Coastal Plain

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In Podcast #27 the Trekkers visit the Wakefield Peanut Company! Peanuts are an important product in the southern counties of the Coastal Plains region.  If you live in one of those counties and know some peanut farmers, why not make a video and submit it to our video contest.  We were unable to visit a peanut farm (which is why we need you), but we did visit a peanut factory.  Learn how peanuts make their journey from the truck to the store, see and hear the very loud specialized machines that shell and sort the peanuts, and find out why Civil War soldiers sang a song about peanuts! Come on, let's go trekkin'!

Peanuts are not actually nuts.  They are in the legume family along with beans and peas that grow in pods.  So that’s why they are called goober peas!  If you’re a second grader you’ve heard of George Washington Carver.  He encouraged southern farmers to grow peanuts as an alternative to cotton.  He actually came up with over a hundred different products that could be made from peanuts like lotion, soap, shaving cream, shampoo, paper, glue, ink, and dyes (Source).  Contrary to popular belief, however, he did not invent peanut butter.  If you’re a third grader you know all about soils, but do you know what kind of soil is best for growing peanuts?  Peanuts grow best in sandy loam soil (Source).  Finally, did you know that two peanut farmers have been elected president of the United States?  Thomas Jefferson and Jimmy Carter were both peanut farmers (Source).

SOL Correlation:

1.2 The student will describe the stories of American leaders and their contributions to our country, with emphasis on George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, Abraham Lincoln, and George Washington Carver.

1.4 The student will investigate and understand that plants have life needs and functional parts and can be classified according to certain characteristics.  Key concepts include

  1. b)parts (seeds, roots, stems, leaves, blossoms, fruits); and

2.8 The student will investigate and understand that plants produce oxygen and food, are a source of useful products, and provide benefits in nature.  Key concepts include

  1. a)important plant products (fiber, cotton, oil, spices, lumber, rubber, medicines, and paper);

3.8 The student will recognize the concepts of specialization (being an expert in one job, product, or service) and interdependence (depending on others) in the production of goods and services (in ancient Greece, Rome, the West African empire of Mali, and in the present).

VS.10 The student will demonstrate knowledge of government, geography, and economics by

b) describing the major products and industries of Virginia’s five geographic regions;