University of Maryland Extension

Preview Curriculum


A three-time national award-winning program, AGsploration is a science-based curriculum designed for middle school students. AGsploration lessons allow students to explore the relationships between agriculture, the environment, and their health through engaging hands-on activities. All 24 lessons are aligned with the Maryland state standards for science and health. While designed for classroom use, the lessons can easily be adapted for use by after school programs or community organizations.

Click to view the LESSON OVERVIEW which includes a brief description of each lesson and lists the activities included in each.

Lesson Plan Format

Each lesson in the AGsploration curriculum has been written utilizing the 5-E format.  In addition,  background information and career connections sections are also part of each lesson.  Below is more information about the 5-E format and how it has been incorporated into each lesson.  Click this link to view an EXAMPLE LESSON PLAN.

ENGAGEMENT: Describes in detail how students’ interests are captured and exciting ways to establish a “need to know” for the students.  Each lesson includes fun facts about Maryland agriculture and how they relate to the lesson plan topic.

EXPLORATION: Describes in detail the activity or experience in the lesson. The key for this “E” is what the students are doing.  At least one hands-on, science-based activity is included with each lesson.

EXPLANATION: Describes how students communicate the results of their explorations and how they will explain their results. Each lesson includes handouts and worksheets for the students to use to record their findings from the activities and information learned.

EXTENSION:  Discusses extensions to other curriculum areas (art, music, physical education, et cetera) that will allow students to use their new knowledge and apply it to new situations. Each lesson includes additional activities and suggestions for where more resources can be found.

EVALUATION: Explains how students demonstrate their new understandings and skills.  Each lesson includes a pre-/post-test specific for each lesson.  The pre-/post-assessment measures the students perceptions about science and the topic being covered.

Download Curriculum

The entire curriculum – including teacher guide, all lesson plans, student worksheets, and evaluation materials - is available online and is free to any educator or youth provider. To access the entire curriculum and supporting electronic materials instantly, simply fill out the form by clicking on "download the curriculum" above.  Registration helps us keep track of how many educators are utilizing the curriculum and helps us provide support and evaluation tools to you.

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