For some Warren County youth, their summer was filled with science fun, thanks to the 4-H summer science program. Every year the 4-H program offers fun, hands-on activities to different child care providers throughout the county. This year's theme was Robotics and Engineering. Youth in grades kindergarten through six were able to take part in numerous activities that taught them to use problem solving and reasoning skills to design and test ideas. The 4-H summer program ran from June through August, and averaged 120 kids a week.
Over the weeks, the youth were engaged in activities that required them to design, build, and test a plan they developed. After testing their plan, they could go back and redesign it to get it working better. With each activity, the youth learned how to collect data and interpret their findings. The participatns had a chance to build catapults, windmills, blades for wind turbines, and work with robots. The youth participated in the National 4-H Science Experiment by making 'Eco-Bots' and designing a control area for their robots to clean up a simulated oil spill. The youth also had a chance to work with Lego Education WeDo sets, where they constructed a Lego robot and learned how to program it.
Many locations participated in the 4-H summer science program, including Rouse Children Center, Jefferson DeFrees Family Center, the YMCA, Cobham Youth, and Grace Summer Camp.
Construction of a simple machine showed Jefferson DeFrees participants: Lexie, Clarissa, and Chloe (left to right) how gears, pulleys and levers combine to accomplish work.
There is still an opportunity for youth to check out some of the 4-H Engineering projects at the Warren County Fair. Youth between the ages of 8-18 can stop by the 4-H center on, the Warren County Fairgrounds, Wednesday, August 8 to participate in the National 4-H Science Experiment. Youth will make their own Eco-Bots and control area, and learn how robots can help us keep our environment clean and safe. On Thursday, August 9, the WeDo and NXT Mindstorm Lego robots will be available for kids to work with and program. The sets teach how robots can work with many features and be programmed to do work. The activities will start at 1pm on both days at the 4-H Center, and are available to the first 30 youth.
The 4-H program is a youth development program of Penn State Cooperative Extension.