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calendarMSU Extension-Oakland offers a variety of programs about gardening, personal finance, nutrition, and natural resources.  We also offer programming specifically for youth. Below is a chronological list of all our upcoming programs.



Upcoming 2015 programs being presented by Robin Danto, Food Safety & Nutrition Extension Educator:
January 30:  Food safety presentation for special needs adults (West Bloomfield)
February 10:  Senior nutrition presentation (Royal Oak)
February 13:  Nutrition presentation (West Bloomfield)
February 14:  Nutrition presentation (Farmington Hills)
February 17:  Senior nutrition presentation (Oak Park)
February 21:  Indoor farmers market presentation (Farmington)
February 24:  Senior nutrition presentation (South Lyon)
February 28:  Farmers market program (Novi)

2015:  Lake and Stream Leaders Institute
Michigan has more than 11,000 inland lakes and more than 80 major watersheds, all of which are under constant pressure from a variety of complex human uses.  Faced with a monumental task, local communities may struggle to protect and manage these resources effectively.
Managers, decision makers, homeowners and other interested residents can learn about lake management issues and their implications by attending the Lake and Stream Leaders Institute. Applications are now being accepted, and deadline to submit is March 30, 2015. 
The Institute consists of three in-depth sessions held across Michigan, involving a combination of classroom learning and field-based training sessions. The 2015 Institute schedule is as follows:
2015:  Great Lakes Leadership Academy (GLLA)
The Great Lakes Leadership Academy (GLLA) is accepting applications for the 2015 Emerging Leader Program.  There is a tremendous need for empowered and facilitative leaders that will propel Michigan toward economic and environmental sustainability.  GLLA was designed to bring together leaders from diverse audiences to address critical issues associated with the sustainability of Great Lakes communities along with innovative, equitable and inclusive approaches for addressing those issues.               
The Emerging Leader Program is delivered over a seven month period, with three four-day sessions.   The program provides participants an opportunity to develop personal leadership competencies, skills for relationship building, and tools for working collectively.  Participants also develop advanced communication and change management skills to help them become more effective leaders.  
The application period is open now through February 1, 2015 and is done online at Tuition for the Emerging Leader Program is $3,500 which includes all training, materials, lodging, meals, and other expenses. 
Questions should be directed to Vicki Pontz at, phone 517-432-8685 or Christy Roman at, phone 517-353-6472
To learn more about GLLA programs or to apply, visit

January 22 - April 30, 2015:  Master Gardener Program
This class series will be held on Thursday evenings, 6:00-10:00 pm at the Oakland County Executive Office Building in Waterford.  Cost of the 13-week program is $300, which includes the 1,000 page training manual.  Master Gardener volunteers start by completing a 13-session practical curriculum ground in university research. This training consists of approximately 45 hours of training with classes on plant science, soil science, integrated pest management, diagnostics, annuals and perennials, woody ornamentals, lawns, vegetables, small fruits, tree fruits, household and nuisance pests and gardening practices to protect water quality.  After completing the training, Master Gardener trainees must complete 40 hours of horticulture-related service within one year to earn their Master Gardener certification. Click for further information and to register  Contact:  Cathy Morris at 248-858-0887. 
January 31, 2015:  4-H Rabbit and Cavy Show
This one-day event, begins at 9:00 am, is held at the MSU Pavilion (4301 Farm Lane, East Lansing, MI 48910),  and is open to participants aged 9 to 19 by January 1 of the current year. Exhibitors must be Michigan 4-H members and must own the rabbits or cavies (guinea pigs) they enter. Exhibitors may enter as many breeds as they wish; however, if breed show times conflict, another 4-H member must help show the entries. Exhibitors will be responsible for transporting their rabbits and cavies to and from the judging tables.   Click here for show catalog.  Spectators are welcome!  Contact:  Katie Ockert
January 31-February 1, 2015:  4-H Winterfest
Location: Kettunen Center, 14901 4-H Drive, Tustin, MI, 49688
4-H Winterfest is a hands-on educational program that is open to youth ages 8 to 12 years old. Youth spend two days learning about many different project areas while meeting youth from around the state. 4-H Winterfest offers participants an opportunity to experience Kettunen Center in an overnight camp setting. Youth participate in hands-on sessions that range from crafts to shooting sports. This event offers an opportunity to spend time outdoors enjoying all the Michigan winters have to offer! Youth have the opportunity to go learn new skills, make new friends, while enjoying Michigan winter.  
February 7, 2015:  Michigan Garden Travelogue - West
This travelogue, held at the Oakland County Executive Office Building in Waterford, will feature two gardens at Michigan State University, the Cooley Gardens, the Grand Ideas Garden, Meijer Garden and Walter's Gardens.  We will discuss:
  • formal and informal design concepts
  • the importance of pathways in the garden
  • how to incorporate a water feature into the garden

We will also look at several great plant combinations.  Advance registration required by February 2, 2015.  Contact Cathy Morris, 248-858-0887, if you have questions.
February 9-March 16-April 13, 2015:  Michigan Pesticide Applicator Exams
Michigan Department of Agriculture pesticide applicator examinations will be held in Oakland County at 8:30 a.m.on February 9, March 16 and April 13, 2015.  Exam sessions generally run 9am-12pm.  The location is the Oakland County Service Center Executive Office Building Conference Center in Waterford.  Go to  for more information and to register.  Advance registration is required.
1) Only money orders or checks made payable to the State of Michigan are accepted.
2) Applicants must bring a picture ID, pen, pencil, and if renewing, their certification card and renewal paperwork.
3) We do not take walk-ins; all applicants must schedule an appointment.
4) We generally begin processing applicant paperwork at 8:30 am.  Please  arrive at that time and no later.  If you have a unique work situation and cannot arrive at the required time, please contact Molly Mott at 248-521-0501 (for this situation only).
Presented by the Puppy Patrol & Canine All-Stars.  To learn and enhance your showmanship skills (e.g., stacking, patterns, presentation of your dog, and attire) with inside tips from the instructors who are also judges.  Open to 4-H members, ages 9-18, this program is for novice, open, and champion levels.  The event will take place at Competitive Dog Sports (inside Pet Supplies Plus), 11525 S. Saginaw Road, Grand Blanc 10 am-11:30 am and/or 12:45 pm-2:15 pm.  Contact Terry Harrison for more information.  
February 15, 2015:  4-H Poultry Educational Workshop
Interested in knowing more about poultry?  Then join the Oakland County Fair Poultry Committee at the Poultry Educational Workshop on Sunday, February 15th at 3:00 pm in the Community Room at the Fair office -- 12451 Andersonville Road, Davisburg.  No RSVP required.  For more information, please contact Deb Morgan, 248-858-0894.
February 16-20, 2015:  Wild Winter Farm Camp
Staying warm this winter doesn't mean sacrificing fun!  The ecology of the farm is ever-changing and it doesn't stop in the winter.  During this winter school break, join us for hands-on fun on the farm as we feed goats, collect chicken eggs, warm up in the Garden Kitchen learning about local and seasonal food, and explore the wild winter animals of the forest.  We have a theme to make each day full of adventure!  Does your school have only a few days off this week?  Check out our 2-day and 3-day options.   Registration deadline: Thursday, February 5, 2015.  Financial aid is available for all camps.  If you need to register after the deadline, please contact us.  Location:  MSU Tollgate, 28115 Meadowbrook Road, Novi.  Contact:  Mandy Jacobs, 248-347-0269 x 238. 
February 25, 2015:  4-H Horse Protégé Program
We are looking for cloverbuds and teens interested in the horse and pony project for the 2015 Oakland County 4-H Horse Protégé Program.  Please join us for a kick-off/informational meeting on February 25th at 7:00 pm in the Community Room at the Fair Office.  For more information, please contact Debbie Morgan at morga194@anr.msu.ed or 248-858-0894.
February 27-28, 2015:  4-H Veterinary Science Teen and Adult Leaders Workshop
Location: Kettunen Center, 14901 4-H Drive, Tustin, MI 49688
Explore animal systems and learn about animal health for a broad array of animals species. Come prepared to learn from others, share information and experiences, ask questions and quiz veterinarians about their careers. You will also participate in hands-on demonstrations that will teach attendees how to help members recognize healthy, sick, and/or injured animals. Meet other youth and leaders who have developed outstanding veterinary science projects and gain ideas to help others start their own vet science projects. New resources will be provided to all attendees. Open to adult and teen volunteers ages 13 (as of Jan. 1, 2015) and older.  
February 28, 2015:  4-H Fair Association Fiesta Fundraiser & Silent Auction
An Oakland County 4-H Fair Association fundraising event including dinner, dessert and a silent auction.  Proceeds will support Fair premiums for youth exhibitors at the 2015 Oakland County Fair.  Read more
February 28-March 1, 2015:  4-H Beef, Sheep and Swine Teen and Adult Leaders Workshop
Location: Kettunen Center, 14901 4-H Drive, Tustin, MI, 49688
This workshop is designed for both teen and adult leaders who are involved with beef cattle, sheep and swine projects. Topics include animal health, management, care and nutrition. In addition, breakout sessions will include livestock and meat evaluation, animal management and more. Interaction with leaders from different counties is encouraged for exchanging of ideas and programs and connecting with other volunteers in the same project areas. The workshop will also offer ways to enhance communication and teaching skills as well as learn about the many opportunities available for those interested in the beef, sheep and swine industries. Resources will be available for all attendees. Open to adult and teen volunteers ages 13 (as of Jan. 1, 2015) and older.  
At MSU Tollgate Farm we cherish the chilly month of March as our maple sugaring time.  Don't have a sugarbush or evaporator?  No worries!  Join us through the month of March for maple sugaring field trips, 2-hour engaging programs where students get to tap maple trees hands-on, investigate the working evaporator, take a wagon ride, tackle historical tools, and taste REAL Michigan maple syrup.  We correlate programs to support state and national educational standards.  Scouts, homeschool, and other community groups enjoy experiencing the sugarbush too!  Can't make it out during the week?  Join us on March 14th for a robust pancake meal and then engage in our 2-hour program (see Marth 14th below).
Come understand the steps to plan, maintain and run a school garden while integrating garden activities into your curriculum to meet state standards. From gardening basics to building a garden team as well as curriculum activities, this workshop is designed for hands-on educators interested in gaining the technical knowledge necessary to start a garden. Learn how to engage your students in the outdoor classroom or choose to bring the concepts indoors. School garden hands-on activities are presented as a strategy for meeting curriculum content expectations as outlined in the Common Core State Standards.  Pre-registration is required by March 2, 2015.  For more information please contact Kristine Hahn, or 313-567-9701, ext. 102
March 7, 2015:  Michigan Garden Travelogue - North
This travelogue, held at the Oakland County Executive Office Building in Waterford, will feature the McLaren Healing Garden, several gardens in Frankenmuth, Dow Gardens and Dahlia Hill.  We will explore:
  • ways to create a garden for healing and renewal
  • how to extend your garden into the "hell strip"
  • how annuals can add extended beauty to the garden
Advance registration required by March 2, 2015.  Contact Cathy Morris, 248-858-0887, if you have questions.
March 7, 2015:  Oakland County Tack Sale
Spring is right around the corner!!  So please join us at the 2015 Oakland County Tack Sale on for Saturday, March 7th 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at Springfield Oaks Activity Center (Oakland County Fairgrounds).  Oakland County 4-H Horse Council is the new host of the tack sale and are looking forward to keeping the tradition -  offering affordable, unique and necessary items to our local equestrians.  Come shop or sell items (new/used tack, show clothes, boots, jewelry, crafts and more!) to benefit the 4-H Horse & Pony project in Oakland County.  We are looking for new and used vendors and 4-H clubs to join us.  The cost for space is affordable and an excellent opportunity for promoting new and existing businesses to the community.  Get out of the house and come out to the fairgrounds – it will be spring soon!
Set-up will be available Friday, March 6 from 5-9 pm or Saturday at 9 am.  Doors open to the public at 10 am. 
For information about reserving space, please contact Debbie Morgan, or 248-858-0894. 
March 7-14, 2015:   Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) Week
For 100 years, Michigan State University (MSU) and the MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) have welcomed visitors to Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) Week. This year’s event is March 7-14. With more than 50 programs and annual association meetings on and near the East Lansing campus, ANR Week is the largest event of its kind in the nation.
The ANR Week centennial is not the only milestone this year -- the Quiet Water Symposium celebrates its 20th anniversary, and the 2015 Beekeepers Annual Conference marks the 150th occurrence.
This year’s event offers educational programs in areas such as animal science, agriculture and the natural environment. Additional educational programming topics range from small flock poultry management to forage technology acidified food programs.
The annual ANR Week Luncheon will take place March 10 at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center. There the CANR will honor alumni, industry leaders, and faculty and staff members for their excellence and support of the college. Presentations will be given by MSU Provost June Pierce Youatt, MSU President Lou Anna K. Simon and CANR Dean Fred Poston. Awards given will be the Distinguished Faculty Award, the Honorary Alumni Award, the Outstanding Alumni Award and the Distinguished Service Award. Registration for the luncheon begins in January.
The 2015 ANR Week program guide -- with dates, times, location, costs and event descriptions -- will be available online in early 2015. For more information on the centennial year’s events, visit or contact program coordinator Jennifer Labun at 517-884-7351 or
Explore and discover how to incorporate environmental education into your lessons and activities. Environmental education strategies and projects empower participants to make our world a better place to live. This workshop is a hands-on, experiential format. You will be a participant; not a recipient! You will leave with valuable resource materials and knowledge to create lessons that include environmental education principles! A small meal and beverages are included.
Join us for the MSU Tollgate Maple Tapping and Pancake Celebration on Sunday, March 15th for a robust pancake meal and then engage in our 2-hour program (10am-12pm or 1-3pm).  For information and to register contact us by phone, 248-347-0269 extention 238, or email, or through our website.   All throughout the month of March experience maple sugaring hands-on with our 2-hour maple sugaring field trips.  Location:  MSU Tollgate Farm, 28115 Meadowbrook Road, Novi.
MSU Extension is pleased to offer this professional development opportunity to assist youth development staff, teachers, volunteers, and community members interested and committed to providing quality career development programming. Learn how to implement this new National 4-H curriculum focusing on career exploration and workforce preparation in your club, school or community group.  Training will take place at the Oakland County Executive Office Building Conference Center.   Click here for details and registration.
March 21, 2015:  Urban Farmer Tune-Up
This class is good for anyone interested in growing produce.  You do a good job of producing fresh, quality, wholesome produce, but there's always that one crop that doesn't always grow like it should.  Or no matter what you change or how to you fertilize, one area of your field always grows poorly.  Those are the situations that the Urban Farmer Tune-Up will address.  You'll find practical information that can have a real difference on your bottom line.
March 27-29, 2015:  Michigan 4-H Dairy Conference
Location: Kettunen Center, 14901 4-H Drive, Tustin, MI, 49688
Do you have an interest in learning more about the dairy industry in Michigan? Whether you’ve just started learning about dairy cows or grew up on a dairy farm, this is the conference for you! You’ll learn about real-world dairy management topics, like nutrition, reproduction, welfare, health, and dairy cattle evaluation. You will also have a chance to practice for the state dairy skill-a-thon and quiz bowl contests and tour a nearby farm. Experts from the dairy industry and Michigan State University will lead educational, hands-on sessions about dairy management to bring the learning to life! This conference is open to youth ages 11-18 as of Jan. 1, 2015. 
April 24-26, 2015:  MI 4-H Shooting Sports Instructor Certification Workshop
Location: Kettunen Center, 14901 4-H Drive, Tustin, MI, 49688
This Michigan 4-H Shooting Sports Instructor Certification workshop is for 4-H staff, adult 4-H volunteers who have completed the 4-H Volunteer Selection Process with their county, and teens enrolled in a 4-H shooting sports club who are at least 16 years old as of Jan. 1, 2015. Participants must be approved by their county MSU Extension 4-H Staff person to work with 4-H Shooting Sports Programs and have at least a basic working knowledge of, and experience in the discipline in which they wish to participate. Disciplines offered will include shotgun, rifle (BB, .22, air/pellet), archery, muzzleloading, and hunting and wildlife.
Participants will learn about the Michigan 4-H Shooting Sports mission, policies, risk management, safety, discipline specific equipment use and care, how to teach shooting fundamentals to youth, range set-up, and more. Participants will also develop and improve skills in teaching shooting sports activities to youth; learn how to develop, expand, and maintain local 4-H Shooting Sports clubs/programs; have the opportunity to exchange ideas for local and State 4-H Shooting Sports programs with volunteers from many counties; and develop renewed respect and concern for safety in the 4-H Shooting Sports program. Adults who successfully complete the workshop and all other requirements will receive certification as a Michigan 4-H Shooting Sports Instructor for the discipline in which they participated. Only 4-H certified instructors can lead live-fire, on-range shooting and archery experiences for youth and/or in 4-H Shooting Sports programs.  
CWF has been a part of the Michigan 4-H leadership and civic engagement programming for almost 50 years.  CWF is a learning lab about our national government in Washington, D.C. for young people between the ages of 14 and 19.  Held at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland (one mile outside of Washington, D.C.) these week-long sessions run with the help of college-aged program assistants.  Program assistants go through intensive training about the national government and the Washington, D.C. sites.  At the end of training they actually become licensed tour guide for the D.C. area.  They work with each of the delegation coordinators to provide the most meaningful experience for CWF delegates.  For more information, contact Deb Morgan at 248-858-0894.
July 17-19, 2015:  4-H Mentoring Weekend
Location: Kettunen Center, 14901 4-H Drive, Tustin, MI, 48688
4-H Mentoring Weekend is a 3-day workshop for adults and youth who are in a mentoring program through 4-H and other youth mentoring organizations. Mentoring program staff are also welcome to attend. The weekend offers activities to mentoring matches with a focus on science, outdoor education, healthy living, and meaningful service in order to strengthen the mentoring relationship. This year’s theme is Building Life Skills. Mentors are also provided with structured training that aims to build the mentoring relationship. 
August 15-16, 2015:  4-H Family Fun Weekend
Location: Kettunen Center, 14901 4-H Drive, Tustin, MI, 49688
Explore all that 4-H has to offer! This weekend will be action-packed and full of new experiences for the entire family. Youth, ages 5-8, and their parent/guardian/caregiver are encouraged to attend this workshop to learn about 4-H! Sessions will provide youth with opportunities to learn about 4-H projects and life skills, the Four-H’s of 4-H, and other Michigan activities and events for 5-8 year old youth involved in 4-H. Parents/guardians/caregivers who attend will learn about 4-H programming specifically designed for the 5-8 year old audience, how to make the most of 4-H experiences, and Michigan 4-H facilities, workshops, and programs. Families will learn and grow together while exploring Kettunen Center and 4-H! 
Ongoing:  The following nutrition program series are presented to community groups, organizations, and schools (age appropriate) by MSU Extension staff.  Programs are offered in English or Spanish.  Call  248-858-0897 for further information or to schedule these programs.
Cooking Matters for Adults is a nutrition program where participants will learn how to eat healthy, cook and grocery shop on a limited budget. The program consists of six lessons, lasting approximately two hours each. With the help of an experienced chef and nutrition educator, participants will gain the skills and confidence to make healthy, budget friendly meals for their family.
Each week, participants will receive take-home food, which they can use at home to practice a recipe they learned in class. The class series also includes:
  • Participatory food preparation that provides cooking and food safety instruction
  • Engaging nutrition activities and discussions
  • Practice with food budgeting
  • Interactive grocery store visit and $10 challenge
  • Recipe book for use at home
  • Certificate of completion
  • Short physical activity component lasting 5 minutes or less
Class series are taught throughout the community, including but not limited to community centers, churches, schools and local MSU Extension offices. Group series are available if there are six to 15 people, and at least half of the group is Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) eligible.
This series is aimed at helping parents/caregivers make simple and tasty meals for their families that won't break their bank.  MSU Extension-Oakland nutrition instructors will provide nutrition education, food demonstrations and take-home materials. The class series also includes a short physical activity component lastng 5 minutes or less.
This nutrition series consists of fun, interactive activities for 55-74 year olds designed to encourage older adults to increase fruit and vegetable consumption as well as physical activity. 
Learn to stretch your food dollars to fit your meal plan, learn about food preservation and maintain a healthy weight with Eating Right is Basic from Michigan State University Extension. This eight to 10 week session can be offered in a variety of community settings. Participants will learn about goal setting, custom nutrition and physical activity to suite each person, eating more fruits and vegetables, portion sizes, becoming familiar with Dietary Guideline numbers, Food labels 101, healthy habits and fat facts.  High school students and adults can participate in this series.
Show Me Nutrition
This 6-week program is aimed at an audience of pre-kindergarten through 8th grade.  These lessons are interactive and appeal to a wide variety of learning styles.  Many of the activities are hands-on and each lesson has a book that accompanies it to reinforce literacy.  Each grade level is age-appropriate.  Topics covered:  food safety, positive body image, world hunger, physical activity and general nutrition. 
Ongoing:  Food Preservation Correspondence Course 
A correspondence course for anyone wishing to learn canning, freezing, or drying techniques using up-to-date information and methods so the food preserved is safe to eat.  Contact:  Robin Danto at 248-858-0904.

Ongoing:  Michigan Cottage Food Law Food Safety Training
The Michigan Cottage Food Law allows Michigan residents to manufacture and store particular foods in an unlicensed kitchen, such as a residential home. Through this program participants will learn about the Cottage food law and other principles you can use to provide safe products. Cottage Food Law and Safety training educates on preparing and selling foods under the Cottage Food Law, producing a safe food products, production, packaging and labeling, storing and transporting.  Cost: $10.00.

The Tollgate Farm Center offers year-round educational field trips for school or youth groups.  Hands-on, interactive and engaging lessons are intertwined with real-life applications.  They create experiences that complement school curriculum and customize programs to be relevant and enriching.

Upcoming Webinars

Webinars:  Young Invincibles and the ACA
Are you interested in a crash course on how to help your Young Invincible evaluate and purchase health insurance? Michigan State University Extension has your back!
Upcoming webinars:
12-2 p.m.
6-8 p.m.
In case you are wondering, Wikipedia says that a Young Invincible is a person between the ages of 18 and 29 who decides that it’s best for their financial health to decline purchasing health insurance. The term is used particularly in the insurance industry.
The Affordable Care Act provides access to health insurance via the health insurance marketplace and many Michigan residents have expanded access to the Healthy Michigan insurance program. says that if you’re under 26, you have several options for getting health insurance coverage:
Learn how to make a smart choice about health insurance. Join MSU Extension live online to gain tips and tools that will help you choose the best health insurance plan for you and your family.
To participate, simply log on to:
For Michigan State University Extension’s most current ACA news and information, visit
January 7, 2015- March 25, 2015: 2015 Great Lakes School of Turfgrass Science Online – This 12 week certificate program aims to provide participants with thorough and practical continuing education in turfgrass management.
January 13, 2015- March 10, 2015: Conflict Smoothies 2015 – Conflict Smoothies are a series of nine, 30-minute online sessions focused on interpersonal and inter-group conflict resolution.
2015 Rest Time Refresher Online Training for Early Childhood Providers
Join MSU Extension’s MI Strong Family Early Childhood Education staff for a 1-hour online training opportunity held during nap time. Connect through your computer and learn about a variety of topics! Sessions will last 45 minutes with 15 minutes for questions and answers. Participants that attend and actively participate will receive a certificate of completion for 1 training hour emailed directly to them. Sessions are $5 per person.   Click individual links to register for training.
 February 17, 2015: What Children Need to Know to Start School – By the end of Kindergarten a child will have been in class for 700 hours; but before it begins, parents, grandparents, child care providers, family members, churches, businesses, libraries and communities will have had the child for 52,000 hours. Learn more about what teachers want children to know to start school and how to best support early learning.
March 17, 2015: ABCs of Early Literacy – Literacy development begins at birth! These critical pre-reading or emergent literacy skills set the stage for children to be ready to learn to read when they enter Kindergarten. Learn more about why early literacy development is so important and how to help very young children become successful readers by the third grade.
April 21, 2015: Purpose of Play – “Why does my child just ‘play’ all day?” Learn more about the purpose of play in early childhood and why play-based education for young children is so critical to their social, emotional, language, cognitive and physical development.
May 19, 2015: RELAX Alternatives to Anger Parent Caregiver – Anger affects everyone and can be hard to know how to handle. Learn the developmental stages of self-control in children, understand what cortisol is and does, be able to identify books that can assist children with self-control, learn and be able to implement activities to assist with self-control and use RELAX concepts in daily interactions with children.
June 16, 2015: Setting the Stage – Social emotional skills can be nurtured by parents and caregivers through daily routine, children’s literature and language, and, playing to learn. The workshop will discuss social emotional skills that are fundamental to healthy development and school success and explore children's literature that can assist in teaching the skills.
January 22, 2015- March 12, 2015:  Building Early Emotional Skills – This eight week online class will help you learn how to navigate the tough early years in parenting, enhance your parenting skills and reduce your stress!  
January 26 - April 29, 2015: Beginning Farmer Webinar Series
Attention beginning farmers!  The MSU Extension 2015 Beginning Farmer Webinar Series is available for you to gain knowledge needed to plan your start-up farming operation, or add a new enterprise to an existing farm.  A series of twenty, 2-hour evening webinars covering a wide variety of farm- related topics is available, including: 
“Getting started with….”
Small Grain Production, Jan. 26 
...Cover Crops in Organic Vegetable Crop Rotations, Feb. 2
…Integrated Pest Management, Feb. 4
…Manure Storage, Handling and Mortality Management on Small Farms, Feb. 11
…Beekeeping for Pollination and Honey, Feb 13
…Value-Added Agriculture, Feb. 18
…Farm Food Safety, Feb 23
…Sheep and Goat Management, March 2
…USDA Organic Certification, March 9
…Hop Production, March 11
…Season Extension, March 16
…Marketing, March 18
…Small Fruit Production, March 23
…Beef Cow-Calf Production, March 25
…Direct Marketing, March 30
…Managing Soil, Irrigation and Fertilization Interactions, April 1
…Cover Crops in Field Crop Rotations, April 6
…Poultry Production, April 20
…Small Farm Equipment, April 27
…Beef Feedlot Management, April 29
A fee of $10 per webinar is required, or you can register for the entire series for $100.  Webinar recordings will be provided to all registered participants.  Participate from the comfort and convenience of your own home or office.  Registration, a brochure containing details on each individual program, and on-line or mailed payment options can be found at
Each program begins at 7pm Eastern time and will last about 2 hours.  A  high-speed internet connection is required.  You will receive webinar connection information after you register.
Contact the Alger County MSU Extension office at 906-387-2530 or for more information.
February 4, 2015- March 18, 2015: Citizen Planner on the Web – Three to four locations to be determined on a first come basis. This is a special version of the course using web conferencing technology for small groups at 3-4 sites. Join surrounding communities to host a site near you.

Get the Facts: The Affordable Care Act in Michigan Webinars
(Mondays at 3:00 pm)
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (also known as PPACA, ACA, health reform law, ObamaCare) affects residents’ access to and use of the country’s healthcare system and insurance policies. Individuals and families who have insurance through their employers, the private market, or through public programs, as well as those without insurance, are all affected in various ways. How much can I afford? Why is it important? What do I need and want? Lean how to make the Smart Choice . Join us live online to learn how you can get the most out of your health insurance. Webinars will be held Mondays at 3:00 pm for the foreseeable future.  To participate, log on to: Click “Guest” and type in any name. Your participation is anonymous. No personal information will be collected. If you don’t have a computer with a high-speed connection and speakers, visit your local library for access.
  eHome Money is a personal guide to financial health.  It's a fun, informative, low-cost course that you take online at your own pace, on your own schedule, at any computer.  With eHome Money you learn the steps you can take to reduce debt, raise your credit score and improve your whole financial picture.
As a HUD and Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA) certified agency, MSU Extension has been providing housing education for over 20 years.  By completing the online eHome America course and learning about available local, state and federal housing financing programs, participants can take positive steps to reach their goal of home ownership.  In order to receive a certificate of completion participants will need to complete a discussion (in-person or via phone) with a Michigan State University Extension Certified Housing Counselor.
Whether you already have a financial services provider, or are trying to select one, this course will give you the confidence to effectively evaluate your options and make the choice that's right for you.  What's the difference between a broker, an adviser and a financial planner?  What do all the titles and designations mean?  How can their background and credentials be checked out?  What services should you insist on having provided?  When interviewing a prospective financial services provider, how do you differentiate between a straight-talking professional and a flimflam salesman?   (This webinar was recorded on September 25, 2012.)
Legally Secure Your Financial Future 
Organize, Communicate, Prepare is a comprehensive series to help you get organized, communicate with others and begin preparing your estate plan.
 Investing For Your Future is an 11-unit home study course that was developed by the Cooperative Extension system for beginning investors with small dollar amounts to invest at any one time. It was assumed that many readers will be investing for the first time or selecting investment products, such as a stock index fund or unit investment trust, that they have not purchased previously.  The course units were developed in a logical order. "Basic" topics such as setting goals, investment terms (e.g., diversification, dollar-cost averaging, asset allocation), and finding money to invest lay a foundation to help readers understand how and why they’re investing.  After exploring "the basics," the course describes specific types of investments (e.g., stocks and bonds) in detail. Finally, Investing For Your Future concludes with additional topics of use to investors: available resources, how to select professional financial advisors, and information to help you avoid becoming a victim of investment fraud. You can choose to read the entire course, in any order that makes sense to you, or select only those topics that are of most interest.
Michigan Citizen Planner Online 
Michigan Citizen Planner Online is designed to equip volunteer community leaders with the technical knowledge and leadership skills needed to perform their duties more effectively.   Contact:  517-432-7600.

For further information about any classes or activities, please contact MSU Extension-Oakland County, 248-858-0880. 

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