New This Fall! Wyo Wonders Elementary Curriculum Is Ready for Classrooms

Wyoming Agriculture in the Classroom (WAIC) is excited to announce the launch of its brand new Wyo Wonders curriculum this fall. Wyo Wonders is a free elementary curriculum focused on helping students understand Wyoming’s core heritage industries of agriculture, minerals and energy, outdoor recreation, and tourism.

Wyo Wonders continues the legacy of stewardship-based education for Wyoming students that WAIC’s previous curriculum, the Wyoming Stewardship Project has previously fulfilled. The curriculum was written by teachers for teachers, equipping them with Wyoming-specific tools and resources for their classrooms. By completing the curriculum, students not only learn Wyoming’s history, but study Wyoming’s core industries, how they are connected, and the importance of those industries today as they employ critical thinking skills and begin to envision their future careers in their home state.

Executive Director Andrew Joannides stated, “I am so excited to share this new curriculum with educators, students, our supporters, and folks all around the great state of Wyoming! When I first saw it, it took me back to my childhood when my mom would take me to children’s museums. It feels exploratory, it is creative and inviting. We want this freshly branded curriculum to be memorable for the children who have access to it. As we all know, Wyoming is full of wonderful things. It is inspiring to know that our children can learn this starting in elementary school!”

Wyo Wonders is supported by WAIC, and their team of Education Advocates provides workshops for educators, along with as-needed support throughout the school year. Since the beginning of June, educators attending WAIC’s summer workshops have gotten their first look at the Wyo Wonders curriculum. One participant from the Sheridan workshop commented, “I love the new name and look! I think it will draw in a lot more attention and curiosity.” Others have commented on the kid-friendly new name and fun imagery for the lessons.

Wyo Wonders lessons and resources will be ready for the fall semester at This free curriculum is powered by Wyoming Agriculture in the Classroom. To learn more about the program, and how you can support it within your community, please reach out to Andrew Joannides, Executive Director at 307-369-1749.

Congratulations to our 2023 Educator of the Year!

Wyoming Agriculture in the Classroom would like to congratulate Jamie Keisel, our 2023 Educator of the Year. Ms. Keisel currently teaches 3rd Grade at Greybull Elementary School.

Keisel is active in her school, local community, and WAIC programs. She has been involved with writing, revising, and teaching the Wyoming Stewardship Project (WSP) in addition to participating in the annual Bookmark & Beyond contest. Keisel teaches lessons from both the Agriculture and Outdoor Recreation and Tourism units to both third-grade classes at Greybull Elementary.

Jamie Keisel teaches a lesson from the Wyoming Stewardship Project during homecoming week.

Keisel’s fellow third-grade teacher, Misty Hernandez commented, “Jamie teaches our students to be good stewards of the land through her own examples and stories about the land and livestock that she takes care of in her own life. When the students can see real-life connections from her it increases their buy-in to what she is teaching. Jamie truly loves teaching our students about agriculture in Wyoming and how to take care of our land and resources.”

Lessons come to life for her students when Keisel brings in guest speakers from the Wyoming Game & Fish Department, Conservation District, and agricultural community. Her students write letters to local ranchers asking about stewardship practices before taking a field trip to see the ranch in person.

As the 2023 Educator of the Year, Keisel will be awarded a cash prize of $2500 through Wyoming Agriculture in the Classroom.  The award is funded by the Vermillion Ranch, the Wyoming Livestock Roundup, and Mantha Phillips.

Congratulations, Jamie!

Congratulations 2023 Bookmark Finalists!

We are excited to recognize 13 students as our 2023 bookmark finalists this spring. Thank you to everyone who took the time to participate and share your Wyoming stewardship message!  All finalists were selected by a panel of judges, and the winner of our People’s Choice was chosen by popular vote during National Agriculture Week

2023 People’s Choice

Bridger Hatling, 5th Grade Moorcroft Elementary, Moorcroft

2023 Finalists

Alyx Black,
3rd Grade, Westside Elementary, Powell

Beth Black, 5th Grade, Southside Elementary, Powell

Lucas Carman, 5th Grade, Fort Casper Academy, Casper

Carlee Coxbill, 5th Grade, Southeast Elementary, Yoder

Kaynen Ferguson, 5th Grade, Moorcroft Elementary, Moorcroft

Paxton Fowles, 2nd Grade, Verda James Elementary, Casper

Logan Harr, 5th Grade, Moorcroft Elementary, Moorcroft

Ploy Inthranuruk, 5th Grade, Harmony Elementary, Laramie

Amelia Johnson, 4th Grade, Ralph Witters Elementary, Thermopolis

Ivy Lewis, 4th Grade, Gilchrist Elementary, Cheyenne

Elizabeth Pearson, 5th Grade, Cloud Peak Elementary, Buffalo

Ella Stoll, 4th Grade, Clearmont Elementary, Clearmont

We will be holding a celebration for the finalists, their families, and teachers this summer.  Invitations will be mailed when the date and location of the celebration have been confirmed.

Thank You Bookmark Sponsors

Meet Andrew Joannides, Our New Executive Director!

From Wyoming, To Texas, and Back To Wyoming, Andrew Joannides Named Wyoming Agriculture in the Classroom’s New Executive Director

Born and raised in Cheyenne, spending 10 years working in higher education and intercollegiate athletics around the country, Andrew Joannides is now back in Cheyenne and has joined the Wyoming Agriculture in the Classroom (WAIC) team as Executive Director on October 17, 2022.

Continue reading “Meet Andrew Joannides, Our New Executive Director!”

Wyoming’s Students Wyoming’s Future

Dear Friends,

We hope your fall is going well!  Wyoming Agriculture in the Classroom (WAIC) is in full swing with our Wyoming’s Students Wyoming’s Future (WSWF) Campaign. Our goal for the WSWF campaign is to raise $5 Million.

This funding will allow for expansion of the Wyoming Stewardship Project (WSP), extending it’s reach to 825 classrooms annually by 2025. With your help, we can complete the WSWF Campaign by year-end.  We hope that you consider a financial gift to help students, teachers, and families throughout Wyoming.

The WSP is a curriculum for Wyoming students in 2nd-5th Grade in Agriculture, Minerals & Energy, and Outdoor Recreation & Tourism.  This series of lessons focuses on critical thinking skills around our natural resources and major economic drivers.

Teachers value this educational resource. One of those teachers, Reva Lobatos, has witnessed powerful impact within her students through use of the WSP in her 4th Grade classroom at Fort Washakie Elementary in Fremont County. She shares the story of a student in this year’s class.

Reva and Elis
“My students deserve curriculum that is relevant to their lives, families, land, and culture! WSP provides these lessons as a free resource for classroom teachers across Wyoming.   
One of my students, Elise, age 9, has benefited from this resource.  Elise says, ‘I believe this (WSP) is important. Wyoming is a special place for our culture, and it’s home.’ After the lessons, when I asked Elise if she knows what the economic drivers, A
griculture, Minerals & Energy, and Outdoor Recreation & Tourism are, she responded, ‘Yes, now I know what those are, and I know Wyoming is full of those.’
I am proud that Elise has learned all of this through the WSP. Now Elise, and other Wyoming students, can understand the importance of the land and natural resources in this State we call home.  The students make connections and solve problems in a variety of ways.  Because the content is directly relatable to kids who live in Wyoming, they can understand how each concept affects their future and see the big picture.”

WAIC so grateful to teachers like Reva, who see the value in this curriculum for Wyoming.  This truly is an effort to safeguard the future of our State.

We hope that you will consider a gift to our Wyoming’s Students Wyoming’s Future campaign today.  As you look at the response card, note the option of up to a five-year pledge or a one-time gift.  Your generosity can help us impact more students, like Elise, in your community.

All our best,

Joe Evers

Campaign Co-Chair

Marilyn Mackey

Campaign Co-Chair

Ray Mader

Campaign Co-Chair

JoAnn Skeim-True

Board President

Jessie Dafoe

Executive Director

Rindy West

Development Director