Archive for the ‘4-H Science’ Category

4-H National Youth Science Day Experiment 2014: Train-the-Trainer Workshop

Thursday, August 28th, 2014
Print Friendly

September 11, or October 7 at 6:30 pm, or September 12 at 3:30 pm. The workshop, delivered via distance learning to sites around the state, will equip participants with the experience and resources to deliver the 2014 4-H National Youth Science Day (NYSD) Experiment “Rockets to the Rescue!” Designed for 4-H volunteers, after-school and childcare providers, teachers, and library staff, the workshop provides 2 hours of professional development. Participants must complete the full training to receive CEUs and materials, and will be asked to host at least one NYSD experiment with youth, within 2 months of training.

More information and online registration is available at: Registration will close 10 days prior to the training. Cost: $10 for currently enrolled 4-H volunteers (volunteers must confirm with Jessy Brainerd at or 207.581.3877 for the coupon code to receive this reduced rate) or $25 for non-enrolled volunteers.

UMaine 4-H Science Saturday – Fun with High Temperatures – Making Beautiful Glass Beads on a Wire

Thursday, August 28th, 2014
Print Friendly

Saturday, September 27, 2014 at the University of Maine, Orono, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm, open to youth in grades 6 – 8. What happens to materials at high temperatures when they start glowing red-hot or white-hot? Why do some materials withstand high temperatures and others do not? How are high temperature materials used in many important technologies in everyday life? These are some of the questions that will be answered in this hands-on laboratory activity involving high temperature materials. Participants will heat copper and nichrome wires and Borax to extremely high temperatures to make their own piece of jewelry consisting of a beautifully colored glass bead on a wire. The glass bead colors and other properties will be explained by understanding the high temperature reactions and the atomic scale structure of the materials. In addition, participants will learn about research activities being carried out in UMaine’s Laboratory for Surface Science & Technology (LASST) in the area of high temperature sensor materials. Cost is $15.00 per person; register online.

New 4-H Science Toolkit Available – Vernal Pools

Thursday, August 28th, 2014
Print Friendly

What is a vernal pool, and why should Maine people care about protecting them?  Based on research at the University of Maine, the Vernal Pools 4-H Science Toolkit includes activities that take youth from learning about biodiversity, to recognizing what a vernal pool is and how scientists determine if a pool is “significant”.  Instructions and materials for visiting and collecting samples from a vernal pool are included! Learn more about this, and our many other fascinating 4-H Science Toolkits, and how to borrow them for your club’s activities.

Early Registration for Maine 4-H Days Ends June 2nd

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014
Print Friendly

Maine 4-H Days will take place June 20 – 22, 2014 at the Windsor Fairgrounds, and the registration materials are available online. As always, workshops are assigned on a first come, first serve basis, so be sure to register early. If you do not have online access, please contact your local county office for paper copies of the forms. If you register prior to the June 2nd early registration deadline, the cost is $5 per person, with a maximum of $15 per family.  If you register after the deadline, the price increases to $7 per person, with a maximum of $20 per family.

We are in need of volunteers willing to help with all aspects of the event.  Last year, Maine 4-H Days brought almost 400 individuals to the Windsor Fairgrounds, and we are preparing for even greater numbers for 2014. Volunteers are needed for: presenter assistance, office/registration help, being crafty in the Creativity Area, set-up, cleanup, and more.  We request that one member of each group sign up for a minimum of one volunteer shift.

Along with many of your favorite returning workshops (Archery, Dog Camp, Field Skills for the Forest, Cheese Making, Lego® Robotics, etc.), there are a ton of awesome new workshops this year: Make Your Own Hula Hoop, Line Dancing, and so much more! All of the workshops, and their descriptions, are posted at:  As workshops fill up, the forms available online will note any workshops that are “full” on the registration forms.

If you are interested in volunteering in any capacity, please contact Jessy Brainerd at or 207.581.3877.

UMaine, 4-H Youth to Connect on Campus

Tuesday, May 13th, 2014
Print Friendly
4-Her at 4-H@UMaineThe University of Maine will host more than 100 Maine 4-H youth this weekend at the annual 4-H@UMaine: Connecting Kids to Campus.

Youth 12 to 17 years old will stay overnight on the UMaine campus, explore careers, and take part in experiential learning during a variety of workshops offered by UMaine faculty and graduate students. The event will be held from 3:00 p.m. Friday, May 16 until 5:30 p.m. Saturday, May 17.

Workshop topics include composite materials, embryology, fundamentals of acting, aquaculture, high-altitude ballooning, dance, field skills for the forest, ecology, waves in the ocean, veterinary medicine, permaculture, chemical engineering, CSI-geology, nanotechnology, and nutrition and health.

Some 4-H members will also judge the Maine Invention Convention state competition from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Saturday at UMaine’s New Balance Student Recreation Center. During this collaboration between UMaine’s Foster Center for Student Innovation, Cooperative Extension, and the Department of Computer and Electrical Engineering, students from around the state will showcase their respective inventions to solve real-world problems.

More information about 4-H — the youth development program of University of Maine Cooperative Extension — is available online at, or by contacting Karen Hatch Gagne at 207.592.6980 or Barbara Baker at 207.212.8397.

4-H Animal Science Research Project

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014
Print Friendly

Karen Hatch Gagne and Kristy Ouellette are doing a research project to learn about Animal Science projects within Maine 4-H.  We will be requesting parental permission to send out a survey to 4-H youth ages 13-18 who have been in Animal Science commodities for the past three years.  The parental permission packet will explain the purpose of the study (using a tool-Common Measures) to assess 4-H youths’ outcomes related to Positive Youth Development, 4-H Science, Citizenship and Healthy Living.  When a parent gives parental permission, and Karen receives the parental signature form, then the Common Measures survey will be electronically sent to that child.  If you do not have easy access to the Internet, you may request a paper copy to complete.  Participation in this research project is voluntary.  If you have any questions or concerns please contact Karen Hatch Gagne or Kristy Ouellette

Annual 4-H Robotics Expo Draws 22 Teams

Thursday, April 3rd, 2014
Print Friendly
4-Her with robotTwenty-two teams and 76 youth demonstrated their knowledge of robotics and public speaking at the 8th Annual 4-H Robotics Expo on March 29, at the University of Maine at Machias.

Youth also took part in a challenge activity and attended workshops presented by faculty and staff from the UMM and University of Maine.

Jen Lobley, Extension educator in Washington County for 14 years, said 4-H provides learning opportunities that teach leadership, citizenship and life skills. “Today’s event did all of that,” she said. “Our youth participants collected over 550 items of food to be donated to the Machias Area Food Pantry and they demonstrated a number of life skills, including leadership, teamwork, decision-making, problem-solving, and communication.

“Each year the projects grow in complexity, as does the confidence of the youth,” Lobley said. “When we started this event eight years ago, only a handful of kids tried the challenge activity. This year, we had over half our participants sign up for the activity. It builds resiliency, that’s for sure.”

For more information about 4-H and volunteering, contact the Washington County UMaine Extension office, 207.255.3345, 800.287.1542 (in Maine),

UMaine Extension Offers Tractor and Farm Equipment Safety Class

Monday, March 17th, 2014
Print Friendly

Youth on tractorA University of Maine Cooperative Extension tractor and farm machinery safety course will be held 5-7 p.m. five consecutive Tuesdays beginning Tuesday, April 15, at Ingraham’s Equipment, 3 Knox Ridge South, Knox.

This class is designed for youth ages 14-16 to earn federal certification to operate farm machinery as part of their employment. It is also appropriate for adults who want to learn how to drive tractors and operate implements. Participants will be expected to operate machinery during class. A written and driving exam will be administered at the final session in May; it is required for those wishing to earn federal certification.

A $20 enrollment fee pays for a manual and safety equipment. Pre-registration is requested so course materials may be sent to enrollees prior to the first class. For more information, to register, or to request a disability accommodation, contact UMaine Extension in Waldo County at 1.800.287.1426.

School for Poultry Producers Focuses on Best Practices, Bird Health

Monday, February 10th, 2014
Print Friendly

University of Maine Cooperative Extension and Maine Poultry Growers Association (MPGA) will offer a daylong school for poultry producers Saturday, April 5, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Kennebec Valley Community College in Fairfield.

Topics will include best management practices, bird health, and disease prevention for egg layers and meat birds. Additional topics include poultry nutrition, poultry product quality, and organic practices.

The school is designed for farmers with a poultry enterprise and is appropriate for backyard keepers, bird fanciers, and 4-H teens. The $25 fee ($10 for MPGA members) includes a reference notebook, a poultry break-even calculator and refreshments. Participants should bring their lunch.

The Maine Farm Bureau and Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association are co-sponsors. For more information and to register, visit or call UMaine Extension, 207.781.6099. To request a disability accommodation, call 207.781.6099 or 1.800.287.1471 (in Maine only).

UMaine Extension’s 4-H Science Saturday All About Spuds

Friday, December 6th, 2013
Print Friendly

The science of cooking and consuming spuds is the theme of a University of Maine Cooperative Extension 4-H Science Saturday on Jan. 25 at Hitchner Hall on the UMaine campus in Orono.

Dr. Jason Bolton, assistant extension professor and food safety specialist, and Kate Yerxa, Extension educator, will lead the program for as many as 25 youth in grades 6-8. From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Bolton and Yerxa will address storage conditions, processing and healthy consumption of Maine potatoes. Participants will also bake potatoes, prepare a potato bar with toppings for lunch and discuss MyPlate recommendations and how spuds can be part of a healthy diet. Youth also will be introduced to kitchen basics and safety.
The $12 program fee includes lunch. Pre-registration is required and may be done on online at Or, to register, for more information or to request a disability accommodation. contact Jessica Brainerd at 207.581.3877. After the program, participating youth, if accompanied by a parent, may swim at UMaine’s New Balance Student Recreation Center pool for an additional $3 per person.