Explore health and wellness in your personal life as well as in your club, community, country, and world. In this project you will learn how to assemble a first aid kit and how to treat cuts, stings, bruises, and other injuries. You will also be able to learn about how to stay healthy and develop your own personal fitness plan.

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Exploring 4-H

Health

Spark Activity: Magnificent Meal Makeover
Think about your favorite meal. You can probably think of ways to improve the quality of that meal to make sure your body is getting more of what it needs and less of what it doesn’t need. You can still enjoy your favorite meals, but a few smart changes can make you feel a whole lot better about eating them! Here are a few typical meals you could consider giving a “makeover” with some healthier alternatives:

  • Burger and fries
  • Spaghetti and meatballs
  • Meatloaf and potatoes
  • Pizza
  • Pancakes
  • Tacos or burritos

Remember to think fresh, not canned or processed. If there are a bunch of ingredients you can’t pronounce, it is probably not good for you.

Ingredient check: 

  • Always avoid foods with trans fats. 
  • Try to avoid foods with nitrates/nitrites, high fructose corn syrup, or artificial sweeteners. 
  • Try adding vegetables or fruits, when possible. (Ex: Why not add a tomato into your grilled cheese? Or fresh cut strawberries & bananas on your pancakes?) 

Here are some great substitution ideas to help you improve your favorite meal:

  • Replace ground beef with ground turkey or chicken.
  • Replace french fries with baked sweet potato fries.
  • Replace regular bread, pasta or rice with whole grain versions.
  • Replace processed cheese with fresh cheese.

Now it is your turn!  Pick one of your family’s favorite meals to makeover for healthier alternatives.

4-H Project Levels and Goals
Beginner
  • Design a family first aid kit
  • Learn to treat cuts and scrapes
  • Recognize the signs of choking
  • Learn how to prevent sprains, strains and bruises
  • Learn to be safe around pets, strange dogs, insects, and wildlife
  • Learn about poison safety 
Intermediate
  • Learn about germs and how they affect the body
  • Learn about foods that help you stay healthy
  • Learn about your personal strength, flexibility, and endurance
  • Learn how to add activity to your daily routine
Advanced
  • Identify the components of fitness
  • Learn the importance of hydration
  • Learn to choose foods for fuel
  • Try new types of physical activity
  • Create a personal health and wellness plan
  • Explore careers in the fitness and nutrition fields
Put Your Project Into Action

Show Your Skills

  • Display about how nutrients affect the body
  • Make a video of proper stretching exercises and techniques
  • Present ideas to community leaders for walking paths and bike trails in your town

Service and Leadership

  • Volunteer at a nursing home or hospital
  • Organize a project to assemble first aid kits in your community
  • Plan a clean-up effort at a local park, playground, or bike trail
  • Help to organize a health fair in your community
  • Serve as a 4-H Health Ambassador

Entrepreneurship

  • Design and create family emergency kits to sell
  • Plan and lead a group fitness class at a local park
  • Plan health and fitness themed birthday parties for kids

Technology Connection

  • Wellness apps
  • Drones deliver AEDs
  • Mechanical CPR
  • Virtual reality
  • Smart clothing

Connecting with a Mentor

  • Job shadow with a local health care professional
  • Tour a hospital or health care facility

Events

  • 4-H Illini Summer Academies
  • 4-H Health Rocks
  • 4-H Health Jam
  • Be SAFE
  • 4-H Memorial Camp counselor
  • Local summer youth camps 
  • American Red Cross youth classes
  • Local community health fairs

Project Manuals & Exhibit Requirements

  • First Aid in Action
  • Staying Healthy
  • Keeping Fit 

Purchase manuals on the Shop Illinois 4-H Store.

Careers
doctor smiling at little girl
  • Nurse
  • Doctor
  • Physical Education Teacher
  • Personal Trainer
  • Dental Hygienist
  • Nutritionist
  • Family and Consumer Sciences Teacher
Start a Conversation
  • What is one thing you learned that you will apply to your own life?
  • What surprised you about what you have learned?
  • How will you continue to learn about health and nutrition?
  • What barriers exist for families or individuals that make it challenging to live a healthy lifestyle?
Credits

4-H Spark Sheets are a collaborative effort of 4-H staff, volunteers, alumni and teens from across Illinois. A big thanks to the many contributors and reviewers!