by aschortinghouse | Oct 12, 2022
Figure One. The Experiential Learning Model. (Experiential Learning Model, 2022)
“Hands-on,” and “learn by doing” are terms you often hear in 4-H and they both refer to the Experiential Learning Model, which is the instructional strategy we use in 4-H programs. The hands-on experiences that 4-H is known for offer youth the chance to engage all their senses in the learning process. One of the prevalent models guiding hands-on experience design is the experiential learning model (Experiential Learning Model, 2022). Figure one illustrates this model, highlighting the three notable stages of doing, reflecting, and applying which serve as the core of the model. While the hands-on experience is critical, it is also important to remember that reflection and a focus on how to apply what was learned are also necessary for a compelling experience to result in impactful learning outcomes.
Designing for Experiential Learning
When designing programs, it is important to keep in mind that leaders must intentionally foster experiential learning through the careful planning and execution of programs. Three tips to keep in mind are:
- Build in Time – While this may seem obvious, it is important to keep in mind that time needs to be built into the program to allow for a thorough exploration of an experience, the reflection, and the application phases. The amount of time needed will likely vary with the experience and how many youth are involved. While the experience generally takes up the most time, be sure to reserve time for reflection activities. It is through the intentional carving out of time that it is possible to foster the whole of the experiential learning process. Ten to fifteen minutes for a reflection activity should be sufficient.
- Identify a Leader – Identify an individual to take point with each section or activity that is planned. This will help relieve some of the pressure and will allow for focused efforts on each section. When considering the reflection stage, it is important to identify an individual who will be able to facilitate the process in a meaningful way. Specifically, someone who will be able to ask unassuming questions and will be able to respond to the information shared, and relate it to the experience and application stages.
- Mix it Up – Utilize a variety of different activities to facilitate sharing and reflection. Reflection activities may be anything from using a thumb ball with specific questions passed around to free-form conversation as participants feel comfortable in contributing.
Experiential learning is easier with practice, but we have several resources to help!
- Florida 4-H Experiential Learning Cards are a handy reference tool that include questions you can ask youth for each step of “do-reflect-apply” to help them process the activity. Once you have done this a few times, it will come naturally and you won’t need to refer to the cards, but these are helpful if you are new to this teaching strategy.
- Participate in a workshop! Both online and in-person workshops are available for volunteers who want to learn more!
- California 4-H has developed an excellent website with tip sheets, resources, and even an online module to learn and practice experiential learning. They have a toolbox to support volunteers and 4-H professionals- it is all free and you don’t have to register to use the tools!
- During our Northwest 4-H Volunteer Forum, January 20-21, we will have a guest speaker who will lead us all in a workshop on experiential learning! If you would like to attend, registration opens in 4Honline on October 15th.
Norman & Jordan, 2019)
The experiential learning process is broad and well-covered in studies and educational design. If you are interested in learning more, check out the resources referenced in the article below.
by aschortinghouse | May 13, 2022
Youth from across north Florida gathered to compete at the 2022 Area
2022 Area North High Point Division Winners bridle bags.
North Horse Show in Clay County. Area shows take place throughout the state and serve as a qualifying show for the state show which takes place this summer. This is not just another horse show though, these 4-H Area shows are unique in that these shows are just one part of the larger project these youth are involved in. At the beginning of each year, youth declare which horses they will be working with. They are then responsible for working with their horses to learn more about equine sciences and to prepare for the various show and project opportunities such as workshops and shows. At the 2022 Area show, youth had the opportunity to participate in various disciplines including western, hunter, speed, and ranch divisions. Youth were eligible to earn ribbons, high points, and versatility awards. What youth are achieving inside the arena is second to that of what is being developed in our youth outside the arena.
Outside the Arena
2022 Area North Horse Show Sportsmanship award winner.
2022 Area North Volunteer of the Year.
In addition to the competition in the arena, youth and volunteers are recognized for their efforts outside the arena with various awards such as the sportsmanship and volunteer of the year awards. Horse projects and shows offer youth a chance to develop life skills, while loosing themselves in the magic of a horse. Horses demand responsibility, decision making, communication, among many other life skills. While some youth will be recognized for their success with ribbons, all of our youth are building skills that will carry them throughout their lifetimes. All of this though is not possible without the support and tireless effort put in by our volunteers. Thank you to all of our volunteers who made this even possible and congratulations to our 2022 volunteer of the year!
Congratulations to all the youth who competed and qualified for the State 4-H Horse Show later this year. To see a full list of qualifiers, click here. If you want to learn more about how you can get involved!
by aschortinghouse | Mar 11, 2022
In 2022, there have been some shifts in the area to state horse show qualification guidelines. In years past youth have an assigned area horse show they must participate in through which they can qualify for the state horse show. Due to a couple of areas being unable to host their shows for various reasons, the two remaining area shows have been opened up to accommodate the qualifying process. As such, there are new guidelines and stipulations everyone should be aware of.
4-H Youth participating at Area Horse Show.
- For the 2022 show year only, a 4-H member may elect to show at any Area show of their choice to qualify for the state show. Ideally, youth will select to compete in their own area show first, as this is the most convenient to them.
- Qualification for the state show is based on the participation and qualification at the Area level.
This complex process is new for this year, so if you plan to show at the Area North Show, we recommend reading the 2022 plan passed out by the state thoroughly. That plan can be found here: https://animal.ifas.ufl.edu/extension/youth/horse/4h-shows/area-shows/.
The Area North Show is held in Green Cove Springs, Florida at the Clay County Fairgrounds. Show dates for 2022, are April 29-30. If you have any questions or concerns about these changes, please follow up with your 4-H agent, so that any questions can be addressed before the close of Area North Horse Show registration on April 1, 2022.
by aschortinghouse | Jan 15, 2022
While the Florida 4-H Horse Program is
4-H Youth participating at Area Horse Show.
composed of many opportunities, one of the most well-known opportunities is the Area and State horse shows. Each county in Florida is assigned to a specific Area, which hosts shows as a qualifier to the state show. Area North encompasses the whole of north Florida stretching from the panhandle to the coast down to Alachua. Below is some key information and important dates for the 2022 Area North show year.
- March 14 – April 1: Area North Registration, no late entries are accepted
- April 12, 5:30 CST/6:30 pm EST: Horse Show Virtual Prep Night on Zoom
- April 29 – 30: Area North Horse Show, Green Cove Springs, FL
- July 6 – 9: State Horse Show, Tampa, FL
Key Changes for the 2022 Horse Show
- Multi Horse Projects & Showing. All youth may now show multiple horses even at the State level. All horses must be certified project horses by Jan 1. Each rider/horse combo will be scored as a unit for points. No horse or rider may enter the same class as multiple entries.
- Walk Trot is coming to Area North! All walk trot classes are non-point classes. Youth may only compete in walk trot classes for two years- per horse/rider combination. Exhibitors entered in a walk trot class may not cross over into any loping or cantering class. If a walk trot exhibitor qualifies for the State 4-H Horse Show with points from in-hand classes, the exhibitor’s county 4-H agent will need to approve their advancement to the State 4-H Horse Show. Walk trot exhibitors will only be eligible to enter in-hand classes at the State 4-H Horse Show.
- Dressage tests are now “test of choice”.
- Saddle Seat & Gaited division are now gone; however, these type horses can still be shown in comparable classes.
- Sportsmanship Award Continued!
- Introducing, the “Crew”! Crew is an opportunity for horseless or non-showing youth to still be involved in clinics and horse shows by offering their skills in organization, grooming, cheering, and more. Crews are by-county, and their specifics may vary.
- Record Books are a critical component of your horse program year. We have record books for both riding and non-riding participants. Seniors are encouraged to use the NEW SENIOR Horse Record Book, especially if they intend on applying for the Horseman of the Year Scholarship. Juniors and intermediates may use the existing version. Additionally, your county may have its own version. Check with your agent to complete this part of your program. To find out more visit: https://animal.ifas.ufl.edu/extension/youth/horse/horse-record-books/
To stay up to date with everything Area North, follow us on our Facebook page at UF IFAS Extension 4-H Area North Horse Program.
This blog was authored by the following individuals:
Kelsey Irvine, UF/IFAS Nassau County, 2022 Area North Chair
Allie Anderson, UF/IFAS St. Johns County, 2022 Area North Vice Chair
Aly Schortinghouse, UF/IFAS Escambia County
by aschortinghouse | Jul 14, 2021
Did you know the Florida 4-H Horse Program offers horse shows, horse judging, Hippology, public speaking, demonstrations, illustrated talks, quiz bowl, horsemanship schools, and even scholarships?
Youth at the 2019 Area North Horse Show in Clay County, FL on May 11, 2019.
September 1, 2021 starts the new 4-H year, and now is the time to get involved! The Florida 4-H Horse Program consists of all the programs mentioned above, and only a few of those events actually requires owning a horse. The horse program has something for everyone, and the best part is that you get involved with youth focused, horse loving community. Below, we will introduce you to each part of the program, but if you have more questions, be sure to reach out to your county agent. For this article, we will look at programs where you do not need to own or lease a horse, and programs where you do. So let’s get started!
Horseless Programs (No horse needs to be owned or leased)
Youth compete at the 2019 Area North Horse Show in Clay County, FL on May 11, 2019
About: In horse judging, youth are presented classes of horses, and they are asked to evaluate each class, place them, and present oral reasons. This competition teaches youth to look at horses and evaluate the based on both confirmation and function. To watch a short video outlining the details of the competition, click here.
February 2022: Florida State Fairy Horse Judging Contest, Tampa, Florida
March/Early April 2022: State 4-H and FFA Horse Judging Contest, Gainesville, Florida
For More information, please visit the UF 4-H Horse Judging Website.
About: Quiz bowl is a trivia style contest with both individual and team components. Topics range from practical hands on knowledge to horse industry knowledge. To learn more about these events, watch a short video here.
June 1, 2022 (not yet officially announced, but same as years past) – State Entry Deadline
June 2022- State 4-H Horse Quiz Bowl Contest, Gainesville, Florida
For More information, please visit the State 4-H Horse Demonstrations and Public Speaking.
About: Hippology includes all aspects of horse knowledge and covers topics ranging from judging to feedstuffs identification. Hippology includes practical horse management knowledge combining it with the experience and knowledge from all the other contests (Judging, quiz bowl, public speaking, etc.). To watch a short video outlining the details of the competition, click here.
March/Early April 2022 (not yet officially announced, but same as years past): State 4-H Contest, Gainesville, Florida
For More information, please visit the UF 4-H Hippology Website.
Public Speaking/Demonstrations/and Illustrated Talks
About: In these events, youth get to explore an area of interest as it relates to horses, then create a presentation to share it with others. These events have a county, district, and in some cases a state level. To learn more about these events, watch a short video here.
Most counties have a qualification process, that differs across the state. Check with your county agent for the specifics on the county and district qualifying events.
June 1, 2022 (not yet officially announced, but same as years past) – State Entry Deadline
June 2022- State 4-H Horse Demonstrations and Public Speaking Contest, Gainesville, Florida
For More information, please visit the State 4-H Horse Demonstrations and Public Speaking site.
About: The Florida 4-H Horse scholarship program aims to reward youth who are demonstrated an intense passion and advancement in the Florida 4-H Horse Program. These scholarships have their own specific requirements and awards. For More information, please visit the Florida 4-H Equine Scholarships Summary here.
To watch a short video outlining the details of the opportunities, click here.
June 1, 2022 (not yet officially announced, but same as years past) – Scholarship Applications are due
*Be sure to work closely with your county 4-H agent to ensure this process goes smoothly.
Project Horse Programs (A horse must be owned/leased by youth)
Area and State Horse Shows
Photo Credit: Julie Andrews Photography Youth at the 2019 Area North Horse Show in Clay County, FL on May 11, 2019.
About: Each year, Florida 4-H hosts Area Shows to qualify for the State 4-H Horse Show. To learn more about these shows watch this short video which introduces the Florida 4-H Horse Shows.
Important Dates and Information:
If you want to compete at your Area Horse Show, you need to be aware of the following items:
- December 31, 2021- The Florida 4-H Horse Certification Form should be submitted to the county 4-H on or before December 31, 2021 to qualify to pa
Youth displaying ribbon after placing in a horse show class at the 2022 Area North Horse Show.
rticipate in the Area North Horse Show and the State 4-H Horse show. This form must be completed each year, even if you are using the same horse as a previous year. A youth should do this for each horse they intend to show or use to participate in 4-H shows with.
- Find the form here: Florida 4-H Horse Certification Form
- December 31, 2021- A Horse Lease Form should be completed and submitted if a youth wants to participate with a horse that is not owned by the youth. Even if you are borrowing the horse without a fee, youth must have a Horse Lease Form on file with the local county 4-H office.
- Find the form here: Horse Lease Form
- The Florida 4-H Horse Project Record Book is a great way to track and demonstrate your growth throughout the year.
- Find the project book here: Florida 4-H Horse Project Book
Each county has their own specific guidelines and requirements. Please be sure to check when your county offices are closed for the holidays as they may not be open on the final day the form is due. Contact your county office if you have any questions or concerns regarding county specific requirements. For more information about Florida 4-H Horse Project opportunities visit the State 4-H Horse Events site.
About: Horsemanship school is a week long program geared at teaching and equipping youth with the knowledge and tools needed to be successful and grow as horseman. There are three program offerings: Western week, English week, and Cowboy Camp (male 4-H youth). To watch a short video outlining the details of the opportunities, click here.
Youth at Horsemanship School in Niceville, Florida before camps were moved to Gainesville.
Summer 2022 – Cowboy Camp, Gainesville, Florida
Summer 2022 – Western Week, Gainesville, Florida
Summer 2022 – English Week, Gainesville, Florida
For more information, please visit the UF Horsemanship School website.
The Florida 4-H Horse program is abounding in opportunities, so come join our community of horse loving youth and adults focused on “making the best, better”!
If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to us!
You can find your local county 4-H office here.
*Photo Credits belong to:
Julie Andrews Photography, 2019 Area North Horse Show, Clay County, Florida.
*All Photos were taken prior to COVID-19 lockdown and policies.