January 22, 2018

4-H Club, Homeschooling, and Highschool

When my children were younger, we had the opportunity to join a local 4-H club and for a variety of reasons our family chose not to follow that path.  I think this is one area that if I had to do it over again, I would have done it differently.  I think I had the idea that 4-H was only about gardening and animal husbandry and while those are good endeavors, I didn’t feel these were areas that would help my kids meet their ultimate goals.  Boy – was I wrong about 4-H!

4-h Club

I have now had the opportunity to observe many families come through the 4-H program and I love seeing the vast array of subjects they are exposed to.  You see, not only does 4-H teach your students the practical skills of feeding and clothing oneself, they also teach things ranging from entrepreneurship to community service and from robotics to raising rabbits.

4-H has a large library of resources to support all of their programs.  And they encourage students to take leadership roles – in fact, most 4-H groups are run by a council of students.  Students are encouraged to prepare for and make presentations often and participate in competitions ranging from baking to public speaking.   Students are even taught to judge competitions themselves.

Yes – one of 4-H’s strengths is developing rural youth programs – but they are also actively involved in urban and downtown development – encouraging students to be involved in their community through many community action programs.

And while there are many programs for younger students, I believe their strength lies in the multitude of high school level programs available.  For example, the National Youth Summit on Geospatial Technologies was just held this past September specifically for 4-H high school students.  This program focused on the STEM subjects of Global Positioning Systems, Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing.

In addition to these types of programs, 4-H students are able to compete for participation in reward trips and for college scholarship money.

Don’t overlook this free resource.  Visit the 4-H website to find a chapter near you – or to discover how to start your own.

~to your success

Joanne

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