\ All Things Girl Scouts: 2016-03-13

March 19, 2016

Tula: Courageous and Strong - Red Petal







Petal Activity #1: Enjoy Tula’s Story and talk about it

Tula's story is in the Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting.  Tula the Tulip is the fourth petal of ten that you will learn about in this guide.  Tula's petal is about learning what being courageous and strong means.  If you don't the Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting, you can hear it read here by Troop #5007.

Petal Activity #2: Make an art gallery celebrating women who are courageous and strong

We did this requirement last - because I wanted my girls to see that THEY could be courageous and strong.  I had previously printed pictures of each of my girls, and when we got to this part, I gave each girl their photo, and a piece of colored construction paper.  We took out our troop arts and craft supplies, and I asked each girl to paste their photo to the construction paper, and decorate it.  When they were finished, I had each girl show us her art, and tell us about the girl in the picture and how she was courageous and strong.  I LOVED this part of the badge - it was a really empowering, and uplifting experience for both my girls and myself.

Petal Activity #3: Practice being courageous and strong

We did this requirement second, rather than third.  This was also one of my favorite petals to earn.  I had 9 daisy girl scouts, and so I took 4 eggs and hard boiled them.  I left the other 5 fresh.  When we got to this part of the meeting, I gave each girl a paper plate, and let them each pick an egg.  I talked about being courageous, and what that means.  

Courage is being able to face fear, and being able to move past uncertainty and nervousness.  It is being brave; feeling scared and moving forward despite that feeling.

Then I explained that we have 9 eggs, and 4 of them are hard boiled, which means 5 of them are not.  I asked my girls to them smash their egg between their hands.  Many of the girls balked - no one wanted to be covered in egg.  I used this time to reinforce courage, and how they are feeling fear - and now we were going to move past it.  We encouraged each other, and one by one they smashed their eggs in their hands.  The lucky girls were relieved and the less lucky little ladies delighted in being intrepid and making a bit of a mess.
We had a great time with this - not many things cuter than 5 and 6 year olds learning about girl scouts!  Tell me how your Tula the Tulip earning went!


Bugs - Brownie Legacy


Brownie Badge Work

The Bugs badge has 5 steps, and is designed to help girls learn about bugs, and immerse themselves in the world of bugs.  Brownies are in 2nd and 3rd grade, and ready to take the world by storm.

Brownie Legacy Bugs Patch


Badge Requirements

  • Learn about bugs
  • Bug craft
  • See bugs in action
  • Bug homes
  • Take a bug field trip 
These requirements do not need to be done all at once, or even all in a row.  There is a great spreadsheet that will help track these badge requirements if you choose to space them out.   You can find the spreadsheet here.  The spreadsheet also gives some more great ideas for ways to meet the requirements.  You can also edit the entries if you choose to do something different.

If you have the means for it, a trip to a local zoo, or bug house can help complete the entire badge.  If this is the route you take, I will note what will complete each requirement.

1.  Learn about bugs

Simply learning about bugs is a pretty broad topic.  There are a few great options.  If you are at a zoo or bug house, simply attending a talk about bugs or speaking with someone who is a bug expert.

Another option is to print off bug worksheets here, and hand them out.  This is a color sheet of an ant, and has label areas for the 3 main parts of an insect.  The title is 'The Insect' and the three sections to label, top to bottom are head, thorax, and abdomen.  


Give a short talk about insects:  Insects have 3 things in common - 6 legs, 3 body parts, and a hard skeleton.  The head is the first part, in front of the thorax.  The eyes and mouth are on the head.  The thorax is the middle part - sometimes wings are attached to the thorax.  The end of the insect is called the abdomen, and it sits right behind the thorax.  This is generally the largest part of the insect.

Then have the girls fill in the words, and color in the insect. 


paper inch worm craft
Photo c/o: All Kids Network
2. Bug craft

  • Paper Inchworm
    • Supplies:
      • White construction paper
      • Green construction paper, printed with this template
      • Black sharpie
      • Googly eyes
      • White glue
      • Hole punch
      • Black Pipe Cleaner
    • Cut on the lines of the green paper.  Starting at bottom of white construction paper, glue one end of a green strip down.  Glue the other end down, pushing it towards the previously glued end, to form a bump.  Repeat this 2 more times to complete the body of the inchworm, overlapping the end of the previous bump each time.  Next make a circle with the last strip of paper.  Punch two holes in the top and slide one end of pipe cleaner in each hole.  Glue 2 googly eyes on the loop, and draw a smile on, then paste it down, overlapping the end of the last strip of the body.
      **This craft was inspired by this blog, and has been modified from the original picture to the right.
  • Lady Bug roll up
    • Supplies: 
    • Image of Paper Loop Lady Bug
      Picture c/o: Free Kids Crafts
      • Red 2 1/4 in x 6 in strips
      • Black 1 in circles, with a tab on one side
      • Leaves printed on green construction paper, cut out
      • Googly eyes
      • Black Sharpie
      • White glue
      • 6 in pieces of black pipe cleaner
    • Make a circle with the red strip (this is the body of your lady bug).  Draw black line down the middle, and make 3 black dots on each side.  Next, fold tab over on circle, and glue onto the front of red circle (this is the head of your lady bug).  Fold pipe cleaner into antennae and glue to black circle.  Glue googly eyes on the middle of the black circle, and glue ladybug to your leaf.                                                                                     **This craft was inspired by this blog.
3. See bugs in action

Challenge your girls to find, and observe at lease 3 types of bugs.  Ask them to write 3 sentences about each bug they observe.

At a zoo or bug house, challenge your girls to observe the beehive.  They will see bees leaving and coming, and hard at work. You can also challenge them to find the queen, generally marked with a white or black dot on her back.

4. Bug homes

A)  Visit a local butterfly home, and check out the chrysalis'.  Share with the girls the life cycle of ther Monarch.

  1. Female lays an egg, that sticks generally to a leaf or stem
  2. Egg hatches into a caterpillar
  3. Caterpillar creates chrysalis
  4. Butterfly emerges from chrysalis, living the rest of their lives in a warm climate with lots of flowers.

Discuss the various homes of the butterfly, as they move through the stages of life. (Leaf or stem, Chrysalis, Warm climate/lots of flowers)

B)  Another option is the Simple Bug Hotel.  If you are skirmish and your girls are loving this bug badge, this may be for you.  You take a 2 liter, and cut the top and bottom off, then cut it in half so you end up with 2 cylinders.  Then you stuff the cylinders tight and full of organic material - twigs, leaves, wood, etc.  This was a great idea from THIS blog, and she made adorable bug hotels with her kids!

5. Take a bug field trip

If you are at a zoo or bug house, you've got this one in the bag.  Let the girls enjoy their surroundings and take in all the bugs they can find.

Other options are taking a trip to a local farm, state park, or beach, and taking note of your surroundings.  Notice bugs on the ground, in the sand, in the water, on trees, etc.  Observe them and try to figure out what is happening in their lives.










March 18, 2016

Zinni: Considerate and Caring - Light Green Petal



Welcome to the Daisy Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting! The main focus of this book for our first and second year girls is the Daisy Petal Patch.  Unlike the badge work for older girls, there are not a whole heck of a lot of guidelines for the petal patches.

1.  
Enjoy Zinni’s Story and talk about it
Zinni's story is in the Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting.  Zinni the Zinnia is the third petal of ten that you will learn about in this guide.  Zinni's petal is about learning what being considerate and caring means.  If you don't have the Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting, you can hear it read here by Troop #5007.

2.  Come up with ideas on how to be like Zinni
This is a fairly simple step - an open forum works well, and its a great segway from discussing the story.  Once you talk about the story, and the girls are clear on what being considerate and caring means, you can ask them to come up with ideas on how to be like Zinni.  Some leaders like to par off into groups, then come back together to talk about what they came up with, but I prefer the open forum with the little ladies. 

3.  Practice being kind and considerate.  
There are a lot of ways to fulfill this requirement.  The Card Making Fun Badge is a great way to fulfill this badge - cards are a great way to show someone how kind and considerate you are.

Another way to complete this badge requirement is to help your girl make jar of kindness.  They are simple jars that help (remind) your little ladies to be kind every day.

Supplies: 

  • Mason jar for each child
  • Kindness slip template (download here)
  • Art supplies to decorate their kindness jars
  • Scissors
  • Pens
1.  Give each child a mason jar, and a kindness slip.
2.  Have the children share the art supplies, and practice being considerate and caring while they decorate their Jars of Kindness.
3.  Have each child write in 2 of their own acts of kindness, and then have them cut out their strips.
4.  Have them put their slips in the jar, and explain that they can pull out one strip a day, and practice in that specific way to be caring and consider to the world around them.

**A variation of this jar is to hand out empty, clean baby food jars, and a handful of pony beads - then encourage the girls to fill their jars, adding one pony bead every time they complete an act of kindness. 


We had a great time with this - not many things cuter than 5 and 6 year olds learning about girl scouts!  Tell me how your Sunny the Sunflower earning went!






March 17, 2016

Sunny: Friendly and Helpful - Yellow Petal



Sunny the Sunflower (Yellow), Friendly & Helpful Petal



Welcome to the Daisy Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting! The main focus of this book for our first and second year girls is the Daisy Petal Patch.  Unlike the badge work for older girls, there are not a whole heck of a lot of guidelines for the petal patches.

1.  Enjoy Sunny's story, then talk about it

Sunny's story is in the Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting.  Sunny the Sunflower is the second petal of ten that you will learn about in this guide.  Sunny's petal is about learning what being friendly and helpful means.  If you don't have the Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting, you can hear it read here by Troop #5007.

2.  Make a mural based on Sunny's story

You have a few options for this one.  Personally, I like bringing a roll of white paper, and letting the girls use different mediums - paint, markers, crayons - to create a mural about Sunny's story.  I do know that some leaders give each girl an individual paper and have the girls each do their own drawing about the story.  Both work well.

3.  Practice being friendly and helpful

This is a really fun requirement to this badge - Daisy's gain such joy from being friendly and helpful, so it's a big win for everyone.  For this badge, I like to make coupon books.  I called them Sunny coupons, but you can call them whatever you wish.  

Supplies:
  • Coupon Book Template
  • Ribbon Scraps at least 6 inches long
  • Hole Punch
  • Scissors


I made this template (you can download your own copy here), and handed them out, one per girl.  This allows 5 coupons per girl, which is a pretty good amount.  They wont have to write TOO much but they can fill in whatever they'd like on the lines.  I gave some suggestions - one dinner cleanup, one hour of yard raking, etc.  They got pretty creative - you will enjoy what they come up with!

I had them write on them, then cut on the thin black lines, and we used a hole punch on the black dots.  Each girl picked a ribbon, and put one end of ribbon through each hole, and tie it off.  Voila! Super cute Sunny Coupons!

We had a great time with this - not many things cuter than 5 and 6 year olds learning about girl scouts! Tell me how your Sunny the Sunflower earning went!




















Lupe: Honest and Fair - Light Blue Petal


Welcome to the Daisy Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting!  The main focus of this book for our first and second year girls is the Daisy Petal Patch.  Unlike the badge work for older girls, there are not a whole heck of a lot of guidelines for the petal patches.

1.  Enjoy Lupe’s Story

Lupe's story is in the Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting.  Lupe the Lupine is the first petal of ten that you will learn about in this guide.  Lupe's petal is about learning what being honest and fair means.  If you don't have the Girl's Guide to Girl Scouting, you can hear it read here by Troop #5007.

Other appropriate books to enjoy and discuss in lieu of Lupe's story:

  • The Boy Who Cried Wolf
  • Princess Kim and the Lie that Grew, MaryAnn Cocca-Leffler
  • Liar Liar, Pants on Fire, Diane deGroat
  • Little Croc's Purse, Lizzie Finlay


2. Act out the story with Daisy friend

This step is pretty self explanatory - just assign each girl their own part, and help them come up with a quick skit of this story.  This step is really about comprehension, so as long as they get the gist of it, it's all good.  If you have a large troop, splitting them up into groups, and assigning parts of the story to act out will work well.

3. Practice being honest and fair

This last step is open to interpretation.  We chose to do an activity that would get the girls up and moving, and be a hands on illustration of the characteristics of Lupe the Lupine.  I got plastic Easter eggs - one for each girl in my troop.  I split them in half, and in one half, I put two Hershey kisses in each egg.  The other half, I left empty.

We met in a community building, so while we were doing the early parts of the meeting, one of my parent volunteers hid the eggs outside in the greens surrounding the building.  When we got to this part of the meeting, I gathered my girls and told them I had a fun activity for them.  We were going to have an impromptu Easter egg hunt.  There was only ONE rule - each girl can only find one egg.  Once they find their egg, they come back to home base, and wait for their friends to finish.

Once everyone had their egg, we went inside and sat back down at our table.  I told the girls they could each open their eggs.  Some girls were elated to have received TWO chocolates. Some girls were put off because their eggs were empty.  As girls began to protest and grumble that it wasn't fair, I explained that they were correct - it wasn't fair.  I asked them if they knew what would make it fair.  My girls proudly decided that if each girl with 2 chocolates shared theirs, everyone could have one.  I did have one little lady who just didn't want to share (because who wants to give away their chocolate!) but a quick talk about girl scouts being a sister to every scout, and learning about being honest and fair got her on board.  Once everyone had their own chocolate, everyone opened and enjoyed their chocolate. 

We had a great time with this - not many things cuter than 5 and 6 year olds learning about girl scouts! Tell me how your Lupe the Lupine earning went!



















March 16, 2016

Sample Parent Letter for First Meeting

Girl Scout 
verb

Being a Girl Scout is something you DO, and it is an EXPERIENCE that no girl should miss!



Welcome to Girl Scout Daisy Troop # ______!

Your Daisy Girl Scout has joined a special group of young women on a memorable and unique path.  Girl Scouts have a long history of shaping and molding smart, successful, well rounded women.  I can't wait to share these experiences with your Daisy Girl Scout!

My name is [NAME] and I am the leader of troop #12345. I am excited about working with your daughter and look forward to spending time with her this year.

Schedule:
Meetings will be held on the first and third Tuesday of the month, at the elementary school at 123 School ln, Mytown, Mystate.

Snacks:
We are asking that each family commits to providing snack for at least one meeting.  If you prefer, you can choose a week, and make a $10 donation, and I will make sure snack is provided.

Parent Roles:

  • Meeting Parents/Co-Leaders: We always need parents to volunteer and register to help out at meetings.  It is $15 for adults to register for girl scouts.
  • Product Managers:  We have 2 product sales throughout the year.
    • Fall Product Sales:  This parent will register as a volunteer, and take the fall product training and be the lead in our fall product sales.
    • Cookie Sales:  This parent will register as a volunteer, and take the fall product training and be the lead in our fall product sales.
  • Outdoor Certified Parent:  When we camp, or do activities outdoors that involve fire, we will need an adult who is a registered volunteer and has take the outdoor certification.
  • Treasurer:  This is an adult who will volunteer and register. You will handle our finances, and keep parents and girls abreast of the balance in our bank account and let everyone know how money is being spent.
  • There may be other roles that arise throughout the year - I will let you know if we need more volunteers.

All girls, leaders, co-leader, fall product sales, manager and cookie sale manager are required to register and clear a criminal background check. Other adult guardians and parents are welcome to register as adult Girl Scout members. Financial assistance is available; please contact me for more information. Applying is simple, and if there is any concern with cost, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Troop Dues:
**Add information about troop dues here - we dont utilize them for my troop, so it wasn't a necessary sections for us.**

Attendance:
I am aiming to build a cohesive group with a great sense of group identity.  For this reason, it is important that the girls attend as many meetings as possible.  If your girl is not able to attend a meeting, please let me know at least 24 hrs in advance.  Supplies are often purchased for the number of girls attending, and troop funds are precious so this will help us spend them wisely.  If there is an emergency day of, please text/call/email so that I am aware, and we are not left waiting for your girl to start the meeting.

I look forward to meeting each of you and if you have any questions, please feel free to call or email me.

Name
Phone
Email

**Feel free to use this form, alter it, whatever you need to do to it - my form is your form**

The Girl Scout Way - Brownie Legacy


Brownie Badge Work
The Girl Scout Way is a badge that can be earned at every level, Brownie and up.  This post is dedicated to earning it at the brownie level.  Brownies are in 2nd and 3rd grade, and ready to take the world by storm.




Badge Requirements
Girl Scout Way Legacy Patch
  • Sing Everywhere
  • Celebrate Juliette Low's birthday
  • Share sisterhood
  • Leave a place better than you found it
  • GS traditions
These requirements do not need to be done all at once, or even all in a row.  There is a great spreadsheet that will help track these badge requirements if you choose to space them out.   You can find the spreadsheet here.  The spreadsheet also gives some more great ideas for ways to meet the requirements.  You can also edit the entries if you choose to do something different.

1.  Sing Everywhere - Brownies are at a great age for this one - they love songs and singing!  Help your girls learn 3 new songs, then encourage them to sing them together at the end of the meeting, after learning them.  Below are three great songs.  Click on the link to view the lyrics and a YouTube video.

          Song #1: Make New Friends
                     
          Song #2: Linger

          Song #3: On My Honor

2. Celebrate Juliette Low's Birthday

A great way to celebrate Juliette Low's birthday *ANYTIME* (even outside the month of October) is with SWAPS!  SWAPS are a small token of friendship that you exchange with another troop, traditionally while travelling, but more recently troops are connecting with other troops in their council, state, country, or even another country by way of social media.  You can convene with troop leaders all over the US in our facebook group here!  SWAPS stands for Special Whatchamacallits Affectionately Pinned Somewhere.

One of my favorites, in honor of Juliette Low's birthday, is a cupcake SWAPS.  Below I will list how we make them.

Supplies:
Scissors
Fuzzy Balls
Elmer's Glue
Hot Glue Gun
Small Beads (seed)
Safety Pins
Mini Cupcake Liners
Cardstock
Candles

1.  Start with the mini cupcake liner, and glue a fuzzy ball inside of it. 
2.  Spread glue on the top of the fuzzy ball, and sprinkle beads on it.  The glue will dry clear, and the sprinkles will look like jimmies on the cupcake. 
3.  Cut down candle to the appropriate length, and glue it to the top of the fuzzy ball. (I recommend using the glue gun for this, since its a sturdier glue.)
4.  From the cardstock, cut a tag for your SWAPS.  I prefer this shape:
5.  Write Happy Birthday on the square side of the tag.
6.  Glue the bottom of the cupcake to the side near the hole, and slip the safety pin in the hole.  

3. Share Sisterhood

One of the coolest ways to share in sisterhood with our girl scout sisters (in my opinion) is the Eternal Flame ceremony.  This is a ceremony that started with the original group of girl scouts, as they disbanded, to remind them what being a girl scout is all about. 

Supplies:
  • Candles (One for each girl, with the girl scout law tied to it with a ribbon)
  • Lighter/Match
  • Water bucket - filled with water (*Just in case!*)
Leader #1: Long ago, a special ceremony was formed. Juliette Low wanted her original girls to carry a special spark with them as their Scouting group broke up. Some from the troop were moving away, working to help their families, or wanted to help a group of girls a little younger than themselves. But whatever their reasons, Juliette knew no other group would ever be quite the same.

Leader #2: As the girls stood in a circle holding candles (they had made), Juliette knew what spark it was she wanted to pass on. She lit her candle & spoke.

Leader #1: With this candle, I give you each something very special to pass on. As I light the candle on my right, I ask each of you to light the candle to your right & pass it on. I want you to carry this thought with you wherever you go. This is the ETERNAL FLAME for Girl Scouts. Each of you, after having a lit candle before you, will repeat the Girl Scout Promise with me, then pause & recall a few of the things we have done together as a group. I will hold my candle up, and as I do so, you will all raise yours and we will blow them out together. Before we separate from our circle, I want to ask you to keep this candle as a very special candle. It is not to be used for any purpose but passing on the ETERNAL FLAME. You may use it in other Girl Scout ceremonies, such as camps, encampments, campfires, bridging or court of awards ceremonies. I’m glad we were able to start a special tradition based on our ETERNAL FLAME.

4. Leave a place better than you found it

This is something we practice at every meeting.  Its recited often, and is generally the first and last thing I say at every meeting.  We meet at the girl's school, and so it's very important that we leave the space better than we found it.

However, for this requirement, a hike would also work.  Head to a local state park for a hike and picnic.  As you hike through the woods, remind the girls that girl scouts leave places better than they found it.  Bring a trash bag to pick up any litter you find along your way, and have the girls be cognizant about picking everything up after lunch.  This is an easy concept for the the girls to understand, and it sticks - my little lady picks up litter everywhere we go, reciting, girl scouts leave places better than they found it!

5. GS traditions

For the Girl Scout traditions requirement, you can do any tradition you'd like.  I choose to do one of the most useful traditions - making a Sit-Upon.  I have my Sit-Upon from when I was a brownie girl scout, and I hope my daughter keeps her just as long. They are very useful, and simple to make - which is a win win.

Supplies: 
Photo Credit: Artsy Chaos


  • Vinyl - I grabbed some from Hobby Lobby
  • Hole Punch
  • Yarn
  • Padding - I used pillow stuffing for ours







1.  Cut vinyl into rectangles - I used 16 x 32 inch rectangles.
2.  Fold rectangles in half to make a 16 x 16 square.
3.  Use the hole punch to punch holes around the open sides, about 1 inch apart.
4.  Stitch the blanket with yarn, using the holes you've punched.  You can use any stitch you like and just tie it off when you are done!

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial! If you do this badge, please tell me about it! How did it go - did you do it the same, or tweak it a little? I love hearing about other's experiences. 















Songs - On My Honor

Girl Scout songs are an integral part of being a girl scout.  These are some of my favorites! Please enjoy them.  I grew up in the midwest, so if you are from a different region, you may have slightly different lyrics!  I've included links to YouTube videos, but they are not *my* videos - enjoy them, and let the artists know if you loved them!



On my Honor

Chorus:
On my honor, I will try,
There's a duty to be done and I say aye.
There's a reason here for a reason above,
My honor is to try and my duty is to love.

People don't need to know my name,
If I've done any harm, then I'm to blame,
If I've helped another, then I helped me,
And opened up my eyes to see.

I've tucked away a song or two,
If you're feeling low there's one for you,
If you need a friend, then I will come,
There's plenty more where I come from.

Come and sit where the fire burns bright,
You can see much more by candlelight,
You can find more meaning in a campfire's glow
Than you can find in a year or so.

Songs - Make New Friends



Girl Scout songs are an integral part of being a girl scout.  These are some of my favorites! Please enjoy them.  I grew up in the midwest, so if you are from a different region, you may have slightly different lyrics!  I've included links to YouTube videos, but they are not *my* videos - enjoy them, and let the artists know if you loved them!


Make New Friends
Link to YouTube video for Make New Friends


Make new friends,
But keep the old.
One is silver,
And the other, gold.

A circle's round
It has no end
That's how long 
I'm gonna be your friend.


A fire burns bright,
It warms the heart.
We’ve been friends,
From the very start.

You help me,
And I’ll help you
And together
We will see it through.

The sky is blue
The Earth is green
I can help
To keep it clean.

Across the land
Across the sea
Friends forever
We will always be.

*Optional Verse*
A friend like you,
Is hard to find,
Very special,
And one of a kind.

This is a round, but can be sung together as well.  I also tend to use only 3 verses with my younger girls, just because its a lot to remember for them!


Songs - Linger

Girl Scout songs are an integral part of being a girl scout.  These are some of my favorites! Please enjoy them.  I grew up in the midwest, so if you are from a different region, you may have slightly different lyrics!  I've included links to YouTube videos, but they are not *my* videos - enjoy them, and let the artists know if you loved them!



Linger
Link to YouTube video for Linger

Hmmm, I want to linger. 
Hmmm, a little longer. 
Hmmm, a little longer, 
Here with you. 

Hmmm, it’s such a perfect night. 
Hmmm, it doesn't seem quite right. 
Hmmm, that this should be, 
My last with you. 

Hmmm, and come September, 
Hmmm, I will remember, 
Hmmm, our Scouting days, 
Of friendships true. 

Hmmm, and as the years go by, 
Hmmm, I'll think of you and sigh. 
Hmmm, this is good night 
And not good bye. 

Hmmm, I want to linger. 
Hmmm, a little longer. 
Hmmm, a little longer, 
Here with you.