Request a Speaker (Virtual)

Whether you and your students are in the classroom or at home, you can request a guest speaker to visit your virtual classroom at a date and time that works for you. Speakers will attend using your preferred platform and will answer live questions from your students. See below for a full list of topics:

Please note that we aim to reach as many students as possible. If you are interested in multiple speaker topics you will need to complete a separate form for each request and we may only be able to accommodate your highest priority topic (determined through further communication with Liaison Program staff). Keep in mind that sessions are best suited for high school students.  If you would like to book a session for elementary students, please contact the OAC Liaison Officer directly (oacoffcr@uoguelph.ca).  

Animals

Animal Housing and Welfare

Learn from OAC staff from animal programs! Combine knowledge of production animal species' respiratory, circulatory, and digestive systems with information on how these animals relate to their physical environment. Recommended for grade 11 & 12 students at the U or C level. 

Environment

The Buzz on Bees

Expand your knowledge of honey bee social structure and anatomy from OAC Liaison Officer, Christine, who is also a beekeeper! Take part in fun activities that challenge your understanding of these important insects through fun activities and showcase how they contribute to our food supply. Recommended for grades 9-12.

Soil: An Essential Resource

Learn from graduate students and staff of the Soil Health Interpretive Centre about soil and its relationship to plants, insects, fungi, bacteria, food production, and water filtration. They will demonstrate different soil management strategies used on farms and their impact on the environment. Recommended for grades 9-12.

Climate Change

Learn from a student in the Bachelor of Science in Environmental Sciences degree!  Students will explore the different effects climate change has on the earth and our society.  They will discover the differences between weather and climate and learn about carbon and its role in climate change.  Recommended for grades 9-12.

Goldenrod Field Ecology

In the fall, goldenrod blooms cover the fields with their vibrant yellow petals.  This native wildflower attracts thousands of insects to its nectar and pollen and that attracts small predators to eat those insects - it's like a mini Serengeti out there!  Step outside of your comfort zone and uncover the diversity of insect species in The University of Guelph Arboretum. Students will search for live insects around their home, neighbourhood, and their local environments and identify them with help from a naturalist. Recommended for grades 9-12. 

All About Trees at The Arboretum

Virtually visit one of the most beautiful natural spaces on campus, the Arboretum! Students will explore their local environments to identify the different species of trees and plants.  They’ll learn about tree identification, disease, conservation, and biology from a naturalist at The University of Guelph’s Arboretum, and be able to ask questions about the species they found near their homes.  Recommended for grades 9-12.

Research in the Arboretum

Do you have students that want to be a scientist?  It doesn't take years of schooling, or a lift lived in a research lab to be a scientist.  The University of Guelph Arboretum grounds are home to many research projects.  Let's take a closer look at some of the awesome research and conservation initiatives that take place in the Arboretum, while becoming citizen scientists ourselves! Recommended for grades 11-12.

Food

Exploring Food Chemistry

Visit the Department of Food Science virtually with a master's and Ph.D. student to learn about the chemistry of food. Students will learn about scientific concepts using materials they have at home. Activities include using cold cream versus warm cream to make butter and egg white to stabilize foams. Recommended for grades 11 & 12 at the U level with a science foundation.

The Gluten Project

Learn from a master's and Ph.D. student in the Department of Food Science through an interactive presentation that includes hands-on demonstrations including a sensory test with gluten-containing and gluten-free bread. Students will compare the properties of wheat flour to other cereal flour with the materials they have at home. They'll also discuss the negative perceptions about gluten. Recommended for grades 11& 12 at the U level with a science foundation.

 Economics & Business

Ending Global Hunger

Learn from Spencer Henson, a professor in the Department of Food, Agricultural & Resource Economics about ending global hunger.  Today, over 800 million people do not have enough to eat. That means they do not eat enough food each day to meet their energy needs; they go hungry. At the same time, many people in rich countries like Canada have a plentiful diet, and many of us over-eat. Looking to the future, predictions of population growth suggest there could be 10 billion people or more on the planet. There are genuine concerns over whether we can adequately feed that many people.  Recommended for grades 10-12.

Interdisciplinary

What’s on Your Plate?

Learn from the Ontario Agricultural College about various aspects of the food production industry. Gain a better understanding of where your food comes from and how it gets to your table with interactive components that can be completed from home or in the classroom. Recommended for grades 11 & 12 at the U level with a science foundation.