Pa. Farm Bureau honors western Pa. teacher

Sharon Baillie (left) of Washington County, Pa., was honored by the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau's Young Farmer and Rancher Committee as its 2013 Outstanding Teacher of the Year. Melanie Fink presented Baillie a check for supplies and materials from the committee.

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Pennsylvania Farm Bureau’s Young Farmer and Rancher (YF&R) Committee has named a Washington County educator as its Outstanding Ag in the Classroom Teacher Award winner.

Sharon Baillie, who teaches classes in family and consumer sciences at the Burgettstown Middle/High School, used agriculture as the foundation of numerous lessons, including fashion design, natural fibers and interior design utilizing Pennsylvania hardwoods.

Baillie, who lives on a 40-acre crop farm near Avella, received the award (and a $550 prize for supplies and materials) at a recent Ag in the Classroom workshop in State College.

“I teach my students that farmers feed them and also supply many of the sustainable resources for the homes they live in and the clothes they wear,” Baillie said.

Baillie used a hands-on approach in the classroom, bringing in various Pennsylvania farm commodities to teach her family and consumer science courses.

Baillie also funded a greenhouse and school garden through a National Education Association Foundation grant. Students were able to taste vegetables in the spring and come back in the fall to taste food they grew in the garden and greenhouse.



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