4-H Jersey County

4-H Jersey County

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What is 4-H?

Illinois 4-H is a voluntary, educational program designed to meet the needs and interests of boys and girls who are eight years of age and have not reached their nineteenth birthday on or before September 1 -- the beginning of the 4-H year. Where resources are available, 4-H programs are offered to youth that are five to seven years of age. Participation and membership are open to all youth without regard to race, color, national origin, age, gender, religion, ancestry, marital status, familial status, sexual orientation, or disability. Essentially,  4-H is for all Illinois youth, rural and urban, with programs in every Illinois county that funds its own University of Illinois Extension programs.

The purpose of 4-H is to provide learning experiences and opportunities for boys and girls that will help them grow and develop to their fullest potential. Projects, programs, and activities are tools used to help members gain important life skills. They should be adapted, insofar as possible, to fit the needs and interests of each person or group of individuals. The 4-H program includes adult volunteers, youth volunteers, and paid Extension staff members.

Overall guidelines for developing and conducting 4-H youth development programs include the following essential elements of positive youth development:

· Belonging – Opportunities to develop a sense of belonging

· Independence – Opportunities for self-determination

· Generosity – Opportunities to value and practice service to others

· Mastery – Opportunities to achieve competency

Who are Cloverbuds?

The Cloverbud 4-H Program is open to youth ages 5-7 years old by September 1 of current year. The youth participate in hands-on, non-competitive learning activities related to 4-H project areas. The Cloverbud program provides a great way to provide inter action with other children, making new friends and learning neat stuff. CLICK HERE for more information.

What Is a 4-H Project?

The major way 4-Hers learn is through their 4-H projects. Completion of a 4-H project takes a series of experiential learning activities planned by the member and a leader, parent or helper. Projects involve setting goals, learning new skills (subject matter skills and life skills), and evaluating progress, all in a challenging and fun format. Public speaking is a real asset of 4-H. Most clubs require a member to give a talk or demonstration about one of their projects at some point during the year. This experience is priceless for building self-confidence.  CLICK HERE for 2016-2017 Project List. For a complete description of each project CLICK HERE for the 2016-2017 Ilinois Clover

How Do I Enroll?

CLICK HERE for directions on how to enroll online. Feel free to call the Jersey County Extension office for more information at 618-498-2913, or email Judy benz@illinois.edu

Educational Goals of 4-H

Although 4-H is flexible and should be adapted to the needs and interests of individuals and local situations, it is also the nation’s largest out-of-school educational program for youth. All fifty states and more than seventy countries throughout the world are actively involved in 4-H. National goals and objectives, which are guides for the total 4-H program, are to help young people to become self-directing, productive, and contributing members of society. The program utilizes hands-on methods to enhance skills developed through learning experiences that focus on a wide variety of subjects and interests.

More specifically, its objectives are to help young people to:

 · Acquire skills and knowledge in subject matter areas;

· Develop a positive self-image;

· Learn to respect and get along with people;

· Develop leadership skills and fulfill leadership roles;

· Develop and practice responsible environmental skills;

· Use accepted practices for mental, physical

· Use leisure time productively;

· Participate in community affairs;

· Develop volunteers as individuals and leaders for 4-H and the community.

4-H Motto

The 4-H Motto is “To Make the Best Better.” This means that each person will do the “best” that he or she possibly can and then they try to improve on that effort the next time the project or task is attempted. Thus, the 4-H members’ original “Best” becomes even “Better”. Illinois 4-H members stretch their abilities and capacities to greater achievement, not to the breaking point, but within their own potential.

4-H Pledge

The delegates to the 1927 National 4-H Club Camp in Washington, D.C. adopted the National 4-H Pledge. State 4-H club leaders voted for and adopted the pledge for universal use. The phrase "and my world" was added to the pledge in 1973. The 4-H Pledge summarizes what 4-H is all about. 4-H has as its goal the four-fold development of youth: Head, Heart, Hands, and Health. Most 4-H members try to live up to the promises they make in the 4-H Pledge.

I Pledge:

My Head to clearer thinking,

My Heart to greater loyalty,

My Hands to larger service,

My Health to better living,

for my club, my community, my country

and my world.

Reciting the pledge has a prominent place in 4-H activities, meetings, achievement programs, and other events. When saying the pledge, members stand straight and tall. With their left hand at their sides, they raise their right hand to their foreheads as they say, “My Head to clearer thinking.” They lower their right hand to their hearts as they say, “My Heart to greater loyalty.” As they say, “My Hands to larger service,” they put both of their hands outstretched in front of them with palms upward. They follow by standing at attention, with their arms and hands at their sides as they recite, “My Health to better living,” and the remainder of the pledge.

For more information about 4-H in Jersey County, contact Judy Benz at the Jersey County Extension office at 618-498-2913, or email Judy benz@illinois.edu