4-H In School
Bradford County 4-H offers in-school programs. Find out why your classroom should incorporate 4-H In School programming and check out our offerings below!
Benefits of 4-H In School Programming
4-H is America’s largest youth development organization. Through 4-H, youth are put on a trajectory to thrive through experiential learning in a strong developmental context. The 4-H Thriving Model is the theory of change for positive youth development in 4-H. High quality 4-H program settings provide youth a place to belong, matter and explore their personal spark. High quality settings foster developmental relationships with youth, relationships that express care, challenge growth, and share power. These components help ensure that 4-H programs provide a nourishing developmental context – a place where youth can belong and grow.
Current research points to the advantage of authentic instruction that involves “active knowledge construction” by learners, relevance, active feedback on learner progress, ongoing opportunities to rethink and reflect, and highly interactive learning activities (Eccles & Gootman, 2002). For decades, 4-H Youth Development has been using active knowledge construction processes through a process called experiential learning.
WHY USE EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING?
- Multiple senses can increase retention.
- Multiple teaching methods can be integrated to maximize creativity.
- Child-centered learning becomes the focus.
- Discovery of knowledge and solutions builds competence and confidence.
- Students can learn life skills that will be used, in addition to subject matter content.
- Learning is more fun!
4-H Youth Development relies heavily upon the five steps of the experiential learning model to teach life skills. The sequential steps of the model help students identify what they have learned from a 4-H experience or activity and to apply that learning to other experiences or situations. This model requires that the “teacher/leader” be very clear about the skill or concept targeted and that the experience and the processing questions are designed to support that learner goal. The experiential learning process engages the learners in all phases of the activity, resulting in the ability to generalize this learning to new situations.
The Bradford County Program Assistant works with teachers to offer a multitude of in-classroom programs to support learning. Reach out to Sterling Westbrook at Swestbrook1@ufl.edu to learn more about our programs or about offering additional ones.
4-H Embryology teaches students about science and respect for life. Students hatch chicks in the classroom and witness the exciting miracle of life. Students take the responsibilities of caring for the fertilized eggs and then the chicks after they have hatched. Following each session, the hatched birds are given to local farmers or adopted out to students. We provide equipment and a curriculum to guide your class through the 21-day hatching process. This is an immersive project that can cover nearly every subject!
Is your school interested in creating a school garden? Does your school already have one that needs a little help? Work with the Florida Master Gardener volunteers to make your garden a great place to work, grow, teach, read, and relax.
Please contact the Horticulture Agent Luke Harlow at Harlow1231@ufl.edu.
Ag Literacy Day
Florida Ag In the Classroom sponsors Ag Literacy Day each year and provides a new book about Florida's agriculture industry for schools. Bradford County 4-H typically organizes volunteers to read in elementary classrooms throughout the county. A signup goes out to teachers to select a date and time slot for 4-H volunteers (often times our great teen leaders) to come to all of the classrooms of that grade level to read the book, answer questions from the students, and bring materials that typically include a copy of the book for each class and bookmarks and stickers for each student. FAITC also provides many additional resources for teachers on their website.