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The Faces of Iowa 4-H: Janet Toering

Name: Janet Toering

Current Position: Youth Program Specialist and Connecting, Learning, and Living Program Director for 4-H

Hometown: Waukee, Iowa

Education: Family and Consumer Science Education and Family Environment/Human Relations from ISU. Masters in Family and Consumer Science Education with an emphasis in Communication and Curriculum development from ISU.

Past Work Experiences: High school teacher in Erlum, Iowa. 4-H Communications and Secretarial for 4-H camp.

Hobbies: Combining living with her work, being outdoors, exploring Iowa with 13 year old son, Traveling, reading, and piano lessons.

Ultimate Goal in 4-H: Improve the quality of life in Iowa and the planet.

Janet was a member in 4-H for about four years growing and really loved it. She now works to promote the curriculum in the Connecting, Living and Learning program. More specifically she works with Growing in the Garden for Kindergarten through third grade children to develop tools used for growing curiosity about agriculture and natural resources. It focuses on life skills, critical thinking, communication, citizenship, leadership and healthy living. It is easy for the kids to relate to and a lot of after school programs use this. Other programs she develops are “Food, Land, and People” which is for K-12th grade students, and “Where We Live” for 4-8th grade students.

Janet wrote the curriculum herself along with help from a few others. The project book was amazing and there was so many great activities in it for children to learn. The lessons were very hands on as well making it much easier to use! I loved talking with Janet because she was so unbelievably passionate about her job and the opportunities she has had. She works very hard and it is clear that she truly loves every second of her career.

What does 4-H mean to Janet? It means youth and caring adults working together to improve quality of life for themselves, their families, communities and beyond.


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