It was a veritable barnyard outside Northwestern High School on Tuesday as preschool and elementary students learned what it truly means to be down on the farm.
Livestock mainstays such as pigs, goats and cows mingled with the less common guinea fowl and quail as part of Future Farmers of America’s annual Farm Day. High school students brought in their animals and tractors to show to students in preschool through third grade.
The goal was to give them a first-hand account of farm life and where food comes from, said Colt Standley, a junior.
“The whole point is that way they can see them and they can learn where their food comes from because a lot of kids don’t get to go out on farms and see guineas or quail or anything like that,” he said.
Standley brought his chickens, turkeys, quail, guineas, pigeons and geese for the event. He said he likes raising fowl best because of how colorful and varied the birds are.
“There are so many different kinds of birds,” he said.
For freshmen FFA members and twins Rebecca and Rachel Wells, they opted for a more common animal but obvious favorite: kittens.
“They’re easy to bring and all the kids like them,” Rebecca Wells said. “And they were a surprise because we really didn’t know the mommy cat was pregnant.”
Barn cats serve an important function on the farm by keeping mice and other vermin out of grain and feed, she said.
Standley said he hopes learning about the hard work and fun that goes into raising animals will make the younger students interested in creating another generation of farmers.
“We’re just proud to be farmers,” Standley. “I love it and I love working with the animals.”