Our homeschooling group is a 4H club. In my life before child, before homeschooling, before homeschooling groups, I thought 4H was about raising livestock. I thought it was a club for future farmers, an association that put on a good fair, and the society that supplied good local eateries with fresh meat every fall. Needless to say, I was surprised to learn that our group was a 4H club. I was, perhaps, even more surprised to find myself 4H leader of said club. Since then I have become increasingly familiar with the 4H system and have found it welcoming, if not entirely organized. Their heart is in the right place, even if nothing else is.
Over this past year, in addition to participating in our club, the Homeschoolers of Ann Arbor, Calvin also participated in their summer day camp, will again enter projects into their Youth Show later this summer, and this week he joined the archery club for their Tuesday night practice.
Here's what is really, really fabulous about this organization. On Tuesdays nights, three men who are very capable and very knowledgeable in firearms and such dedicate several hours of their time to teaching archery to kids ages 7-18. They cart all the equipment to the fairground field, where they set up targets at a few different distances and assemble a couple dozen bows for kids of all different sizes. Then they spend two hours gently instructing and guiding. They have the patience of saints, while still being focused enough to keep the kids from killing each other or anyone else. Their great love for the sport shows.
Calvin loves it.