SPRINGFIELD, Ohio -- For many kids, 4-H is a building block of success throughout their lifetimes.
That’s the focus of this year’s locally produced special on 4-H, “4-H Elements,” to air at 7 p.m. on Thursday, July 17, on Dayton’s WHIO-TV.
“I created, with the help of some 4-H volunteers, a ‘4-H Periodic Table of Elements’ for the show”, said Patty House, 4-H Youth Development educator in Clark County for Ohio State University Extension. But instead of carbon and oxygen, House’s table includes elements such as fun, knowledge, leadership and community.
OSU Extension is the outreach arm of Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.
House, who has worked with WHIO-TV on the annual special since it started six years ago, said the show will air this year before the Clark County Fair, July 18-24. In the past, it ran near the end of fair week.
“Originally, the whole idea for the show began when state Sen. Chris Widener talked with me and Channel 7 about doing a show on the fair’s Sale of Champions,” House said. At the time, Widener was a state representative serving Springfield and Clark County. “I suggested we focus more on the depth and breadth of what 4-H has to offer, and after meeting with the television station and the local fair board, we put the show together.”
This year, everyone agreed it made more sense to air the program before the fair began instead of just before the fair ended, she said.
This year’s show will feature:
- The 4-H Fish Farm Challenge, about how 4-H is working to teach STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) skills needed to help address the need for agricultural innovations to feed a burgeoning world population in the coming decades.
- An update on former 4-H member Kati Stevens, who was featured in the first 4-H special in which she talked about her dream of becoming a veterinarian. She is now entering her second year of veterinary school at Ohio State.
- A story on 4-H woodworking that focuses on how such projects help young people learn about precision and doing things the right way -- skills that help prepare them for the workforce. “It’s a good illustration of how all families can find out what interests their kids and can match up those interests with a project in 4-H,” House said.
- This year’s Clark County 4-H camp theme, “Camp-tomic Bonds,” and how 4-H mixes teaching scientific concepts with fun. “Kids don’t even realize they’re learning about science at camp,” House said.
- A family helping their 4-H member prepare to show animals at the fair. “The focus is on family, quality animal care, and teaching children responsibility and sportsmanship,” House said. “It’s about 4-H building champion kids, not necessarily champion animals.”
“Even though the show is about Clark County 4-H for the most part, it’s a nice representation of what 4-H is all about all across the state,” she said.
WHIO-TV is owned by the Cox Media Group and is the Miami Valley’s CBS affiliate. Its coverage area includes 22 counties and stretches into Indiana, House said.