I was interviewed by USU Extension Sustainability last month and asked to describe a typical day in the life as an Extension Agent. I also discussed my educational programs, thoughts on what sustainability means to me and why I love living in southern Utah.
I just finished reading this outstanding book. Here are all my notes and takeaways.
Why Making is Meaningful
Making has become a hot topic, not just in 4-H but in all of education. More 4-H programs are planning to host Maker Camps this summer than ever before. I am so thrilled to see youth across the country involved in the Maker Movement, however, my fear is that some of us are missing the point.
Some of us are jumping on the bandwagon because we were told to, or it’s what everyone else is doing. When this happens, in many cases I see youth following instructions, recipes and patterns—building what the manual says to build—this is not bad, it’s a good start but it is not making.
Anyone can follow instructions and make something, but that doesn’t mean they are learning. So, what makes ‘making’ meaningful?
This picture is of a farmer who brought his family to one of my 4-H Maker Nite activities, it's a wonderful example of never being too set in your ways to learn and try something new. People who see stories like this always ask me, "I see all the interesting things you do at work on your Instagram, but what is your actual job?" I usually respond with my elevator speech, "I'm an Extension Agent, I organize leadership and science experiences for ambitious people."
Most of what I do at work is quite different than what others in my position do. Some have wondered how I get away with it. It's certainly not a secret. In this blog post I will share exactly how I innovate inside the primitive environment that is Extension.
Paul Hill, Ph.D.
I design, plan, and evaluate economic development programs for Utah State University.
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