There’s Been an Outbreak: 4-H Summer Fun Camp

— Written By

Our 4-H summer has had a great kick-off! We’ve journeyed to other countries, tasted new food and made crystal art. This past week our 4-H’ers joined the CDC and fought against an outbreak of a deadly virus. We had a lot of fun learning how scientists combine biology and engineering to further medical technology and treatment.

Our week started by learning how scientists at the CDC work with highly contagious deadly viruses. The kids challenge was to design a quarantine box that would completely contain a virus, while allowing scientists to perform tests on the virus without exposing themselves or their team to the virus.Image of kids building quarantine box

Next, we created model viruses to learn how viruses attack and infect cells by using an inflatable inner tube to model a cell, and Velcro to model the receptor that viruses use to attach and infiltrate the cell.

Image of inflatable cell

Then our 4-Hers learned how federal, state, and local government budgets affect how well health services can affect the communities’ preventative health measure.

Image of kids writing

Our participants also learned how virus cells mutate to create different sometimes more deadly strains of virus, some examples being the many strains of flu from the common flu to the Spanish flu. They were able to experience the difference between antivirals and vaccines and create their own model of an antiviral. Then they created Public Safety Announcements, PSAs, to warn their communities about the Outbreak.

Image of kids creating PSAs

Finally, they all got to engineer their own super virus and a vaccine to prevent their super virus from infecting the masses.

Image of camp kids

We have more great programs coming up to put a stopper in summer learning loss and create a great environment to foster the magic of summer. Youth can travel all around the world with “Book Explorers” at the Pamlico County Library, reading stories, tasting food, and making art from different countries. Or they can blast off the planet with “Out of this World,” learning about planets, stars, and aeronautical engineering. Children will engage in challenges to get their astronaut and all the mission supplies safely off the planet. All of these programs will get kids up, active, and engaging their curiosity, building on educational and motor skills masteries of the previous year. Register soon to guarantee a summer of fun!

For more information on the Love Thy Neighbor summer nutrition program or any of our summer programs contact Kait Neeland at (252) 745-4121, or kait_neeland@ncsu.edu, or check us out online.