The 4-H Pledge promotes Restorative Justice Teaching

The 4-H pledge

I pledge
My head to clearer thinking,
My heart to greater loyalty,
My hands to larger service, and
My health to better living,
For my club, my community, my country, and my world.

Do I ever love my Dad for being a 4-H leader.  My Grandparents started the 4-H club the Ramis Ramblers.  My Dad and his siblings were 4-H’ers, my siblings and I grew up in 4-H and for a brief time, my daughter was in 4-H.  Every meeting started with reciting the 4-H pledge, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance.

Lane change back to Restorative Justice . . . when I teach RJ, I bring in three concepts:  Knowledge, Skills and Attitude.  This week I told my college students when they wanted to learn something new, or make a change they should consider focusing on one of these three.  Seek the knowledge and learning, develop and practice new skills, or focus on a change in attitude. 

I try to provided learners new information about Restorative Justice, providing research outcomes or studies.  I give new things to think about, concepts and views.  We focus on new skills in trainings.  Our most recents volunteer training included role play for skill development.  We also developed new skills with engaging in Circle process.  The most dificult hurdle, is to promote a change in attitude.  What I have learned as a teacher and trainer is to be the best role model possible for attitude.

I recently shared with a training group an attitude transition tool.  About 6 weeks ago, I decided that I could work on increasing my gratitude and networking by sending three thank you emails, just as soon as I got to work.  I have a 15-20 minute drive into work, I would contemplate who I could email and thank.  These came easily to mind, I work with a large network.  In the last 6 weeks, I have found myself more content, more eager to work with others and just genuinely happier.  I haven’t written a single email!  It turns out just thinkng about my blessings changed my attitude!

Back to the 4-H pledge . . . let’s all use the 4-H Pledge as our guiding principles when developing and promoting RJ!