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,
From Rockets to the Rescue, #iam4H photos on Facebook, to the store front decorations in your local communities that many of you shared with me, I wish to give a BIG SHOUT OUT to everyone for the amazing activities and events that took place during National 4-H Week!
The following is an excerpt from an article titled "Farming as Rocket Science: Why American agriculture is different from the European variety."
BEFORE growing up to become farmers, a startling number of America's rural kids are taught how to build rockets. Every year rural skies fill with mini-missiles built by children. The largest fly hundreds of feet, carrying altimeters, parachutes and payloads of eggs. Baseball diamonds are popular launch sites, as are alfalfa fields: the latter tend to be large and, compared with other crops, alfalfa tolerates a fair bit of trampling. All this tinkering and swooshing explains a lot about American farms.
For me this article served as a personal reminder that it doesn't matter whether we are teaching youth about improved crop varieties, disease and pest identification, raising healthier meat products, practicing safe food preservation and processing techniques, improved land conservation methods, learning to measure material for clothing construction or launching rockets from the local ball diamond or alfalfa field. For more than 100 years 4-H has been at the forefront of teaching young people about science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).
The full article can be accessed at http://www.economist.com/news/united-states/21584994-why-american-agriculture-different-european-variety-farming-rocket-science
As always thank you for all you do for the youth of Oklahoma! You are the Best!
State 4-H Program Leader & Assistant Director, OCES
February 20-21, 2015
Cost: $35 per person
Includes the Dome Show, Planetarium, Science Live show, Science Activity Tables and fun-filled evening exploring the Science Museum
Theme: Hunger Games
Hunger Games: It's the 75th annual Hunger Games! You know what that means. It's time for the Quarter Quell. Do you have what it takes to survive in the Hunger Games? In this action-packed Bright Night, we will show you the science of survival.
Registration Due February 1, 2015
More information here.
Come stay the night at the Oklahoma City Zoo on March 27 -28, 2015, for the annual 4-H Zoo Snooze. Learn how animals "lighten up" as zoo educators teach us how some animals create their own light. Participants will then experience the zoo in a very unique way as they go on a night hike through the zoo. The following day, participants get to experience the zoo when the animals are fresh and generally very active as they enter the zoo on their own an hour prior to the zoo opening to the public. Zoo Snooze registration includes all day admission to the zoo on Saturday morning.
Each year the 4-H Zoo Snooze fills, and registrations will be accepted on a first come/first served basis. For more information and registration forms log on to http://okla.st/4hdogs.
National 4-H Conference is a future-focused program that aims to build strong leaders through roundtable discussions, town hall meetings, group assemblies, and visits with national legislators. Being selected to represent our state at this conference is one of Oklahoma 4-H’s highest honors.
The unique environment of the program allows delegates to engage with national 4-H leadership (including USDA and CSREES) and to learn how to better youth-adult partnerships. The program reinforces the ties 4-H has to the Cooperative Extension Service and the land-grant university systems that make 4-H possible. Roundtable discussions generate ideas for club and community improvement, and students are encouraged to implement these ideas in their home states. Through the roundtable process, students also build valuable leadership skills, including team-building, flexibility, and communications. On "Capitol Hill Day," delegates have the opportunity to become more familiar with the national government by meeting with the Secretary of Agriculture and Oklahoma's own senators and representatives to discuss prominent issues the students see in their home states and communities.
- Through an application process, three to four Oklahoma 4-H delegates will be selected to attend National 4-H Conference.
- Applicants must be 16 years old.
- This trip is an award (based upon your application and support letters)
- Oklahoma 4-H will cover almost all expenses for the trip.
- Delegates are responsible for:
- $250 Registration fee (Oklahoma 4-H and the OK 4-H Foundation will cover the remaining $1,100)
- Transportation to and from the airport,
- Meals on travel days to and from Washington D.C.
- Lunch on Capitol Hill Day.
Upon returning from National Conference, each member of the 2015 National Conference Team will complete a service project by June 2016. Service Projects will be a part of Oklahoma’s back home plan and may be either a group or individual program depending upon the strengths and ideas of the youth-adult team that participates.
The service project is the delegate’s opportunity to demonstrate their leadership skills and develop a program that initiates community change.
Oklahoma 4-H'ers who are 14 years old or older and looking for an outdoor adventure this summer should make plans now to take part in the Oklahoma Outdoor Adventure 2015.
The week-long experience is slated for July 28-August 5, 2015, in the Weminuche Wilderness north of Durango, CO. This will provide 4-H Outdoor Adventurers a new experience as they will travel from Durango, CO, to the trailhead on the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. After departing the train adventurers will hike into the backcountry to spend 5 days and 4 nights hiking and camping.
There will be a required Parent/Camper Rally, provided online, that participants and a parent/guardian must take together in order to make sure they understand what gear and conditioning is necessary for this experience. On April 24-26, 2015, all participants are required to attend a Shake Down, which is basically a weekend for practicing backcountry skills, meeting new friends, and developing the teamwork skills that are necessary in the backcountry. At the shakedown, adventurers will learn numerous skills, including backpacking, hiking, camping and cooking.
Just as with all 4-H programming, this outdoor adventure will help participants develop leadership skills, character, integrity and teamwork, all while allowing them a chance to share their knowledge and skills with others and continue building upon those life skills they already have.
Registration for Oklahoma 4-H Outdoor Adventure 2015 will be $750, payable in three installments. Registration forms and the first payment of $250 are due to the state 4-H office March 30, 2015. For more information, contact Steve Beck at email@example.com.
Due to the nature of Outdoor Adventure, trip details are subject to change.
The Amazing Small Animal Project (ASAP) Teen group has decided to once again host the 4-H Pet Fun Day. The purpose of this event is to provide 4-H youth the opportunity to come together to have fun and show off their pets.
Activities of the day will include but are not limited to:
- A contest for the Best 4-H Companion Animal Display
- Companion Animal Knowledge Bingo
- Hamster Races
- Intro to 4-H Dog Obedience and Agility
- Includes instructional workshop and a beginner fun contest
- Pet Photo Contest - Once again will be accepting mail in entries
- Pet Fun Show, including categories such as the best dog trick, best non-dog trick, best pet costume and many more
- Rabbit Showmanship Workshop
- Fun and Games, including, Display Bingo, and a Treat Walk
The event will be held at the Tulsa Fairgrounds. The event is expected to last until mid-afternoon, so be sure and pack a lunch and bring some snacks for both you and your pet. Cloverbuds are invited but will have special restrictions.
Take some pet photos, work on some pet tricks and plan on attending the 4-H Pet Fun Day, January 31, 2015. For more details, activities and rules, check http://okla.st/4hdogs or contact Steve for more information, (405) 744-8886.
This trip is open to graduating 4-H members and current college students with an international interest. It is a small group with only nine students. We travel to parts of Guatemala that are well acquainted with our sponsoring organization. In the evening we stay in a local hotel with a gate and guard who patrols all night. Our sponsoring organization regularly takes groups to Guatemala and makes our safety a priority.
College credit is optional.
For more information: http://4h.okstate.edu/programs/central-america-1
Do you know a 4-H'er who has a passion for government, history, political science, working with youth, public speaking or leadership? If so, encourage him or her to apply for the position of CWF Program Assistant (PA) at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center!
The application deadline for CWF PA is January 16, 2015.
Applicants must have:
- Experience in leadership roles, public speaking, and presenting
- Be flexible and work well under pressure and with others
- Be at least 18 years old
- Have at least a high school diploma or equivalent, with education beyond high school preferred
- Be a citizen of the US
- Be able to read, write and speak the English language
- Pass a satisfactory background check
- Successfully complete the tour guide exam and meet the medical and physical requirements of DCRA.
An application form for chaperoning the 2015 CWF, 2015 National 4-H Congress and 2016 Denver Western Roundup conference is attached. If you or a certified volunteer from your county are interested, please complete this form and route through both the county and district office by January 30, 2015.
If you have questions or need more information, please contact Tracy Beck at 405-744-8891.
Looking for a fun-to-teach science curriculum with videos, activities, and student handouts? Check this one out. http://wonderwise.unl.edu/activitykitsmain.htm
Kits are available through the State 4-H Office.
4-H Salute to Excellence Program
The State Volunteer Board encourages every county in honoring and recognizing the efforts of their volunteers. Each county may submit one nominee for each of the two awards:
- Volunteer of the Year (less than 10 years of experience)
- Lifetime Volunteer Awards (an accumulation of 10 or more years of experience).
- County's nominee(s) will be recognized at the state awards luncheon on June 27, 2015 as part of the State Parent-Volunteer Development conference.
The application form and guidelines for 2015 District and State volunteer awards is or available at http://4h.okstate.edu/awards/2014-ok-volunteer-salute-to-excellence-awards-form .
If your volunteer is uneasy/reluctant about completing the resume, please take the time to sit with the volunteer and assist them in developing the resume.
Electronic nominations are due to the District 4-H Office no later than 5:00 PM on or before March 13, 2015 - nomination includes volunteer resume, 3 letters of recommendations and an electronic photograph.
- National Volunteer Month - April
- National Volunteer Week - April 12-18, 2015 http://www.pointsoflight.org/signature-events/national-volunteer-week
Through programs such as the President's Volunteer Service Award, Daily Point of Light Award and the Extra Mile - Points of Light Volunteer Pathway, the Points of Light organization recognizes individuals, families, nonprofit organizations and government entities and the tremendous impact they are making on our country's most critical challenges year-round. Take action
- Share your stories - Tell us about the impact volunteers are having in your community or through your organization.
- Learn more about these volunteer recognition programs and how to nominate volunteers for awards.
The 2014 version of the Volunteer Management System manual, PPT trainings and revised forms are posted at http://4h.okstate.edu/educators/volunteer-management-system-1. Please dispose of any manual printed prior to October 2014. If your manual has tabs, keep and insert into the revised materials.
Quick Review - Pages 18-20 include a table with abbreviated steps in the VMS process.
There have been questions about keeping records - paper files and electronic. See pages 30-31 for a review.
As you wrap the 2013-14 data entry in ACCESS 4-H for the ES237, please print a Continuing Education/Training report for each of your certified volunteers. The report should be added to the volunteers personnel file. Refer to pages 23-25 in the VMS manual if you have questions as to whose status will be considered a "renewal" or "probation."
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.