Setting Your Goals

All of us have had to set goals for personal or professional reasons in our lives. Some might be in a habit of setting goals; others might be doing them out of necessity.

WHY are we talking about setting goals for Cloverbuds?  A study from Brown University (Pressman et al., 2014) concluded that routines and habits in children take root by the third grade. This means that habits like household chores and responsibilities are unlikely to vary once a child reaches the age of nine.  As a Cloverbud Volunteer, you are in a great position to start teaching the useful habit of goal setting. When encouraging them to set goals, think about the age of the child and their abilities. Younger Cloverbuds are more likely to respond to a picture of their goal versus words, but older Cloverbuds might be able to read and will find it fun to write out their goals for the year.

Setting one goal is the ideal place to start.  Encourage youth to think about something they want to do (go to the zoo, play at the park) or something that they would like to learn (ride a bike, make cookies) to help them started. At this age, their minds are full of creative thoughts. A great place to start is with a blank sheet of paper with the wording “I would like to…”  This gives them the option to write or draw a goal they might have for the future.

We feel much satisfaction from accomplishing our goals, so plan a way to celebrate!  Celebrating achievements is vital to instilling joy and excitement of a job well done.  That joy and sense of accomplishment is what drives us to set another goal!

It’s Slime Time!

We are all fascinated by slime!  There are so many different colors, textures, mixtures, and ingredients used to make slime. A classic favorite that has been around for quite some time is Oobleck. Oobleck was cool before slime was cool! Take some time with your Cloverbuds to make some Oobleck.

Make sure you have a space that can get messy, gather all the ingredients, and wash your hands before you begin.

Ingredients/Supplies:

  • Small bowl
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1.5 – 2 cups of cornstarch
  • Spoon – optional
  • A few drops of food coloring – optional

Instructions:

  1. Pour water into a small bowl.
  2. Begin adding cornstarch to the water. You can stir with a spoon at first, but you’ll need to use your hands as the mixture thickens.
  3. As you are mixing the cornstarch in you may add the optional food coloring.
  4. Once you’ve added 1.5 cups of cornstarch, add the remaining amount a little at a time. You may not need it at all.
  5. You are looking for a consistency that is liquid and solid at the same time.
  6. If you find you’ve added too much cornstarch, add a little water to thin it out.

Oobleck is a great tool to use when teaching hands-on science concepts. Once you have created your Oobleck, take some time to play with it.

Discuss the following science concepts:

  • Is it a solid? Or is it a liquid? – Answer: It acts as both!
  • What is a solid? – Answer: matter that retains it’s shape when not confined.
  • What is a liquid? – Answer: a substance that flows freely.
  • What other things can be both a solid and a liquid? – Answer: water/ice, rock/lava

Store your Oobleck in an air-tight container. Be sure to tell your Cloverbuds not to eat their Oobleck!

Creating Holiday Cards for Community Service

This time of year is often known for being the season of giving!  So, why not take this opportunity to teach your Cloverbuds about giving by helping them create their own holiday cards to give to others.  For example, cards can be taken and distributed to residents of a local nursing home or tucked into a local food bank’s distribution boxes before delivery!

Supplies Needed:

  • Cardstock and/or construction paper
  • Markers, colored pencils and/or crayons
  • Glue sticks
  • Scissors
  • Ribbon
  • Stickers
  • Old magazine or cards
  • Stencils
  • Glitter

Steps:

  1. Fold the cardstock or construction paper into the desired card size.
  1. Encourage members to use their creativity to decorate the cards by drawing and coloring a picture, tracing a picture with a stencil, cutting pictures out of old magazines or old cards. Add a little something extra with ribbon, glitter or other decorating items you have around.
  1. Have some sample phrases written out and available for members to use on or in their card such as “Merry Christmas”, “Happy Holidays”, “Seasons Greeting”, “Happy New Year” or another greeting of your choice. Some members may still be learning to spell and this might help them.
  1. Be sure your Cloverbud signs their name to their card.

This activity can be fun for the members creating the cards and fun for the individual receiving the cards.  It is a great way for young members to realize that their kindness may bring cheer to someone else!

Autumn Activities for Cloverbuds

It seems like summer flew by and we are looking towards autumn. This is the time to enjoy some of those last outdoor activities before the weather turns really cold.

Start Simple.

Activities do not have to be complicated and require a lot of planning. Just doing things together is important. What might you do?

  1. Visit a pumpkin patch and pick out a pumpkin to paint or carve
  2. Rake up a pile of leaves to play in – Remember to think about safety and make sure that the pile is deep enough if your children are going to jump in it.
  3. Take a walk – visit a local park or your own backyard and enjoy the sights of autumn. Ask your child to describe how nature looks different at this time of year.
  4. Pick apples together. Eat them plain or make a salad or dessert from what you bring home.

Fall is also a great time to try new science activities or get a little crafty. Try these activities:

 

How Do Leaves Change Colors

from https://www.123homeschool4me.com/why-do-leaves-change-color-science_52

 

Supplies:

Glass jars

Coffee Filters

Leaves

Rubbing Alcohol

On your nature walk collect a variety of leaves. Sort the leaves by color into the glass containers. Cover with the rubbing alcohol and grind the leaves up.

Make a cone shape from the coffee filter and place the tip in the container. Allow to sit long enough to absorb the liquid. It may take a little while to absorb the liquid. As the liquid travels up the coffee filter, it separates into the colors that were inside the leaf.

THE SCIENCE BEHIND IT…

Plants create the oxygen that we breathe through photosynthesis. They turn water and carbon dioxide into oxygen and glucose. We breathe the oxygen. The plants use the glucose to grow. Photosynthesis means “putting together with light”. Chlorophyll is used for photosynthesis and gives plants their green color.

Sunlight is an important part of photosynthesis. In the winter when the days are shorter, plants are exposed to less sunlight. Because of this lack of sunlight, plants go into a resting state. They use the glucose that they stored over the summer to live through the winter. The green chlorophyll disappears from the leaves and we start to see the fall colors like orange and yellow which have been in the leaves all along.

Leaf People

This is a simple activity that you can get creative with.

Collect a variety of leaves of different shapes and sizes. You can also collect small twigs and other natural materials to use. Have on hand craft supplies such as google eyes.

Using glue, glue dots or double sided tape, attach the leaves to a piece of paper create people (or even a favorite animal). The leaves might be all the parts of the person – head, body, arms and legs. You can also use the leaf as the head/body and use twigs as arms and legs. Just allow your child to be creative.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Images from MyMommyStyle.com, handsonaswegrow.com, fun-a-day.com, smallhandsbigworld.com

Fall is a great time to explore activities with your Cloverbud age youth.

Left, Right, Center, Keep

This is a great game to play with all ages, children and adults. I have played it with all age groups and it is always enjoyed. It is a great way to reinforce right and left, plus teaching fair play and sharing.

What you need :

  • a minimum of 3 wooden blocks for each group of 5-10 players
    (blocks need to be large enough to have a letter written on each side but small enough that all three blocks can be held in a child’s hand at the same time – these can be purchased in the craft department of many stores or cut out your own)
  • Using a permanent marker – write one letter on each side of the block as follows – one K, one C, two sides will have R and two sides will have L. So the blocks will contain one K, one C, 2 R’s and 2 L’s. I place the R and the L on opposite sides of the block.
  • 3 pieces of wrapped candy per player ( I like chewable wrapped candy as opposed to hard candy. Lollipops work well too! )
  • people to play

Instructions to play:
The players sit in a circle facing one another. Each person receives three pieces of candy. They place their candy in front of them. One person begins by picking up all three blocks and rolls these into the center of the circle.

  • For example – lets state that the dice rolled come up with K, C , R

The person who rolled the dice will then K = Keep one piece of candy, C = place one piece of candy into the Center of the circle and R = hand one piece of candy to the person sitting on their Right. The next person (go around the circle either direction ) takes the three blocks and rolls.

  • For example – this person gets L, L , C. This person would then hand the person on their Left 2 pieces of candy and place one piece of candy into the Center of the circle. The game continues. A person can be completely out of candy and then a few rolls later receive some from a “ neighbor” A person rolls the number of blocks corresponding to the number of pieces of candy that he or she has.
  • For example – one piece of candy – roll one block, 2 pieces of candy – roll 2 blocks, 3 pieces of candy – roll 3 blocks, more than 3 pieces of candy – still you roll 3 blocks as that is the maximum number of blocks.

Several circles can be playing at one time. I suggest having a teen leader or adult volunteer supervise each circle of players. The game ends when only one person has any candy left and the last two players with candy have rolled a final time. The person ending up with the last piece of candy is then allowed to take all the candy from the center of the circle and distribute it to all the players. With little ones, sometimes a small talk on sharing is needed!

Reprinted from Ohio 4-H Cloverbud Connections – Spring 2004 Edition.

Author – Barbara Phares, Former Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development, Ohio State University Extension, Mercer County, Ohio