Tuesday, March 31, 2015
March & April Learning: Future Farmers?
The kids have participated in several county fairs in the past, in multiple counties, and the Hamilton County program is definitely a rockstar program. The kids spend several months in the spring, one Sunday a month, learning about caring for baby animals, showmanship, and doing activities. In June they'll bring their animals to the fairgrounds for a practice run, and in July they'll take the lambs to the fairgrounds for the week, practice herdsmanship (keeping the pens clean), and finally participate in the show for an audience and judges. They keep a record book of the experience from year to year, answer questions about their animals in front of the crowd, and lead them around the ring. The physical labor of washing, shearing, and walking the sheep, combined with the literacy skills (spoken and written) involved with documenting and showcasing their projects are life-long skills that I'm so excited to see them applying.
Now don't get me wrong, I don't actually touch the animals, but I like to help make their books more interesting with video inserts and QR codes... Oh! And I bought R and her sheep matching hair bows, and bedazzled her halter. Next year R will get to participate in 4H (if she wants), but Hamilton County has definitely done a good job of bringing a small taste of the true 4H process to the bottle animal classes!
Did you participate in 4H/FFA programs? Will or do your kids? What are some of your favorite memories?