Monday, September 26, 2016

Girl Scout Founder's Day 2016 Ideas for Daisies

I know that it is only September, but you are planning ahead for your meetings and not running around at the last minute trying to get everything done for this week's meeting, are you? (hint-you should not be!)

Girl Scouts really does make it easy for you to plan your calendar, since there are holidays for you to celebrate. The first one comes in the fall, which is Girl Scout Founder's Day on October 31st. This is the actual birthday of Juliette Gordon Low, who founded the movement in 1912 (you can read a brief history of her life in this article.)

Girl Scout Founder's Day Activities for Daisy Scouts

Photo from Pixabay

Here are some ideas for you to do with your Daisy troop as you celebrate the founder!

Make a Pearl Bracelet or Necklace

Share with the girls that in order for Juliette to start the very first Girl Scout troop, she had to sell her rare and expensive pearl necklace in order to fund it. Depending on how many volunteers you have, you can have the girls make their own "pearl" necklace or bracelet (necklaces will take longer to finish)

Before the meeting, prep the elastic by cutting it to the length you want and and tying a knot. You may also want to put a piece of scotch tape at the end so it is easier to thread.

Materials:

White Pony Beads

Daisy Girl Scout Founder's Day craft idea-make a pearl necklace or bracelet.


Elastic

Girl Scout Founder's Day craft supplies

Number Beads are optional. If you want to have the girls put their troop number on the jewelry, then have them organized in a baggy for each girl ahead of time.


Girl Scout Founder's Day craft ideas


Flower Beads are another option for the girls to put on their necklace or bracelet. There are 100 that come in this package, so you will want to hand these out to each girl in a baggie so no one hogs all of them.

Daisy Girl Scout bead craft for Founder's Day



Birthday in a Bag

This service project has become a classic. My troop did this several years ago and donated the bags to a food pantry located in our local high school that a student created years earlier.

You can read about the genesis of this project here at the official Girl Scout website.

If you want to do this with your troop, you will have to do three things before you meet.

First, find a food pantry that will take your bags.

Second, email the parents two weeks prior to ask for the items you need, which will be:
  • one box cake mix
  • one tub of icing
  • box of candles

With troop funds, purchase pretty paper napkins and plates. You can put 6-8 in each bag. Since this is not food, it does not have to be unopened.

Other materials you need:

White bags to decorate





The girls can make flowers from white muffin liners and glue them to the bag. Here are some images to spark your imagination.

Do you want some more ideas for celebrating Founder's Day with your Daisy troop?






Monday, September 12, 2016

Start Your Daisy Girl Scout Scrapbook Now

*This post contains affiliate links.

Creating a Girl Scout scrapbook is an easy and worthwhile activity to do with your troop. With a little advanced planning, your girls can create an individual keepsake of their scouting years that will last a lifetime. While you can begin your troop's Girl Scout scrapbook at any time of the year, starting in the fall gives your girls a trip down memory lane that will make them smile at the end of the school year.


Making a Girl Scout scrapbook with your Daisy troop is an investment that will pay off down the road. My troop loves theirs and they are starting 8th grade!

Photo from Pixabay

Before you begin, have one leader in charge of taking the pictures, having them processed and separating them into a pile for each girl. Make sure whomever is the photographer gets enough notice to develop the film before your scrapbook meeting.

Another thing to note, as I learned from experience, is to make sure that your photographer gives you the receipts as she processes her film. It can cost quite a bit of money if she decides to have them printed just anywhere (and at the last minute) and does not look for sales and deals. As a matter of fact, I had to ask my troop parents for extra money at the end of the year because we ran out after all of the pictures were developed!

Twice a year, we devoted time to working on our scrapbooks. It is simply too overwhelming to do it all at one meeting. It was a tradition at our very last Girl Scout meeting before summer break to work on them. This always brought lots of giggles and grins were as they looked at their Daisy and Brownie pictures from just a few years ago. My troop is a group of young women who are in eigth grade; they are not little girls. Where did the time go?

Here is how we have scrapbooked through the years.

Get Volunteers!

When my troop was younger, I had two extra volunteers come to our scheduled scrapbook meetings.  This is really important because Daisy Scouts get scissor happy and cut way too much off a picture!  They also need help learning how to scrapbook.  More eyes means fewer mistakes!

The First Way to Make a Girl Scout Scrapbook

We Started Doing This Activity as Daisy Girl Scouts


The first Girl Scout scrapbook is to use a basic Avery view binder and page protector inserts. Avery binders come in an assortment of colors, so be sure to buy each girl the same one to prevent any arguments over who gets which one. I chose white to keep things simple.



For paper, I used cardstock that the girls decorate with stickers and markers, or themed paper I can find in Staples or craft stores. For example, we will do a scrapbooking meeting in late November. I make sure that I have bought all of the fall and Halloween stickers and paper at the beginning of the month, when stores are trying to get rid of these things. The same goes for the week after any major holiday.



These three rolls of flower stickers are good not just for Daisy Scouts, but as the girls get older and do some of the other badge work in Brownies and Juniors. Available on Amazon.

This was a very successful way for us to make our treasury of memories. With a three ring binder, I could buy top loading inserts by the 100 and the girls could keep adding to the binder as the years passed. When new girls joined my troop, I could easily purchase additional binders for them that were just like the ones the veteran members of my troop had.

Make a Choice

As the leader, you need to decide if your scrapbook will be done yearly, for every level, or if you will use the same one for all of your troop's years in scouting.

A Second Girl Scout Scrapbook Option-Ready Made Girl Scout Scrapbooks


If you want to buy a traditional scrapbook, there are options available for you. You can pick any solid color or go with a pattern or floral theme. Pick the same exact scrapbook for each girl to avoid any issues and have her put her picture on the front cover.

There are official Girl Scout scrapbooks for Brownies and one that just says "Girl Scouts". There are many Girl Scout supplies that you can buy that go along with it. I buy these as well as regular stickers so the girls can have a mix of both. 

Daisy leaders, the following is a helpful hint from my personal experience. When my troop was younger, before the scrapbooking meeting, I cut up the stickers and place them in plastic bags with each girl's name on it ahead of time. This prevented one girl from hogging one kind of sticker and it made each girl responsible for her own supplies. If she did not finish, she could bring the bag and the paper home to do on her own time so she was all caught up for our next session.

The Best Scrapbook Paper!

When I buy scrapbook paper for my troop for art projects, I get lost in all of the choices that I have! There are so many bright, bold and beautiful patterns. I do buy enough for each girl to have a piece. If we only need to cut out sections from a paper, then I buy three, one for each set of girls (I have eleven in my troop).

Scrapbook pads are also a great way to get a lot of paper for a minimal cost. You can start the girls off with blue themed paper as Daisies, then go to brown themed as Brownies, green as Juniors, etc. Here are some great pads-my favorite is the one with the butterflies, as there are so many options!



Girl Scout Embellishments

When my troop has scrapbooking meetings, I use a variety of stickers. While I do buy some at the end of the season and even from the Dollar Store, I always have a few sets of special Girl Scout themed stickers. I believe these are important to include because this is not a scrapbook of a vacation, a field trip or a birthday party...it is a Girl Scout scrapbook! No matter which style of scrapbook you do with your girls, the following paper rub-ons, stickers and other official Girl Scout embellishments will add a touch of class to your album!

 


Are you planning on making a Girl Scout scrapbook with your troop?

Monday, August 29, 2016

How to Earn the Yellow Daisy Petal Friendly and Helpful With The Invisible Boy

*This post contains affiliate links.

While there is no particular order in which the Daisy petals need to be earned, after first earning the Blue Promise Center, one of the next ones that I feel should be taught is the yellow Daisy petal, Friendly and Helpful. One of your jobs as a leader is to foster positive relationships within your troop...to have the girls become sisters in scouting (another petal that should be among the first to be earned, in my opinion).  After all, you are going into this hoping to lead a troop of girls for many years to come. Even if the girls are not friends outside of troop time, while they are with you, they need to get along.

A book that simply touched my heart is The Invisible Boy by Tracy Ludwig. I guarantee it will pull at yours as well, as the author writes about experiences that most of us have had at one time or another during our childhood.


Earn the Yellow Daisy petal, Friendly and Helpful, by reading The Invisible Boy and doing a related activity afterwards.


This book is the story of Brian, who is invisible to his classmates. When the book begins, Brian is drawn in black and white, while everything around him is in color. We read about two of his classmates, Sophie and Nathan take up a lot of space. You can ask the girls what does that mean?

My heart broke as I read...the author touches upon so many real life situations that children face and we adults are not there to protect them. Parents and leaders need to stop and talk as they read this book.

Other situations that Brian faces are:

  • Not being picked for a team
  • Talking about a party Brian was not invited to while sitting at lunch (is that being considerate and caring?)

One day, a new boy named Justin comes and the kids give him the once over. At lunch, he eats with chopsticks and the other children make fun of his lunch...all that is except Brian. He overhears what is happening, as he is sitting alone, and he wonders if it is worse to be laughed at or worse to be sitting alone-invisible.



Photo from Pixabay

Brian, who has a kind heart, draws a picture and writes a nice note on it and puts it in Justin's cubby. At recess, Justin thanks Brian, who is now illustrated with a bit of color. But, as Brian is once again left out in class, he is black and white...that is until Justin invited him to be a part of his group. This illustration jumps out as you can see how others make Brian feel like he does not matter.

After Justin gives Brian a compliment, he is in full color. At last, he is invited to sit with the others at lunch and becomes visible to everyone else.

Once you are done with the book, you can follow it up with a discussion of the story and this simple craft.

Materials
  • White paper
  • Pencils
  • Markers or crayons

Have the girls fold the paper in half. Give each girl a pencil and have her draw her entire self and how she would feel if she were treated like Brian. 

When they are done with that, have them draw a happy picture of themselves in color.

To finish, ask the girls what they could do to make someone comfortable and included what if a new girl joined their troop. How would they make her feel colorful and not black and white?

Monday, August 15, 2016

Girl Scout Kaper Chart Resources

*This post contains affiliate links.

A Girl Scout Kaper Chart is one way for leaders to get the girls working together as a troop and develop positive self-help skills. When the girls are younger they will only be able to do certain tasks, but as the reigns of leadership get passed onto them year after year, they will be in charge of organizing the jobs they are required to do at each meeting.

(If you want to read about the different kinds of jobs girls can have, please read this blog post about Girl Scout Kaper charts)

Whether you are a new Daisy leader or are entering your second year, you will want to have a portable and easy to use and maintain chore chart. In fact, creating a Kaper chart makes an excellent first meeting idea, and you can read about it in this blog post.


Resources for Girl Scout leaders on how to create a Kaper chart

Photo from Pixabay

If you do not want to spend time and effort creating the perfect kaper chart, you can buy a ready made chart and have it laminated. This way, you can change the jobs every meeting or two and use it year after year.

Use this easy to organize job chart to create a Girl Scout Kaper Chart that will last for years for your troop.


This Helper Chart comes with everything you need for troops with 12 or fewer girls. You can use the back of the card and a graphic that you print out yourself for jobs that are not listed here.


Kaper chart idea for Daisy Girl Scouts


Another option is to buy a job poster like this one. Cover the word "Class" with the words "Girl Scout" and then have it laminated. Use a dry erase marker to write the jobs and the names of the girls.





Purchase a large piece of poster board and decorate it with these adorable owls. This set comes with 34 owls and 10 moon pieces. Laminate them so that the jobs can be changed as the girls get older.

A Kaper chart is a Girl Scout tradition and a good way to start having the girls be responsible.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Resources for Brand New Daisy Leaders

You signed up to lead a Daisy Girl Scout troop-congratulations! It felt exciting as you made the decision and went through the training, and now as the school year begins and your first meeting is looming on the horizon, you may be feeling a sense of panic.

I am here to tell you to relax! I was once in your shoes, as was every other leader of a Daisy troop. Breathe...it will be fine. Remember that your audience is a group of kindergarten or first grade girls, and they are fairly easy to please.

Below are a list of resources for you to use, with links provided.

Resources for brand new Daisy Girl Scout leaders. Get started on the right foot!

Photo from Pexels

Your First Daisy Girl Scout Meeting

Although it feels like a million years ago (my Cadette troop is entering eighth grade now!), this is what we did for our very first meeting. The parents were there as I set the tone for what my expectations were for the troop. It was a learning experience for us all, and I am proud to say that of the six girls who were there, three are still a part of the troop!

4 Steps to Successful Meetings

This article highlights four things for you to do to ensure that your Daisy meetings go smoothly.

New Daisy Girl Scout Leader Checklist

In this blog post, I have listed all of the things you need to think about before you have your first meeting. Don't play this by ear...it helps to parents and you stay on the same page when it comes to various policies.



Photo from Pexels

Frequently Asked Question that New Leaders Need to Have Answered

When you start your troop, you are going to have lots of questions. While some answers are different depending on the Council you are in, here are 7 questions that are on the minds of most new leaders. You can read them and the answers in this blog post.

Establishing a Good Relationship With Your Co-leader

The most important relationship you have during your time with Girl Scouts, besides the one you have with the girls, is with your co-leader. It is important to delegate tasks so you are not doing everything. And I will emphasize to put whatever you decide to do in writing. Memory is fleeting, and whatever you have in writing in a time stamped email after your meet with your partner will leave no denying what was promised. Take this tidbit from my own personal experience.

This blog post will help you navigate this new relationship.



Photo from Pixabay

10 Things You Need to Know to Have a Successful Troop

This article shares what you need to do to have a successful troop that will hopefully stay together for a long time!

Your First 8 Daisy Meetings All Planned for You

This blog post plans out your first eight Daisy Girl Scout meetings. Except for earning the Blue Promise Center, there is no special order for you to earn petals. Use this as a guide, as well as my other blog post outlining your second 8 meetings for winter and spring.

As I begin my ninth year as a Girl Scout leader, I am so happy that I began this volunteer role all those years ago. It has been a fulfilling experience, and as you embark on your journey, take a deep breath and don't forget to enjoy yourself!