About Self-Determined 4-H Projects

Did you create or experience something that doesn't "fit" in one of the other project areas, but you want to show it off? That’s what a self-determined project is for - to create your own thing! Ideas include, but are not limited to: weeds, train/scenery scale models, miniature dollhouse, architecture, clowning, alternative energy sources, music, auto mechanics, taxidermy, travel, diorama of historical event, etc.


Contact the Marion County 4-H office:


Resources for Self-Determined Projects

  • Use the resources around you: the internet (especially a website like Pinterest), adults, friends, your 4-H club or another group you are a part of. We want you to dream and be creative!

Showcasing What You've Learned

You can create a project exhibit to showcase what you’ve learned while working on your project. Project exhibits are submitted for judging at the annual Marion County 4-H Showcase. Create an exhibit (poster, notebook, display board, or thing) that shows the public what you learned/did!

Exhibit Guidelines

  • You can enter up to two exhibits either individually and as a team/group (two or more members working together). Categories:
    • Individual Grades 3-5
    • Individual Grades 6-8
    • Individual Grades 9-12
    • Team/Group (all ages)
  • Exhibits must include a completed 4-H General Record Sheet.
  • Marion County 4-H poster exhibit guidelines and tips
  • A reference list must be included with your poster, notebook, or display board.

Score Cards

Advancing to the State Fair

  • No, self-determined projects are county-only and only eligible for exhibition at the Marion County Showcase.

Cloverbuds (Grades K-2)


  • Cloverbuds may enter one exhibit for a self-determined project. 
  • Cloverbud projects are for exhibition only (not judged), so there are no score cards, and exhibits are not eligible to advance to the State Fair.