources and Industry Professionals (google doc)

Ag is STEM Materials – Session 1: Ecological Concepts

In this section you will find the resources from October 8, 2021 from our Ag is STEM session focusing on Ecological Concepts. This project was funded by the AFRI Education Workforce and Development Program from USDA-NIFA, Project 2021-67067-34217. Below you will find all materials associated with our pre-made modules presented at our first development session. The focus of these sessions is on providing professional development opportunities related to agriculture for K-12 teachers.

  1. Introduction slideset (.pptx)
  2. Topic Area 1: Ecosystem Comparisons
  3. Topic Area 2: Ecosystem Services
  4. Topic Area 3: Ecosystem Dynamics
  5. Additional Resources and Industry Professionals (google doc)

Tech in Ag Workshop Materials

Below, please find the resources related to our Tech in Ag workshops as funded by USDA-NIFA PD-STEP Award 2017-68010-25959. Workshops were originally offered from 2017-2019, and the materials generated as part of these workshops can be found here. Below, there are components as presented at the workshops:

  1. Introduction to Ohio agriculture and modern career opportunities (1 – Ohio Agriculture Background and Careers pptx)
  2. Materials related to soil nutrients, nutrient cycling, and using crop sensors to quantify nutrients
  3. Materials related to seeding rate and planting date impacts on crop growth and development
  4. Materials related to cover crop use
  5. Materials related to data analysis and statistics

Data generated from Activities in 2, 3, and 4 can be found in this Google Sheet: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1YZDKbjRc04uTwAylZSQUMSUMsbi_VgNSOkbJFconssU/edit?usp=sharing

Two additional extension presentations related to corn and soybean production can be found here:

Feel free to explore and utilize these materials in your classrooms!

Materials were constructed with the help of Education Projects and Partnerships, LLC (http://www.educationprojects.org).