Signs of Successful 4-H Clubs

October 11, 2023 -

Signs of Successful 4-H Clubs

The following member and volunteer behaviors can be observed in a 4-H club that is successful in achieving the goals and outcomes of 4-H.

Active Participation in Learning

  • By developing competency in chosen projects and life skills
  • By doing and discovering through multiple learning styles
  • By doing things that have tangible results
  • By progressively gaining accomplishments and meeting challenges
  • By having fun

Decision-Making Opportunities

  • In groups (such as establishing group goals, plans and actions, and experiencing the democratic process)
  • Individually (such as making choices in project work and evaluating progress)

Social Interaction

  • Learning to participate appropriately in competitive and cooperative learning situations
  • Socializing with peers, adults and persons outside the group
  • Taking part in group-centered activities
  • Having fun


  • Members involved in leadership roles
  • Common roles include president, vice president, secretary and treasurer.
  • Common leadership activities include giving demonstrations and teaching projects to other 4-H members.
  • Leaders serving as facilitators and showing youth how without doing it for them
  • Shared leadership among members and leaders
  • Participation in leadership training and application of what is learned


  • Assessing personal progress and club organization
  • Gathering feedback from members, leaders and adults
  • Using feedback to plan future activities


  • Appreciation of one’s own accomplishments
  • Interpersonal acknowledgment and reinforcements
  • Incentives and awards for individuals and groups

Public Affirmation

  • Exhibition of projects
  • Public presentation of ideas

Community Involvement

  • Using community resources in 4-H
  • Contributing to the welfare and development of the community


This 2023 version of "Signs of Successful 4-H Clubs" is adapted from the document of the same name in the 2006 and 2009 versions of the Michigan 4-H Club Development Guide.

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