NORTH STRATFORD — Coos County 4-H, County Activities Day, considered one of the biggest events for 4-H all year, will be held on Saturday, April 1, starting at 9 a.m. at the Stratford Public School, where members will share their experience and knowledge with others.
Formally known as Demonstration Day, 4-H County Activities Day is designed to provide 4-H members with an opportunity to share with the public, their project work in a friendly, supportive atmosphere. At the same time members can gain valuable experience in a public speaking situation. It is an opportunity for them to focus on life skills like communication and understanding self.
Another purpose of the day is to select those 4-H members who will represent Coos County at State Activities Day on May 20. At State Activities Day, Coos County members will compete with 4-H members from the other nine counties in New Hampshire.
According to a release submitted by the UNH Cooperative Extension, it is a real challenge to capture one of the limited spots and for those who succeed, it is a tremendously prestigious honor. At State Activities Day some will be selected to advance on to the Eastern States Exposition in September.
4-H members may participate in County Activities Day several ways. There are opportunities for youth to show off their creative and artistic talents through the poster, photography and FLIX video contests. Members also give oral presentations in the form of public speaking, illustrated talk, demonstrations, and action exhibits. Public Speaking is a presentation of a speech written by the participant, given from memory, notes, or outline, using index cards as a possible aid. No visual or audio aids are used. An illustrated talk communicates ideas with the aid of charts, posters, slides, flannel graph, or chalkboard. The object discussed is not used, only pictures, or other representation of it.
A demonstration shows how to make something, how to perform a skill, how to repair something, or how something works. In this method, the subject (animals, machine, clothing, musical instrument, or model) is used in the presentation. An action exhibit is an interactive presentation which involves the audience in the presentation process. Like a demonstration, in an action exhibit the 4-H members demonstrate a skill, show how to make or repair something, or they show how and why something works. Real objects are used. Unlike a demonstration, as the action exhibit presentation unfolds the audience asks questions and interacts with the presenter; the audience may even try the skill themselves.
Because the whole process is shown, action exhibits may last up to 45 minutes each. New this year will be the Mouse Trap Car Challenge. This contest began with youth building a mouse trap powered car in their 4-H project or school settings. The youth then bring the car to County Activities Day where they will compete in a distance challenge.
County Activities Day is made possible with the youth and adult volunteers who help to conduct the logistically challenging day by serving as judges, room monitors, and in other capacities. The Stratford School PAWS group will be offering healthy food options for sale for those not wanting to bring their own lunch. All proceeds will help support their community service effort in providing for the Backpack Program.