Extension Professional Staff
Extension Educator, 4-H Youth Development-Metro & Military
Henry/Mercer/Rock Island/Stark Unit
321 W 2nd Avenue
Milan, IL 61264
Diane Baker provides leadership to the 4-H Youth Development program for Military and Metro programming. Diane has a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education from Northern Illinois University and a master's degree in Education from Western Illinois University.
Diane has twenty-three years of experience in working with 4-H Youth Development programs in northwestern Illinois. Diane started her Extension career in Whiteside County before moving to a multi-county educator position in the greater Quad Cities area. During that time, Diane has worked with 4-H programs in urban, rural, and military communities to develop innovative 4-H programming for youth ages 5 – 19. Diane's programming includes, but is not limited to:
- Expanding 4-H Clubs & Programs to New Audiences
- Teen Leadership Development
- Science Enrichment
- Volunteer Management
- Networking and Partnerships
- 4-H Club Program Management
Diane's professional association involvement includes Illinois Extension Professionals for Youth Education and the National Association of Extension 4-H Agents. Included among her professional awards are the state and national Distinguished Service Awards for her programming excellence as well as the national 4-H / Army Youth Development Salute Award.
Expanding 4-H Clubs & Programs to New Audiences – building upon the success of the 4-H Club model, along with unique outreach initiatives, to actively engage youth and families who have not traditionally been involved with 4-H opportunities
Teen Leadership Development – engage teens in positive youth development leadership opportunities at the county-level and beyond. This will include advanced leadership opportunities for youth who have been involved in 4-H community clubs, as well as reaching out to new teens who have not traditionally been involved in 4-H.
Science Enrichment – through our national network of land-grant universities, 4-H has access to current, research-based information, especially in the science field. 4-H is uniquely positioned to offer hands-on 4-H science experiences to youth in a wide variety of settings – through 4-H projects, 4-H special events and activities such as Science Siesta and Science Camp, participation in the National 4-H Science Experiment (Wired for Wind in October 2011), and providing curriculum resources to schools such as incubation / embryology
Volunteer Management – provide leadership to the 4-H volunteer programs in the tri-county area which includes volunteer recruitment, screening, orientation and training for 4-H clubs, events, activities, and groups.
Networking and Partnerships – communicating actively with schools and community organizations serving youth to ensure that needs of youth are being met but that 4-H programs are not duplicating the services already available to young people through other local organizations
4-H Club Program Management – provide program supervision and training for 4-H Program Coordinators who manage the 4-H community club program in each county. These individuals are responsible for 4-H data management, coordination of 4-H events and activities including 4-H project workshops, camps and 4-H fairs, risk management plans for club and county 4-H programs, supervision of 4-H project committees, and facilitating communication with 4-H families and volunteers.
Experiential Learning–Training for Adults and Teens who work with youth.
Training that is designed specifically for client requests, includes emphasis on:
- What is experiential learning–the model and the steps
- How does experiential learning relate to developmental readiness of youth
- How does experiential learning relate to learning styles of youth
- How to incorporate the experiential learning technique in instruction
Tips and Techniques for Working with Youth Audiences
This flexible format training can include the following componenets:
- Developmental readiness of youth (what to expect from various ages)
- Behavior management
- Techniques for managing groups
- Making learning fun for youth and the teacher
- Temperament and/or learning styles of youth
In-service opportunities for classroom teachers or youth group leaders on the following topics:
- Incorporating workforce preparation into your program
- Incorportating horticulture education into your program
- Incorporating science education into your program
Needs Identification and Program Development
- Diane works with schools and other agencies to identify current needs of youth and develop appropriate educational programs to respond to needs