Wyoming FFA advisor shares lessons through portable farm

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Jay Clapper has lead the Southeast FFA chapter in Wyoming for 11 years and occasionally has members who don’t have access to a farm, so he brings it to them with a portable farm.

Clapper has a simple motto: “If I can’t get the kid to the farm, I’ll get the farm to the kid.”

FFA.org offered a detailed description of how Clapper’s unique contraption came to be. It began as a portable pig hut and now has two pig huts, five beehives, a poultry processing trailer, a portable corn plater, portable rotary tiller and two 16-foot trailers as makeshift barns.

“I really think this is the future of agricultural education,” he told FFA.org. “A lot of chapters have farms, but it’s limited to the kids who are close, and it can be hard on the teacher to maintain over breaks. This puts the responsibility on the students.”

Clapper recently received a $25,000 grant from the Wyoming Department of Education and wants to add a sweet potato program, a lamb program and a worm farm. His goal is for his students to learn skills to develop habits and solve real-world problems.

“If my students become ranchers, that’s great,” he said. “But it’s more than that.”

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