Vermont 4-H offers a wide variety of opportunities which enable teens to develop knowledge, skills, attitudes, and aspirations needed for success in the 21st century. Teens can participate in programs focused on LEADERSHIP, CITIZENSHIP, and LIFESKILLS, through exploring a variety of topics.
Citizenship Washington Focus (4-H Members Only)
Registration for this event is now closed. Vermont will send participants to CWF again in July 2022.
For over 50 years, thousands of 4-H youth between the ages of 14-19 have traveled to Washington, DC and stayed at the National 4-H Center to participate in CWF, a life-changing week that empowers 4-H’ers to take their leadership skills to the next level for themselves, their communities, and their world.
Leadership Washington Focus (4-H Members Only)
Leadership Washington Focus (LWF) is the only national leadership development experience exclusively designed for 4-H'ers entering grades 7-9. Participants will be immersed in the culture and history of our nation through on-site workshops at D.C.'s most spectacular sites. This program will take place at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland, just 1 mile from Washington, D.C.
Vermont will send participants to LWF in July 2021. Dates to be announced in the Fall 2020. Applications will be due by January 15, 2021.
Natural Resources Management Academy
The dates for NRMA are July 17-19, 2020. Registration will be available by mid-March 2020.
NRMA is a program for youth who are passionate about the environment and are ready to explore Vermont's natural resources in-depth. Experts from around Vermont lead workshops and skill-building activities.
NRMA Article (PDF)in UVM Extension's 2012 Annual Report.
Summer of Science 2020
Save the dates for these exciting science opportunities - click on the flyer to learn more.
Transferable Skills Workshop
What are transferable skills? And how do students recognize these skills in themselves? The 4-H program has been doing this for over 100 years, though we call them life skills. Help your students gain these critical skills by participating in a customized workshop through experiential learning activities. Students will have a fun and safe way to build skills and recognize ways to use these skills in real world situations. Download the "Helping Students Gain Transferable Skills" (PDF)
Want to know more? Watch our Across the Fence Episode!
TRY 4-H Science
Become a teen teacher!
TRY for the Environment
Recipient of the 2015, 2016 and 2017 Governor's Award for Environmental Excellence
TRY stands for Teens Reaching Youth and is an environmental leadership opportunity for youth in grades 7-12. It is a teen-led environmental education program with an embedded service learning component designed to teach environmental literacy and responsibility to younger youth. TRY for the Environment includes five program areas—energy FUNdamentals, waste solutions, food systems, forest and trees and TRY 4-H20 —to connect young people to real-world environmental problems in which they can be key change agents helping to create real-world solutions.
"The Teens Reaching Youth program has allowed our students to become experts on energy and sustainability issues. It has enabled them to become agents of change through education."
- Don Taylor, Main Street Middle School teacher
The TRY program consists of five program areas:
Each program area curriculum includes 6 different one-hour lessons that are fun, hands-on, and easy to teach!
Energy FUNdamentals highlights wind and sun energy engineering. Grades K-3
Climate Change Through Waste Solutions focuses on the 4Rs—reduce, reuse, recycle and rot. Grades 1-3
Food Systems explores the food system and the need to protect our soil, seeds, pollinators and climate. Grades 2-4
Forests & Trees investigates the basic concepts of forest and tree stewardship. Grades 2-4
TRY 4-H20 examines the water cycle, watersheds, water quality and health, and aquatic life. Grades 3-4.
TRY Lessons are taught by TRY teams consisting of 2-4 teen teachers and adult mentor who are trained to teach specific lessons to younger students. Teams must apply to the program and be selected.
Information and application for 2019-2020 is available! (End of this article)
TRY teams commit to teaching their program curriculum to 2 different groups of at least 15 youth.
Teams choose who they teach, and where and when they teach. This allows a lot of flexibility in how to fulfill your commitment of teaching two programs.
All programs must be concluded by May 24, 2019. Vacation camps, afterschool programs, libraries, in-school, weekends and summer programming are all options!
Everything you need to be successful will be given to you, including training, teaching materials and ongoing support.
Who can be a TRY team member?
Team members must be in grades 7-12 and should have an interest in learning and teaching about renewable energy, waste solutions or food systems. It's okay if you don't have any knowledge of the issues or know how to teach. We will train you!
Your team must be able to commit to teaching the program to two different groups. That's a minimum 12-hour commitment (plus your preparation time).
Who can be a TRY team mentor?
Some ideas of people to ask:Teacher, parent, afterschool instructor, community member, college student (21+ years old), 4-H or Scout leader, Green School Energy Challenge advisor, or any caring adult who wants to mentor your team!
Applying to TRY!
VTeen 4-H Science Pathways Cafe
It is a free, fun way for teens to explore science, engineering and technology with local scientists, engineers and technology experts. Teens participate in informal discussions and hands-on activities to learn about different topics. And, there is always free food! Planned and run by teens for teens. Save the dates! Future Cafés (PDF)
VTeen 4-H Trail Stewards
June - September 2020
Elmore State Park in Elmore; and Little River State Park in Waterbury
We know that young people care about and want to protect our lands. VTeen 4-H Trail Stewards is a partnership with Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, and an integral part of trail maintenance on state lands. Maintain your trails from June 1—October 19, 2019, twice a month (every other week) for approximately 4 hours each visit. Maintain your trails from June 6—September 26, 2020, twice a month (every other week) for approximately 2-4 hours each visit.
Check out a video of last year’s trail stewards at Elmore State Park!
VTeen Leadership Weekend
This year’s event is November 20-22, 2020. Registration will be available in Fall 2020.
Open to all Vermont teens in grades 7-12. A fun-filled weekend developing important skills and traits that will help you stretch and improve your leadership, communication, problem solving, teamwork and other transferable skills to take back to your club work, school and community.
Space is limited to 50 participants.
Youth Environmental Summit (YES)
YES 2020 will take place on Friday, October 30.
Speak Out. Act Up. Be the Change. Attend the 2020 Youth Environmental Summit at the Barre Civic Center, Barre, Vt.
YES is an annual event for students in grades 6‐12 who want to learn about environmental issues and find ways to take action. The Youth Environmental Summit (YES!) is an annual conference for middle and high school students. YES! is an opportunity to learn about environmental issues and get involved in local communities. The mission of YES! is to inspire, encourage, and prepare youth for a life of environmental responsibility, service and leadership by increasing awareness and knowledge of environmental issues and fostering leadership skills.
At YES! participants engage in hands-on workshops, action-inspiring discussions, networking with environmental professionals and like-minded peers, and much, much more!
Don't miss out - YES! is Vermont's premier environmental conference for young people. All young people in grades 6-12 are eligible to attend.
Registration is available Fall 2020.
Want to know more about YES!? Watch our Across the Fence Episode!