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October is National Pork Month.
The leaves are falling. It's time to start your sheet-composted planting
Writing Prompt: Students keep journals describing
the trees in the schoolyard or in their own yards as the leaves
begin to change colors.
October is Archaeology Month
Timeline of Oklahoma Prehistory (interactive)
Oklahoma has one of the most important archaeological sites in the US at Spiro Mounds. Read about agriculture among the Spiro people in this lesson:
Spiro Farming: Corn, Squash and Beans Build a Mighty Trade Center
More lessons related to ancient agriculture
Barbed Wire was invented October 27, 1873
Farmer Joseph F. Glidden applied for a patent on
barbed wire on October 27, 1873. Learn more with Don't
Fence Me In
Writing Prompt: Students use online or library
sources to research the impact of the invention of barbed wire
on the American frontier.
Ag in Art: Pigs, John Frederick Herring Sr. (1854)
October 8 is Columbus
Columbus Day is significant to American pork producers
because swine came to the New World with Columbus on his second
voyage. In his narrative of that voyage, Michele de Cuneo reported
that pigs, in particular, "grew over there to a superlative
In addition to pigs, Columbus loaded his fleet
of 17 ships with horses, cows, oxen, sheep, goats, hens, dogs
and cats. He brought wheat seed and plants, barley, radishes,
onions, peas, melon, sugar cane, broad beans, lettuce, leeks
and parsley "to try out the ground."
Writing Prompt: Students write and perform skits
about the animals on Columbus' second voyage.
In some US cities Columbus Day has been replaced with Indigenous People Day in honor of natives who were here when Columbus arrived. Students will write short essays arguing for or against this issue.
The foods listed above that Columbus brought to the New World were part of what historians call the "Columbian Exchange." Students will research to find foods from the New World that explorers took back to Europe.