Friday, November 20, 2015

Brownie Badge: Making Friends

Wow... it's been 3 years since my girls did this badge... though it seems like it should be longer. The girls were in 3rd grade at the time. They are now 7th graders. Time flies, huh? 

I will discuss what we did to earn the Making Friends badge. I have to say the graphic for the badge is adorable and one of my favorites. Not only is the badge cute, the lessons learned are great life lessons... some that I think would be good for our Leaders and adults in general to brush up on at times... 

The 1st and 5th requirement were sent home as "homework" for completion. 

Requirement #2 Show Friends You Care
This was during Girl Scouts 100th birthday year. We had connected with a troop in St. Louis (100 miles away from us) and decided to trade SWAPs. So, we made a simple little SWAP and mailed them off to our sister troop in St. Louis. 

You can find TONS of SWAP ideas online. If you want to see my collection of ideas, check out my Pinterest board

Requirement #3 Share Favorite Activities 
Play a game the group decides on. I typically keep a few games in my bag of tricks at each meeting. When the girls were Brownie age, my collection consisted of Twister, washcloth toss, and hot cookie. We could also always play tag (if good weather), snake obstacle course, Juliette Says. 

  • Twister: I think everyone knows what that is...
  • Washcloth Toss: Details here
  • Hot Cookie: Take an empty cookie box, stuff with newspaper, and tape it shut. Same rules as hot potato. 
  • Tag: I think you know what that is
  • Snake Obstacle Course: Set up (or have the girls) set up chairs, tables, etc. in a pattern. Then the girls line up in a single line and put their hands on the shoulders of the girl in front of her. They have to make their way through the obstacles all together. We have also played with them sitting on the floor and scooching together through the obstacles to make it more challenging. We've also blindfolded everyone except the first girl to make it more challenging. 
  • Juliette Says: Think Simon says, only...Juliette

Requirement #4 Learn How to Disagree
For the most part, the girls got along great at this age and their school was awesome at teaching the kids how to disagree and settle conflicts. So, I decided to take a different approach for this requirement. 

The girls worked together to think of all the kind words they could think of in 5 minutes. One girl wrote them down as everyone else chimed in suggestions. At the end of 5 minutes, they went through their list and came up with examples of when they had used the word.

In addition to the 3 requirements we did in troop meetings, the girls also had 2 things they had to take home with them and bring back. This did 3 things, it allowed some flexibility, got parents involved, and the girls had to be responsible to bring it back to the next meeting. 3 years later, we still struggle at times with the responsibility thing when it comes to scouts. 

The resource sheet is linked below. 

Requirement #1 Make Friendly Introductions
Take Home (Resource below): Introduce yourself to 3 new people at school using Kind words and telling them something about yourself to start a conversation OR meet a parents adult friend and tell them something about yourself

Requirement #5 Practice Friendship
Take Home: Sit at a different table at lunch (you can take a friend with you) and make a new friend OR Go to a dance or art class, sports game, camp or other activity and practice being a good friend.


Thursday, November 19, 2015

Daisy Petal: Mari - Responsible for What I Say and Do

Remember I have a 7th grade Cadette troop, too, okay? Seriously... this has got to be the easiest petal EVER to earn. I just followed the booklet and was thankful I had planned to do a leaf in this meeting, too, or else we would have been singing A LOT!

For the Mari petal, here is what we did:

Enjoy Mari’s Story and talk about it

The girls sat in the circle and I read the story. I have to say, it kinda cracks me up to see parents listening intently to the story. I don't think we are ever too old to be read to. In fact, isn't there a whole "book on tape" following to back that theory up? 

Anyway, we read about the Cupcake Promise and then talked about the questions. 

Practice ways to be responsible throughout the day

Next up... SKITS!

I had the following written on slips of paper and let the girls draw one from the bucket to keep it all fair:

Morning: make bed, brush teeth, put breakfast dishes away, remember stuff for school
School: pay attention in class, put things away, follow directions, eat lunch on time
Afternoon: help with dinner, dishes, homework, pick up toys, bedtime routine

They took turns acting out how this would go. Then we discussed if they typically did that item and how being responsible is important. 

Practice being responsible 

Lastly, we practiced being responsible. I had the girls clean up our Daisy meeting place. We had done some painting for the holidays and such and put together a little foam reindeer, so there were lots of little pieces of plastic and such around that needed to be picked up and thrown away. I reminded them in order to earn this petal EVERYONE had to help. Otherwise, they wouldn't receive the petal. 

It is interesting to see the various levels of commitment to helping out when you have 10 girls from 10 families with 10 different sets of values. But, at troop meetings... everyone is held to the same rules and obligations. The troop is their family, too.

    Monday, November 16, 2015

    Daisy: Money Counts Leaf

    The Daisy Money Counts Leaf is one of 4 leaves Daisies can earn. I wasn't really planning on trying to earn these, but... I reviewed the requirements and figured it would tie in well with Fall Product sales and Cookie sales. When meetings are only an hour though, you have to stay on track and keep the girls focused at the task at hand. 

    Guessing jar of coins

    As the girls arrived to the meeting, I showed them the little box of coins and asked them how much they thought was inside. Guesses ranged from 20 cents to $100. I also asked parents what they thought, just to get them more involved with activities.

    I then set that aside and told them we would find out in a little while. We were doing our Tula petal at the same time, so we had some things to do to prepare our canvases. 

    Understand different kinds of coins

    As the canvases were drying, I gathered the girls into a circle on the floor. I picked out a penny and asked them what it was and how much it was worth. I did the same with the dime, nickel, and quarter. 

    Then, I quizzed them about how many pennies it would take to make each of the larger coins and a $1 dollar bill. I had a coloring sheet of a piggy bank with pennies for them to color in how many it would take for a dime, but I cut that activity for sake of time. I can use it at a later meeting for a different petal or to reinstate this one. Cookie season is coming, after all. 

    Then, I asked one girl to sort out all the pennies, one for nickels, one for dimes, one for quarters. After the coins were sorted, I asked different girls to count each one and help me do the math to see how much value was there for each type of coin. We then added it all together. I used "old school" math and held up fingers to count the columns and come up with the result of how much money was in the box. I will note here, I purposefully kept this number low, because I didn't want to be counting all day. We had roughly $7 in coins in the box. $4 of that was in quarters.

    Know more about paper money

    In the leaf badge handbook is a great graphic of paper money. I simply held that up for the girls to see and we talked about the different values of paper money and how many coins is would take for the various values. 

    Find out the cost of fun

    I have to say, this was enlightening to me. I was impressed to see how well the girls understood what was free and what cost money when it comes to activities. Again, I simply used the page in the badge booklet. 

    We briefly discussed what we would want to do for fun. We talked about going to the movies and how much tickets were and what that would mean for a group. 

    If you are interested in any of the resources mentioned above for this leaf, you can download a complete copy off my Google Drive.

    Tuesday, November 3, 2015

    Daisy Petal: Tula - Courageous and Strong

    In November 2015, the awesome Daisy troop earned their Courageous and Strong Petal.

    For a beginning activity, the girls were given a choice:
    Complete the Courageous and Strong Maze
    Coloring page for courageous and strong
    The beginning activity is for girls who arrive early and then at the meeting time, they stop and join Opening Circle. I printed these as double sided, so I was using resources wisely. 

    Petal Activity #1: Enjoy Tula’s Story and talk about it (snack!)
    The girls loved the story and I'm amazed each time how attentive they are to the story and how quick they are to want to answer questions and have a discussion about it. This is a great time for snack, as it keeps them quiet while they hear the story. It also sets a limit on snack time, so it doesn't drag on for half the meeting.

    Petal Activity #2: Make an art gallery celebrating women who are courageous and strong
    I wanted the girl's to see they are courageous and strong and they can be great, too. A recent study I saw told us that girls self-esteem peaks at age 7 or 8 and then begins to decline. So, anytime you can remind them they are awesome... worth it!

    For this activity, we made a Super Girl canvas.  They turned out super cute and it gave the girls something to take home to remind them they are super girls who can set the world on fire!

    tablecloth, hair dryers, canvas, paints, mod podge, scissors, foam brushes, super girl images, names, strips with courageous/strong words on them 
    1. Paint background with foam brush and allow to dry. I used orange, yellow, and a metallic golden orange and just swiped across at a diagonal
    2. Cut out super girl graphic, trim down words, cut out name
    3. Once canvas is dry from painting, apply thin layer of mod podge with foam brush to the area you are applying paper objects.
    4. While mod podge is still wet, lay papers on top. I found it was good to work in small areas at a time and not cover the entire canvas with Mod Podge. It dries quickly.
    5. Once you have adhered all your words and graphics, apply a thin coat of Mod Podge over top of it all and allow to dry. 
    We brought hair dryers, just in case the girls got the paint too thick.

    Petal Activity #3: Practice being courageous and strong 
    While the background of the canvases were drying and as we used blow dryers to dry some of them, we did a circle discussion thinking of characters on TV, movies, books that are courageous and strong and how/why.