Circular 17 May, 1930
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.
PROGRAM BUILDING AND GOALS
FOR BOYS' 4-H CLUB
By R. W. BLACKLOCK,
State Boys' Club Agent.
Isn't it strange that princes and kings
And clowns that caper in sawdust rings,
And common folks like you and me
Are builders for eternity ?
And to each is given a bag of tools
A shapeless mass and a book of rules;
And each must make, ere life is flown,
A stumbling block or a stepping stone.
NEED FOR A PROGRAM
After the United States had won its right to exist as an inde-
pendent nation a convention met in Philadelphia to develop a pro-
gram to guide and direct the efforts of the young republic. Our
constitution is but a program of work in nation-building. The
framers of the constitution set forth in the preamble their reasons
for their program.
The community is but a miniature of a nation, and the com-
munity 4-H club needs a program for its work in the same way and
to an equal degree with a nation. Without the constitution Amer-
ica would not have become what it is today. Without a program
of work, a 4-H club cannot hope to live, let alone to help build a
The poet says "strife and war, but misdirected effort are." A
4-H club without a program is like a ship without a rudder, more
likely to hit the rocks than to reach the harbor. It insures the
useful utilization of the pep, the energy and enthusiasm of a crowd
of boys. A well thought out program must be made.
HOW TO BUILD A CLUB PROGRAM
I. ORGANIZATION NECESSARY
Before a program is necessary or possible there must be an
organization. Without an organized group with its officers and
leaders to direct the efforts of the group, the best program is
The standard club must be the first step. When the orvaniza-
tion is complete, work on a program can be started. A committee,
made up usually of the President, Vice-President, Secretary and
local leader with the County Agent, if possible, is given the job of
preparing a program for the club. This committee will submit the
program to the club for its approval and adoption.
II. METHOD OF DETERMINING PROGRAM
A. Needs of Community. A 4-H program which does not an-
swer the needs of the community is not enough to bring out the
best efforts of a group of boys. Study the farm and home life of
the community. Discover if possible the needs in regard to both
agriculture and social life. Are the farmers making money?
What crops or livestock appear to be best suited to that particular
community? Why are certain crops not bringing better returns ?
Is it because of worn-out soil, poor seed, wrong fertilization? Is
the livestock of the right type? Are the right crops being raised
for feed? Is the community working together? Will the people
unite on anything? Are there enough get-together meetings?
Do the young people have the right opportunities for recreation?
B. What 4-H Club Work Can Do to Help. After the needs of
the community have been discussed, the program committee must
decide which ones club work can help solve. Club work functions
through demonstrations. If a boy can use certain improved
methods in producing a crop and thereby demonstrate that it is
possible for more money to be made, he has helped solve the
trouble. Attempt to do those things which it seems possible to
prove. Do not attempt too much. In regard to the social life,
discuss how the club can help do some of the things needed.
III. BUILDING THE PROGRAM
A good 4-H program will be divided into two parts: First, the
project demonstration; second, the social side. When the program
committee has worked out the needs of the community and de-
cided which ones club work can help solve, it should begin build-
ing its program.
The first step should be to study the production needs. List
the needs which club work can help meet, then select those which
are most important and build the production part of the program.
This is simply a matter of what crops and livestock are to be
stressed in the project work. In a community where corn and
cotton are the most important crops, the corn and cotton club
projects should be stressed, with perhaps the pig and dairy clubs
as a means of demonstrating the value of sources of income other
than corn and cotton. Your study of why more money is not being
made will tell you what projects should be stressed.
In the social side, there is more need for study. This side takes
up the club as an organization, the needs for better community
recreation, the education of the community to the value of club
work, the building of a better and larger club, in fact everything
which has to do with the people of the community in their relation
with each other. The building of community life in all forms,
excepting the making of more money from producing crops and
livestock, is covered under the "social side."
Do not try to move too fast in community building. It takes
time to build a better social life. On the other hand do not get
discouraged and feel that nothing can be accomplished. Pick out
certain things which club work can help and build the social pro-
gram around them. A bigger and better club should be on every
program; educating the community to the value of club work is
always in order. Some social good times help. There are needs
which challenge the best that a club has. Make the club program
one which builds, not so easy that it will not appear worth while,
not so hard that it seems impossible.
IV. PUTTING THE PROGRAM INTO EFFECT
The best program in the world is of no value unless put into
operation. When the committee has built the program, which
should be done early in the club year, it should be reported to the
club. Some member of the committee or the local leader should
explain the program and why it was made. Try to inspire the
club members with the idea that by carrying out this program
certain needs of the community will be met. If properly made a
program will have a mixture of work and play so that it will in-
terest the boys not only as a means of making money but of being
of service and of having a good time.
A good program will be adopted by the club, and once adopted
should be kept in mind throughout the year. And at the end of
the club year the club should study the results of their work in
regard to how well they carried out the program outlined at the
beginning. The program committee for the following year must
bear in mind that of the year before and try to add to it. Make
each year's program a little larger and stronger than the one just
passed. A good club will grow in effect as well as size.
FOR CLUB IN A WEST FLORIDA COUNTY
NEEDS OF COMMUNITY
Average yield of corn is but ........ bushels per acre.
Average yield of cotton is but ........ pounds per acre.
Too few good hogs.
No purebred dairy cows.
Corn-poor soil, poor seed, improper fertilization.
Cotton-poor soil, poor seed, improper fertilization, boll weevil
Hogs-not enough improved stock, marketed at wrong time.
Dairy-only scrub cows, no pastures, improper feeding.
Better community spirit.
More club work.
Community-people will not work together, are divided.
Club work-boys not interested, parents lukewarm toward the
Recreation-no place to play, no one to lead, too few social
Prove by means of well conducted demonstrations that local
soils can be built up by cover crops; that profitable crops of corn
and cotton can be grown by using good seeds and better fertili-
The need for better blood in hogs can be met by introducing
a few purebreds through the pig club. These demonstrations
should stress proper feeding.
The time of marketing need will be left until such a time as
other community clubs in the county will cooperate with us in
raising at least a carload of hogs for early market.
The cost of buying better bred dairy stock is too great for us
to attempt to help meet this need at the present time.
Keep our 4-H club going as a demonstration that it is possible
for this community to work together. By every means in our
power sell the value of club work in the community so that our
club will grow.
By cooperation with the girls of the 4-H club improve the social
and recreational community life. The 4-H club will try to give
opportunity through social meetings for the people to meet to-
gether in a social good time and to train leaders for recreation.
GOALS FOR A BOYS' 4-H CLUB
A program is an outline of the general trend of activities. To
make the program workable it must be supplemented with definite
goals, defining just what attempts will be made to carry out the
program. The goals state in definite numbers what the program
states in a general way.
HOW TO SET GOALS
After the program is adopted the club should set as goals the
doing of a certain number of things which carry out each part of
The program committee can also set the goals or a separate
committee can be appointed. The committee must study condi-
tions of the community and must make the goals fit into the
Do not make the goals too easy. That will not arouse the proper
spirit in the club. A boy wants to tackle something difficult.
Always raise the goals after they have been reached-each year's
goals should be a little higher. As the membership grows and as
the members get experience the club will be able to accomplish
more. Make the goals grow with the club. On the other hand
do not try to do everything in one year-leave something for the
future-all of it cannot be done at once.
WHAT MUST BE WATCHED IN DETERMINING GOALS
1. The program.
2. The number of members in the club.
3. The financial conditions of the members.
4. The experience of the members.
5. The community's feeling toward club work.
SAMPLE SET OF GOALS
This set of goals is for the sample program given. They are
estimated on the basis of 15 members in the club with 25 projects.
Have 10 demonstrations in corn. Each boy using either What-
ley's or Tisdale's variety. Each boy using a side-dressing of ni-
trate of soda, sulphate of ammonia or calcium nitrate. Five boys
planting winter cover crops on their acres as a part of the soil
Have 7 demonstrations in cotton growing, each boy planting
seed of a variety recommended by County Agent and using the
fertilizer recommended by County Agent. Each boy fighting the
weevil if it appears in dangerous numbers. Three boys planting
winter cover crops on their acres.
Have 8 demonstrations in hog raising, each boy to raise a pure-
bred pig, using methods outlined in chapter XIV of LESSONS
FOR PIG CLUB MEMBERS. Start at least one permanent pas-
THE CLUB ORGANIZATION
1. Keep the organization going.
2. Secure at least five new members.
3. Secure at least 20 complete record books and stories.
4. Have project leaders in corn, cotton and pigs.
5. Have at least 18 exhibits at county contest.
6. Have representatives at county rally and club camp if held.
7. Hold at least 6 business meetings during the year.
CLUB WORK AND THE COMMUNITY
1. Have at least one tour of club projects.
2. Hold one public meeting with a program showing value of
3. Work with the girls' 4-H club for community education on
1. Have four social meetings during the year, cooperating with
the girls' 4-H club. One of these meetings should be a com-
2. Every member should learn five new games. Every member
should learn the club pledge and the words of the Ploughing
(The goals for a South Florida club will be different in the pro-
duction side, but would vary very little in the social and com-
Club members who are leaders in helping local clubs to build their programs
and reach their goals are given trips to the National Club Camp in Wash-
ington, D. C. Two boys and two girls, with state leaders, go from Florida