Friday, November 19, 2010

County Events Day! Why Should I do a Demonstration?

This is the week for excellent questions.  This question comes to us from a livestock member.

Why Should I do a Demonstration Ms. Renee?

Demonstration is a competitive opportunity, certainly.  Some people like what they view as competition against their peers.  And while this might seem like it is the case in a 4-H competitive event....  I like to think of it as really a competition to present your personal best. You aren't really against anyone in this kind of competition.  You are measured against a standard.  You can get a copy of the "ruberic"  That is the judging form that tells you the total possible points and what the judges are looking for as they score you.  So relax.  It is NOT all about the competition real or imagined.

Demonstration is really about an opportunity to "show and tell" using some visual aids.  People learn faster and remember longer if they see as well as hear.  So in a sense you are teaching something you've learned in your project.  However, the greatest value of demonstrations is to the 4-H members who plan, prepare and present them.  Poise, confidence and self-assurance grow each time a person makes a presentation.

Through demonstrations, 4-H members can:
                  Gain new knowledge about something in which they have an interest
                  Learn to plan and organize their thoughts so they can express themselves more clearly
                  Emphasize the major points of a presentation using visuals or examples
                  Develop good judgement, speech and actions before an audience

I hope that members will learn to love the chance to share their project through demonstrations at County Events Day.  Young adults who have graduated from 4-H and are now out in the world, working and going to college often come back to tell their 4-H agent.  "You know!  Demonstrations and public speaking were the best thing I did in 4-H!"

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