Wednesday, November 14, 2018

4 Blog Posts to Help You Navigate the December Holidays With Your Troop

If you have walked around any store in the past few weeks, you know that the holidays are all around you. While shopping in my local Walmart this past October, the trifacta of holidays were in full display, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. It was like all three just blended into the other.

If you are a new Daisy leader, this will be your first holiday season with your girls. You have choices to make that will create a tradition that you may want to continue, so you have to be careful when choosing what to do. 

What am I talking about?

I am talking about celebrating Christmas with your troop. 

4 Blog Posts to Help You Navigate the December Holidays With Your Troop

Images from Ivorymix and Pixabay and altered by the author in Canva


Girl Scouts is a non-denominational activity. It is not affiliated with any particular religious group. If you start celebrating religious holidays with your troop, it may be an issue to take away your traditions and celebration if a new girl joins your troop and she does not celebrate this December holiday (or may be agnostic or atheist and not celebrate any kind of religious holiday at all).

I am Jewish and do not celebrate Christmas. As the leader, I made the decision during our first year as a troop to not do anything related to this holiday or to do a gift exchange of any sort. My personal experience as a child with this was not a positive one, and with my older daughter's troop, this activity proved to be a dud for some of the girls. The girls in my troop, both Jewish and Christian, received enough gifts and went to plenty of celebrations during the holiday season, so there was no reason to add another one. Instead, my troop always does a community service project in lieu of a party because there are so many others in need.

Over the years, I have written several blog posts on this topic. As new leaders, you probably have not read them, and so I am bringing these to your attention so you can be inclusive and understanding to girls of different faiths in your group. Please do not assume that these girls families "won't mind" you celebrating a holiday with them that they do not celebrate. Many are not like me and do not want to rock the boat and are afraid to have their child seen in an unkind light.


Other December Meeting Ideas

In this blog post, 10 Activities Your Girl Scout Troop Can Do This Holiday Season, I share 10 things you can do with a troop that have nothing to do with the celebrating Christmas or Chanukah.

Should You Have a Holiday Party if All Girls Are Not Included?



Having Holiday Parties for Only One Holiday

In this blog post, I wrote about what I was reading from Facebook groups about what leaders had to say about this matter. I was floored at the insensitivity of some of these women and was inspired to share what it looked like from the other side of the fence. Girl Scouts is about inclusion above all else.





Winter Craft Ideas


If you want to have a celebration, then the crafts need to be non-denominations. You can read here some fun winter crafts for your troop to do.


Fun Crafts for Your Winter Party

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Being a Sensitive Leader

In this blog post, you can read my opinion on this matter and why December does not have to be all about Christmas, but it can be about giving to others.

Being a Sensitive Girl Scout Leader During the Month of December

Image from Pixabay and altered by the author on Canva

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Fun and Easy Thanksgiving Meeting Idea for Daisy Scouts

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It is that time of year when all of the weeks turn into a blur because the holidays are coming fast and furious! As a leader, you have so many obligations outside of Girl Scout that all you want to do is figure out how to have a meeting and make it easy on yourself.


Fun and Easy Thanksgiving Meeting Idea for Daisy Scouts when a leader's time is short

Image created on Canva


This is where Thanksgiving craft kits come in handy. You can make this meeting more of a festive atmosphere than a badge/petal meeting.

The children learn about the holiday in school, so they have some knowledge about it. Here is a simple meeting format.

Discuss the meaning of Thanksgiving and what the children are thankful for. Then have them do one of the following crafts.




Once the craft is over, you can sing some Thanksgiving songs together. You can find them here at DLTK You can also find more songs here at Everything Preschool.

Don't forget to have a Thanksgiving coloring page in case you finish faster than you thought you would!

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Earn Daisy Petals With Easy Girl Scout Beading Crafts

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Girl Scout beading projects make for easy meetings, especially during the busy upcoming holiday season.  There are many beading crafts available online or in craft stores.
Earn Daisy Petals With Easy Girl Scout Beading Crafts

Photo from Pixabay

This Girl Scout Law beading craft is perfect for Daisies. Be sure to have a few volunteers on hand to help the girls.

Materials

Pony Beads


Beading activities for Girl Scouts


Heart Beads






Elastic






Before the meeting, separate the beads into sandwich bags, one set for each girl. Included in each bag should be the pony beads, the heart beads, and the elastic already cut and knotted. Decide in advance if you are making bracelets or necklaces. 

As the girls bead, have them pick up a color that you call. For example, you can say "Everyone, please hold up a red bead. What does it stand for? Can you give me an example of this?"
For Brownies and Juniors, this craft is a great ice breaker for the first meeting of the year.  Or they could make this necklace as part of being a sister to every Girl Scout when working with a younger Daisy troop.
If your troop is able to do fundraisers, they can make bead bracelets and sell them at craft fairs or to people they know. It is inexpensive to buy beads in bulk packages.  Girls can also make bracelets and necklaces as holiday gifts for friends and family.
Girl Scout Swaps are also fun for girls to do and share with other Girl Scouts. Beads can be used for an assortment of easy to make Swaps.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Girl Scout Daisy Leader Uniform Ideas

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Another topic of conversation that frequently comes up in the beginning of the scouting year is what kind of uniform a Girl Scout leader should wear, if she wears one at all. To be honest, I have never worn anything that resembles a uniform. When my girls were younger, I typically came straight from work, with a short pit stop to grab a cup of coffee from home. Wearing anything nice to preschool is just not something I did, as our motto is "dress for mess".  I did not dress sloppy, but nothing nice, like silk pants or a blouse, like I would wear to my elementary school teacher job back in the day.


Easy Girl Scout Leader Uniform Ideas That Won't Break the Bank


Image from Pixabay and altered by the author in Canva

Also, cost is another factor in deciding whether or not you want to purchase anything official from the Girl Scout Shop. The items for adult leaders are quite expensive, at least from my vantage point. During most of my years as a leader, money was incredibly tight for my family. Spending fifty dollars on a navy cardigan was not happening, especially when I could purchase something similar for much less money. If you are looking for something "scouty" to wear on your Girl Scout outings and at your meetings, you might like some of these tee shirts. 

*Please note that these shirts are all customizable! You can change the colors and the wording, as well as the fonts to suit your style. You can even change the style of the shirt and add your troop number. 

*Zazzle frequently has coupon codes to reduce the cost of your shirts.



 

Friday, October 12, 2018

Create Your Own Free Girl Scout Bingo Cards

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For those of you who have perused through this blog, you might have seen me mention that I am a teacher and have been once since 1987. Teachers spend a lot of their own money out of pocket, and we make do with as many donated and recycled materials as possible. Being an expert in this area made me stretch those dues my troop collected, as we did not sell cookies. 


Create Your Own Free Girl Scout Bingo Cards

Image from Pixabay and altered by the author in Canva


For new leaders and those who need to stretch you dollars as far as possible, I have found a great site for you. You can make your own Bingo cards here at My Free Bingo Cards.

For Daisy leaders, you can make Bingo cards for the Girl Scout Law. You can also make cards for Cookie Season if you decide to sell them.

I have made several different sets for my Hebrew School classes. I run them off on colored cardstock and store them in a plastic Ziplock bag. I have Bingo chips that I use as markers so the cards can be used again and again. You can make the cards as easy or as difficult as you want. Make sure you run off the calling page and the words that you have used.

You can play this game as a time filler with one child or as teams (sisterhood!). You do not have to give out a prize...I do not. It is just a fun thing to do during a meeting!