14 Dec 2018

Teachers skip class for a day

From Country Life, 8:20 pm on 14 December 2018

A busload of Canterbury secondary school teachers visited farms, agribusinesses and a microbrewery recently for Teachers Day Out – a development day organised by Mary Holmes of NZ Young Farmers.

Teachers Day Out highlights the range of careers available in the primary sectors and how science, technology and business can relate to teaching in the classroom.

The Teachers Day Out experience inspired Kaikoura High School maths and chemistry teacher Ezra Lamond, who hopes to include everyday primary industry practices in his teaching.

"One of the key things I'm interested in doing is getting the kids outside taking measurements, running through the processes themselves, so they can get a taste for what's actually done within the industry."

Peter Randrup and Bex De Prospo work for Anteater – a company which produces premium edible insects.

They talked to the Canterbury teachers about alternative protein food sources and insect farming as they munched on flash-fried locusts rolled in tofu flour and lime and coconut pannacotta with lemongrass ants.

"I think the whole point of us being here is just highlighting that there's more to primary production than red bands and stubbies and beef and lamb, so yeah, we're just an example of another option in agriculture," Peter says.

This year, about 400 teachers participated in the Teachers' Day Out event at seven locations around the country - six were hosted by NZ Young Farmers, and one by GrowingNZ and Dairy NZ

"I would like [the teachers] to walk away with the belief that there are loads of opportunities for their students in this industry," says NZ Young Farmers CEO Lynda Copperfield.