Reading Technical Text to Identify Needed Resources to Develop a Basic Farm Business Plan - Remix

Part 1


Lesson Title

Reading Technical Text to Identify Needed Resources to Develop a Basic Farm Business Plan


Abstract

The purpose of this lesson is build on a previous lesson that teaches how to take out a farm loan.

This lesson is designed for adult learners who are pursuing a career in farming. It focuses on reading scientific and technical texts (Grade 6) related to farming business plans. It will help learners identify the resources necessary to develop a simple farm business plan. The learners will have the opportunity to apply their acquired knowledge in class activities such as discussion to analyze case studies and develop the basic outline of their resource sheet.

Learner Audience/Primary Users

This lesson is designed for adult learners who are preparing for certifications or high school equivalency exams such as the GED. It aims to help adult learners who are thinking of pursuing a career in agriculture and need to improve their reading skills in topics related to the business aspect of farming.

Educational Use

Curriculum / Instruction

Language

English

Material Type

  • Instructional Material
  • Activities
  • Homework

Keywords

  • Business Planning
  • Resources
  • Adult Education
  • Agriculture
  • Farming

Time Required for Lesson

90 minutes

Targeted Skills

Key skills covered in this lesson include:

Career => Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources Career Cluster

Learning Objectives

By the end of this lesson, the learner should be able to:

  • Identify each major element of a farm business plan
  • Define each major element of a farm business plan
  • Identify at least two sources that can assist in developing each major element of the farm business plan
  • Create a farm business plan resource sheet


College and Careers Readiness Standards (CCRS) Alignment

  • Level: Adult Education
  • Grade Level: 6 (D)
  • Subject: English Language Arts
  • Domain or Strand: Strand
  • Strand : Reading and Writing
  • Sub-strand : Reading Informational Text or Reading of Scientific and Technical text
  • Standard Description: RI/RL.6.7 = Reading Informational Text/Reading Literature, Level 6, Standard 7
  • Application: RST.6-8.7 = Reading Scientific and Technical Text, Level 6-8, Standard 7.


Prior Knowledge

Learners should be able to read a text at Grade Level 6.

Learners should be able to do basic searches on the Web using a computer

Required Resources

Adult learners : A computer and internet connection (to research farming business plans).

Instructor :

  • A computer and internet connection
  • Audio/visual projection capabilities
  • Business Plan Resource worksheet
  • Links to examples of farm business plans

Lesson Author & License

Part 2 Lesson


Instructional Activities and Strategies


Warm-Up


Time: 5 minutes


Ask, “Have you ever had to fix something or learn how something works? What did you do?”


Students volunteer their experiences.


Ask, “What steps did you have to take to fix that broken equipment or learn how to use something?”


Write their answers on the board; have students take notes


Introduction


Time: 20 minutes


Say, “The purpose of this lesson is to help you get started with your own farm business plan. By the end of the lesson, we’ll have heard from a start up farmer just like you, we’ll have taken a look at the basics of a farm business plan, and then you’ll draft a resource sheet to help you develop your own plan.”


First, let’s take a look at Ryan Wiebe, NC A&T State University 2014 Small Farmer of The Year.


As you watch this video ask yourself,

  • Why do you think Ryan succeeded?

  • What do you think is the most important lesson learned from Ryan’s experience?


Show Wiebe video.


Note:


  • Be sure to point out the importance of Ryan’s mentor (Claude) if no one else does.

  • Also the importance of other resources such as the Cooperative Extension (support organizations will come under a variety of names).

  • Point out the farm started small; required help and a lot of hard work


Presentation / Modeling / Demonstration


Time: 20 minutes


This part of the lesson helps learners to identify the specific resources that are available for farmers to make a useful business plan.


Note: for the teacher to demonstrate use of the AgPlan resource, he or she must register and name their own business plan. To use the tools and resources, students must register as well.


  • Go through each section of the farm plan with a brief explanation:

    • Executive Summary

    • Business Description

    • Operations

    • Marketing Plan

    • Management and Organization

    • The Financial Plan

  • Emphasize to learners that they’re not expected to have all of this information. The objective of the lesson is to help them identify who can help with each part of the plan.


Note: the basic categories of the plan in the AgPlan resource have several subcomponents. It is not necessary to address these; tell the students that they should only be concerned with the top level of the each part of the plan, e.g. Business Description, Operations, and etc.


Distribute a paper version of the farm business plan resource worksheet to those who need it.


Note: the farm business plan resource worksheet should be distributed electronically before the class with a short description and how it will be used.


Explain the three parts of the worksheet: Business Plan Item, Description, Resource columns


Go to the Executive Summary portion of the AgPlan resource. Show the four tabs: description, resource, example, and comments (comments is for adding your own comments to the plan).


Show how students might summarize the description of the cover letter (it should not simply be a copy and paste exercise).


Show how to include given resources in the resource column of the farm business plan worksheet => Show them how to add links to the text.


Show one other resource that may help with the cover letter (students must identify at least one source outside the AgPlan resource for each farm business plan item.


Example resource website for helping the students complete the worksheet;


By the end of this segment of the lesson, the first line of the business plan resource worksheet, Executive Summary, should be completely filled in on showing on the screen.


Guided Practice/Evaluation


Time: 15 minutes


Have learners fill out the next item in the plan: Business (Farm) Description by identifying at least two resources that can help them with this. They may also fill in the details of these two items if desired.

Review together

Clarify any questions or difficulties in understanding or doing the task


Application


Time: 30 minutes


Have learners denote on their worksheet where they are going to get help in finding the information they need to complete their farm business plan. Show them how to add links to the text.


Note: it is not enough to copy a top-level web address, e.g. “www.sba.gov”. Students must identify specific web pages for each particular element in the resource list.


Note: if students cannot identify a resource for each section by the end of class, it is to be done as homework. All business plan resource worksheets are submitted to the teacher for final evaluation and feedback.


Key Terms and Concepts

Amortization
to Borrow (money), a borrower
Business
Challenges
Collateral
Commercial credit
Commercial lender
Competitor
Credit
Credit history/score/report
Debt
Debt forgiveness
Direct loan
Down payment
Family-owned farm
Farm (dairy farm, livestock farm, tree farm, etc.)
Farmland
Farm record
Farm Service Agency (FSA)
Financials
Fund(s)
Guaranteed (loan)
Interest rate
Loan
Loan term
Marketing
Mission
Objectives
Opportunities
Planning
to Pledge (collateral)
Price
Private treaty
Product
Production cost (cost of production)
Profitability
Ranch (ranch vs farm)
Risk
Service
Strategy
Strengths
Temporary loan
Threats
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
Vision
Weaknesses

Part 3 Supplementary Resources and References


Supplementary Resources

Farm Business Plan Resources worksheet


Farm Business Plan Resources worksheet (teacher)

General use :


Small Business Administration

Small Business Houston Chronicle

More Business.com

Shopkeep.com (Small Business Resources)


Farming specific:


Cornell Small Farm Program

University of Minnesota (AgPlan)

USDA

Farm Service Agency (USDA)

Beginning Farmers.org


Example Business Plans


Cornell University Business Plan templates


Business Plan A template

Business Plan A guide

C Farm: A Carrot Farm in the Intervale


Beginning Farm Plan (NY Farmlink)


Student Worksheet


Farm Business Plan Resources Worksheet



References

Designers For Learning (2017), CN-2440-Gain-Experience-For-Good. Retrieved from https://learn.canvas.net/courses/1766.


Wiebe, Ryan. (2104). Ryan Wiebe, NC A&T State University 2014 Small Farmer of The Year [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DCNDtpMCzDA.

Attribution Statements

The video of Ryan Wiebe, NC A&T State University 2014 Small Farmer of The Year was created by Ryan Wiebe and published at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DCNDtpMCzDA. This video is copyrighted and is not licensed under an open license. Embedded as permitted by TERMS.


This work, ‘READING TECHNICAL TEXT TO IDENTIFY NEEDED RESOURCES TO DEVELOP A BASIC FARM BUSINESS PLAN’ is informed by ‘READING TECHNICAL TEXT SPECIFIC TO FARMING - LOAN CONTEXT, by SOPHIE GAUTHIER’, used under a CREATIVE COMMONS CC BY 4.0 license.

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