Recognition is a key component of the 4-H experience. Primarily because recognition is a human need. Recognition can help motivate and inspire young people to continue participating and learning. Youth need feedback regarding how well they are learning new skills or contributing to a group. Recognition also contributes to youth feeling as though they are a valued and important member of the Seminole County 4-H program.
Appropriate recognition can take many forms—participation, cooperation/ group contribution, progress towards self-set goals, standards of excellence and competition. The Florida 4-H Recognition Model A variety of these methods are used throughout the 4-H year.
Recognizing youth for participation includes attending, participating in and successfully completing an experience or activity. This could include listing the names of participants, event t-shirts or participation ribbons.
Working within a 4-H club or group is a major function of the program. Recognition for cooperation is based on how well group members work together, rather than on the accomplishments of an individual. We have heard the phrase, ‘all for one, one for all’—and this is true when it comes to cooperation.
Another form of recognition focuses on the process, rather than the outcome: progress towards self-set goals. In 4-H, youth learn to set goals that are SMART: specific, measureable, attainable, realistic and timely. It is important for 4-Hers to reflect on the process, as well as make judgments about their progress. Recognition of the steps along the way can help provide motivation to continue the effort.
Achieving standards of excellence is another form of recognition. Many times this form of recognition takes the forms of ribbon colors (blue, red, white)—as recognition is based on a set of standards.
Peer competition and the recognition of a youth’s efforts with scholarships, trophies, plaques and publicity is another type of recognition. Competition can many times serve as a positive motivator for youth. However, the competition should not overshadow the experience. Youth should be prepared for winning and not winning.
Whatever form it takes, recognition is an acknowledgement and affirmation of the personal growth and accomplishments of a group or individual. Awards are given to symbolize this recognition. When working with young people there are usually a number of people involved in their successes—including parents, 4-H club leaders, mentors and teachers.
On October 9 at 6:00PM, Seminole County 4-H will recognize club members and volunteers at the annual Awards and Recognition Ceremony. At the ceremony, 4-H members will receive medallions and certificates for their completed 4-H projects and for participation in events and activities throughout the 4-H year. 4-H Club leaders will be acknowledged for their years of service. We are extremely proud of our 4-H members and volunteers and all they contribute to our 4-H clubs, community, country and world. Recognizing them for their positive efforts is the least we can do! Interested in attending? Register at: https://4hawards2020.eventbrite.com.