Professional Development

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Updated: May 8, 2023

Empowering Volunteers to Incorporate Workforce Readiness into 4-H Programs (FS-2022-0628)

4-H volunteers play a key role in helping youth with college and workforce preparation because they regularly create educational experiences that foster the development of life skills such as time management, responsibility, leadership, and teamwork. Authors: Ashley Travis, Jessica Mellon, Vernelle Mitchell-Hawkins, Chris Rein, Beckey Ridgeway, Mark DeMorra, and Thomas Hutson; Title: Empowering Volunteers to Incorporate Workforce Readiness into 4-H Programs (FS-2022-0628)
Updated: May 31, 2022

Educational Planning Tools and Methods for Extension Educators (FS-1195)

Extension Educators have been delivering research-based content to the community for over a century. These informal learning experiences for youth and adults are designed to be relevant, timely and age appropriate. Educators are considered experts in their respective content area and the community depends on their knowledge. Preparation for learning experiences is important for extension educators. The time and care that is taken align to University goals and meet intended learning objectives can make a difference in the amount of skills attained by learners. The tools presented in this document are designed to help the extension educator make written plans for single workshops, multi-session workshops, seminars, and short courses. The tools are intended to be easy to use across program areas and encourages efficient teaching. Author: Vernelle Mitchell Hawkins; Title: Planning Tools and Methods for Extension Educators (FS-1195).
Updated: May 19, 2022

Strategies for 4-H Youth Development Educators on Outreach Programming (FS-927)

There are a number of key strategies to successfully expand and sustain 4-H outreach programs. These strategies include (1) assessment and planning, (2) quality youth development training for facilitators, (3) participant recruitment, (4) quality program delivery, (5) sustainable partnerships, and (6) evaluation. This fact sheet will provide an overview of these six strategies and resources to begin your 4-H program outreach. Author: Dr. Nia Imani Fileds;Title: Strategies for 4-H Youth Development Educators on Outreach Programming (FS-927)
Updated: May 19, 2022

Developing Extension Lesson Plans: Using a 4-H Youth Development Lesson Plan Template to Strengthen the Rigor and Quality of Research-based 4-H Programs (FS-1060)

4-H Youth Development educators use a variety of program education models to engage youth and volunteers in experiential learning. 4-H educators often develop and/or adapt research-based lessons and curricula to facilitate youth development programs. The use of a standardized lesson template can enhance consistency and increase efficiency in delivering quality programs. Additionally, a peer review process can be used to increase the rigor and research-based content of University of Maryland Extension (UME) developed programs.  This resource is a support piece to assist educators through utilizing the UME lesson plan template and submitting their resource through the peer review process. Author: Dr. Nia Imani Fields; Title: Developing Extension Lesson Plans: Using a 4-H Youth Development Lesson Plan Template to Strengthen the Rigor and Quality of Research-based 4-H Programs (FS-1060)
Updated: April 28, 2021

Planning and Facilitating a 4-H Public Speaking Workshop

Maryland 4-H Youth Development programs incorporate experiential learning opportunities that promote development of life skills including communication/public speaking. This fact sheet provides a framework for planning and facilitating a public speaking workshop and includes suggested learning activities that can be adapted for various youth audiences.
Updated: April 20, 2021

Speaking of Appreciation: Ways to Incorporate Informal Recognition into Your Program

Volunteer recognition is one of the seven steps to volunteer administration according to the ISOTURE Model. It is often an overlooked aspect of volunteer development, but can play an important role in creating a sense of belonging in volunteers and a culture of appreciation in your program. This factsheet using The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Work Place to identify ways to help professionals and others show appreciation to volunteers.
Updated: March 29, 2021

Helping Your Child Become Money Smart (FS-962)

Children, teens, and young adults learn their money management skills from a variety of sources, such as school, media, and peers. But parents have the greatest influence on their children’s financial decisions. In fact, 56 percent of young adults say they rely on their parents for financial guidance. Money management must be learned and practiced. It’s important for children to learn about the value of money before they actually have any. Start early in your child’s life to instill habits and build on them as your child grows and learns.
Updated: March 29, 2021

Public Speaking - Making a Great Speech

Public speaking is one of the top fears of adults within the U.S. It is also one of the best life skills youth can gain during their time in 4-H. Participating in the Maryland 4-H Public Speaking contest is a great way to practice this skill. This guidebook provides youth with an overview of the Maryland 4-H Public Speaking Contest and worksheets to use when developing their speeches.
Updated: January 26, 2021

Preparing 4-Hers for Interview Success

Interviewing can be intimidating and stressful but teaching 4-Hers essential skills in this area will help them be successful. This publication provides youth development professionals with a resource when teaching 4-Hers about interviewing for teen leadership positions, Out of State trip interviews, and employment. Additionally, this publication can be a tool directly provided to 4-H youth who are planning to interview.