The Farm Branches
The students work on the farm about 5 hours a week from eighth to twelfth grade.
The village has modern and sophisticated chicken coops that emphasize the welfare of animals while maximizing profits and of course optimal practical and theoretical learning.
The coops are divided into two:
The laying branch - the first modern and innovative freedom coop of its kind in our country that produces more than a million eggs a year, all of which are collected and sorted by the students.
The growing branch - is at the highest technological level that exists in the country and also meets the requirements of animal welfare. This chicken coop produces 190 tons of chicken meat with 5 hatchings per year.
The stable branch is used for work and education by the students (like any other branch), as well as for classes for boarding program students. The stable is also open to the public for riding lessons. The stables house about 20 horses, offers stabling services and there is a possibility for therapeutic riding.
The Petting Zoo
A lovely corner in the village, that raises many species of animals: mammals, reptiles and more. Besides being a popular spot for visitors, the Zoo also holds extensive activities with schools and kindergartens from the area. It is also used by the the therapeutic unit of the village and that of the regional council. It is run by Maimon Madon and is maintained cared for by students and residents of the "Alut" home located in the village.
One unique project is a "village business" run in collaboration with the JDC and the Ministry of Education together with the 10th graders in the village.
"Village business" program is a pilot program that aims to develop the abilities and life skills, necessary for independent and productive adult life, among youth village students, through the experience of establishing an educational-social-business enterprise, based on one of the agricultural branches in the youth village.
The students experience preparing a business plan, which includes defining a need and examining the feasibility of new ventures within the business, from the conception stage to the execution stage.
Veterinary Hospital (ICU)
About two years ago, a veterinary hospital was established in the village, with among the most modern and sophisticated in the intensive care for dogs and cats in the country. Our students are integrated as animal trustees under the guidance and training of the hospital's doctors and interns. They mainly help in post-injury treatment. In time, each intern will be in responsible for three students and will be their mentor, and will accompany and teach them everything related to the field.
In the longer term the goal is to open up an educational track for young veterinarians in the high school.
In the barn we produce about 960,000 liters of milk annually. There are about 140 head of cattle in the barn, of which about 84 are dairy animals. We at Ben Shemen barn take care of the environment having instituted the reform in the dairy industry in cooperation with the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Agriculture.
In addition, there are enrichment programs in which seventh graders visit the petting zoo once a week, horse riding competitions that our students who have reached a good and satisfactory level, studies for a tractor licenses, volunteering at the veterinary hospital and more.