Agriculture in Louisiana is very different than here in Illinois, but there are a few similarities. Forestry is the number one agriculture industry in Louisiana. The state also ranks number one in the nation in the production of crawfish, shrimp, alligators, menhadden, and oysters. The other top crops in the state are rice, corn, sugarcane, soybeans, and cattle and calves. Which of these crops are also common in Illinois?
Have you ever even heard of a crawfish farm? Farmers in Louisiana farm crawfish in their rice paddies so they can harvest multiple crops from the same land. Learn how it all works from this Louisiana farmer.
Now let’s learn more about crawfish and shrimp, two really important crops in Louisiana. We’ll start by listening to this read aloud called “Why the Crawfish Lives in the Mud”, by Johnette Downing.
Learn more about shrimp with this National Geographic for Kids video–shrimp really are amazing animals!
4-8 Maine Blueberries
Maine grows more wild blueberries than anywhere else in the world. Maine is also 2nd in the nation for the production of maple syrup. This is another reason why blueberries and pancakes belong together!
For many people, when they think of blueberries, they think of this famous scene from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory:
Blueberries are often considered a “superfruit” because they contain so many antioxidants, which help our bodies fight disease. Did you know all these antioxidants are actually found on the skin of the fruit?
Learn more about farming wild blueberries in Maine from this short video from Maine Cooperative Extension:
Check out more on Maine Blueberries with this link! https://teachmefoodandfarms.org/bberriesmebook/
STEM: Do this fun activity to make your blueberries “dance”! Why do you think the berries dance? What other foods can you get to “dance” with this experiment?
Assessment and Extended Response
- How many species of shrimp are there in the world? (over 2,000)
- Shrimp are “omnivores.” What does this mean? What other animals are “omnivores”? (they can eat anything-both plants and animals. Humans are omnivores too!)
- How long can shrimp live? (up to 5 years)
- Do you like to eat crawfish or shrimp? What ways have you seen others eating these foods?
- Why are bees important to the Worcester’s blueberry crop? (they help pollinate the plants to produce berries)
- What did you notice about the mechanical blueberry harvester? Does it look similar to harvesting equipment you see being used in Illinois? (looks similar to a combine harvesting soybeans, only much smaller)
- What does it mean when farmers make a “value-added” product from their crops? (they process them in some way to create a new product out of it)
- What are some ways that you could include more blueberries into your diet?