2013-04-11 / Columns

Everyday Extension

4-H Communications Arts Program provides youth with valuable skills
By Acacia Stuckle Extension Agent, Emmons and Kidder Counties acacia.stuckle@ndsu.edu • 701-254-4811

At some point in our lives, we will each talk or present in front of a group of people. It might be at school, our jobs, church or as part of a leisure activity. Some of us will be required to do this almost daily as part of our career choice. Most folks will agree that communication skills are essential.

4-H offers youth the opportunity to hone their communication skills by participating in the 4-H communication arts program. This program has five primary objectives:

• To help participants develop communication skills that are useful throughout a lifetime.

• To provide participants an opportunity to practice their skills before a group.

• To provide participants an opportunity to gather and organize information, equipment and props for public presentation.

• To develop participants’ confidence in making public presentations.

• To evaluate and enhance communication skills.

Participation begins at the club or local level, where youth are encouraged to give at least one public presentation each year. Each county (or group of cooperating counties) is encouraged to conduct a communication arts event annually in which all youth can participate. Ten district events are held. Each district consists of the group of counties in the multicounty program units (MPUs).

Emmons County will host its communication arts contest on May 9, 2013. The district event will be held on May 28 in Mandan.

There are a variety of categories for youth to choose, including demonstrations, illustrated talk, prepared speech, interpretive readings both humorous and serious, dramatic presentation, commercial, short take, broadcasting, presentation software, video production, web site design and 4-H promotion. Cloverbuds are able to participate by doing a recitation.

If you are interested in learning more about each category in the 4-H communication arts program, stop by our office to pick up NDSU Extension Publication BA800.

“Communication is a skill that you can learn. It’s like riding a bicycle or typing. If you’re willing to work at it, you can rapidly improve the quality of every part of your life.” -- Brian Tracy

Please contact me with any questions at 254-4811 or email acacia.stuckle@ndsu.edu.

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