Ag News

Diversity and innovation spark national interest in agricultural education conference.

  • By: Farm Tender "Prime"
  • Dec 14, 2017

Educators and industry stakeholders from across Australia and overseas are converging in Launceston during January 2018 to attend the National Association of Agricultural Educators (NAAE) Conference.

Hosted by the Tasmanian Agricultural Education Network (TAEN) the conference will highlight the vast array of opportunities to incorporate an agricultural perspective in classrooms across the country.

The conference is celebrating ‘Diversity and innovation in agriculture and education’, with a range of engaging local and international speakers, workshops, exciting industry tours and valuable networking opportunities.

According to TAEN President John Lehman, participants will be exposed to a myriad of ways schools and industry can incorporate agriculture in the classroom for every age group.

“Every child (and every teacher) in every classroom has an intimate relationship with agriculture through the food they eat, the clothes they wear and the pharmaceuticals they use,” he said.

“Recent developments in technology offer an unparalleled opportunity to showcase the production and processing systems and the career pathways on offer in this exciting, diverse and innovative sector.”

Keynote speaker Tim Gentle, Think Digital, will kick off the conference, inspiring teachers to adopt digital technologies in the classroom, including 360-degree photo and video, virtual reality and augmented reality, to create new learning environments while bring ag to the classroom.

Industry panel discussions
On the second day of the conference ABC rural reporter Laurissa Smith will lead a panel discussion with industry innovators Jane Bennett (TasFoods), Stephen Creese (Creese NorthEast), Anthony Crawford (DoE) and Joanna Jones (UTAS). The panel will share their views on the future of agriculture and the role education can play to encourage the next generation of the agricultural workforce.

Workshops and tours
Throughout the four-day conference attendees will have the opportunity to participate in up to five informative workshops across a broad range of interest areas. Topics vary from raising edible snails, GPS cows (technology in livestock), forestry education, keys to successful agvocacy, innovative education resources and overseas programs.

The organising committee in partnership with the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture and the University of Tasmania’s School of Land and Food have coordinated a package of diverse and exciting tours during the conference.

Half-day and full-day tours will see participants transported across several regions of Tasmania, visiting a number of exciting destinations and agricultural industries showcasing the diversity of agribusiness in Tasmania.

Inspiring dinner speaker
The conference dinner on Tuesday 9 January is open to the public and will feature multi-award winning speaker, trend forecaster and bestselling author Michael McQueen.

In his practical, research-rich and entertaining presentation Michael will explore:
•   the five shifts that have dramatically changed the face of education in recent decades.
•   the three key trends that will shape education in the years to come — the changing nature of students, the climate of the classroom and the expectations of parents.
•   practical and proven strategies for engaging tomorrow’s students in learning

Places are still available for both the dinner and the conference. Visit www.taen.org to register for the conference or the dinner.

For more information or interviews, contact:
Andrew Harris, TAEN Publicity Officer
Mobile: 0407871830
Email: andrew.harris@education.tas.gov.au