COOPERATIVE EXTENSION WORK IN
AGRICULTURE AND HOME ECONOMICS
(Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914)
AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION SERVICE, UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA,
FLORIDA STATE COLLEGE FOR WOMEN,
AND UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
WILMON NEWELL, Director.
HOW TO ORGANIZE AND CONDUCT
A BOYS' 4-H CLUB
By R. W. BLACKLOCK,
State Boys' Club Agent.
Four-H club work is a nation-wide organized effort to improve
farm and home life through the efforts and by the aid of the boys
and girls now living on the farm.
From this definition of club work, it is seen that some kind of
local organization is necessary if the boys of any community are
to do their part. Ten boys working together can accomplish much
more than 15 boys each working alone. An organization can pro-
mote and execute community programs of work and fun. Experi-
ence has proven that 4-H club boys when members of a live local
club get more enjoyment out of their work, accomplish more for
themselves and build club work in the community faster than is
possible without the organization.
A STANDARD 4-H CLUB
To make the organizations uniform a standard has been set up
to which each local club must conform before it can be given a
charter. The following requirements will govern the rating of
all local clubs in Florida.
1. A membership of five or more.
2. An adult local leader.
3. A club organization with a constitution, etc.
4. A carefully worked out program for the year.
When these four requirements have been met the club becomes
a "standard" club and is entitled to a club charter. This charter
is signed by the Secretary of the United States Department of
Agriculture, the State Director of Extension and the State Boys'
Club Agent. When the requirements are met, the club secretary
should make application on the blank which will be supplied by
the County Agent.
A GOLD SEAL CLUB
When a standard 4-H club has completed a year's work and can
meet the following additional requirements it will be given a gold
seal to attach to its charter. Application will be made on blank
furnished by County Agent.
5. Six or more regular business meetings during the year with
minutes in the Secretary's book.
6. Every member enrolled carrying on one or more club projects.
7. Four social meetings held during the year.
8. A project leader for every project with four or more members.
9. Seventy-five percent or more of members completing their
work with record books and exhibits at county contests.
THE ROYAL PURPLE CLUB
In ancient times purple was considered the badge of royalty.
To reward royal endeavor and success a purple seal will be given
to those local clubs who fulfill the following requirements.
1. Every boy of club age in the area covered by the club, a
2. Every member carrying at least one project.
3. Every project leader making a complete report of the project
of which he is leader.
4. Every member reporting on his project or projects.
5. Every member making an exhibit at county contest.
6. Every member attending county contest.
7. Club holding six business and four social meetings during
8. Each project group putting on a demonstration.
9. Local leader attending ofie leadership training school if one
is held in his county.
10. Club represented at rally and camp if these are held.
STEPS IN ORGANIZATION
First Step: In starting a 4-H club organization the first thing
to do is to call together those interested. This can be done by the
boys themselves or with the assistance of the County Agent. A
time and place of meeting must be decided upon. It is best to
have the County Agent present to explain 4-H club work and the
need of an organization to the boys who are taking up club work
for the first time.
At this meeting, after the need for organizing is explained, a
temporary organization with a chairman and a secretary is
formed. The subject of club work and the organization can be
discussed, and a decision reached as to whether or not a local club
is to be formed. If it is decided to organize, a committee should
be named to investigate and report on a suitable constitution and
by-laws at the next meeting. Sample constitution can be had from
the County Agent. A date and place for an organization meeting
should be set.
Second Step. When the constitution and by-laws are adopted,
the next step is the election of permanent officers. The officers to
be elected and their terms should be stated in the constitution and
by-laws. The secretary should be supplied with a record book and
should take the names of the members. The club is ready now
to start business.
At or soon after the first meeting the President should appoint
such committees as the constitution and by-laws require.
A local adult leader for the whole club should be selected as
soon as possible. A former club member, if available, makes a
good local leader. Sometimes the local teacher or a man or woman
of the community who is interested in boys and girls can be
induced to act.
Each member of the club must enroll in one or more projects,
such as the corn club, pig club, or other type of club. When the
membership for each project is about completed, an older boy
from each project group should be selected as project leader to
assist the others in keeping records and selecting exhibits.
Project leaders can be selected by the President and local leader
or can be selected by the members of each project group. The
project leaders should be chosen before it is time for the members
to begin work on their projects.
Third Step. A program for the year should be made. This is
best done by a committee working with the local leader. The
County Agent can offer valuable suggestions.
The program must cover the projects to be used, the number
of business and social meetings to be held and an outline of the
things to be attempted by the club during the year. The County
Agent will supply the committees with a bulletin on program
building and goals for local clubs.
KEEPING THE CLUB GOING
After the club is organized the important thing is to keep it
going. Unless the organization works it is a detriment to club
The first requirement for local club success is good meetings.
Keep the meetings on a business basis, do not let them be taken
up with a lot of foolishness. The President must know his duties
and see that everyone behaves and that the business is carried on
fairly and without dragging. Keep things moving; give as many
boys as possible a part; close with some recreation. By doing
these things the meetings will be so good that the members will
want to come. The County Agent will supply the proper com-
mittees with a bulletin on club meetings and how to make them
2. The success of the club will depend upon the spirit of cooper-
ation among the boys. If everyone is willing to do his part and
all work together the result will be a live club. Members should
rally around their officers and local leaders, and give them full
3. Nothing will kill a club quicker than having the members
fail to keep their projects in shape. As soon as a boy fails to do
his project work in a way that is satisfactory to the club, his name
should be taken off the roll and he should not be allowed to attend
meetings. Four-H club work is made up of boys who really are
conducting a piece of work.
4. At the end of the year, complete all reports, and check up on
how near the club came to accomplishing the things it set out to
do. This final checkup is important. Perhaps this club is entitled
to a gold seal. Let all officers make their reports.
5. Reorganize for another year. Elect new officers and build
a bigger and better program for the year to come.
HOW TO KEEP A CLUB GROWING
If the club has won a gold seal there will be no trouble in build-
ing it up. The club will have been so successful that new members
will want to join. There are some things which may help to get
more members. The following suggestions may help. Some of
them will be a part of the regular program, others can be used at
The reason most boys and girls living on the farms are not club
members is because they and their parents do not understand
fully what 4-H club work really means. Club work is a good thing
and we must let other people know about it. Once we educate the
people of a community to understand club work the rest is easy.
The following things help:
1. Projects which really demonstrate something which makes
the farmer more money.
2. Club tours. Invite members of the community to visit club
3. A club contest or achievement day. A club exhibit can be
made before the county contest.
4. Newspaper reports of the best project demonstrations.
5. Public meetings at which club work is explained.
6. Putting on the 4-H club initiation ceremony at a public
7. Word-of-mouth advertising, telling the other fellow and his
parents about club work and what it means.
The methods of securing new members are many. A special
meeting at which all who wish to join are invited can be used.
One of the best ways is to have a membership contest. To do this
divide the old membership into teams and have them compete in
securing new members. Some prize should be given the winning
team or some forfeit exacted of the losing team. The losing team
might furnish the eats for a feed. The club can work out ways of
conducting such a contest; it is lots of fun and gets results.
SHOW THIS TO BOYS WHO
ARE NOT IN CLUB WORK
1. Do you want to learn to be a better farmer?
2. Do you want to be better fitted for a life of use-
3. Do you want to learn and show others how to
produce more excellent crops and livestock, and to
have a better community life?
4. Do you want to make and save money while you
are learning these things?
5. Do you want to win prizes, secure trips to the
College of Agriculture, attend camps with other boys,
and become an asset to yourself and your community?
6. Do you want to become a community leader?
Then you should join in boys' 4-H club work. It
doesn't cost anything to join. This work is conducted
by county agents, and if you are interested you should
see your agent or talk to other members of suc1l
clubs in your community.