SPIN Volunteer Quick Guide to Ages 8–10
While young people learn at their own rate and in their own way, they typically share some common characteristics during certain stages of development. It’s important to consider those characteristics as you begin planning learning activities for your club.
|Characteristics of Age Group||Implications for SPIN Club|
|Are active and full of energy||Start meetings on time and quickly engage young people in hands-on learning activities.|
|Like group activities; strong need for belonging to a group||Divide members into work groups of two to three that take turns or work together.|
|Like to be with members of own sex||Pair youth into same-sex work groups to help them make positive connections with peers.|
|Have rapidly changing interests||Divide activities into steps to keep their attention. This divides instruction and information into easier to understand “chunks.”|
|Are just beginning to think logically and understand abstract ideas||Provide simple, short directions. Help them see the connection between the steps of a learning activity. Demonstrate key techniques as a model for youth to follow.|
|Want adult approval and have a strong need to be accepted||Provide encouragement and praise as they work. Praise is a powerful motivator.|
|Have a strong need to feel accepted and want individual attention||Provide feedback on each individual’s work or product and avoid comparisons between young people.|
|Admire and imitate older boys and girls||Ask older youth with experience to assist as volunteers for the group.|
Adapted with permission from University of Illinois Cooperative Extension.