Steven Worker is the 4-H Youth Development Advisor for Sonoma, Marin and Napa counties.
4-H uses a variety of volunteers for it's programs. Steven conducted a study of volunteer educators, with a "diverse experiences, abilities and values" to teach STEM projects to students using 4-H curriculum at three sites using three different methods.
To describe volunteers' pedagogical practices, I conducted a qualitative case study at three sites where volunteer educators were implementing a design-based 4-H curriculum. The curriculum advanced youth scientific literacy by supporting scientific inquiry in conjunction with planning, designing and making shareable artifacts. Through detailed observations, videos and focus groups, I identified six common pedagogical practices, though educators differed widely in which ones they used. Pragmatic and structural constraints shaped their choices, as did their professional identification as engineers, or not, and their relative comfort with engineering.
To support volunteer educators in implementing a learner-centered educational program, curricula designers might be more specific in recommending and explaining pedagogical practices, and program managers might better train volunteer educators in those preferred practices.
Read this research article is in California Agriculture, volume 71, number 4.
Citation: Worker S. 2017. Volunteer educators bring their own ideas about effective teaching to a 4-H curriculum. Calif Agr 71(4):208-213. https://doi.org/10.3733/ca.2017a0021.
As a new Cooperative Extension Advisor, Worker will provide leadership, support, and oversight to 4-H Youth Development clubs, camps, and programs in Marin, Sonoma, and Napa counties. In partnership with the respective County 4-H Program Representatives, he will connect local 4-H Clubs and programs to exciting new 4-H projects and initiatives. Worker's academic responsibilities include developing, implementing, and evaluating programs to engage youth in healthy living; science, engineering, math and technology; environmental stewardship; and civic engagement.
Worker and his wife, Heather, recently moved to Rohnert Park and are excited to explore the North Bay. Worker is a tabletop (board and card game) enthusiast and an avid science fiction reader.
Contact Worker at University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources, Cooperative Extension Marin (415) 473-4207, Sonoma (707) 565-2836, or Napa (707) 253-4221, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or view his bio and publications.
- Author: Karen Giovannini
THIS EVENT HAS BEEN RESCHEDULED TO MARCH 14, 2015
Project Learning Tree (PLT) and the UC ANR (through the Cooperative Extension System and Hopland Research & Extension Center) have teamed up to provide a local training opportunity for educators at the Hopland Research & Extension Center, Rod Shippey Hall on Friday, December 12 from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm. Register online.
Project Learning Tree provides educators with peer-reviewed, award-winning environmental education curriculum resources that can be integrated into lesson plans for all grades and subject areas.
Sandy Derby of the UC Cooperative Extension office in Davis, is Project Learning Tree's State Coordinator. She will be facilitating the workshop.
Participants will learn how Environmental Education is changing in California…and how they can be a part of that exciting change! They will engage in a full array of inquiry-based activities that exemplify inquiry-based learning and critical thinking, define STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) education, and Support constructivist NGSS (the Next Generation Science Standards).
Participants will receive a free EEI (Education and the Environment Initiative) unit and choose one of the most popular PLT modular guides “Environmental Experiences for Early Childhood”, “Places We Live”, or “Focus on Forests”.
Cost per person is $65 to cover light brunch and lunch, facilities use, and activity materials. Register online.
Please say you will join us for this exciting opportunity in our area to learn about what PLT and the UC can do for you and your students!