Texas FFA News  
Why I Teach Ag: Joe Carter    
Saturday, February 15, 2020 | Author: Texas FFA News

What ag education classes do you teach?

I teach Agricultural Mechanics and Metal Technologies and Wildlife, Fisheries, and Ecology Management.

Why do you teach ag?
Teaching agriculture is very fulfilling to me because I have a passion for agriculture and the FFA. I think the program is one of, if not the most, beneficial high school programs available to students. 

What is your favorite classroom memory?
While I have many favorite memories, one always stands out. Many years ago, I was teaching Ag 101 in Navasota. On the day I began teaching the FFA Creed, a young man from Mexico, who spoke no English, was placed in my class. I assigned all students the task of memorizing the first paragraph. When I asked for volunteers the next day, my new student stood up and recited, not only the first paragraph, but the entire creed- in a language he didn’t speak. When I asked him how long it took him to memorize, he told me it took about 12 hours. That experience taught me a lot, and reaffirmed that we can all succeed if we are willing to put in the time and effort.  

What is your favorite FFA memory?
Every teacher aspires to succeed in FFA contests and stock shows, and I am fortunate enough to have experienced success in both areas. One of my proudest moments as an FFA Advisor was my FFA Broadcasting Team winning the Texas FFA state contest.

What advice would you give yourself as a first-year teacher?
“When you work hard, good things happen,” is something my teaching partner always says. It has become our motto as we motivate our students. It is exactly the advice I would go back and give myself. 

Why do you believe that ag education is so important?
I truly believe that agricultural education and the FFA offers more to high school students than any other program. The opportunities afforded to students range from public speaking to leadership to service to gaining knowledge in a multitude of fields. I personally have seen all different types of students find their niche through agriculture education.

Do you have advice on balancing work/home life?
Often your work becomes your life when you are an agricultural science teacher. Your family grows exponentially as your students, their parents and their brothers and sisters become part of your life. My advice is to enjoy all of them like they were family and you’ll probably be a lot happier.

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