Most 4-H judging events involve livestock or other traditional 4-H projects. Consequently, many urban and suburban youths miss out on building life skills developed through judging. In a nontraditional approach to 4-H judging, such youths play board, dice, and card games and then judge the games using the practice of giving oral reasons. The youths also reflect on the life skills learned while playing and judging the games. This approach has been used in a Washington State 4-H program. Youths have responded positively, demonstrated skills, and returned to the program year after year. Because Extension offices across the country have resources related to judging, the approach is easily replicated.
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Brandt, B., & Stowe, J. (2017). Applying 4-H Judging Strategies to Board, Dice, and Card Games: Developing Skills in Urban and Suburban Youths. The Journal of Extension, 55(1), Article 20. https://doi.org/10.34068/joe.55.01.20