We enjoyed participating in 4H for many years during our homeschooling journey.
It was a wonderful blessing for our family.
Although 4H is a county and state government-run program, we were blessed with so many new friends who supported homeschooling nad encouraged us in our journey. Our 4H group was made up entirely of Christian homeschoolers.
In our group, each mother was also a helper, but the children were able to hold different offices in the club such as president, secretary, chaplain, or treasurer. 4H also exposes children to parliamentary procedure and the different offices of a club. The secretary took minutes, the treasurer collected dues and managed the money, and the chaplain opened in prayer. The children learned to make a motion and second that motion!
How 4H Enriched Our Home School
4H's purpose is to teach life skills to children and to give them the opportunity to demonstrate those skills through exhibits and demonstrations. The topics available to choose from are quite numerous and include: gardening, cooking, sewing, oceanography, forestry, livestock, arts, crafts, woodworking, management skills, public speaking, bicycle safety, automotive repair, electricity, health, and interior decorating.
Each child, with parents’ help, chose one or several project books to work on. For instance, Katie Beth chose a project book on beginning photography. When the project book was completed, she had learned the parts of a camera, how to center the subject, focusing, the use of a flash, the effect of light, camera and film care, how to mount pictures, and taking trick pictures. She took several rolls of film and even made a simple camera. She planned and prepared an exhibit of her photographs, adding a poster and a short demonstration to her 4H group on an aspect of photography or camera care. The entire exhibit was also brought to the county fair where she won a blue ribbon.
You see, children earn ribbons for their exhibits with monetary rewards. At the end of the year, all their work is combined into a project book that is turned in, evaluated and returned as a permanent record of their work.
Not only do they acquire the skills taught in the project books, but also public speaking skills, presentation skills, penmanship and artistic skills (posters), and decision making skills (what should I demonstrate? What should I exhibit?).
More Learning Opportunities with 4H
My favorite thing of all the fabulous things we did with 4H was the speech workshops. Wow! They were amazing and FREE. My children all took public speaking at the 4H Extension Office and learned to speak confidently in front of a group—something I could not do at a young age.
What I love about homeschooling is that we were able to use the 4H meeting rooms and kitchen while all the other children were in school. It was a perfect addition to our homeschooling journey. We had the blessing of experts in certain fields who were happy to share their wisdom with us.
4H was a great choice for us!
In addition, homeschooling has sure been a blessing for our family.
If you want more tips and practical wisdom on homeschooling with joy and success, you've got to read Joyful and Successful Homeschooling, available at Amazon. The E-book is available at Payhip and Currclick. Joyful and Successful Homeschooling covers it all: how to teach, homeschool record keeping, how to make lesson plans, how to choose curriculum, choosing outside activities, managing your home, philosophies of home education, and teaching tips for each subject. Recipes and personal stories are included.
Remember: your homeschooling adventure belongs to you and your family. Make it your own and have fun on the journey!