Information for Parents

Welcome to the Iowa 4-H website!  By exploring our site you have taken the first critical step in supporting your child and/or youth in an educationally-successful and fun adventure in 4-H.  The mission of the Iowa 4-H Program is to empower youth to reach their full potential working and learning in partnership with caring adults. Iowa 4-H staff4-H volunteers, and 4-H members’ parents and family members all play critical roles in developing safe, nurturing, and supportive learning environments for youth to strengthen their assets and capacities in order to reach their full potential.

As Iowa 4-H’ers’ parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and other compassionate adult family members, you are the foundation upon which your child’s healthy growth and development depend, and you play a natural role in providing consistent opportunities for 4-H children and youth to learn by doing.  In this regard, families already provide two of several best practices of 4-H positive youth development learning experiences; hands-on learning experiences and healthy relationships between young people and adults.

Thank you for your willingness to walk side-by-side with your child(ren) during their life-changing 4-H adventure.  Via a three-way collaboration among 4-H staff, adult volunteers, and families the Iowa 4-H Program looks forward to working together to provide youth access to safe learning environments; challenging experiences that build youths’ skills, competencies, and resiliency to address life’s challenges; opportunities to actively contribute to society; and strong partnerships with caring adults to help meet youths’ basic needs of belonging, mastery, independence, and mastery.

Initial Steps to Enrolling Children and Youth in 4-H

Step 1: Discuss with your child/youth their learning interests

Step 2: If your child is in grades K -  3, please visit our Clover Kids page. 

Step 3: If your youth is in grades 4 - 12, contact your local ISU Extension office to determine which 4-H club would best support the specified learning interest(s) 

Step 4: Visit your local ISU Extension office to enroll your child/youth in a Clover Kids group (K - 3) or 4-H club (4 - 12)

Parent's 4-H Pledge

(From University of Illinois Extension)

I pledge my HEAD to give
my child the information I
can, to help him/her see
things clearly, and to make
wise decisions.

I pledge my HEART to encourage
and support my child no
matter whether he/she has
successes or disappointments

I pledge my HANDS to
help my child’s club; if I
cannot be a club leader, I
can help in many equally
important ways.

I pledge my HEALTH to
keep my child strong and
well for a better world through
4-H for my child’s club, our
community, our country,
and our world