The 4-H program has a long history of record keeping. The focus reflects the importance of this life skill in our daily lives. In 4-H, young people have tracked their activities, events, profits and losses, skill development and learning experiences, and much more using the iconic 4-H Record Book. In addition to record keeping, the 4-H Record Book gives members an opportunity to reflect on their year, measure their achievements and growth, and set goals and develop plans to meet those goals.
Why have a 4-H record book?
4-H record books give members an opportunity to reflect on their yearly work. They document their skill development and their learning experiences in a written report. 4-H members measure their achievements and growth in their total years in 4-H
4-H record books encourage members to set goals, pursue strategies to meet those goals, and to shift gears in the face of challenges and obstacles. Completion of the Personal Development Report awards 4-H members for participation in 4-H activities, which provides an incentive for participation, learning, and achievement.
Completing a 4-H record book is a process where 4-H members record project and club work. Records management is a competency skill to identify, create, classify, archive, and preserve records. The 4-H record book teaches 4-H members these skills through a standard format.
Not Required for 4-H Membership
4-H record books are not required for membership or for participation in 4-H activities, such as club events and activities, or for attending 4-H camps or conferences. A 4-H record book may be required to receive participation awards (such as star ranking, medals, or pins based on 4-H record book achievements).
2 Ways To Do A Record Book
In California, we have two ways to complete a Record Book - through our Online Record Book (ORB) or with a paper Record Book. Both versions are aligned with the same forms and follow the same instructions for completion. You can use either version as your Record Book.
State 4-H Record Book Competition
The state record book competition is focused on selecting senior 4-H members who have demonstrated outstanding achievement in their 4-H project work. Books are judged against standard criteria. Those books displaying the most outstanding 4-H work, goal management skills, and leadership and citizenship development are selected as state medalists and/or state winners.
Record Book Manual
This manual was designed to be more kid-friendly than previous versions. It outlines all the parts of the Record Book and includes instructions for completing each form.
Record Book Forms
Contains all forms for 4-H members using a paper Record Book. This version allows you to complete the form directly into the document and expand the rows as needed. The ORB entry screens align with the paper versions.
Online Record Book
The 4-H Online Record Book (ORB) provides you with an interactive way to maintain records online and stay connected to the 4-H community. The ORB is aligned with the paper versions of the Record Book.
Primary Record Book
We now have forms for Primary Members to start learning the skill of Record Management.
Note: Primary Members are not required to complete reports forms to receive their annual stripe and pin.