4-H program puts teens in classroom with primary students

Special to the News Tribune
Emma Hesse shakes cream to form butter, learning what happens when molecules are agitated, as part of the agriculture science project with 4-H Teen Leaders.

MINERAL COUNTY - Mineral County 4-H Teen Leaders enjoyed teaching and leading hands-on agriculture science activities recently with third and fourth grade students at Frankfort Intermediate School and New Creek School.

The students learned about seed germination and how butter is made.

During a 4-H Teen Leader weekend camp at WVU Jackson’s Mill, 22 4-Hers were trained as Mineral 4-H Ag STEM Ambassadors to prepare them to teach hands-on science activities with school classes, 4-H clubs and other groups throughout the 2021-22 school year.

The Keyser 4-H Teen Leader team recently taught some hands-on agriculture lessons to third and fourth grade students at New Creek School. Pictured are: Riley Staggs, Helen McCarty, Seth Earnest, Audrey Williams and Gracie Moncrief.

“Many youths today don’t understand the vital connection between agriculture and their everyday life. The 4-H Teen Leaders are doing an amazing job of bridging that gap and ‘planting the seed’ of agriculture education,” stated Stacey Huffman, WVU Extension Agriculture agent.

“This was a great experience not only for us to teach kids about agriculture, but hopefully get the next generation excited about 4-H and FFA in the future,” says Helen McCarty, 4-H Teen Leader. These trained 4-H teen leaders plan to reach all third and fourth grade students in Mineral County this winter.

The Frankfort 4-H Teen Leader team recently shared some agriculture-related hands-on lessons to fourth grade students at Frankfort Intermediate School. Pictured are: (front, l-r) Katie Miltenberger, (standing) Candra DelSignore, 4-H program assistant; Natalie Kyle, Morgan Cowgill and Megan Weaver.

“Each time we train older 4-H members on a topic – health, agriculture, team building, hands-on science - I am always so impressed with the outcome. The 4-H teen leaders gain confidence with each program and the youth participants are very engaged,” says Margaret Miltenberger, WVU Mineral County 4-H agent.

Funding for the training was made possible through a grant with the Community Trust Foundation Inc., which connects philanthropy for community good. The mission of CTF is to strengthen the region by working in partnership with donors and community groups. To learn more about CTF visit https://ctfinc.org.

The West Virginia University Extension Service 4-H program is open to all youths. If you are interested in learning more about 4-H and joining a local club contact the Mineral County office at 304-788-3621 or email m.miltenberger@mail.wvu.edu.