Cry of the Hawk

The student news site of North Harford High School

Cry of the Hawk

Cry of the Hawk


Should the northern Harford County area have its own 'snow zone' for inclement weather days?

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NHES hosts Agriculture Night; Students, families attend

NHES students and parents got to visit all 14 stations to learn about their community. Each presenter was very eager to educate students on the effect agriculture has on their lives everyday.
NHES students and parents got to visit all 14 stations to learn about their community. Each presenter was very eager to educate students on the effect agriculture has on their lives everyday.

North Harford Elementary School hosted their second-ever Agriculture Night on Thursday, April 18, from 6-8 p.m. Around 110 students, teachers, and their families attended the event to learn about the environment and agriculture through numerous stations and activities. 

     There were around 14 different stations that students and families could visit, ranging in topics from wildlife to futures in agriculture.

     Mrs. Jennifer Covert, a fourth grade teacher at NHES, became very inspired to start the agriculture night tradition last year, after  taking “an ag class [taught] by the Maryland Education and Agriculture Foundation, and so [they] wanted to bring that to the students.” Covert, along with the help of Mrs. Chere Dawson and others, were able to reach out to local groups such as Harford Glen, Eden Mill Nature Center, and Molly Hill Farm. “[They] were blessed to have a large amount of people interested,” says Covert. She would also “absolutely love” to keep the tradition going in the future, and possibly have “a tie-in with North Harford High School.”

     Principal Mr. Christopher Yancone explained that “The staff [there] deserves an amazing amount of credit; it was a lot of work… they contacted the people, they organized everything, they’ll clean up when it’s all over… it’ll be a long night, but it’s well worth it.” 

     Mrs. Tanya Wible from the  Maryland Agricultural Education Foundation had a station displaying information “all about different careers available to pursue,” a path “connected to agriculture.” Wible added that most people “often think of a farmer in a field, but there are so many other careers.” This was Wible’s first time presenting at NHES ag night. The Maryland Agricultural Education Foundation represents agriculture in Maryland and connects it to peoples lives. 

     Returning from the Harford County Master Gardeners organization, Mr. Greg Murray expressed the importance of exposing primary students to this type of education. He believes in “North Harford’s mission” and added that “kids need to know that carrots don’t come out of a plastic bag and they need to understand the work and energy” that gets put “into growing food” in hopes that it is not taken for granted.

     Mrs. April Cooper from The Mill presented at ag night, giving students a “soil health demonstration by cutting apples and showing children what percentage of soil” there is to grow good on. Cooper added that she made sure each student learned “why it is important to protect” fertile soil that food can be produced on. She also has the kids “plant green bean seeds” so they could “think about how food is grown.” Cooper expressed that “kids are the future generation, and no matter what efforts we have put in action, we need to ingrain in them that they need to be conscientious about the environment and continue protecting the soil to continue growing food for the animals and plants.”

     NRAS teacher Mr. Todd Stewart also had a station at ag night. The NRAS station had students “planting flowers” and learning about what is done in the North Harford greenhouse, according to Stewart. “Agriculture provides us all with the food we need,” he added. He also expressed the importance of elementary level students being more “acclimated to what it is like to live near a farming community so they understand why they might see a tractor drive down the street or smell some manure every once in a while.”

     Senior James Ortt has progressed throughout the plant science strand of the NRAS program. He was present at ag night, helping Stewart with the station. Ortt added that primary level students should be given the opportunity to see and do hands-on experiences in ag to “keep them interested throughout middle and high school” which could give them a “good idea of what they could possibly study in post secondary education.” Ortt wants to go into plant science and work with USDA to alter genetic strands inside of silage corn.

     Elementary students Bob and Lilith described their favorite stations from the evening. Bob’s was the topsoil station, where students were able to create their own cup of “topsoil” out of food such as Oreos and chocolate pudding. Lilith liked making a bird nest at the Bird Club table. The students also mentioned their favorite farm animals, which included horses and chickens. Pre-K student Weylin also liked the topsoil station, and exclaimed to us that his favorite animal is a horse.

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