Focus on Youth
News for OCES staff working with youth.
4-H is a community of young people across America learning leadership, citizenship and life skills.
Dear Educators and Volunteers,
2014 marks the 100-year anniversary of the signing of the Smith-Lever Act, which created the Cooperative Extension Service. During 2014 there will be a variety of events to celebrate that milestone and the impact that the CES has had on the lives of people and how we will continue to impact. In this newsletter we have highlighted some opportunities for youth to be involved in preserving some history.
I also thought it might be interesting to see what has going on 100 years ago in the months leading up to the creation of Extension. In September, 1913, the Lincoln Highway opened as the first paved coast-to-coast highway; the 1st US milch* goat show was held in Rochester, NY, and the Dawson, New Mexico, coal mine explosion killed 263 people (One of several major explosions that year which claimed nearly 1000 miners), and Roland Garros was the first to fly over Mediterranean Sea.
Take a minute to think about the things that you have seen change over your lifetime. For some of us there have been lots of changes! I don't consider myself as old but I remember what a big deal it was to have air conditioning in the car and house both or how cool it was to have a computer in my own office. Now we all have one in our pocket!
When you think about the 4-H program in 25, 50, or 100 years from now, imagine what it could be like. In the meantime try not to be an obstacle today in letting it grow to what it could be like in your own county.
Assistant Director, 4-H Youth Development
Oklahoma State University
*Yes, that is the correct spelling. Google it.
Expressive Arts is not to be confused with doing crafts. Expressive Arts is using the activity - making something - to develop targeted life skills.
Attached is a new "Grab n' Go" for staff, volunteers and teen leaders (4H.Vol.136 Crafts: Developing Youth). It is a simple and direct document, written to assist staff and volunteers in using the activity of making a craft as a positive Youth Development experience.
The arts are central to positive life skill development; through arts participation, youth develop such life skills as communication, self-esteem, decision-making, leadership, goal setting, socialization, and responsible citizenship. Expressive Arts 4-H activities are individualized to the needs of participants. To learn more go to http://sebsnjaesnews.rutgers.edu/2013/07/spotlight-on-rutgers-expressive-arts-4-h.
The Smithsonian is asking the public to help preserve the recent history of farming and ranching by sharing their stories about the technologies and innovations in agriculture in the Agriculture Innovation and Heritage Archive. The archive stories and artifacts will be used for Smithsonian exhibitions like "American Enterprise," which will open in May 2015.
Here is the project’s home page: http://americanenterprise.si.edu/introduction/agricultural-innovation-and-heritage-archive/. There's a link on that page where people can submit their stories.
Please share this with your families who might have a story or artifacts to share.
Here is another great opportunity:
Extension is celebrating its Centennial Year in 2014, commemorating the 100th anniversary of the implementation of the Smith Lever Act. The National 4-H History Preservation Leadership Team proposes to capture oral recollections of former 4-H members, staff and volunteers about their 4-H experiences. Current 4-H members will be trained, and will conduct interviews in their local communities. The local youth oral history project will involve mentors to youth teaching interviewing techniques, editing and targeting alternative news outlets. Selected projects will be shared during 2014 to honor the Centennial. Ultimately they will be archived on the National 4-H History Preservation website and other online locations. These oral records will be developed to preserve 4-H history for generations to come.
4-H youth working directly with news media and history groups in their own communities will gain skills in fact finding, critical thinking, communications and public presentation skills and become aware of career opportunities. For further information and to provide your input/feedback on this idea as well as your interest in participating in a pilot test, please contact: Tom Tate at Tateace@AOL.com or the Voice project team at Voices@4-HHistoryPreservation.com
On the Dashboard of ACCESS 4-H, under the heading Resources & Request Forms, you will find a webinar titled Managing Livestock Data. The session aired on May 9, 2013.
For any county using ShoWorks or Blue Ribbon Fair Management systems I would strongly encourage viewing the session. It may save you time and man hours as you head into fair season.
The session will provide information on how data in ACCESS 4-H can be downloaded and then uploaded into these data management systems.
There's still time to sign up for Septemberfest 2013! This annual event on the lawn at the Governor's Mansion is a family-oriented, free festival that features all kinds of activities for youth. The audience is primarily urban, and more than 20,000 people typically attend! This is an excellent way to spread 4-H to a broader audience in a fun, cost-effective way.
This year, Septemberfest will take place on Sept. 7 from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Each year we have participated in the event, we have had 4-H'ers from across the state coordinate various activities at the Oklahoma 4-H display. We'd like to invite youth 12 to 19 years old to join us in sharing the educational and fun activities they have learned through project-related, hands-on activities or demonstrations. We'd like the activities and projects to be pertinent to an urban audience and peak their interest in the 4-H program. Project work related to dog club activities, entomology demonstrations, robotics, science and technology, and healthy living would be excellent, but we are open to other ideas.
Each participant will be asked to conduct his or her activity repeatedly during a two-hour period. Remember that families will want to see many exhibits, so they won't stay in one place too long. Plan activities that can be completed in a few minutes. The time periods include:
9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (Actual shift is 10 - 12, but set up starts at 9:00 a.m.)
12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
It is imperative that 4-H members and families follow through with this commitment once they register for a time slot. Interested parties may complete the attached form and return it no later than August 19 to the state 4-H office via email, mail or fax. Participants will receive written confirmation and further instructions. Feel free to contact me for more information related to this event!
It's almost fair time, and the Oklahoma State Fair and the Tulsa State Fair each have opportunities for 4-H dog project members to show off their dogs. Both fairs offer 4-H classes in Obedience, Rally Obedience and Showmanship. In addition, the show at Tulsa offers classes in Agility. These are great opportunities for both new and experienced dog show participants. Dogs should be well-socialized, healthy and current on vaccinations. Mutts are welcome; breed registration is not a requirement.
The Oklahoma State Fair 4-H Dog Show will be held September 21, 2013, with registration due by August 30, 2013. The Tulsa State Fair Dog Show will be held October 6, 2013, with registration due by September 11, 2013. Event information and registration forms can be found at http://oklahoma4h.okstate.edu/events/statefair.htm.
For more information about participation in 4-H Dog shows contact Steve Beck at (405) 744-8886 or email@example.com.
Mark your calendars now for two great companion animal programs. First, on November 2, 2013, the Creek County Dog Club will be hosting a statewide 4-H dog showing clinic. Details are still being worked out, but they are planning on having a 4-H Rally Obedience workshop for new to experienced dog showers, as well as an afternoon fun match for those wanting to test their showing skills.
Second, the ASAP Teen Leader group has been making plans for another statewide 4-H Pet Fun Day and have chosen January 18, 2014, as the day for the competition. Some of the events they are planning include hamster races, best pet tricks, dog showing clinics, and rabbit showing clinics. Other activities will include photo and display contest, treat walks, and pet bingo. As details become finalized, information will be posted to the Oklahoma 4-H companion animal website http://oklahoma4h.okstate.edu/events/animal.htm.
Oklahoma 4-H has been selected to pilot test the new TechXcite STEM Curriculum. Kits are available for check out through the State office. If you are interested contact Jeff Sallee.
TechXite provides activities across a wide range of technologies in order to offer opportunities for middle school students to explore aspects of engineering that are most exciting to them. Modules include topics of biomedtech, wireless communication, and solar energy. Future topics are expected in architecture, digital imaging, gis/gps, and transportation.
Curriculum is available online http://techxcite.pratt.duke.edu/ This link will take you to the complete curriculum along with video explanations.
Oklahoma 4-H is in the process of developing these kits for checkout and evaluation
- Bionic Arm
- Solar Oven
- Solar Car
- Rainwater Harvesting
- TV Remote Control
- Quest for Speed
Oklahoma does not automatically re-enroll members or volunteers. Youth and adults are responsible for re-enrolling in the program annually.
At this time we are not allowing members/volunteers to manage records in ACCESS 4-H.
A new enrollment card has been developed based on input from a statewide steering committee composed of secretaries and educators. The new card is organized to follow data entry in ACCESS 4-H. Go to http://oklahoma4h.okstate.edu/litol/. Click on "Other" in the bottom right corner.
4-H project areas have changed on the enrollment card and in ACCESS 4-H. All projects are now alphabetized. Some projects have been eliminated due to low enrollment; others have been grouped based on enrollment and steering committee input. A cheat sheet of OLD and NEW project names have been provided for volunteers and staff as they assist youth and families with re-enrollment. This is posted at http://oklahoma4h.okstate.edu/litol/.
Items on the enrollment card are required. It is understood that some youth will not have an email or more than one phone number. If there is no email address (personal/work/parent-guardian) N/A can be noted on the enrollment card.
Parent Signature - The new card is going to require parent signature(s). Youth/families are responsible for completing the enrollment card, not leaders, teachers, educators, etc.
Project - All youth are to be enrolled in project work. This section should not be blank for any member in the system.
Phone Number - Everyone (youth and adult) should have at least one phone number (personal or work).
Text (SMS) number - This has been added to the enrollment card for counties that want to be able to send a bulk text message through ACCESS 4-H or Outlook. Some counties have found this useful for sending quick reminders.
Reminder: We now have Form 9 "Social and Electronic media/Texting Student Permission Form" which must be on file for any youth you might contact individually using a SMS number.
Bulk Email - We ask that all counties run a bulk email test once all enrollments have been entered so timely corrections can be made. We found numerous errors in the system last year.
Mid-term Enrollment - At mid-term (January/February) run a spread sheet of contact information for each club leader. Ask club leaders to confirm and/or update address, phone, email, etc. for the ACCESS 4-H data base.
A club is supported and nurtured by "Positive Relationships with Caring Adults," the first of the 4-H 8 Essential Elements. These caring adults acts as advisors, guides, mentors and educators. The adult helps set boundaries and expectations for young people. These adults are the volunteers serving as club leaders, project leaders, supporters, friends, and/or advocates. See page 7 for information about conducting a New Parent Orientation.
Adult Enrollment - We are actively researching an online process for managing the certification process. At this time, continue with the process detailed in the Volunteer Management System Manual.
- Do not enter any parent as a volunteer if he/she has not completed the certification process. I have been instructed by ACCESS personnel that parents are not to be counted in the ES237 "volunteer" number.
- Do not list Teen Leaders as volunteers in ACCESS. The term "volunteer" is reserved for adults only. Teen leaders who have gone through the certification process are recorded as youth leaders. This is the ES237 term for recording our youth volunteers in ACCESS 4-H
- School Teachers - It is recognized that we have a wealth of dedicated teachers who serve as club leaders/volunteers. Some of these individuals receive a stipend from the school to serve as club leader. Please be sure school administration has a firm understanding of what is required of the individual receiving the stipend and what is expected of a "chartered 4-H club" in their school.
No teacher is exempt from the expectations or policies regarding volunteer certification.
- Volunteer Certification - (Excerpt from Application Packet) If an adult volunteer or teen leader is interested in working with 4-H youth as an organizational leader, a project club leader, a chaperone, project group leader, camp counselor or in any situation that is unsupervised by staff or a certified volunteer, the application must be completed. 4-H volunteers and Extension staff may recruit potential volunteers; however, the OCES staff, in cooperation with the county Volunteer Advisory Committee, must approve all volunteers.
- Certification of NEW Volunteers - Procedure outlined step by step in the Volunteer Management System Manual and an abbreviated version is contained in the application packet. New addition to the training process is the Working with Minors Training.
- Certified Adult Volunteers re-enrolling (having completed certification requirements the previous year) annually complete the enrollment card, behavioral guidelines, appropriate agreement form and participate in a refresher of Working with Minors Training. There is an "Annual Renewal Certificate" that they can be presented with.
- A volunteer who does not complete the necessary steps for maintaining certification will not retain an active status as a certified volunteer. The volunteer may be placed on one-year probation with an explanation of what is necessary to retain active status. (Provide the volunteer with sample letters 3 and/or 4.)
The chartering of clubs is one way Extension insures we provide uniform youth development opportunities for those who want to be affiliated with 4-H. Through a defined management system there are expectation and processes in place across Oklahoma.
As educators our roles are to recruit, train and provide continuing education for volunteers fulfilling a variety of roles in a local club. It is also our responsibility to provide supervision and guidance in the management of what takes place in a club.
Remember to visit with school administration regarding 4-H Youth Development expectation of clubs, financial reporting and volunteers when a club is closely associated with the school. OCES/OSU is ultimately responsible for the club, members, volunteers and finances.
Annually, the Extension educator is responsible for reviewing a club's charter to determine if it is intentionally making a faithful effort to achieve the minimal standards for maintaining the charter. In the event the club has not met the minimal standards or there are some personnel or programmatic concerns, the educator is responsible for counseling the club leadership and helping them develop a plan for maintaining the charter or correcting the concern.
New Clubs - When starting a club be sure to refer to the procedures outlined in the Club Management System Manual. http://oklahoma4h.okstate.edu/edu/cms.htm. Download the charter application, fill it out and email/post the application to the State Office c/o Denise Stevenson. A charter and charter letter will be issued.
There are a variety of tools available to develop club leadership. In our programming efforts to train club leaders, volunteers and parents these tools will help in conducting 4-H club meeting and developing the skills and knowledge of youth serving in leadership roles.
A 4-H Facebook Oklahoma 4-H Club Leaders Page has been established for club leaders and volunteers. The page will include a link to a virtual tool box of materials and resources, as well as a Q & A venue for volunteers and staff. 4-H Facebook Oklahoma 4-H Club Leaders - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Oklahoma-4-H-Club-Leaders/191303067707199?ref=hl
In the meantime, Leadership Development curriculum is located on the 4-H web page under curriculum at http://oklahoma4h.okstate.edu/litol/.
Conducting an orientation for all new parents (families) is a wise investment of time and resources. Start them off with a firm foundation and understanding of 4-H Youth Development. This is the time to correct any misinformation or misunderstandings about the program.
Contained within Unit 1 Volunteer Core Competencies is a prepared presentation and brochure which can be used by club leaders, schools or county educators.
- PPT slides with notes
- Brochure: Being a 4-H Parent - Publisher document that can be localized with county information.
Resources also accessible at http://oklahoma4h.okstate.edu/edu/comp.htm
If your county has not conducted an On TRAC session lately, this is an opportunity to assist clubs in developing a plan. On TRAC is intended to be a cooperative effort - youth, parents and club leader planning the program year.
Contained within Unit 1 Volunteer Core Competencies is a PPT, training guide, Monthly Planning guide (worksheet) and a county Yearly Programming guide. The PowerPoint and teaching outline have been revised. Please download the 2013 documents at http://oklahoma4h.okstate.edu/edu/cms.htm.
PPT - 2013 revised version of the PPT trainers guide has been posted on the 4-H Web page.
- Yearly Local Club Programming Guide - County Educator are to customize this monthly guide for their county.
- On TRAC Monthly Planning Guide
- At least five youth members from two or more families.
- Certified volunteer(s) who care about working with members, teen leaders and parents.
- Maintain a necessary/appropriate youth adult ratio.
- A structure that gives members the shared responsibility for making decisions and operating the club.
- An organized, fun and educational program planned by members, volunteers and parents.
- Six or more club meetings during the year.
- Participation in learning experiences outside of the monthly club meeting (i.e. project groups). 4H.VOL.101 & 4H.VOL.111
- Involvement in the community through service-learning.
- Personal evaluation and recognition of progress on individual and group/club goals.
- Effective blend of all five components of the 4-H Recognition Model. 4H.VOL.105
Focused efforts on project development can lead to increased participation and being vested as a 4-H member. Two useful tools may be found in Volunteer Core Competencies Units 2.
4H.VOL.101 Leading a Project Group
4H.VOL 111 Developing 4-H Project Work
4-H is more than club meetings. Members need guidance in learning to learn through their individual project work. Projects are the means for delivering and obtaining education, developing skills and changing attitudes. Families must be provided with educational opportunities to facilitate their understanding of the importance of an individual's project work and how to assist their child in developing project work. Extension educators provide this training for volunteers and parents through continuing education opportunities at the county level.
At the time of enrollment, a young person enrolls in one or more projects about which they wish to learn. Project education occurs through one or more of the following methods - independent study, project meetings and/or project workshops/tours/seminars. (Excerpt from Century III)
Independent Study: The member requests or obtains printed/online material in the project. The member is responsible for (1) reading the information, (2) developing goals and plans for completing projects and (3) participating in activities, which allow them to develop their project work, knowledge level and skills.
Project Meetings: Project meetings are held apart from the regularly scheduled club meeting. More in-depth project training is accomplished through project groups because the group is smaller and has a common interest. Members may be involved in more than one project group within a local club. These groups are guided by a Certified Volunteer called a Project Leader.
Project Leaders will be determined by the club based on project enrollment. A club will intentionally recruit individuals with the knowledge (experience) or the desire to learn right alongside the youth. Clubs should actively recruit adult and teen volunteers as project group leaders.
Project Workshops/Tours/Seminars: Educational programs conducted by an adult volunteer or resource person outside the 4-H club meeting. High project enrollment is usually a good indicator of potential topics for specialized training. Do not use enrollment statistics as the sole indicator for programming. Families and members sometimes have to be introduced to new opportunities or a potential project - things they are unfamiliar with or know little about.
On the reverse, cautiously program for the majority because you can and will lose others.
Registration deadline is September 12.
September 26-29 at the Clyde York 4-H Center in Crossville, TX, 14-18 year olds will gather to develop their skills in leadership, civic engagement and youth/adult partnerships.
- Registration fees have increased $5 this year. (We have not had an increase in over 5 years.) The price is now $180.00 per delegate/adult.
- The website for all of the resources needed can be accessed at http://4h.tennessee.edu/4hsrtlc/contactsonly.html
- We are accepting proposals for workshops and funshops between now and September 6, 2013. The online form can be accessed at http://4h.tennessee.edu/4hsrtlc/rfp.htm
- There have been some questions as to whether or not we will return to the Chuckles Fun Center and/or the Cumberland County Playhouse (performing arts center) for a show. That is up in the air right now. When our committee meets at the end of next month, we will review the budget and decide if we can do that again.
- We will send out specifics on our service project, state showcase, t-shirt swap, etc. the first part of August. All of these are decided on by our committee, which will not meet until July 29th.
If you have any questions, please contact Justin Crowe, University of Tennessee Extension firstname.lastname@example.org or (865) 974-2128.
October 3-6, 2013
Rock Eagle 4-H Center, Eatonton, Georgia
The 4-H Volunteer Conference of Southern States (formerly Southern Region Volunteer Forum) is designed to engage 4-H volunteers and staff across the southern region, in contemporary educational opportunities that will impact, enhance and foster quality, excellence and achievement in the essential elements of youth development programming.
The mission of the conference is provide experiential educational opportunities to 4-H volunteers and staff across the southern region which are designed to improve the quality of 4-H programming in their own activities, projects, clubs and communities.
Registration is $295 through September 15, 2013. Register directly through the conference web site at http://www.georgia4h.org/public/more/volunteer/RAVE/VolConference/default.html The conference schedule and other materials are posted at this location.
All due dates listed in this publication are the dates that county staff are to have items in the state 4-H office or other designated location. Each county will establish due dates prior to the dates posted here. These dates are set to accommodate things like screening of applications, processing payments, and adequate mailing time. All forms should be submitted through your county Extension office unless otherwise indicated. Forms that require an Extension Educator's signature may not be processed if mailed directly.