Hopping Into Spring With Some Fun Activities!

As we begin to feel hints of warmer weather, we are all starting to see the signs of spring!  Here are some activities you can do at home, at club meetings, or even virtually.

Spring Scavenger Hunt

Make a list of things that your child can find outside or items that remind you of spring.  Send that list to your youth and challenge them to go on a nature walk around their neighborhood and find these items.  They can bring their favorite or most unique item to a club meeting in person or virtually to talk about what they found and what they like about it.

Potato Stamp Pictures.

Take a potato and cut it in half (an adult can help with this).  Then cut an in indented fun spring shape in each half i.e., a flower, a tree, leaf, star or any fun shape.  Then dip the potato into paint and make a fun picture onto  paper.  Youth can do this virtually as an activity or in person, everyone has their own potato and can throw it away when they are done.

Learning Egg Hunt

Get some plastic eggs and in each plastic egg put a question about 4-H, the project area your Cloverbud is interested in, or even a fun spring question. Examples: what is the 4-H motto, what season comes after winter etc.  Along with the question, put in a prewrapped piece of candy or a goody (be aware of any food allergies that your Cloverbuds may have). Now send your Cloverbud on a hunt for the eggs.  Have everyone meet back in the group and read their question. They cannot have their goody until they answer their question correctly.  In 4-H we like to help others, so they can get help from the group. The objective of this activity is to assist them to learn in a fun way.  If you are meeting virtually, have the guardian/parent prepare the plastic eggs with the question you provide.  Give the youth 5 minutes to collect the eggs. Then have youth take turns reading their questions to the group and answering them, again with help from the group if needed.

Spring Story Time

Ask each child to share their favorite spring books. For those that would like to read, have them read their story to the group.  A fun spring book is the Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. An extra activity is to challenge your youth to find a caterpillar and watch its evolution to a butterfly.  Youth can talk about what they observed at the next meeting.  For a snack, make a hungry caterpillar with apple slices for the body, a cherry tomato or strawberry for the face, raisins for the eyes and fruit roll ups or the legs and antennas.

Another book about spring is The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle.  Encourage youth to get some seeds to plant in a cup or do this at a club meeting, (even just grass seeds) and watch them grow.  Other books about spring include: Goodbye Winter. Hello Spring by Kenard Pak, Spring is Here: A Bear and Mole Story by Will Hillenbrand, Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt by Kate Messner, and The Hike by Alison Farrell.

Paper Plate Animals

Use paper plates and construction paper to make a rooster, sheep, or rabbit. You can use your imagination to make other animals, too. For the rooster, fold your plate in half.  Cut out a comb and wattle from red construction paper (or color white paper with a red crayon) and a beak from yellow paper (or color white paper yellow).  Glue on a googly eye or just use a black marker or crayon to make an eye.  Have youth google why roosters have wattles? 

To make a sheep: Fleece is made out of cotton balls you glue onto the plate. Cut out a face and ears with black construction paper or color white paper. Finally cut out eyes to glue on the face. Have youth google why do sheep have fleece?

You can even make a rabbit with cotton for the fur.  Make eyes, nose and whiskers with construction paper or color white paper.  Have the youth google why do rabbits have whiskers?

Crack Some Fun Spring Jokes                                                                                                                                                                                        

Q: Can February March?

A: No, but April May!

Q: What season is it when you are on trampoline?

A: Spring time!

Q:What flowers grow on faces?

A: Tulips

Q: How excited was the gardener about his plants?

A: So excited he wet his plants!

Q: Name bow that can’t be tied

A: Rainbow

Take some time and do something fun outside.  Enjoy the warmer weather!

4-H Healthy Living: Are We Practicing What We Pledge?

With health as the 4th H and with a variety of healthy living projects, 4-H as an organization recognizes the importance of promoting and establishing healthy habits for its members. However, some aspects of 4-H have yet to embrace health promotion.
In 2016, a survey study was conducted to 4-H club leaders about club practices related health. The survey results below showed that although some practices align with health recommendations, the majority of 4-H clubs surveyed were not serving healthy foods and beverages nor allowing time for physical activity during club meetings.

Results:
• Over 90% of clubs served water and not quite half served 100% fruit juice (45.6%), but other beverage offerings included fruit-flavored drinks such as Kool Aid (50.5%), artificially sweetened fruit juice (36.9%), and soda (33.3%).
• Cookies and baked snacks were the top food items served at club meetings; fruit was the third most served food item, followed by chips and pizza.
• A majority of clubs (59%) hold fundraisers involving food items; top items sold were baked goods, pizza, and candy bars.
• Only two-fifths of clubs always and less than half sometimes allotted time for physical activity.
• Club leaders identified limited time, lack of interest, lack of space, and physical disabilities of club members and leaders as challenges to implementing healthy living activities.

4-H volunteers have the opportunity to help children meet guidelines for physical activity and healthy eating by regularly incorporating healthy living activities into 4-H club meetings. For example, to increase physical activity, try including active movements into already existing activities such as icebreakers and roll call. Try to keep MyPlate in mind by including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and unsweetened beverages as snacks during meetings. Finally, consider taking the 4th H for Health Challenge to jump start your club’s journey to healthier meetings.