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Lesson Plan 16 - Agriculture
download lesson16.pdf

This lesson helps reinforce student learning related to the history of agriculture in California, especially life on a family farm. In Lesson 16, students play the Agriculture Game under GAMES at the Sacramento History Online website at To play the game, you must have a current Flash Player (6.0 or higher).

1. Apply knowledge of life on a family farm and California agriculture.
2. Complete the agriculture unit with an entertaining final activity.

4.4 California's rise as an agricultural and industrial power

STUDENT ACTIVITY SHEET 16 AND KEY: My Farm Visit Journal (includes Aunt Sarah's Recipe)
CLICK to download this PDF document, which then can be viewed and printed with Adobe Reader.


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DOCUMENTS TO DISCUSS (view online or print screen)
The documents below provide background information related to the Agriculture Game.
CLICK on an image to view or print the document.

download pdf file
1. Eat California Fruit
Illustrated pamphlet describing the wonders of California fruit, includes recipes. (Large PDF File - 3.7 MB)

view large image
2. Hack ranch in Freeport
[ca. 1890]
View of yard around farmhouse, showing barn, other outbuildings, areas fenced off in sections, horse-drawn wagons, and windmills; orchard in distance.

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1. Print Student Activity Sheet 16 and Key (My Farm Visit Journal and Aunt Sarah's Recipe).

2. In this activity, students play the Agriculture Game at (Choose Agriculture Game from the Games menu at the top of the screen).

3. Before introducing the game, you may want to review and print the two documents above. Document 1 is a pamphlet from 1904, which provides additional background about agriculture and food in that time period. Document 2 is an image of a family farm in the 1890s.

4. In the game, students make an imaginary visit to their aunt and uncle’s farm in the Sacramento Valley. Although set in the early 1900s, the events and activities shown are typical for any family farm without electricity and refrigeration, from the 1880s through the 1920s. Featured areas on the farm include the following:

a. Farmhouse kitchen

b. Henhouse

c. Barn

d. Almond orchard

e. Almond hulling shed

f. Garden

g. Cistern

h. Additional images include a railroad depot, exaggerated postcard,
  and State Fair button.

5. There are several ways to visit the farm. You can explore different locations on your own to learn more about farm life or gather clues to solve a puzzle.

6. Puzzle. Before they play the game, give students Activity Sheet 16: (My Farm Visit Journal) (printed from the PDF file), to record clues. In the game, students are asked to find ingredients for Aunt Sarah’s recipe at various sites around the farm. If they solve the puzzle, they are rewarded with a virtual animated cake. To solve the puzzle, drag small icons to their proper location on the chart to indicate the following information for each of six ingredients (butter, milk, eggs, potatoes, flour, and almonds):

  a. Where they found the ingredient on the farm (e.g. the barn)
  b. The plant or animal it originates from (e.g. milk comes from a cow)
  c. The kitchen tool or utensil that was used to prepare the ingredient

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1. At the end of the game, discuss the puzzle and your virtual visit to the farm. Pretend that you are the child who made the visit, and write a letter to your family in the city, describing what you saw on the farm.

2. Create a drawing or a mural showing a family farm in the years 1900 and 2000. What changes would have taken place during those 100 years?

3. With adult supervision, make Aunt Sarah’s recipe and share the results. Can you find other dessert recipes that call for vegetables?

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