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. 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 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!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Amazon Prime Day for Back to School and Girl Scout Supplies Today Only!

*This post contains affiliate links 

Back to School and Back to Scouts is still a long time away for those who live on the East Coast, but for my friends and family who live in other places, summer break is drawing to a close. Stores everywhere have replaced grills and swim gear with notebooks and highlighters. 

As the saying goes, the early bird gets the worm...and the deals! Today is the day to go to Amazon and try Prime for free for 30 days so you can get the deals and the free shipping that comes along with being a Prime Member. 

Click on the banner and enjoy your shopping experience!


Monday, May 16, 2016

Important Things Daisy Girl Scout Leaders Need to Know About Bridging to Brownie Scouts

Girl Scout bridging is the hot topic on the Facebook groups where I belong, as well as the Girl Scout forums I read. Daisy leaders have so many questions and concerns since they have not done this before. As an experienced leader of a few of these ceremonies, here is my advice to you.

First and foremost, KEEP IT SIMPLE! You are not throwing a graduation party or a Sweet 16, this is a small ceremony for the girls-not their parents! Your troop is comprised of 6 and 7 year olds and you have to plan things accordingly. While it is important to make it meaningful, the meaning has to be for the girls who are bridging.

Photo from Pixabay

My Daisy to Brownie bridging ceremony lasted about fifteen minutes and took place during our regular meeting time at our regular meeting place. What made this more special than a regular meeting was the fact that parents were there and we served light refreshments at the end. No marching band, no parade, no get my drift. 

I guess I was lucky because we bridged before the Pinterestification of motherhood. When I started my Girl Scout troop, there was very little information on the internet about how to lead a troop or conduct a Girl Scout bridging ceremony. I did what I could with the tools I had. With Pinterest, a place that I love and adore for getting ideas to tweak and make my own, the stakes have gotten higher. From what I am reading, leaders are stressing over a simple short ceremony for first graders. What is going to happen when their daughters get married?

Your Daisy to Brownie bridging ceremony does not have to be Pinterest worthy! I did not even take photos of what I did years ago..I just had pictures taken with the girls. Even my oldest daughter's bridging ceremony was a simple affair that I remember well.

To Gift or Not to Gift

Photo from Pixabay

Another topic that has leaders stressing is what to give your troop as bridging gifts. This is a choice that all leaders must make. You already give your girls the best gift of all-your time! Giving a small present from your co-leader and you is not required.

What concerns me is the time and effort other leaders put into homemade bridging gifts that make other leaders feel like they have to do the same. 

If you enjoy searching for ideas, shopping for crafts, and spending time creating something, then go ahead and do it! For a bridging to Brownies gifts, I bought each girl a box of Brownie mix. When they bridged to Juniors, their gift was their part of the bridge that my co-leader and I made one afternoon while our kids played. It took less than an hour and I bought all of the supplies in one place.

Do not feel pressured into doing something big if you do not want to. No one is going to think less of you if you don't have a razzle dazzle gift to the troop. Each troop is unique and each leader has her own way of doing things. A store bought present is also fine to give as well, if you are so inclined.  

Should Leaders Buy Brownie Uniforms?
Photo from Pixabay

If you are bridging in the late spring or over the summer, you may want your girls to have their vests for the ceremony. Who should pay for the uniforms?

If you sell cookies and have a nice chunk of change in your bank account, you may be considering purchasing the uniforms, pins and patches for your soon-to-be Brownie troop. In my opinion, this is not a good use of your money. I wrote a very detailed blog post about this on my main Girl Scout blog, (you can read it here). I have never purchased uniforms for my girls. Parents need to have some skin in the game. What if a family moves or a girl changes her mind and does not want to be a Brownie in the fall? While some leaders believe that the vest is hers because she fundraised for it (and this is true), why would you want to risk losing this money? I am sure you can find many other ways to spend the money.

If your troop has children who come from a lower income area and buying a uniform may be a financial hardship, then why not wait until fall after the girls have registered and then you can buy the vests. Financial aid is available for these girls.

Last, you can have parents pay for a portion of the uniform and the troop pays for the other portion. 

Your Daisy to Brownie bridging ceremony should be a time for celebration, not a source of stress. Keep it simple!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Summer Olympics Party Idea for Daisy Girl Scout Troops Who Are Not Bridging

*This post contains affiliate links.

The end of the scouting year is fast approaching, and if your troop is completing it's first year of Daisy Girl Scouts, then you will want to end the year on a high note. A party is just what you need to have to celebrate your accomplishments (you did it!) as a troop.

If you do plan on a big end-of-year bash, then make sure that you have enough volunteers lined up to make it a success.

One idea I wrote about last year was to host a Daisy Girl Scout tea party. You can find the party plans here in this blog post. With the 2016 Summer Olympics just around the corner, why not host an Olympic themed event for your troop?

Ideas for having an Olympics party for your Girl Scout meeting

Photo from Pixabay

Olympics Party

This summer Olympics will be held in Rio de Janerio. Why not host a Daisy Girl Scout Olympics for an active and spirited meeting?

Since the girls are going to be very active, make sure they come dressed appropriately with shorts, short sleeved shirts, hair tied back and sunscreen. If you plan on having any water games, have the girls wear a bathing suit under their clothing and a towel to dry off.

Opening Ceremony

Have the girls stand in a line as you or your co-leader runs to them with the Official Olympic themed music and an Olympic torch. Pass the torch down the line and at the end, the last girl will pretend to "light" the official fire. This fire can double as a table centerpiece for the party.

Girl Scout Olympic Games for an end of year party or summer meeting

Girl Scout Summer Meeting Ideas-Host an Olympics Event

Games to Play

Here is where the fun starts! Your co-leader and you will need to overplan the games to ensure that you do not run out of ideas. These games do not have to be complicated-quite the opposite. Make them fun and simple to execute so everyone will have a great time! You will need at least two teams for each game.

Here are just a few ideas.

Water Relay Races 

Since the weather is warm, why not have some water races? Have a bucket fill with water on one side and the girls have to use a measuring cup to scoop out the water, pass it down the line, and fill another bucket at the end of the line.

Another play on this idea is to use a very large sponge to soak up water and then wring out on the other side. The girl who wrings it out runs to the front of the line to put the sponge in the bucket to soak up the water.

A third option is to have the girls race with water balloons in their hands. They have to toss it to the next person in line once the race is complete. If the balloon drops, give the girl another one.

Hula Hoop Games

You will need a timer for each leader. Give one girl on each team a hula hoop and time her. Record the time. The team with the biggest amount of time actively using the hula hoop is the winner.

Line up Hula Hoops in a staggered line. Girls have to race through the hoops to the other side.

Ball and Throwing Games

Some of the Olympic games for Track and Field are based on throwing (javelin, discus). Why not do a few of your own for some games to show a girl's personal best?

You can toss a frisbee or a ball of any size. Place markers or measure where it lands. If the girls enjoy soccer, you can do some kicking games as well.

Awards Ceremony

Hand each girl a medal and then play the National Anthem like they do on television.

Food to Serve

There is no need to get fancy-the girls need something refreshing to eat. Have a Make Your Own Sundae bar and some Olympic themed cupcakes.

As a small party favor, these red, white and blue novelty sunglasses will be a big hit!

Girl Scout sujmmer meeting ideas-host an Olympics party with games. These sunglasses are a great novelty to hand out.