Learning by doing in an atmosphere where learning is fun is a basic philosophy of 4-H. The project is where learning by doing takes place. Within the project, members find things to learn, things to do, things to make, and things to explore. A 4-H project is:
- Planned work in an area of interest to the 4-H member.
- Guided by a volunteer who is the project leader.
- Aimed at planned objectives that can be attained and measured.
- Summarized by some form of record keeping.
Each year a 4-H member takes at least one project. With their project leader and parents as consultants, members should select a project that will be a challenge, but not one that is larger than they can handle. Any project a 4-H member selects should be based on:
- Their interests, needs, and time available.
- Their family situation.
- Suitability to the area in which they live.
- The availability of necessary tools and equipment.
A 4-H project is supervised by the project leader with the help of the member’s parents, but it is the 4-H member who does the work.
Some projects (raising plants and animals) involve the production of items potentially for sale. Where this is the case, a business agreement should be established between the 4-H member and his or her parents.
Some project groups meet once a week. Others meet once or twice a month. The purpose of these meetings is to guide the members in gaining knowledge, attitudes, skills, and habits needed to complete their work successfully.
Leader guides, reports, and records are available free to 4-H members for most projects. The volunteer who leads the project will obtain these for the 4-H members. 4-H record forms help the members keep track of their progress and accomplishments in their activities.
What projects (learning activities) are available?
Each county has a variety of projects to offer. And each club will offer projects according to the leadership that is available to that club. However, if a project is not available in a home club, a member may be able to take it from another club if there is room.