CLOVER BUDS: 4-H program teaches kindergarten students about sounds

Published 3:00 am Saturday, September 15, 2018

Sounds are made by vibrations. Ears capture those sounds and send them to the brain.

The 5-K students at Pike Liberal Arts School had a fun time learning about sounds Friday. They learned about vocal chords and how vocal chords enable them to make sounds.

They recalled pleasant sounds, birds and music, and frightening sounds like wolves and sirens.

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The fun-learning program was presented by Pike County Extension Coordinator Katie Thomas and assisted by Courtney Daniels, who both played the role of unconventional Easter bunnies. They gave each young student an Easter egg but one without candy.

Each egg contained an object that made a sound when the egg was shaken. Some eggs made loud sounds, some made soft sounds, others made scratchy sounds and some made no sound at all.

The students then had opportunities to develop the scientific skills of observing, comparing and categorizing. And, all the while, they were unaware that they were learning more about sound.

The five-year-old scientists were asked to shake their eggs and listen closely to the sound. Once they had identified the vibrating sound their eggs made, they were challenged to find the one other student with an egg that made the same sound.

With a lot of shaking of the eggs and with a lot of listening and some confusion, the students were able to find their matching-sound egg.

When two like-sounding eggs were found, the students were allowed to “crack” their eggs to find what was inside.

Some eggs made loud sounds. They contained heavy things including bells, dice and pennies. Other eggs made soft sounds. They were stuffed with cotton, sugar and sand.

At the end of the program, the five-year-old students were named 4-H Cloverbuds and will have the opportunity to participate in Cloverbud programs throughout the year.

Thomas said the Cloverbud program is designed to teach children about the world around them and, during early childhood when their interests are at their highest peak.

“This year more than 200 children in Pike County will get to have fun with hands-on learning through 4-H Cloverbud clubs at Pike Liberal Arts School and Troy Elementary,” Thomas said. “Typically, 4-H programs focus on youth development in older children but Cloverbud clubs are designed for kids between the ages of five and eight and are ideal for kindergarteners.”

Cloverbuds will meet each month and the activity-centered lessons will come from an Alabama 4-H approved statewide curriculum based on age-appropriate research.

“Cloverbud clubs can help kids in Pike County grow into smart and thoughtful contributing members of their communities and families,” Thomas said.