Making Time for Youth

— Written By Julie Lyvers
en Español / em Português

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Many times adults have a misconception about the youth of today. Some adults will say kids are only interested in electronics. Even though there are quite a few, under the age of 18, with a cellphone to use (given to them by an adult), I have found kids still enjoy being kids. Times may have changed, for example how the TV has gone from black and white to high definition,  but overall kids are still the same. Given a chance, they will enjoy the outdoors or even crafts.

The North Carolina Cooperative Extension, Clay County Center helped out with the Tractor Parade this past year, as they have always done, and 4-H had a center set up with activities for children of all ages. The young ones glued items together to make a turtle, the 8 to 12 year old’s wrapped yarn around popsicle sticks to make a turtle, and the high school age learned to macramé. All the kids enjoyed being able to make something with their hands.

After visiting Hayesville Middle School and asking some of the students about their interests, some are interested in playing video games, but there are others who are interested in fishing, sports, or theater, to name a few. By asking more questions, a new 4-H club is in the process of being formed for those who are interested in fly fishing. This gives a group of youth an opportunity to learn life skills and leadership skills through the 4-H program.

Most of the time, children only know what they have been told. If the only thing we adults tell them is technology, then that is what they will know. If we teach them, even just having conversations, about other interests, such as fishing, crafts, hiking, boating, etc., then we can expand their horizons.

Let’s continue to talk to our children, or children we know, about our interests/hobbies and show them there are a variety of things to do in their spare time.

If you are interested in being a guest speaker to share your hobby to a small group of children (age range is 5 to 18), please call Julie, 4-H Agent, at the N.C. Cooperative Extension of Clay County office, 828-389-6305.