Monday, September 29, 2014

How Much Should Leaders Charge for Girl Scout Dues?

Girl Scout dues
Photo from

When you start a Daisy Girl Scout troop, you have a bank account that begins with a big zero.  The question new leaders ask is "How much should I charge for Girl Scout dues?"

Girl Scouts is, without a doubt, one of the cheapest activities a child will participate in. Other than registration and the uniform, all that is left to pay is dues.   As the girls get older, there will be other expenses, but many troop fundraise to offset those costs and to make them minimal or even free.

Over the years, I have explored this question.  I do not believe in having children pay per meeting, as that not only takes up valuable time, you are going to have girls who do not pay on time, if ever. This method creates a new task for you to do at each meeting, as well as create stress if you have to approach a parent about non-payment. Unless you like confrontation and excuses, avoid this method of dues collection.

Girl Scout dues
Photo from

The best method, in my opinion, is to collect Girl Scout dues at the first meeting if you are a brand new Daisy troop.  This is what I did the first year and it worked out well.

For the remaining years, dues and paperwork were due before the first meeting or the girls could not attend. I was only making one trip to the bank with one deposit slip.  This made keeping track of everything much easier for my treasurer and for me. Parents did not want their daughter to miss out on the first meeting, so everyone paid on time.

As the for the amount to charge, it really depends on the area in which you live. I think that $25 for the first year should cover petals, patches and craft supplies.  There is so much online that you can do with recycled materials and cheap Dollar Store items that there is no need to charge more.  Of course, if you live in a financially needy area, then you have to charge accordingly.

It is also a good tip to be transparent with your money spending if a parent asks.  No one ever questioned me as I was always good with how much I spent, but if someone asked, I would have shown them the troop report.

How much are you charging for dues this year?  How did you come up with that amount?

Monday, September 8, 2014

Books to Help Your Girl Scouts Earn Daisy Petals

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Updated September 2019

If you are a Daisy Girl Scout leader, then you already know that earning Daisy petals with kindergarten and first grade girls is a fun, and at times, challenging task. Children today are raised with a lot of bells and whistles-from their infant toys that light up and make noise to their hand held gaming devices. Holding their attention for a 90 minute meeting means you have to have them actively engaged from the beginning.

The girls in your troop, who are between the ages of five and seven, are in a developmental stage where they need concrete hands-on activities or they will lose interest. The key to success is to keep them engaged...the more involved they are with the Daisy Girl Scout activity you planned, the more focused they will be.If the girls are focused on the task at hand, that will but down considerably on any behavior problems that may arise from being bored!

Books to Help Your Girl Scouts Earn Daisy Petals-Updated 2019

Photo from Pixabay and altered by the author in Canva

As an experienced teacher since 1987, I know for a fact that managing your meeting is the most important thing you can do to maintain order and accomplish your goals.One activity that has withstood the test of time is reading. Children love to be read to, and there are so many wonderful stories for them. If you are planning a Daisy Girl Scout meeting around earning a particular petal, here are some book suggestions for you to try.Starting your meeting with a good book is an excellent springboard for earning Daisy petals. They are a great resource for Daisy meeting ideas and activities!

Before Your Meeting

It is a good idea to read a book first before reading it to your troop. It should have value and not be too long or too far above their grade level. Use sticky notes to mark pages. Doing this gives you the chance to formulate questions to ask that relate to the petal you are earning.

Books to Earn the Daisy Promise Center

Before you earn any Daisy petals, you will first need to earn the blue promise center. Keeping your promises is an important value for both children and adults. Will anyone ever believe you if you do not keep your word? You can start your meeting talking to the girls about this concept and how it feels to have a promise broken. Be prepared to hear lots of stories, as children remember everything! Just keep them focused on why it is important to keep your word and own up to the things you promise to other people.

Books to Help Earn the Light Blue Honest and Fair Petal

Everyone, no matter what age they are, wants to be treated honestly and fairly. Young children have a very black and white sense of what is fair. One of their favorite phrases is "That's not fair!".Young children also lie, even about little things that are not important. Fortunately, most are not very good at it. This petal is about integrity, and there are some very good children's books that can help you get this message across.

Earn the Yellow Daisy Petal Friendly and Helpful

how to earn the yellow Daisy petal friendly and helpful

Girls will understand the issues between Sister Bear and Lizza.

This Daisy petals easy to teach. Friendliness comes naturally for most kids but unfortunately, not for all. During the meeting where you earn the yellow Daisy petal, you have to stress that friendly means kindness and respect. Being friendly to each other is an important part of the Girl Scout promise. I always emphasized to my girls that we were going to be together for a long time...and we still are! My troop is now entering their seventh year together as 6th grade Cadettes.

Being helpful is also a concept that is easy for kids to grasp. Young children love to help! You can talk about all the ways they can be helpful at home, in school, and at Daisy meetings.

Earn the Light Green Daisy Petal Considerate and Caring

Being considerate and caring goes hand in hand with being friendly and helpful. You can read books about taking care of others, like an aging grandparent or a pet. This petal also ties in nicely with community service projects you have planned. You might even use this as a springboard for discussion of projects the girls would like to do in the future.

how to earn the light green Daisy petal considerate and caring
A great book to teach this concept.

Earning the light green Daisy petal also touches upon using good manners. We have to think about others feelings and we should not act rudely towards each other.

how to earn the light green Daisy petal considerate and caring

A children's classic about manners.

Earn the Read Daisy Petal Courageous and Caring

Courage is a trait everyone needs in their life. It takes courage to try new things, to stand in front of people and speak, to start a new sport, to be the new kid in school and to lead a Daisy Girl Scout troop! You can ask your girls about times they needed courage.

how to earn the red Daisy petal courageous and strong

Kids adore this book!

Juliette Gordon Low, whose nickname was "Daisy", was a very courageous woman. She was mostly deaf in both ears, yet she started the Girl Scout movement in the United States at a time when women were considered to be inferior to men.Being strong is an emotional thing, but girls this young won't understand that. They will understand the need for exercise and eating healthy.

Earn the Orange Daisy Petal-Responsible for What I Say and Do

Being responsible is another important concept to teach children. We have to be responsible for getting our chores done as well as be responsible for our actions. Unlike older kids, who thing doing chores is a drag, younger kids tend to get excited when they are permitted to perform a task that is usually the realm of someone older. You should wisely harness that energy!

Books to Help You Earn the Purple Daisy Petal Respect Myself and Others

Respect is another character trait that is part of the Girl Scout promise. One way to show respect for yourself is to take good care of body. Eating right, exercise, and getting enough rest makes everyone happier and healthier.We can show others respect by using our manners and being courteous at all times.

A Note About Reading Books at Meetings

Reading a book during a Daisy Girl Scout meeting is a fine idea. Just make sure that you do not have a book that lasts more than ten minutes, fifteen max. Remember, it isn't story time, it is a Girl Scout meeting!

Books to Help Earn the Magenta Petal Respect Authority 

There are so many wonderful authority figures in the lives of our children.  From teachers, doctors, nurses, police officers and firefighters, and of course YOU as their leader, girls need to know how to act and whom to respect.

how to earn the magenta Daisy petal respect authority
A wonderful pictorial resource.

Books to Help Earn the Green Daisy Petal Use Resources Wisely

Being "green" is a natural part of children's lives today. Unlike our generation and those before us, today's Daisy Girl Scouts have been raised to recycle, reduce and reuse. While this is a very hands on petal to earn, there are some wonderful books about the earth and the importance of recycling.You can follow up this book with a fun activity that uses all kinds of items you would normally toss out, like tissue boxes, paper towel tubes and margarine tubs.

how to earn the green Daisy petal use resources wisely
A highly rated book by readers!

how to earn the green Daisy petal use resources wisely
A book aimed at this age group.

Earn the Rose Daisy Petal Make the World a Better Place

It is the small things that we do that makes the world a better place. Random acts of kindness, doing something simply because it is the right thing to do, and being responsible for our actions are just parts of earning the rose Daisy petal. Miss Rumphius, by Barbara Cooney, is a book that ties into all of these themes and is one my personal favorites. The girls will love the tale of the "Lupine Lady" and how she got her name.

Books to Help You Earn the Violet Daisy Petal-Be a Sister to Every Girl Scout

If you wish to have troop harmony, then the girls in your group need to get along. Even if they are not best friends outside your troop meeting, they need to be a "sister" to each other and to all of the time. The Girls Scouts is a sisterhood, and in or out of meetings, they are responsible for being kind to each other.These books will help your girls earn Daisy petals and get your meetings off to a great start. Promoting friendship within your troop is so important! Your girls will be together for years!

How to Earn the Violet Daisy Petal Be a Sister to Every Girl Scout
Another book that talks about friendship.

Do you read books at your Daisy meetings? Which ones did the girls enjoy?

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Daisy Girl Scout Craft Supplies

Photo from

One of the many decisions you will make as a Daisy leader is who is in charge of the craft supplies. Should you schlep them back and forth to each meeting or should each girl bring in her own pencil box filled with the items they will be using each week?

What you decide to do depends on the area where you live.  Will asking parents to supply the girls with markers, glue and scissors be an added expense they cannot handle or is it no big deal from a financial standpoint?

Will the girls be able to remember to bring their pencil box to each meeting?

Some leaders buy supplies for the first year from dues that have been collected or from their own pocket. Should you pay for things out of pocket and get reimbursed or eat the expense?  Can you afford to do that?  

When I started my troop, we met in the art room in the elementary school and had access to markers, scissors and glue.  We were always very careful about using them and putting them back, as these were the supplies my girls actually used during their art period.  

Other craft items were purchased with the $25 in dues I collected from the six girls.

This worked for us for six years.  While my older daughter had to bring her own supplies when she was involved with scouting, my younger daughter did not have to do this.

What does your troop do about craft supplies?