11-12 Farm Subsidies Task

CTE Areas of Study: Agriculture

Standards & Objectives

Learning objectives: 

Students will be able to take these key insights:

  • U.S. Government spends more than $20 billion annually on farm subsidies.
  • History and intent of government subsidies to farmers.
  • Differences in interpretation of data to support the success or failure of specific farm subsidies, as measured against their intent.
  • How changes to subsidies from the U.S. Government – as governed by the “Farm Bill” – impact farmers, taxpayers, and the U.S. economy.
Essential and guiding questions: 
  • What data does Imhoff use to refute the claim that we see Smith make that the richest farm subsidy recipients take in the majority of the payments?
  • How does Riedl stucture his argumet against farm subsidies?
  • What potential outcomes does Smith outline as possible approaches to reforming (and reducing) agriculture subsidies? What evidence does he five for either his support or opposition to each approach?

Activity/Task Variations

Blooms taxonomy level: 
Differentiation suggestions: 

Scaffolding and support for special education students, English language learners, and struggling readers:

  • Consider pre-teaching synonyms of difficult vocabulary words.  Lower-level readers and ELL students can still be challenged without being overloaded with difficulty. This strategy can also be used to differentiate for stronger readers by introducing new, and more challenging, vocabulary. Struggling readers would also benefit from visual aids to illustrate many of the ideas presented. Pictures, diagrams, and charts alongside the text will go far to aide students as they dissect the article.