First of all, I found the baby pig movie clip to be absolutely amazing. Some students that were in the library at the time found it to be very "cool." They only wished it had been longer.
The We're Feeding the World story was interesting. I was amazed at the links that were provided throughout the story. What a great resource. The information contained in the links was very easy to access and seemed very interesting and valuable.
In the Looking to the Future section I visited the "Iowa 2010 Project" and "Vision 2020". I had no idea what those two concepts were but the overview provided some good information.
The teacher resource sections were concise and easy to follow. The standards were easy to follow and nicely organized.
The student section provided some very interesting information and some fun activities. I really liked the mystery pictures.
In the section Exports and Value Added Agriculture there were interesting statistics that might be useful in social studies or math.
I liked the links to Grant Wood info as well. The symmetry of the rural landscape played such a role in his work.
In A Day in the Life the comparisons for then and now were interesting. We have an 8th grade agriculture exploratory which feeds into the high school agriculture / FFA and many of the participants don't actually even live on farms so it is a good overview/field trip opportunity perhaps.
Most 4th graders in Des Moines take a field trip to Living History Farms, which is a pioneer farm. This website makes a great extension activity before and after the field trip.
I'm pleased to say that I found the latest technologies explained under the Tech Trek link, including the GIS, GPS, and also current trends such as value-added agriculture.
I really like the way the information is presented under the We're Feeding the World link. The story begins on the farm house at ISU and proceeds to connect the work of Etta Budd, George Washington Carver, Henry Wallace and Norman Borlaug in an easy to understand way.
Also, I think the Teacher section is organized in such a way that it makes it easy for teachers to quickly preview and access the links in the module.
I liked the way Pioneer Farming explains about farmers from the beginning of Iowa history (the Mound Builders) to pioneer farmers dating to 1870. Graphics are easy to load on each page and the amounts of text that students have to read is manageable.
The Farm Tech Trek was cool. Information here shows such a dramatic change in how farmers work today, utilizing the latest technology. Students of all ages would enjoy using the NASA satellite site to view their own town.
I have bookmarked the CampSilos Website and will share it with the teachers who bring their classes to the library for research--especially the classes in Iowa History, Vital Issues, US History, and Science. Teachers will be amazed at all the helpful resources and links which are contained in this website.
I have been impressed with the ease of navigation in each site and appreciate how the hot links make it easy to find more information.
I found the activities extremely user friendly and interactive which students would enjoy. I also appreciated the immediate response systems built into the activities. The students will be able to experience authentic lessons using a variety of styles of learning and producing various products.
The prairie was a real eye opener. I really liked the color photos that made this site a pleasure to look at and want to explore more.
There is great stuff here! Pictures, primary sources, activities, etc. It is well laid out and very helpful to teachers. There are not enough good Internet sources about Iowa.
I will recommend this site to our teachers who work with Iowa history because it has so much information in it. I'm truly amazed on how what I do not know about this state, and agriculture in general. This website has opened my eyes a little more to what Iowa is like now, how it was in the past, and how it might be.
When I have looked for content in the past the webpages were either too low or too high for 6th graders. The information in this website is substantial and "packaged" very well for the students. My students will really love working with this website in class. We have the luxury of having over 20 laptops on a cart that are hooked up to a wireless Internet.
I'm sure these web pages would be helpful to any curricular area, any course and the way they are set up is really helpful in these ways: the pages are attractive, accurate, informative, colorful, pertinent to Iowa life