4-H Healthy Living Resources

The fourth H in 4-H represents Health. When reciting the 4-H pledge, members pledge their health to better living. Health as the 4th H can mean many things, including:

  • Taking a health-related project
  • Learning more about health through reading and hands-on learning
  • Adopting healthy behaviors
  • Encouraging one’s family and friends to do things to be healthier
  • Teaching others about a health-related topic
  • Making changes in the food served at club meetings and county events to reflect health recommendations
  • Learning about health-related careers
  • Talking to community leaders about health issues
  • Creating a plan to address a health-related issue in the community

Health is very important to the overall 4-H program. Whether members take a health project or not, we want involvement in 4-H to include educational experiences focused on health.

Ohio 4-H has some new healthy living resources, brought to you by the Ohio 4-H Healthy Living Design Team. These resources can help club officers and 4-H professionals add a dose of the 4th H to their meetings.

Ohio 4-H Healthy Living Officer Resource Guide

Healthy Living officers have the opportunity to lead activities that will be both fun and educational for their 4-H club. The Healthy Living Officer Resource Guide is a new 20-page resource designed to accompany the Healthy Living Officer’s Record Book. Both can be found on the Ohio 4-H Officer Resources page. The resource guide includes background information on the healthy living area, tips for planning your part in club meetings, evaluating sources of information, and a list of current healthy living projects. The remaining sections are organized by the core topics covered in the national 4-H Healthy Living mission area:

  • nutrition
  • physical activity
  • mental, emotional, and social health
  • safety and injury prevention
  • prevention of tobacco, alcohol, and other drug use

Each section includes a brief description, sample activities, and sources of additional resources to learn more about the topic. You’ll find ideas for icebreakers, roll call, displays, presentation, guest speakers, and community service projects.

Healthy Living Grab and Go Resources Page

We’ve created activities that go along with many of our blog posts, and now they are organized on the Grab and Go Resources page. On the grab and go page you’ll find lesson plans that you can download and use at your next meeting. You can use one activity, or combine several related activities to create the plan for an entire meeting. The lessons are grouped together by topics that correspond with the Healthy Officer Resource Book: nutrition; physical activity; and mental, emotional, and social health.

Additional topics include:

  • The newest section is Mindful Moments, which are short, 5-minute activities that can be used at the start of any meeting.
  • COVID-19 activities address situations brought on by the pandemic.
  • Creative Well-Being activities are fun activities that exercise creativity in different ways.

As we write new blog posts, we will continue to add resources to the grab and go page, so check back often. Click the “subscribe” button to receive an email notification about new blog content.

And don’t forget that we have Ohio 4-H Mental Health Month resources on our 4-H Healthy Living webpage.

Your Thoughts Matter – a 4-H Project

Mental health matters for everyone. Mental health is not the same thing as the absence of a mental illness. Mental health includes emotional, psychological, and social well-being. Just like health doesn’t mean only the absence of disease, positive mental health doesn’t mean that people are always stress free and happy. Positive feelings alone aren’t enough (especially because there are some not-so-healthy ways to feel good). It means still being able to function when facing challenging times and knowing how to get support when you need it. You can also learn how to help others when needed.

We are encouraged to take care of our physical health before we feel sick. We may take advice to eat well, exercise, and try to get enough sleep to help maintain overall wellness. What if we took the same approach to mental health? Just as you may work to keep your body healthy, you can also work to keep your mind healthy.

One way to learn more about mental health is the Your Thoughts Matter: Navigating Mental Health 4-H project. Your Thoughts Matter is an advanced-level 4-H project designed for youth who are interested in learning more about mental health, why it is important to overall well-being, and steps that promote more positive understanding and action.

Topics in the Your Thoughts Matter project include:

  • What is Mental Health?: What mental health means and its impact on those around us
  • Mental Health Disorders: The difference among some common but serious mental health disorders
  • Stigma: How society communicates about mental health in casual speech and in the media
  • Self-Help and Resources: Self-help and becoming part of the solution

In this project, you will be prompted to complete all 10 activities and all the Talking It Over questions, take part in at least two learning experiences, become involved in at least two leadership/citizenship activities, and complete a project review.

Today’s Take-Away: You can listen to this short video for a project review. In this video, Luke Uhlenbrock, a 4-H member from Clermont County, gives an overview of the project and shares his thoughts about participating in the Your Thoughts Matter virtual SPIN Club last year.

This project book is currently available for download on the Stay-at-Home Projects page on the Ohio 4-H website. In addition, another virtual SPIN (Special Interest) Club will be offered later this year. We will share the dates when they become available.

You can also access other Mental Health Month resources on our Ohio 4-H webpage. Come back here for more information and ideas.

Yours in Health,

Signature

Theresa Ferrari, Extension Specialist, 4-H Youth Development

Dimensions of Wellness

Health and wellness are broad concepts. The World Health Organization defines health as “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” That means that being healthy is more than just not being sick. Overall wellness includes many areas. It means being healthy in many areas of our lives. Achieving wellness is a lifelong process of “making the best better.” International Mind-Body Wellness Day gives us an opportunity to reflect on the many dimensions of wellness and the connections between body and mind.

Every aspect of wellness can affect a person’s life. The Eight Dimensions of Wellness take into account not only a person’s physical health, but all the things that contribute to a person’s overall wellness. These dimensions are interconnected, each one building on the other.

Eight Dimensions of Wellness

8 Dimensions of Wellness

Eight Dimensions of Wellness

  • physical
  • emotional
  • social
  • intellectual
  • environmental
  • spiritual
  • vocational/occupational
  • financial

For an overview of what each dimension entails, you can view a short 3-minute video from Northwestern University.

Creating balance in our lives is an important part of wellness. When we’re trying to get through a tough time—whether it is stress, an illness, trauma, or an emotional challenge—balance is especially important. In these times, our habits and routines can help us get that feeling of control back. This means focusing on ourselves as well as the roles we play in the lives of others including family member, friend, classmate, and club member.

Maybe you made a New Year’s resolution related to improving some aspect of your health. But maybe, with so many areas to consider, it can seem overwhelming to know where to start. In our posts, we’re going to break it down into more manageable chunks, day by day and week by week.

To start the new year off, we’re offering the Healthy Body Healthy Mind SPIN (special interest) Club to learn fun ways to keep your body and mind healthy. This SPIN club will be offered virtually through Zoom, with live sessions on Tuesdays from 5:30-6:30pm for 6 weeks starting January 19, 2021.

  • When: January 19 and 26 and February 2, 9, 16, and 23 from 5:30-6:30pm
  • Where: Zoom (link sent after registering)
  • Who: This SPIN Club is open to all 4-H ages youth 8 to 18.
  • What: 4-H professionals Frances Foos, Lori Now, Amanda Raines, and Cassie Turner will lead you through Yoga for Kids, games, activities, and more, all from the comfort of your home.
  • Cost: It’s free to participate, but some supplies will be suggested for activities.
  • Register here by January 14.
Promotion for Healthy Body Healthy Mind SPIN Club

Register by January 14 for the Healthy Body Healthy Mind SPIN Club

We’ll be addressing these dimension of wellness throughout the month of January, Ohio 4-H’s Mental Health Month. Come back for more information and ideas!

Yours in Health,

Signature

Adapted from: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2016). Creating a healthier life: A step-by-step guide to wellness. https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Creating-a-Healthier-Life-/SMA16-4958

#4hhealthyliving #4thH #Ohio4Hmhm #MentalHealthMatters #4HGrowsHere

Daily Dose- Pizza with Pizazz

Pizza and salad makes a meal

Let’s participate in Pizza Day! Ohio Governor Mike DeWine announced Spirit Week, with Friday as Pizza Day. The governor has asked everybody who participates to tag their pictures with #SpiritWeekOhio #InThisTogetherOhio #StayHomeOhio. Your photo may be featured on state social media platforms!

Pizza has been called the world’s most popular food. Traditional pizza is cooked in a wood-fired oven. It originated in Italy and was brought to the U.S. by Italian immigrants, where it has taken on a life of its own. About 1 in 8 Americans eat pizza on any given day.

Composed of flatbread with toppings, pizza had humble beginnings. It started as peasant food, but it’s fit for a queen. A classic pizza is Pizza Margherita – a crust topped with soft, white mozzarella cheese; red tomatoes; and green basil. It is said to be named after Italy’s Queen Margherita. (The colors of this pizza are also the colors of the Italian flag.)

Pizza sometimes has a bad reputation as an unhealthy food, but it doesn’t have to be. Ingredients to be on the lookout for are sodium and fat. Sources of fat include meat and cheese, which, in addition to some crusts, also contribute to the sodium content. You can include any ingredient, just be mindful of amounts and portion sizes.

You can make pizza a home! Recipes abound on the internet, but you can get creative and make our own. You’ll need to look up recipes if you want to make your own crust. Here’s one to get you started. 

The variations of pizza are endless! When you make your own pizza, you get to the control the ingredients. Use your creativity to Design Your Own Pizza.

 

Be Mindful about MyPlate

To pack the most nutritional punch into your pizza, use MyPlate to design yours. Here are some suggestions:

 

Design Your Own Pizza

Be creative and use the ingredients you have on hand

Crust (Grain)

  • Naan bread
  • English muffin
  • Pita bread
  • Flour tortilla
  • Refrigerated biscuits or crescent rolls
  • Homemade pizza crust (with or without yeast)
  • Cauliflower crust (Vegetable Group)

Base

  • Tomato sauce
  • Pesto

Toppings (Vegetables) And the great debate – is pineapple on pizza acceptable?

  • Fresh vegetables (peppers, onions, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes, potatoes, spinach, asparagus, etc.)
  • Cooked vegetables (great way to use up leftovers)

Toppings (Protein)

  • Meats
  • Seafood

Toppings (Dairy)

  • Shredded cheese or fresh Mozzarella cheese

Seasonings

  • Fresh or dried herbs (such as basil, oregano, parsley, chives)
  • Chopped fresh garlic or garlic powder
  • Crushed red pepper
  • Green onions
close up of homemade pizza

Pizza with Pizazz – Here’s my Pizza Day creation with ingredients I had at home

Here’s the pizza I made with ingredients I had on hand: I didn’t use the oven to make my pizza. I used naan bread for the crust, which I heated in a frying pan, with a small amount of oil to prevent sticking. I topped the naan with a thin layer of tomato sauce. I sautéed an onion, chopped garlic, and peppers – green, orange, yellow, and red (about 1 cup). I topped the crust with the vegetable mixture and added shredded parmesan cheese and basil. Easy and tasty!

The “Let’s Start Cooking” 4-H project has a recipe for Veggie Pizza (page 29).

#SpiritWeekOhio #InThisTogetherOhio #StayHomeOhio #pizza

#4HInThisTogether #StayHomeOhio #ThankYouPublicHealth #leanonyourlandgrant #LandGrantFierce #OSUExtension #ohio4h #COVID19 #coronavirus #4thH #4Hhealthliving

 

Yours in Health,

 

 

 

Daily Dose- Design a Masterpiece

A noted quote from Albert Einstein reads: “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”

Einstein didn’t mean that knowledge wasn’t important, but rather that imagination helps us create knowledge. When people let their imagination go and think about “what if…,” new ideas follow. Everyday objects that we take for granted were once ideas that first existed in someone’s mind.

Imagination is related to creativity, and creativity to art. If you are inspired to explore your imagination through art, check out the “Getting Started in Art” is a perfect stay-at-home 4-H project that is now available as a PDF. Join Heather for an introductory lesson here:

 

Today focus on how using your imagination can lighten your mood! Did you know drawing can strengthen your creativity, improve your memory, and help you de-stress? Find your inner artist today and comment down below with your masterpiece you have made!

Draw a picture, paste in clippings from the paper, magazines, or scrapbooking materials you may have! Show us your masterpiece on social media at the Ohio 4-H Healthy Living Facebook page!

PDF Link to Today’s Journal Can be Found Here!

The first picture is from one of our Ohio 4-H Health Heroes Nat! She came up with this idea to help cheer everyone up! Below are more Franklin County 4-H’ers showing off their masterpieces as well! Post credit to Natalia Kresic, Mahoning County 4-H member and Ohio 4-H Health Hero, Heather Gottke, and Theresa Ferrari.

 

 

 

 

Daily Dose – Learning about Learning

2 ohotos of girls with masks

4-H’ers are using their sewing skills to make masks

When we think of education, we might automatically think about school. But learning is not limited to what happens in a building during certain times of day or months of the year. Opportunities to learn are all around us!

4-H’s motto is learn by doing. 4-H members select a topic they are interested in and complete a project, which is a set of self-directed learning experiences. These learning activities help them to master some new knowledge and learn some new skills.

In this time when some aspects of our lives have been restricted by the coronavirus and the stay-at -home orders, schoolwork has switched to home and students have substituted the dining room table for their desk.

In spite of these challenges, we have some great examples of learning. For some, that means learning some new technology, like Zoom, to conduct our meetings (although five Zoom meetings in a day is a bit much!). Another example of learning is using skills you already have, but they are put to use in new ways. A wonderful example is our 4-H Health Heroes. These teen leaders are using the skills they learned in 4-H sewing projects to sew masks for themselves and family members and for essential workers on the front lines.

Kylie Arnett, 4-H Health Hero from Hocking County, is making masks; she donated some of the masks she made to the Logan Police Department

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Natalia Kresic, 4-H Health Hero from Mahoning County, sewing masks for essential workers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Throughout our life we will be confronted with opportunities to learn and to apply what we’ve learned. Learning is not over when we complete high school. Ultimately, we want to be lifelong learners.

When I think about a lifelong learner, I think of my maternal grandmother, who survived the flu pandemic in 1918. She lived in northern Italy and was 21 in 1918; she came to the U.S. in 1920. Like many immigrants, she had to learn a new language and a new way of life. Many of my favorite childhood memories are of her telling me stories about when she was a girl growing up in Italy. One saying that she had was “Impara l’arte e mettila da parte.” A rough translation is “learn an art and put it aside,” but the literal translation does not communicate the meaning behind it, which is that what you learn no one can take from you, and it will not go to waste. Although she had only completed a 4th grade education, she was a very wise woman. When I was having a difficult day in school, I would remember her words, and I still remember them to this day.

The changes in our lives during the current pandemic have required us to learn new things, haven’t they? If you’re looking for some ideas, how about taking advantage of some of the perfect Stay-at-Home 4-H project books that are now available as PDFs online. And today’s 4-H Journal Page has some questions to get you thinking about how you learn.

Today’s Journal is Learning about Learning! Check it out!