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My dd wanted to do Girl Scouts-which would have been Daisies for her-but for many reasons, I have decided not to let her. But.. There is a 4H group in town with a few homeschoolers, and I did some research and was pretty impressed. I guess I didn't realize all that 4H is involved in, the philosophies, etc.. Anyway, my dd will be 7 in March, and ds will be 5 this month. Anyone out there have younger kids in 4H, and if so, what has your experience been? I want to know if it's worth adding to our schedule. :001_smile:


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We tried 4H this year only to discover that there isn't really anything for the "Cloverbuds" (this age group). I was really disappointed. According to our Ag rep, there is no formal program for them, no books they can work through, nothing. I still don't know why I paid three dollars for her membership. My older daughter was disappointed and bored and my little one (7) was thoroughly confused. She couldn't figure out why I had dragged her there. And to top it off, my older one still hasn't received her project book and it's been three months. We figured God was trying to tell us something and dropped out.:glare:



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We are a 4-H family, and though out daughter is older than yours (she's 11) there are two kids your dd's age in our club. They do EVERYTHING that the older kids do (it's a dog club) and other than being a bit younger, there is no difference. They participate in all activites, the fair, meetings, etc. I don't know whether this is the norm or not, but we cannot say enough good things about our club and the life lessons our dd has learned by being a part of it .



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It depends on the club you join. We are in a new club in our area, and my DD8 is loving it. She is building a bat house and entering a photo at the fair in our county in February. She loves animals, and the club brings in animals and people to talk about animals at the meetings. We don't own animals (other than a dog lol), but there is so much more to the fair than animals in our area. They are volunteer oriented, and they find places that even the little guys can volunteer at (nursing homes, cooking for Ronald McDonald house, and so on). Our younger kids are 3 and 5 (not in Kindy), and are not clover kids, but they still enjoy the meetings and get to help with some of the projects. Find a club in your area that is active and is family oriented rather than just focused on the annual event. Many areas have a couple of places for clover kids (younger ones) to enter shows.


For us it is not really a huge commitment. We go to one meeting a month for 2 hours, the fair will keep us busy in Jan and early Feb (it would be less crazy if we had started on projects earlier in the year :001_smile:), and then there are volunteer opportunities that we can choose to participate in. If you show animals there are more opportunities to do so, but you can choose how active you wish to be.


Have fun!

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Hi! I have younger kids in 4-H or the Cloverkid program. In fact, I have taken over as leader of the Clover kids. We are in the homeschool group. Our meetings start off with the older and younger kids together doing an activity. Then we go off to seperate meetings. Last month we did a Thanksgiving craft and learned some history. After that the older and younger kids get together again until the end of the meeting time.


Our Clover kids can participate in the county fair and they have other things throughout the year for the Clover kids to do also. I guess it really depends on your state or county. The first Clover kid group we joined was pretty much a waiting room until they could get into 4H. They did a project that lasted about 30 minutes, really didn't socialize and then left. We joined the home school group and have had a different experience. The leader of the group doesn't have much time to devote to both the 4h'rs and the Clover Kids so I'm taking over. I'm really excited and plan to go through the 4 H's and talk about what they mean in our lives, etc... and do activities based on that.


Good Luck!



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It really depends on the individual club. Ours has a huge group of Cloverbuds and they do a lot of activities. My girls have done cooking, handcrafts, leather working, science, dance, plants, pets, arts and crafts, and more. We meet once a month and have projects all day, with a break for lunch in the middle. Every other month we have a potluck and party. We enjoy 4-H very much, but as I said, it depends on the particular club, whether they have many activities for the younger kids.

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My daughter is in a Cloverbuds group this year for the first time. She is one of the oldest, if not the oldest girls in the group. This is a lifestyles club that works on sewing and other crafting skills. The older group in my area is made up of mostly junior high girls and we didn't feel it would be a good fit for our 9 yo.


Honestly, my daughter's group does a lot. The leaders are very creative women who put lots of time and effort into the group. My biggest complaint is the expense. By the time the year ends I will have spent nearly $300 for supplies for the craft projects they do. I know this is not typical for a group, but I wish they could still put out good quality projects for less money. I have no idea where families get this kind of money to spend just on 4-H. I have had to pay my first semester in monthly installments because it was so outrageous for my family. Again, I am pretty sure this is highly unusual for a 4-H group. You would have to call your cooperative extension office to find a group. Ask the leader a lot of questions.


My oldest daughter is in a 4-H horse club, and she doesn't pay anything except for the $25 registration fee charged by the CE office.


I am glad we joined the group. Carolyn is getting a lot out of it and enjoys the projects.



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Our family joined 4H for the first time last fall. We live in Wisconsin.


Our 14 year old is a "regular member". Our 9 year old is an "Explorer". Our 7 year old is a "Cloverbud". The group we joined is family-oriented, so our entire family attends the monthly meetings. Our 5 year old thinks he is a "Sprout" and the 3 year old also thinks she is a member. ;) During the meetings, the little children sit with my husband and I off to the side.


Our Cloverbud was given an activity book to work in, courtesy of the UW-Extension. She could complete it and enter pages in the fair, or just keep it for her own enjoyment. The UWEX gave the same book to our Explorer *and* our "Sprout". :)


Our Cloverbud was able to enter items in the County Fair. Every Cloverbud received a green ribbon for each entry, as well as a small trophy. Her entry (she only did one for our first year) was "judged" by a high school-aged 4-H Member from another club who was very encouraging and positive. This helped to give her an initial experience with judging without any actual critique.


As for scheduling, our club (like most) meets once per month. It is very easy for us to commit to that. Our goal for this year is to complete one fair project per month and the children can then choose which projects they actually want to enter later.


Project books, if not readily available through your club, can be purchased online at http://www.4-hmall.org/ very affordably. Our UWEX provides free project books for many topics. We borrow them, glean from them and return them for another family to use. In our county, if not in the entire state, you are not required to follow the format of a project book.


Occassionally, there is a separate activity for Cloverbuds in our group. I prefer that our daughter stay in the regular meeting, but if a separate activity is planned, we let her go. They are always in the same building, but in a different room, led by another Cloverbud mom.


Your local UWEX office might be able to share which local groups would be a good fit for you. You can ask about groups that share your interests, have a good number of Cloverbuds, are primarily made up of homeschoolers or whatever deciding factor you may choose. We are the only homeschoolers in our group, but that has not been a factor.

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4 H has so many options. We enjoyed it for a few years until the group wasn't working for us. We are now going to try it again. I really liked the oral presentations. My dc started at 5 and 7. They learned so much and are not afraid to put together and give oral presentations.

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We love the 4-H projects. They can be done on your own as well though and it then depends on what you put into it.

My daughter does 3 projects a year. We keep trying to cut it down but have not been successful. She is 9 now. Last year she was in 2 different groups and was the secr. for one group and news reporter for the other group.

Great oppurtunities can be learned from being in these sort of group settings BUT it really depends. If you do not like the one group try for another, or start your own.

Our one group meets year round and it is a mix of homeschoolers and public schoolers. It is a general group so we have kids doing animal, sewing, cooking, photography, etc.

Our other group is a dog group where we train and work with our chosen dogs.

My 4 year old always accompanies us and "says" he is in 4-H as well but will not be a cloverbud for a bit yet.

My daughter has earned3 Grand CHampion ribbons and certificates for her projects last year. She worked very hard for them and they covered quite of bit of her extra schooling as well.

Again though, if you do not find a group that you like you can always start one of your own. We are actually dropping Girl Scouts next year(due to their new program choices) and sticking with just 4-H.

Our yearly cost for 4-H is $10.00 for registration. Then if we want to do a socal activity like rollerskating with our group, the 4-H group will nomrally pay some and we pay the remaining fee. We did do a bake sale for fundraising for the group that helped but again, then we had supplies from parents for baking but I did not add that up.

Good luck,


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Thanks for all of your great feedback! I did contact the person in charge of our group, as well as a hs mom who has her kids involved, and it sounds great. The best thing is, the meeting is about 3min from our house! For once we don't have to travel forever to get to something good.:001_smile::001_smile:


We're going for the first time tonight, and it's going to be at a local nursing home; the kids are going to make crafts to leave with the residents, as well as sing some carols. I'm thrilled!

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