Virginia educators interested in growing produce with their students can enter for a chance to win a free hydroponics system from Virginia Agriculture in the Classroom (AITC). Virginia AITC is hosting a 2022 Back-to-School Giveaway through which it will award three lucky Virginia teachers with a HYVE® LF-ONE hydroponic system, valued at $850, for their classrooms.

Those interested in registering for a chance to win should complete an online form here. The entry deadline is September 30, and winners will be selected on October 3. All Virginia school educators are eligible to participate.

“With the increased emphasis on health and nutrition, this back-to-school event will allow students to learn what skills and technologies are used in modern agriculture,” said Tammy Maxey, Virginia AITC executive director. “Educators are increasingly requesting avenues to provide hands-on learning for their students to learn to grow produce. Along the way, students can enhance research skills, science connections, and food safety practices.”

The hydroponic systems will give students the opportunity to learn how to cultivate produce like lettuce and herbs differently from traditional farming techniques. Hydroponics is a popular method of growing produce without soil or natural light. It instead uses water, a nutrient solution, and LED grow lights. Ideal for small spaces, the systems are an efficient way to grow produce without much maintenance and upkeep, like a traditional garden.

The systems can be used year-round and are appropriate for a range of grade levels and a variety of classes.

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