2013-2014 Program Highlights

Karol Osborne  |  8/28/2013 8:19:33 PM

4-H CLUB EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM FOCUS

The Madison Parish 4-H Youth Development Program focus emphasizes 21st Century skill development through a variety of outreach efforts and delivery modes. Youth are engaged in hands-on activities utilizing innovative teaching methods, such as the mobile technology lab and school garden. 4-H is a project-based learning initiative which centers on developing life and career skills, learning and innovation skills, information-rich texts, and media and technology skills. Programs are designed to encourage critical thinking and problem solving, collaboration, communication and creativity and innovation.

Elementary grades 4-6 will pilot the new STAND STRONG bullying prevention series. Part of the LSU AgCenter's Character Education initiative, it features six lessons to engage youth in identifying and addressing peer cruelty in their school. Lessons include: Building Bullying Awareness, Types of Bullying, Individual Responses to Bullying, Accepting and Respecting Differences, and Building a Support System.

Middle and High School grades 7-12 are encouraged to develop improved decision-making skills for healthy eating as part of the Wal-Mart Fit4theFuture grant. Teens will participate in surveys and interactive lessons to identify eating habits and learn ways to make healthier food choices.

PROGRAMMING GOALS:

*
Create an inclusive environment to build belonging for all participants.
* Encourage independence through personal goal-setting while providing youth opportunities to select project learning opportunities according to their interest and skills.
* Motivate youth to mastery by promoting project completion across the curriculum.
* Inspire generosity through participation in community service-learning programs.

TEACHING OBJECTIVES
4-H Members to:
* Set goals for self-directed and self-paced project-related activities.
* Work cooperatively with others to accomplish goals.
* Complete multiple hands-on activities using a variety of media.
* Increase knowledge and develop skills in utilizing various technologies.
* Participate in school and community-based service-learning programs.
* Develop record-keeping strategies to document progress and accomplishments.

TEACHING STRATEGIES
Extension Staff to:
* Coordinate with principals, school staff and community partners to provide effective and efficient program delivery.
* Organize and manage 4-H Club Days and afterschool events/activities.
* Recruit and train youth and adult volunteers to provide program support.
* Publicize and market program/project opportunities using various media (newspapers, websites, social media, flyers, etc.)
* Develop and present hands-on educational programs utilizing a broad range of hands-on-learning

FIT4tHeFuture

Madison Parish teens will be participating in the Fit4tHeFuture: Youth Choice Youth Voice mini-grant project, a part of the Walmart Foundation Healthy Living Youth Grant. 4-H Teen youth leaders and adult volunteers will partner to improve decision-making skills by conducting surveys, self-assessments and lessons for making better snack and meal choices. Teens will also increase knowledge of dietary recommendations according to MyPlate and the USDA/US - HHS Dietary Guidelines in order to improve decision-making by selecting healthier food options

YOUTH WETLANDS WEEK

Youth Wetlands Week is an environmental awareness program targeting Louisiana Wetlands Conservation issues and utilizes hands-on interactive lessons for grades 4 through 12. Sponsored by the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, America's Wetland Conservation Corps, Sea Grant and the Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program, the program is coordinated through the LSU AgCenter during a week in April following state testing. The program offers free curriculum and manipulatives to enrolled science teachers.

4-H TEEN LEADERSHIP CLUB

connects youth across the parish in an after-school team building experience that develops communication skills and promotes community stewardship. 4-H members in grades 8-12 are eligible to participate in monthly meetings, leadership conferences, counselor certification and special educational trips. Teens may also participate in local community planning boards, apply to run for state office, or serve on state executive boards. The 4-H Master Volunteer Program promotes adult volunteer development and offers free on-line training and screening. The 4-H Volunteer Leader Association also sponsors state and regional conferences.

SMART BODIES is an innovative program of nutrition and physical activities that are integrated into core curriculum academics to prevent children from becoming overweight or obese. Targeting children in grades K-5, it includes classroom physical activities, school assembly programs, the Body Walk in-school field trip, the Germ Cave and Family Nutrition Night school enrichment activities and OrganWise Guys books and materials.

Participating elementary schools receive hands-on faculty training and technical support as well as all curriculum and manipulatives free of charge. Enrichment activities such as the Body Walk, Germ Cave and Family Nutrition Nights are optional.

ENHANCED EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES

4-H promotes positive relationships for youth with caring adults, in a safe environment, with opportunities to develop competency, and encourages the demonstration of new skills through public service. This represents the four ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS of 4-H which are the hallmarks of effective youth development programming.

The essential elements are intended to be used as a guide to meet the needs of youth:
* To know they are cared about by others (BELONGING)
* To know they are able to influence people and events (INDEPENDENCE)
* To feel and believe they are capable and successful (Mastery)
* To practice helping others through community service (GENEROSITY)

These elements are intentionally implemented through a variety of program delivery modes.

4-H ORGANIZATIONAL CLUBS

4-H Clubs are identified as co-curricular in Louisiana and organized in school settings. Each school should appoint a 4-H Club Coordinator to support organization and management, dues collection and communication. Additionally, at least one teacher per grade level should serve as the appointed Club Sponsor for that grade.

The number of clubs per school is decided based on number of members per grade and age appropriateness of school setting. 4-H school-based clubs are generally organized by grade. The 4-H Day format will encourage small group participation on a rotational basis among classes.

Special Events: A variety of special events are offered to provide extended learning experiences outside the regular club meeting and are open to eligible members on a first come-first serve basis. Once quotas are filled, an alternate list is maintained in case of drop-outs. Registration fees are determined from fees incurred for admission, transportation, meals, etc.

* Ag Adventures Delhi (4th & 5th grades)
* 4-H Night with the New Orleans Hornets New Orleans (School sponsored)
* 4-H Day at the Capitol Baton Rouge (Teen Leadership Club)
* 4-H Night in Death Valley LSU Football Game, Baton Rouge (Family Involvement)
* Project based After-school Clubs

4-H ESSENTIAL ELEMENT: INDEPENDENCE

Youth are more successful when they select projects and activities based on their interests and abilities. Working in small groups allows youth to have fun while exploring new learning experiences cooperatively.

Overnight Trips: Camps, Conferences and special trips are sponsored and are age-appropriate in design. Registration fees may be offset by scholarships offered through the Madison 4-H Foundation.

* Summer Camp (4th-6th grades)
* LOST Camp (7th-8th grades)
* Challenge Camp (7th-8th grades)
* Junior Leadership Conference (9th-12th grades)
* Co-op Conference (8th-12th grades)
* 4-H University & Clover College (8th-12th grades)
* Fashion Camp (4th-6th & 7th-8th alternatively by year)
* Food & Fitness Camp (4th -6th grades)
* Marsh Maneuvers (4 year rotation) 9th-12 grades

Fundraising: 4-H is non-profit youth organization and relies on self generated funding. Fundraisers are an important responsibility of all members and serve to teach organization management and communication skills.

4-H ESSENTIAL ELEMENT: MASTERY

4-H Projects: 4-H offers curriculum in over 40 subject matter areas available through the LSU AgCenter and the National 4-H curriculum base. A Project Selection Guide is available online at http://www.4-hmall.org/home.aspx

Project books meet National Education Standards and include activities that coordinate with classroom learning experiences. Additional lesson plans developed by LSU AgCenter faculty that target mastery of leap skills are available upon request or may be downloaded from the AgCenter website.

Contests: Parish Contests are open to all eligible members and competition is grouped by divisions, by age, as appropriate. Regional and State Contests offer opportunities for achievement beyond the parish level. Prizes and awards are presented to the winners in all parish, regional and state contests.

* Commodity Cookery Contests
* Great Pumpkin Contest
* Ag Photography Contest
* Portfolio/4-H Records

Scholarships and Awards

* Excellence Award (grades 6-8)
* Honor Cord (Seniors only)
* Who’s Who (grades 4-12)
* 4-H Opportunity Scholarship (registration fee for overnight camp/conference-project record or recommendation required)
* Scott Scholarship ($1500 to graduating senior)
* Louisiana 4-H Scholarships (up to $1000 based on project record)

MEMBERSHIP DUES

Madison Parish 4-H Club members will be encouraged to join 4-H Club for a $5.00 membership fee. State 4-H Club membership dues have increased to $3.00 requiring this increase in parish dues. The Madison 4-H Foundation continues to collect donations to support on-going programming and does have a 5013c status. Only club members who have met all membership requirements will be eligible for scholarships, trips/camps and recognition awards at the end of the year.

STAFFING: Madison Parish has one agent with a .9 FTE assignment to the 4-H youth development program. Organizational Club sponsors may volunteer or are appointed by the principals in each school. Sponsors serve as coordinators working with administrative supervisors and 4-H staff to support 4-H Day. Afterschool Project Leaders are volunteers who receive training and supervision appropriate to the subject matter area. Teen volunteers are trained to serve as teen mentors and camp counselors. Training opportunities are available for volunteers to gain knowledge and skills in positive youth development through the 4-H Master Volunteer Program. The Louisiana 4-H Volunteer Association also offers membership and training for interested volunteers.

4-H ESSENTIAL ELEMENT: GENEROSITY

4-H Service-Learning: Youth and adults learn and develop through active participation in thoughtfully organized service experiences that:

* Meet genuine community needs.
* Are coordinated in a collaborative effort between 4-H and other individuals or groups.
* Link an educational process supported by research-based information with the hands-on service experiences.
* Establish opportunities for young people to apply 4-H project skills and knowledge in real-life situations in their own communities.
* Provide structured reflection time for young people to think, talk and write about their project throughout the entire experience.
* Promote a commitment to active citizenship where youth understand that they can make a difference.

Youth Volunteers: Teens and pre-teens “Learn By Doing” while helping others through organized leadership and service training. Youth support community service-learning by participating as community stewards, promoting local festivals and school enrichment events. Teens also serve as mentors and role models to younger youth through:

* Teen Leadership Club
* Camp Counselor Certification
* Teen Mentors

Adult Volunteers: 4-H offers many opportunities for parents and other adults to volunteer. Whether as a one-time helper or middle manager, volunteers are caring, responsible adults who provide leadership and support to youth development programs as:

* Organizational Club Leaders
* Afterschool Project Leaders
* Madison Development Foundation Board of Trustees
* 4-H Advisory Leadership Council members
* Louisiana 4-H Volunteer Association members
* Regional Volunteer Leader Training delegates (September)
* Southern Regional 4-H Volunteer Leader Forum delegates (October)
* Certified Overnight Chaperones
* Certified Master Horsemen
* Certified Master Gardeners
* Certified Master Volunteers (four levels)
* Episodic volunteers such as contest judges, day tour chaperones, event assistants, fundraising resources, etc.



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