Thursday, May 28, 2009

D12 4-H Volunteers Provide Guidance to Project Areas District-Wide

At the January 2009 meeting of Adult Leaders from across the district, seven different project areas were discussed among the various break-out groups including:
  • Food & Nutrtion
  • Leadership
  • Livestock
  • Photography
  • Public Speaking
  • Recordkeeping
  • Clothing & Textiles
Each of the groups spent time evaluating each of these projects areas to determine how they might add value to the project experience for 4-H members across the district. The Food & Nutrition discussion resulted in several recurring themes. Some of the strategies to improve project support included
  • Leader training in the summer to prepare for Food & Nutrition projects in early Fall
  • Development of good educational resources for counties to support projects locally
  • Use of technology to share information, ideas, and interact with other volunteers
  • Varied levels of training for youth and leaders (beginner, intermediate, and advanced techniques)
  • Food & Nutrition camps
  • Concession stands, food safety, and proper food handling training
  • Culinary Arts training
  • Training for judges

One of the most frequent comments in the Food & Nutrition discussion, as well as some of the other discussions, focused on the use of technology. Videos and other online resources seemed to be a valuable tool for volunteers. Perhaps it is more likely to serve as a more convenient method to gather resources or learn. Distance education (or using the web to deliver training and information) is not new. In fact, many colleges and universities deliver training to students via the web to students that live on the respective campus. It sounds rather strange that a student who is paying tuition, fees, and dorm fees would rather stay in their room and take a class online than go to class. Regardless, it is a reality of how some prefer to learn. This discussion may serve as an extension of this idea. Web resources give us the flexibility to access information at our own discretion and perhaps this is one way to better equip 4-H leaders and volunteers to provide valuable learning experiences for 4-H members.

While this post focused only on the Food & Nutrition project, future posts on the remaining six project areas will be coming soon। Keep up with this blog by subcribing। Feel free to post comments to add to this post. I look forward to reading your comments. For those that are looking for Food & Nutrition resources....try this link to the Texas 4-H website.

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