Pamela Hall, a first-grade teacher at Carrollton Elementary School in Isle of Wight County, has been named Virginia Agriculture in the Classroom 2020 Teacher of the Year.
The award recognizes a Virginia educator for incorporating agriculture into his or her core curriculum.
Hall’s mission is to integrate agriculture into the classroom all year long. She uses hands-on approaches, including studying plant and animal life cycles, taking farm nature walks, visiting with farmers, making ice cream, investigating and raising pollinators, and experimenting with hydroponics.
“Pam is a vivacious teacher who shares her love of learning about agriculture with her students,” said Tammy Maxey, AITC senior education manager. “Her excitement about the world of science and agriculture has permeated her school throughout the year, from planting to hydroponics to pollinator awareness. Her work embodies the goals and mission of Virginia Agriculture in the Classroom.”
Hall enjoys creating projects that leave an impression. When her students expressed an interest in bees, she began researching them. She then modeled a bee’s life cycle and invited an expert from the Tidewater Beekeepers Association to visit with her students. For an immersive experience, she took students to a farm to don beekeeper suits and conduct a hive inspection.
In addition to using AITC lesson plans for years and participating in Virginia AITC’s grant program, she also has received grants from National Agriculture in the Classroom Organization for her hydroponics lessons.
As Virginia AITC Teacher of the Year, Hall will receive a scholarship to attend the 2020 National Agriculture in the Classroom Conference in June in Salt Lake City, and a $500 cash award.
Virginia AITC also recognized Autumn Pequignot, a kindergarten teacher at Mountain View Elementary School in Rockingham County, as runner-up.