Camp Season is Just Around the Corner!

Are you looking for ways to increase participation in your county’s 4-H Cloverbud program? Consider holding a multi-day Cloverbud Day Camp with a wide range of activities designed to engage and excite your Cloverbuds.

Each year, Union County, Ohio hosts a two-day Cloverbud Day Camp. Due to the large number of Cloverbuds in the county, registration is limited to 75 Cloverbuds. Camp is held at the Union County Extension office.

The camp theme in 2023 was “In My Back Yard”. Campers were divided into groups with teen counselors providing leadership. Adult extension staff and 4-H volunteers taught the educational sessions.

Camper groups were named after Ohio birds—Blue Jay, Robin, Goldfinch and Cardinal. Each morning started with songs. Then the groups rotated through four educational lessons. Each lesson focused on animals. Cloverbuds learned about the different birds in Ohio and painted birdhouses. They went on an outside adventure to look for and learn about different animal tracks. Another session was about animal habitats and Cloverbuds created a terrarium in a baby food jar. The final session was a nature game show. They ate lunch outside and had rest time after lunch. The day ended with a big pool noodle game carnival where Cloverbuds used tokens to play each game.

Day two was an exciting day for the Cloverbuds. Camp organizers chartered two Ohio State University buses and took the Cloverbuds to

4-H Camp Clifton. When they arrived at Camp Clifton, they participated in a nature scavenger hunt. After the scavenger hunt, they ate lunch at the campfire circle. The adult staff made smores for each Cloverbud to enjoy. Cabins were used for rest time and changing into swimsuits. Cloverbuds swam in the pool all afternoon. They returned to the Extension office at 3p.m. and then departed for home.

Cloverbud Day Camp was a huge success, thanks to the teens and adult volunteers. Camp continues to grow each year. So, if you are looking for a way to expand your Cloverbud program, consider adding a Cloverbud Day Camp. Whether you host a one-day camp, a two-day camp, or even longer camp, it is a great way to create excitement for your county’s Cloverbud program.

Get Excited for Fall with this STEM Activity!

STEM activities are a great way to introduce Cloverbuds to the world of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. By participating in hands-on STEM activities, children can learn problem- solving skills, creativity, and decision making skills.

Using the season to build activities around a theme engages Cloverbuds and connects them to real world experiences. Try this favorite Fall-themed STEM activity with your Cloverbuds at your next meeting.

Mini Pumpkin Volcano

Materials Picture of a Mini Pumpkin Volcano made with baking soda, food coloring, and vinegarNeeded:

  • Mini Pumpkin
  • Baking Soda
  • Vinegar
  • Dish soap
  • Food Coloring
  • Spoon
  • Measuring Cup
  • Tray or paper (for the mess)

What to Do:

  1. Cut the stem area of the pumpkin, keeping the opening smaller.
  2. Clean out the seeds.
  3. Place the pumpkin on the tray or paper.
  4. Add 3 to 4 spoons of baking soda to each pumpkin. Add a few drops of dish soap, and a few drops of food coloring.
  5. Pour vinegar into a bowl and have the Cloverbud use a measuring cup to pour vinegar into the pumpkin. Watch as the pumpkin erupts!

To make your pumpkin volcano even more interesting, carve the pumpkin like a jack-o-lantern and watch the eruption from different angles of the pumpkin.

Check out the Cloverbud Connections Pumpkin STEM and the Pumpkin Ideas for Autumn 4-H Cloverbud Activities blogs for more pumpkin and fall ideas to use with your Cloverbuds.


Pile of mini pumpkins


Photos from Adobe Stock


STEM and Cloverbuds

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) activities have a large impact on children. STEM focuses on hands-on learning which helps children develop STEM skills including problem solving, critical thinking, creativity, curiosity, decision making, and many more. It is never to early to teach these skills which are important not only now, but in the future. Try this STEM activity at your next meeting!

Important Information to consider before doing this activity.

  • Neodymium magnets are extremely strong! Fingers can easily get pinched when trying to separate the magnets. Be sure to keep the magnets away from cell phones, computer, and other electronics.
  • Iron oxide powder is not good to breathe. Therefore, the iron is mixed in with the glue.  Wear a mask when working with this powder.
  • Iron oxide powder is available from a variety of online sources.
  • Neodymium magnets are available from a variety of online sources.

                                   Magnetic Slime

You will need:

  • Liquid starch
  • Elmer’s glue
  • Iron Oxide powder (wear a mask)
  • Mixing bowl
  • Plastic spoons
  • ¼ Cup for measuring
  • 1 Tablespoon for measuring
  • 1/8 cup for measuring
  • A neodymium (rare earth) magnet, regular magnets aren’t strong enough

What to do:

  • In a mixing bowl add ¼ cup glue and 2 Tbsp iron oxide powder. Stir.
  • Pour in 1/8 cup liquid starch.
  • Stir the mixture well, the starch will react with the glue and slime will form.
  • Use your hands to knead the slime. If it is too sticky add more starch.
  • Use your magnet and play with the slime.