Around the World with 4-H: A Virtual Field Trip Club
COUNTY EXTENSION 4-H AGENT
CLEMSON EXTENSION SERVICE
Around the World with 4-H is a virtual, synchronous club designed by 4-H agents to reach youth throughout their state. The objective was to offer opportunities for youth to be exposed to various cultures. We set out to highlight a different country at each monthly meeting. Each meeting would offer exposure through virtual tours, recipes, vocabulary, and facts. Intended goals were for youth to understand the importance of knowing about other cultures, explore and respect diversity, and develop skills in cross-cultural communication and travel. Originally offered through Chester 4-H, the program is now a partnership between Chester, Fairfield, and Newberry Counties with participation not limited to these counties. The virtual component is open to youth aged 5-12 from any state or country. The program is also delivered through an in-person club tuning in together in Newberry. The ongoing program, started in December 2021, currently boasts 95 participants from 22 South Carolina counties, 4 other states, and Canada. Monthly, agents lead an hour meeting held via Zoom to introduce a country through an interactive presentation that provides information on cultures, holidays, food, language, currency, geography, and wildlife using maps, recipes, hands-on activities, interviews, and virtual tours. Youth are provided with a follow-up related recipe and hands-on activity to complete at home. As of March 2023, club members have “traveled” to fourteen different countries. Parents completing the evaluation tool noted that the program is “fun, engaging, and easy to connect” and that their family enjoys “learning about the different countries and their cultures, as well as the hands-on activity with each meeting.” 100% of respondents agree or strongly agree that the activities were useful, encouraged respect for other cultures, were age-appropriate, utilize an easy-to-navigate platform, and they would be interested in attending other virtual 4-H programs. Evaluations also show positive results in cultural learning and respect, as well as ease of participation. While original goals did not include offering this program via different delivery modes, this was an unintended outcome of a joint county program. Additionally, the program is helping reach new audiences: 43% of youth registered are new to 4-H.
Poster has NOT been presented at any previous NACAA AM/PIC
This poster is being submitted for judging. It will be displayed at the AM/PIC if not selected as a State winner. The abstract will be published in the proceedings.
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Authors: Alana West, Stephanie Eidt, Abigail Phillips
West, A. COUNTY EXTENSION 4-H AGENT, Clemson University, South Carolina, 29108
Eidt, S. 4-H Agent, Clemson University, South Carolina, 29180
Phillips, A. 4-H Agent, Clemson University, South Carolina, 29706