2010 National Excellence in Teaching about Agriculture Award
Mr. Sergio de Alba
R.M. Miano Elementary, California
The knowledge gained in his mother's garden taught Sergio de Alba the power of learning about agriculture at a young age. The lessons in de Alba's school gardens are fun, engaging, and empower students to succeed. The six gardens he designed, garnered for, and built provide 14,000 square feet of outdoor classroom space used on a daily basis. Four themed gardens are used by all students to explore units such as rose hybridization and propagation, cultural themes, insect life cycles, plant adaptation, and more. Students experience what it takes to run a profitable agriculture business by using "The Family Farm" garden to teach students about financial challenges and decisions farmers face. In the Chaves Garden, de Alba’s students grow a variety of fruits, vegetables, and flowers that are used for his weekly agriculture literacy lessons. Sergio works tirelessly to engage students in a powerful agricultural literacy program extending beyond his classroom walls, as he motivates students to look at agriculture all around them, every day.