Extension Highlights Annual Report 2015 - Page 11

First Tech Challenge 4-H Robotics Club

Roger Ort, rlo28@cornell.edu

This was our first program year hosting a 4-H FTC robotics club for 14-19 year old youth. We faced many new challenges; the competitions were hosted at big engineering schools like Clarkson and PACE. Parts that in the past had been inexpensive Legos were now metal and very expensive. Programming with click and drag blocks were now replaced with learning and writing code. Our budget that was a few hundred dollars expanded into the thousands.

The team support came from a group of youth and parents that (aged out) of the younger Lego team into this older youth group. Our team had youth representing three counties from our local area. The youth loved the chance to do more advanced engineering and manufacturing of metal parts. They had the ability to learn and use a3-D printer to design parts for their robot. The team found their 4-H presentation skills made them excellent team partners and they were invited to both of the championship finals by other teams. FTC championships stress team work, scouting, engineering, programming, dedication, volunteer work and the ability to help other teams. (I have personally) seen our team helping program another team’s robot, giving needed parts to our competitors and still having a big smile while we were not winning. How the skills are gained and the ability to connect youth and careers are all big parts of what sets 4-H apart from other programs. At the competition it was nice to overhear youth talking about attending Worcester Poly Tech, Clarkson and RIT as their goals. Our program goals have been met; to reach youth until they are nineteen and to provide career skills along with opportunities to use those skills locally in the future.

Schuyler County 4-H Clubs

Cloverbuds- Cloverbuds, the youngest participants in the 4-H Club Program, are enthusiastic, curious, creative, robust and resilient young people who are growing physically, cognitively, socially and emotionally through a period of rapid and often uneven development. The 4-H Cloverbud Program has been designed to meet the very special needs of these five to eight year olds.

Dairy Club-Dairy Club: The Super MooShakers! This new club just got started in April! We focus on all things Cow including proper care, breed identification, handling, grooming and much more! Club meets one Sunday a month

Photography Club- This club focuses on great picture taking and drawing! We meet two Thursdays a month to learn and master skills in photography and drawing! Club members can choose to participate in both drawing and photography or just one of the programs.

Puppy Paws-Dog Obedience Club: The Puppy Paws! We offer dog obedience and agility training in the Spring, Summer and Fall. During the winter months, our club meets at the Human Services Complex in Montour Falls. Our young Canine Trainers learn about dog breeds, dog care,vet visits and so much more! This year they collected towels for the Schuyler County

Humane Society. Club is currently meeting once a week with dogs.

Homeschooling- We are in the process of updating this club's 2015-2016 focus. We will meet once a month at the Human Services Complex

Alpaca Club-We are starting a new Alpaca Club hosted by our volunteer, Brett Wicker, and his family. Members will focus on the care and management of the Alpaca.