Schools might be closed, but a new program from Clemson Cooperative Extension is helping the learning continue in every South Carolina county, 25 U.S. states and even internationally.
The 4-H @ Home program offers free, daily educational activities via email that can be completed using common household materials with lessons designed for elementary, middle and high school students. Hosted by S.C. 4-H Midlands Region, the program is open to young people ages 5-18 regardless of location or 4-H membership status.
As parents and guardians seek options for keeping young people busy and engaged in learning, the program has been a big hit in its early stages. Since it began on March 16, more than 1,570 youth from all 46 South Carolina counties and 25 U.S. states have signed up — and the program has even crossed the border into Mexico.
“This opportunity was born out of necessity as we lost the opportunity to teach kids where they are. Our Extension agents all over the state are now working on lessons to be sent out,” said Pam Ardern, S.C. 4-H Youth Development director. “While the Midland agents started with the idea of offering two weeks’ worth of educational opportunities, the reality is that they will need much more than that.”
Young people can register for the program here and, after having registered, will be added to an email list that will receive daily lessons each weekday through at least April 15. While the lessons are designed to be based around items around the household, some may require internet access.
Topics covered will include: Animals and Agriculture, Healthy Lifestyles, Civic Engagement and Leadership, Natural Resources, and Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM).
“We are aiming for each lesson to be at least 30 minutes,” Ardern said. “Our goal is for them to be able to use items found at home without having to go to the store, and to do the activity without congregating in groups.”
Students may also share their daily photos using the hashtag #SC4HatHome for a chance to win a free 4-H Membership and prize pack. Those without social media may enter by sending photos to Lauren Venegas at LBlack4@clemson.edu. Prizes will be given weekly.
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