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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

'Farmer Ron' visits Staunton students

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Seven-year-old Ethan Stewart asks "Farmer Ron" Scherb a question during Scherb's presentation on corn Thursday at Staunton Elementary School. Ethan is the son of Chris and Melissa DeHart, and is a student in Kristi Jackman's second-grade class. [Order this photo]
STAUNTON -- First- and second-grade students at Staunton Elementary School learned a little more about popcorn Thursday.

To coincide with the beginning of the Popcorn Festival of Clay County, "Farmer Ron" Scherb visited with the students Thursday to discuss the growing of corn.

Scherb is also a festival committee member.

Scherb said promoting the festival was key initially. However, he said he believed showing students the process of growing and planting was more important.

"This is the first time we've done this," he said. "We thought it would be better to teach the kids where our food comes from."

Approximately 110 students filtered into the Staunton Music Room for the presentation.

First-grade teacher Marci Nussel said the students have been studying the process of planting.

"Ron contacted me and asked if we would be interested," Nussel said. "(The students have) been talking about planting."

She said the students have been learning the planting process for approximately two weeks. They began discussing apples and John Chapman, better known as "Johnny Appleseed."

As a result, students had an apple pancake breakfast prior to Scherb's visit Thursday.

Nussel added the lesson incorporated elements of science and social studies.

"We integrated all those things together," she said.

Scherb showed the students different types of corn while explaining the process of planting the crop.

He also handed out prizes for the students who answered questions correctly and took questions from students following the presentation.

Scherb also received assistance from his 4-year-old grandson, Luke Swearingen, son of Jennifer and Ryan Swearingen.

"Farmer Ron's" Amazing Field Trip will take place Saturday, from 9 a.m.-1 p.m., at the Forest Park Pavilion, as part of the popcorn festival.

The event, sponsored by Scherb and Clay County Farm Bureau, Inc., will offer children an opportunity to learn about animals and more.

A straw maze will be available as well as other games.

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