The 4-H program has a long history of record keeping. The focus reflects the importance of this life skill in our daily lives. In 4-H, young people have tracked their activities, events, profits and losses, skill development and learning experiences, and much more using the iconic 4-H Record Book. In addition to record keeping, the 4-H Record Book gives members an opportunity to reflect on their year, measure their achievements and growth, and set goals, and develop plans to meet those goals.
Why have 4-H record books?
4-H Record Books serve a variety of purposes in the California 4-H Youth Development Program.
- 4-H Record Books give members an opportunity to reflect on their yearly work. They document their skill development and their learning experiences in a written report. 4-H members measure their achievements and growth in their total years in 4-H.
- 4-H Record Books encourage members to set goals, pursue strategies to meet those goals, and to shift gears in the face of challenges and obstacles. Completion of the Personal Development Report awards 4-H members for participation in 4-H activities, which provides an incentive for participation, learning, and achievement.
- Completing a 4-H Record Book is a process where 4-H members record project and club work. Records management (RM) is a competency skill to identifiy, create, classify, archive, and preserve records. The 4-H Record Book teaches 4-H members these skills through a standard format.
Not Required for 4-H Membership
4-H Record Books are not required for membership or for participation in 4-H activities such as club events and activities, or for attending 4-H camps or conferences. A 4-H Record Books may be required to receive participation awards (such as star ranking, medals or pins based on 4-H Record Book achievements).