DES MOINES, Iowa — A new non-fiction book by children’s author Katie Olthoff is now available and tells the story of producing energy on a modern Iowa farm. My Family’s Wind Farm is available by request free for students and teachers from the Iowa Agriculture Literacy Foundation (IALF).
The story follows Callee, a farm girl in Iowa who produces corn, soybeans, and electricity. Callee takes the readers on a tour of the family farm and discusses how they lease their farm ground to an energy company who installs wind turbines that produce electricity. She discusses how wind is a renewable resource and shares some of the technology that allow turbines to turn wind into the electricity that powers homes. The book is written at a 3rd grade reading level and has supplemental text that gives additional background information for more advanced readers.
The book is the fifth in a series by Olthoff who is a former teacher and understands the importance of having high quality, relevant non-fiction books for students. Iowa Core educational standards require that up to 50% of student reading be informational or non-fiction. Olthoff writes the books for IALF in an effort to provide non-fiction, agriculture-based resources to schools.
“Iowa is a leader in wind energy production,” said Will Fett, IALF executive director. “My Family’s Wind Farm shows how farmers are intimately involved in producing renewable energy – whether it be corn and soybeans for biofuels or electricity from wind.”
Olthoff lives on a working turkey farm in central Iowa with her husband and family. Her first book detailed how turkeys were raised on their family farm. She currently works for the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association as director of communications. She is active in the agriculture community in Iowa and beyond as a volunteer for Common Ground, a national network of farm women who share information on food and farming with consumers across the country. She has experience teaching and communicating about agriculture with her blog, On the Banks of Squaw Creek.
“Farmers need to decide if they can benefit from diversifying their business,” said Fett. “Leasing land and installing wind turbines or joining a co-op and owning wind turbines can provide another stream of revenue for the farm business.”
Copies of the book are being made available to all Iowa elementary schools and additional copies are available on request. The book is a special project of the Iowa Agriculture Literacy Foundation with financial support from a grant through the Iowa Energy Center, now being managed by the Iowa Economic Development Authority. The book also has two lesson plan companion resources that will help teachers integrate the book into a science lesson, social studies lesson, or a language arts lesson. The lesson plans are aligned with Iowa Core standards and easily fit into an approved course of study.
For more information about this book or other education resources please contact the Iowa Agriculture Literacy Foundation at email@example.com.
— Iowa Agriculture Literacy Foundation
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