During the 2022-2023 school year, we were in 4 elementary school classrooms. The 2nd and 3rd graders at Dayton, Fernley, Silver Stage, and Yerington Elementary enjoyed the directed studies program, “Produce Pick of the Month.” The students learned how they get their food through the “Food Systems Cycle” and how each part is vital to getting our food. The students also continued learning how to read nutritional labels and what to look for, such as if it is healthy or not. They learned about “Screen Time” and how it can affect “Play Time” outside. They learned that water is better for them than sugary drinks. Most importantly, they learned about how vitamins and minerals help their growing bodies. They were able to taste, in the classroom, cantaloupe, kale, cauliflower, jicama, garbanzo beans, blood oranges, bell peppers, asparagus, and blueberries. They learned about the six parts of a plant: the root veggies, the stem veggies, the leaf veggies, the fruit veggies, the flower veggies, and the seed veggies. Yes, it was a very good year for learning about what we eat!
Also, the Lyon County elementary school lunchrooms in Nevada got a facelift. The 2022-2023 Snap-Ed year brought the University of Nevada, Reno, Extension-Lyon County into the lunchrooms with The Smarter Lunchroom Movement. What a year it was!!! Three Elementary schools were chosen to participate in the Snap-Ed program this last school year and added excitement in its wake. Lyon County Schools Nutritional Services joined in on the fun and made changes along the way. It started with a Smarter Lunchroom Scorecard. Each lunchroom was assessed on what was already in place and what was not. From there, an Action Plan was written in regard to what could be changed easily both in the lunchroom and school setting. It could have been how the milk was displayed in the milk case, how the salad bar was positioned, how creatively the fruits and vegetables were named, hanging students' artwork on the corkboards each school received, adding “Share Tables” to cut down on waste, and the administration announcing what was for lunch in the morning announcements each day. Easy, little modifications added up to big outcomes. Each lunchroom was given time to work on the adjustments.
Then, the 2nd Smarter Lunchroom Assessment was completed. Each raised their score by 10-14 points!! Nutritional Services for the schools went above and beyond getting each lunchroom in the school district a “Share Cart” to help cut down on lunchroom waste. It was awesome seeing the students use the “Share Carts” and not throwing good food in the garbage. This whole process was fascinating to watch and be a part of!
4-H in Lyon County ran 10 clubs with 24 volunteers and 124 4-H members and completed many activities. Some of the highlights from the year include:
Offered a successful Lyon County 4-H Camp at Lake Tahoe in spite of various constraints. Participants enjoyed archery, games, crafts, STEM activities, swimming, and beach time. Desert Research Institute staff came out and offered robotics curriculum to the kids and the kids worked through some engineering science activities.
Lyon County Jr. Livestock show doubled the number of participants and improved the quality of the show dramatically.
Quality Assurance, which is a program that trains youth exhibitors to understand the rules, regulations, and expectations in raising animals, was expanded and offered in-person in Fernley, Yerington, and Silver Springs.
Successful 4-H recruitment and outreach events were held in Dayton, Fernley, Silver Springs, Smith Valley, and Yerington both to provide information about our 4-H programs and to raise awareness of 4-H in Lyon County.
Increased the number of Record Books (annual reports on the youth’s progress and thoughts on their project work) completed by 4-H members across the county for year-end awards. This increased participation in our year-end awards. We encourage record books to help youth develop critical thinking and to help them better understand the cost, time, and patience that can be required for various projects through self-reflection and record keeping.
New projects expanded the number of offerings available to members throughout the county. New projects such as robotics and outdoor adventure will help to broaden the reach and interest in the variety of learning topics that 4-H has.
Multiple planning sessions were held at Silver Springs Middle School and Sierra Sage to implement the Health Rocks 4-H curriculum. Health Rocks is an anti-drug, vaping, and alcohol program that encourages critical thinking, psychological growth, and development to encourage better decisions in peer groups.
Partnered with Silver Springs Middle School Robotics Club in an effort to expand exposure to 4-H and to increase STEM interest.
Our county 4-H Community Based Instructor, Hillary Dashiell, attended various trainings and the Western 4-H Institute to help better support and expand our Lyon County 4-H community.
Increased the number of 4-H members from Lyon County who entered and competed at Nevada 4-H Expo, which is the annual showcase for static exhibits, demonstrations, fashion revue, shooting sports, livestock breeding, horse competitions, dog shows, rabbit & cavy shows, and herpetology.
Sent one 4-H member from Lyon County to the National Shooting Sports Competition for the first time in over a decade.
Had one Lyon County 4-H member apply and be accepted to be a National Shooting Sports Ambassador.
Increased the number of exhibitors and participants in the Silver State Youth Livestock Show, both for Livestock and static entries
Lyon County 4-H Leaders’ Council awarded college scholarships to all three of their graduating seniors.
The Nevada Radon Education Program is a partnership with the Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health. This program provides educational material to Nevada citizens regarding the health risk posed by elevated levels of radon in the home. Free test kits are provided to Nevadans during a promotional period once a year to assist in evaluating their radon potential. Radon is a radioactive gas that is an odorless, tasteless, and colorless gas, that can cause cancer, which occurs naturally in the soil in Nevada. Lyon County has an elevated potential risk in a large portion of the County. Testing homes for radon is the first step in preventing radon caused illness and mortality. Extension in Lyon County participates in the radon program by distributing educational material and radon test kits in three major communities during radon awareness months.
To be posted at a later date
Gatzke, H. & Schlegel, J., 2023, Lyon County Annual Report | Fiscal Year 2022-2023, Extension, University of Nevada, Reno, County Reports
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