Sunday, December 18, 2011

Meeting Thirteen

To set up the meeting, we asked our girls to start listing off foods from other countries, and every last thing they came up were things we would not be trying, such has hot dogs, pizza and spaghetti (typical kid food, right?). Even when we tried to get creative, we got things like sandwiches, chocolate and meatballs. It was time to burst their little bubbles.

My family will eat just about anything. My daughter usually has qualms with raw onions, but so do most 5 year olds. Our fearless leader's daughter is the same way. So it was no surprise to watch our daughters scarf down what we put on their plates. The key to our meeting was that we told them that we knew what allergies they all had, and that they all HAD to have at least one bite of everything on their plate (since everything was "allergy free"). My daughter practically inhaled the hummus. Most of the girls loved the Souvlaki, and virtually all of them loved the spice cake. There was a lot of whining about how they didn't want to try the things on their plate.

Our one concern was green stuff. We made sure to peel the zucchini and cucumber before they went into the spice cake and tzasiki. We feared that some of the girls would do the typical kid thing and freak out. By the time everyone had tried everything on the plate, we began telling them what things were and what was in them. When we told them about the cucumber in the tzasiki, they were a little weirded out, but ok. The zucchini in the spice cake was the kicker. They all flipped! By the looks on their faces, you would have thought that we just killed the Easter bunny. It was priceless!

Since this was our meeting before the Christmas break, we finished out with our Secret Santa exchange and talked about what Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa are. Most of them already knew, but it was a good refresher for them. And now, we have 3 whole weeks off of school, which sadly means a 3 week break from scouting.

Meeting Thirteen Prep

Call me a nerd if you want, but I think meeting thirteen is going to be my favorite meeting of the whole year. There's an awesome lesson suggestion in the leader's book of 5 Flowers, 4 Stories, 3 Cheers for Anmials! That does taste testing, and there's a wonderful passage in the girls book that goes with it. After reading it, I geeked out!

The challenge for us is that we do have a few food allergies in our troop, but thankfully, not many and they are minor allergies. So, for us, no blueberries and we have to go easy on the milk and cheese. Our other concern was thinking day. Our Service Unit is having a big festival for the thinking day, and our troop will be in charge of doing a booth for Greece. We decided to work in some Greek food for the girls to try. For our menu we decided on:

Pork Gyro with whole grain pita and mosca style tomatoes
Chicken Souvlaki with pita
Tzasiki (for Gyro and Souvlaki)
Chorizo Empanada
Zucchini and Apricot spice cake/bars
Japanese Ramune soda

Reading that, it sounds like a LOT of cooking, but with both us working on it, it really wasn't that bad. Granted, for me, this was nothing but another day in the kitchen. My husband, on the other hand, almost made this impossible since he was standing over us the entire time wanting to "perform quality assurance testing." We caved and gave him an Empanada and that kept him happy, until he finished it and wanted more. BUT, we got it done, so now to see how the girls like it!

Meeting Twelve

Much to my surprise, meeting twelve went over very smoothly! We started out reading a passage about birds nests before we dove into our project. It was the perfect chance to talk to the girls about the various types of homes and shelters we use, such as tents, cabins and more. Seriously, those girls are smart!

Today's lesson learned- even when you repeat the glue rule, you still have to keep an eye on the girls. There were many that went over board with the glue bottles (I owe Target a HUGE thank you- 20 cents for a bottle of Rose Art glue, that's cheaper than the dollar store!). We showed them what to do, but still had to go around and help them. The concept seemed foreign to them, but eventually they all got it. Putting on the roofs was a challenge, but they all made it work.

Meeting Twelve Prep

I'm not sure if this is going to be a hit yet, but we'll see. For meeting twelve, we'll be making classic popsicle stick birdhouses. Thankfully, one of our awesome parents donated a giant box of popsicle sticks, so if the girls have trouble, we'll have extras, and lots of them.

The last time I made one of these, I was in elementary school, so I had to do some research on this, and find a way to do this without having to buy more sticks (granted, we have 1,000 sticks, so we should be ok). Some versions have you using dozens of sticks to make large houses. We also won't have to time to make those, so we needed to find something smaller, more practical, and easy enough for our Daisies to do. I can honestly say that for the first time ever, a search on Pintrest did not help, so on to Google I went! And oh the horrors I found! I mean, a house that needs 800 sticks, one that needs sticks, pine cones and hot glue, another one that needed a milk carton to glue the sticks onto and I even found one project that used tongue depressors to make a castle. I mean, really? Who has time to do that? Around page 12, I found a poem about birdhouses. It was about that time that I wanted to bang my head against the wall and wished that I could remember how we did in art class all those years ago. By the time I hit page 22, I was running into to sites that were selling kits to make birdhouses. I even found a book on making "creative" birdhouses. But, thanks to a clever little article on Ehow, it hit me- log cabin style.

The principle is fairly simple. Make a base by lining up several popsicle sticks (enough to cover the length of one) and then use a popsicle stick on either end to hold/glue the ends together. From there, stack it like you would a log cabin, gluing at the corners. To make this easier, we got out some foam sheets we had left over from another project and cut them into square so the girls could use them for the bases. We also used the excess foam to make roofs for the houses. I made one to show them how, but figure like mot projects, it's best to just show them, and then let them do the rest.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Meeting Eleven

Never, ever forget your craft supplies, especially crayons or markers. Our fearless leader accidentally forget our crayons, so our turtle shell activity had a bit of a bump. She did remember glue sticks, so the girls were able to glue on the googly eyes that one of the girls brought in for us. I'm not entirely sure they understood the why (shells protect turtles and give them confidence, illustrate on your shell how you can be confident) after seeing what they did. Most of them glued on the eyes and just decorated the shells. Maybe it's something we'll have to revisit later on. The foam turtles were a big hit though. We didn't have time to finish them, but it gave them something to do over the weekend and something to talk to their families about. The theme of having a way to protect themselves as turtles do, they got.

Meeting Ten

Today's big, huge, massive lesson learned- if one of you is sick, get help from a parent. Our fearless leader had a bad case of the sniffles, so I was left to fend for myself. We've gotten so into our routine that it was easy for me to forget that while one of us reads with the girls, the other one does the basic set up. And, being by myself during the meeting, I felt like I was so mean the whole time. Oddly enough, the girls had a blast!

The girls loved the turkeys. I challenged them a little with it. I printed out the petals on their respective colors of paper and set them out on the tables. We reviewed the law and I told them that they had to make sure to get all ten petals on their turkey. A few of them put the same color on more than once, so they had to go back and figure out which ones they were missing.

Making the turkeys went by quickly, so we had a secondary activity to do for them as well. We had been collecting toilet paper rolls and used some of them to make Indians. It was a simple craft, but easy for the girls to do and really got them into the Thanksgiving spirit.

Meeting Nine

Meeting Nine was the day before Veteran's Day. We live in a town that has a military base (which my husband happens to be stationed at). Our town also has a lot of veterans and active duty personnel because of the base. It was the perfect opportunity to bring in people to talk about what it's like to serve in the military, and give your girls a greater appreciation for those who serve. Many of our girls have parents who have served or are serving, but the rest of them do not.

Before the meeting, my husband came in to talk to our daughter's class. The boys loved him, the girls didn't seem to care. The sentiments were repeated during our meeting when my husband, our fearless leader's husband and another friend talked to the girls. They all understood what it meant to be a veteran, but were more interested in making them thank you notes and flags for our parade the following day. It wasn't really a failure, but if we do something similar next year, we'll have to really re-think how we're going to do it.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Meeting Ten Prep

Meeting ten will be taking place just before Thanksgiving. There's so many Thanksgiving crafts to do, but the question for us was which one can we tailor towards our girls and Girl Scouting? We started looking at all of the ideas out there and fell in love with a picture of some turkeys made out of construction paper and had made an accordion fold with the legs. That's when it his us- give the turkey the ten daisy petals instead of a few generic petals. Plus, with our girls still trying to remember the lines to the law, it was another chance to work it in!

To help them out, we made an outline for the turkey that we printed out on brown construction paper:

After that, we picked out the other colors they would need from out construction paper stash. It's really not a complicated craft, but it ties in the holiday and scouting.

Meeting Eleven Prep

Meeting eleven will be all about turtles. Our fearless leader's original idea was to have the girls make turtles out of papier mache, but I brought up the question of where will they dry? There's an activity from the leader book that has the girls coloring a turtle shell, but that won't last them very long. Obviously, we needed something else to do. While at Michael's a few weeks ago, we stumbled into the isle that had foam and foam crafts. I had bought some kits for my daughter that created cute animals using little foam dots. I found them and showed them to our fearless leader. That was when we saw the boxes of turtles and realized that it would be something easy and mess free for the girls to do. And, the best part, each kit only cost $1!!! I think it's safe to say that the prep for this meeting was incredibly easy!

Meeting Eight

Today's lesson learned, we should have used tablecloths on the tables. It's hard to forget that so many people today have peanut allergies. Thankfully, no one in our troop does, so we didn't think about that before we let the girls go at it. Of course they made a mess. Thankfully, I always carry some paper towels and cleaning spray in my meeting bag, so we were able to clean up everything. Having a tablecloth would have saved a lot of time. We also should have done this outside. The girls spilled a lot of bird seed on the floor. We would have cleaned it up, but the ladies in the office said the custodian would do it. Before we left, we tracked them down and gave them a massive apology.

The girls loved it though. Even the prep for it brought some fun to one of my friend's kids. We don't have any pine trees in our yard, but I have a friend who has a backyard filled with them. Her kids thought it was fun trying to find the "perfect" pine cones for me. We had well over 30, but we also had a variety of sizes to give the girls options. They didn't seem to care, they just liked getting their hands dirty.

Once they were finished, we played animal "Who am I?" to keep them occupied while the extra cleanup commenced. Even after the girls left, it still took us a while to get all of the peanut butter off the table and chairs we used. Seriously, I mean it, if you do this with your girls, do it outside! Also, don't forget to emphasize that they should not be eating the peanut butter and bird seed.

Despite the few bumps, the girls loved it and they each got to make several feeders. We told them to keep one and share the others they made. My daughter gave her extra to the friend that gave us her pine cones.

Meeting Eight Prep

For meeting eight, we will be getting very brave and will be making pine cone bird feeders. It's something perfect that goes along with our animal theme from 5 Flowers, 4 Stories, 3 Cheers For Animals! And along with our "recycled items" motif. Not only that, there are few supplies we have to buy for this meeting.

Meeting prep:
Open pine cones (we got 30, thinking each girl could make 2)
Peanut butter (with 15 girls, and 2 pine cones each, we got 3 large jars)
10 lb bag of bird seed (yes, this is too much, but we will have another use for it later)
Paper plates
Plastic spoons
String or yarn

If you've never made one, here's how to do it- simply spread the peanut butter around the pine cone, and then roll the pine cone around in the bird seed. Tie a piece of string to it, and then hang from something outside.

Meeting Seven

Today's lesson learned, make sure that when reading something important, the girls are paying attention. While reading our story, one of our awesome parents volunteers held up the cards that had the pictures of the items the girls would be finding during their little scavenger hunt. I stayed behind in the gym to read the last riddle while our fearless leader stayed out in the school to keep an eye on the girls. We had a few teachers let the girls come into their classrooms to give them riddles, and we had someone in the office help us out too. Some of the girls needed other hints. I thought that the riddles I had made would be easy, but it turns out they were a little on the hard side.

On the bright side, the girls really enjoyed it, and everyone helping thought it was a nifty thing to do to. It got the girl outside of our normal meeting spot, moving around, and it got them using their heads. Granted, once they got their goodie bags, all decorum sort of went out the window. We did have some candy in the bags, as well as a toy bracelet (to represent Juliette's pearls, since we couldn't find any cheap pearls). All in all, it was a huge success!

Meeting Seven prep

Meeting seven is a very special meeting. Why? Because it will be our meeting just before Juliette Gordon Low's birthday and Halloween. We plan on starting the meeting out by reading about JGL to the girls, so they can learn more about our fabulous founder. Following story time, we will be doing a very special scavenger hunt.

Not that long ago, I found this wonderful story. Looking at the items next to the story, I wondered how it would work as a scavenger hunt. Our meetings are held in the gym at the school our girls go to right after school. At first, we wondered if we could hide things around the school, but with a troop of daisies, we came to realize that it might not be the best idea. Our next idea was to make riddles based on the items, and have the girls go around the school asking volunteers (parents, teachers, ect.) what they were.

To do this, I picked out fifteen items from the story, since we have fifteen girls. I made the riddles simple. Here's our riddles:

Riddle 1, pumpkin:
I am big and small, slightly round, and I am something that you can eat and decorate
Hint: Juliette was born on October 31, 1860 (Halloween)

Riddle 2, GA state quarter
I am small and shiny, but very valuable. Sometimes people use me to buy gum balls
Hint: Juliette was born in Savannah, Georgia

Riddle 3, Daisy flower
I come in many colors, but bugs know me the best by my scent. People like to pick me and put me in vases
Hint: Her uncle gave her the nickname of Daisy

Riddle 4, horse
I am helpful and fun. Farmers sometimes use me to help them get work done, while little girls sometimes use me to jump over small fences
Hint: Daisy loved animals and had a horse named “Fire”

Riddle 5, art palette
Many famous artists have used me to make their great paintings. Sometimes, you can even see me on TV when artists are teaching others how to paint
Hint: Daisy loved the arts. She enjoyed drawing, painting, poetry, drama, sculpting and iron work.

Riddle 6, letter
Sometimes, when Girl Scouts go to camp, they create me to send home to their Moms and Dads. And, if you’re a lucky girl, sometimes you might receive these in the mail
Hint: Daisy wrote many letters to family and friends even though she often misspelled words. While at boarding school in New York she wrote several letters in French.

Riddle 7, ring
I am also small and shiny. Some of your Moms and Dads like to wear me on their fingers
Hint: Juliette Gordon was married to William Low on December 21, 1886.

Riddle 8, rice
People all around the world love to eat me. Before I am harvested as a plant, farmers flood my fields with lots of water
Hint: On her wedding day a piece of rice thrown in celebration became lodged in her ear. When the doctor tried to remove it, he permanently damaged her left ear drum.

Riddle 9, tea pot
I come in many sizes and colors, but no matter how I look, I always hold the same thing. The drink I hold is often served with things in it, like sugar, lemon and even milk
Hint: Soon after their marriage, Juliette Low and her husband Willie moved to England

Riddle 10, picture of a boy scout
Sometimes people think that you and I are rivals, but we are actually great friends. We are very much alike, yet very, very different
Hint: After Willie died, Juliette met Lord Baden-Powell founder of the Boy Scouts

Riddle 11, star
Some people like to make wishes on me, but whenever you look up on a clear night, you can see me
Hint: Lord Baden-Powell said to Juliette, “There are little stars that guide us on, although we do not realize it.” This gave her encouragement to return to the USA and start Girl Scouting.

Riddle 12, telephone
I come in many forms, but I always serve the same purpose. People use me to talk to people who live near and far
Hint: When Juliette arrived home in Savannah, Georgia she made that famous phone call, “I've got something for the girls of Savannah, and all of America, and all of the world, and we're going to start it tonight.”

Riddle 13, Girl Scout pin
Just last week you received me. Ms. Michelle put me on a yellow tab on your uniform
Hint: Juliette Gordon Low started the first Girl Scout Troop on March 12, 1912.

Riddle 14, pearls
I may not come in many colors, but I come in different sizes and lengths. Sometimes you might see your Mommy wearing me
Hint: Juliette Low sold her pearls, a wedding gift from her husband, to help fund her Girl Scout programs.

Riddle 15, breast cancer ribbon
In October, we recognize this disease. In part of our recognition, you might see people wearing me in pink
Hint: Juliette Low died of breast cancer on January 18, 1927.

Riddle 16, birthday patch
You already have some of me on your uniform, but I am not like any of the ones you already have. I represent everything you just learned today, but most of all, I am something special to represent Founder’s Day

We printed out sheets of papers with pictures of all the items. After the last riddle, once they guess it, we'll have a special goodie bag for them, which will also include a JGL birthday patch. Other items we put in the bag include a pink ribbon swap, a pink daisy lollipop, and a few other things we picked up at the dollar store that related to everything we talked about in the story.

Meeting Six and Investiture

Meeting six was surprisingly low key, but nice. The most important part of our meeting was rehearsing for our investiture. We were able to squeeze in two rehearsals, and the girls did amazing. Afterward, we gave them a choice of what games we could play, and they all choose red rover, red rover. Who would have thought that such a simple game would become so popular with them?

As for the investiture, I have a few valuable lessons for you all... Lesson number one, make sure before the ceremony, all of your pins are unpinned and ready to go. We had a blonde a moment and forgot to do that. Lesson number two, if you can, try to do it in a place where the sun isn't affecting everyone. We were a little limited as to where we could do it, and unfortunately, the cafeteria at our troop's school had a huge glare on the stage. The sun was in the girl's eyes, and it made it tricky for our friendly photographer who was helping us out. Lesson three, which was a good thing, has to do with our petals ceremony. Our fearless leader had a great idea. Instead of putting our petals on a poster, we ended up putting them on a tri-fold poster, and taped that to a table. It was a lot easier that bringing in my daughter's easel for a poster board.

Over all, the whole day was a success. Even though we had to stand behind the girls and remind them about their lines, it was still wonderful. We got a lot of compliments from the parents, so hearing that made it all the better for us!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Meeting Five!

Today's lesson learned... if you're going to do a team based, sharing-focused activity, you might want extra help to keep an eye on everyone.

We started out with our usual routine. While our fearless leader set up the tables for painting, I took the girls and read with them. We read A Little Birdie Told Me, on page 17, which was a perfect way to begin talking about caring for animals. It was also a good way to get the girls involved. We took a point from the story and went around the circle asking each girl, if they were a bird, what color would their feathers be. We related it back to the week before when we made our all about me nests.

Since we have 15 girls in our troop, we split the project up in to 3 groups. Two groups had pots and one group had the base (bath portion). Each group was initially given 4 cups of paint (blue, yellow, red and green) and 4 paint brushes. This then worked into this week's good turn. We told the girls that they need to share the paint and paint brushes, and if they wanted a different color, they needed to ask their team mates to please pass the paint. As each table began to do this, we rewarded them with special paint brushes and 2 extra colors (purple and orange).

After each table finished, they were to help with the initial clean up, and then went with our leader to play the game choices choices. During snack time, we talked to them a little bit more about remembering to use manners. We asked them to go out of their way this week to remember to say please, thank you, excuse me and to over all, be polite. Immediately, we had several girls thank us for snack time.

Next week's meeting will be laid back. We'll be starting the meeting out with rehearsal for our investiture, and the rest of the meeting will be a fun day for them.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Meeting Five prep

I can not wait to do meeting five with the girls! We will be making a team bird bath. Before the bath activity, we plan on reading A Little Birdie Told Me, which will lead right into the bird bath.

This will be the first meeting that we had to spend money on. We found a lot of easy bird baths that used terra cotta pots and their bases. The concept it to get 3 large pots, all in different sizes, and to stack them up (large on bottom, small on top), and to use the largest pot bottom as the "bath" portion (much likethis bird bath). To save a little money, our idea was to use 2 medium sized pots, stacked at their bases, and to use the larger bottom still for the bath. Our fearless leader and I really liked the idea from that link that used a small base for a bird seed holder, so we thought we could add our touch by decorating that one ourselves.

With 15 girls in our troop, we decided it would be easy to split up the work a little, so we wouldn't have so much crowding or oopsies. We plan on splitting them up into 3 groups, and letting each group paint a portion of the bath, and then assemble the bath the next day once it's dry.

Before the meeting prep:
2, 12" terra cotta pots
1, 12" terra cotta pot base
1, 6" terra cotta pot base

Acrylic or tempera paint, various colors (stuff that will wash off the girls and their clothes)
paint brushes
paper plates or bowls (for paint)
acrylic based silicone caulk (afterwards, to assemble the bird bath at all seems)
Clear spray paint (make sure the can says for out door use)

As part of our example, my fearless leader and I did that bird seed portion today. It's far from perfect, but it serves it's purpose (identifies who dun it). We also found some inspiration to add a little something to it....

We took that phrase and painted it around the edge of the dish. We had some extra room, so we wrote our council name in there as well, and separated it by a trefoil and faux-daisy.

As for the top, not too special as you can see (yes, I put my hand over our troop number, gotta keep this anonymous you know!). We're still waiting on it to dry, but as soon as it's done, I'm gonna lay on that clear/seal spray paint to give it the final pop (I promise I will edit in a photo when it's done!).

The best part about this craft... we got in touch with our local parks and rec department to see if we could donate our bird bath to one the parks in our county. That way, the girls can take their friends and family to show off their work. As of today, we're still working on the kinks, but if all goes as planned, in the spring, we will be putting the bird bath in one of our locals parks and we will get to plant daisies around it (which will go with one of our petals project, and our Earth Day good turn).

Friday, October 7, 2011

Meeting Four!

You would think that with five bottles of glue for fifteen girls it would be enough. Well, it would have been if we remembered to teach them the three drops rule. Note to self: next time we use glue, teach them the three drops rule.

We started out our meeting with the usual potty and water fountain dance, followed by the pledge, the promise, the law and a song. After that, we went into talking about our good turns. Last week we taught them that not only do we clean up after ourselves, but we leave our areas looking better than we found them. We then suggested that their good turn for the week was to pick up any trash that they see (and since theses are five and six year olds, we had to remind them that if it was hazardous or really icky trash, to tell an adult). Each girl had a turn to tell everyone else what they did. They had done things like pick up trash in their classrooms, help clean up after a sibling, help a relative clean up and just the usual make sure they cleaned up after themselves.

Yesterday, we got to read from the journey book for the first time. Our first story later worked into this week's good turn. We read A Perfect Surprise in the Garden (starting on page 7). There are many things you can take from that story, including to be cautious around new friends (stranger danger even) and to be kind to new people. Next, we read When a Camera Meets a Nest (page 14). After reading the two passages, we discussed what we learned from each. The biggest thing we emphasized (leading into our craft) was that birds use whatever they can find to make nests, but each species of bird creates different nests. That then lead into even though we are alike, we are also unique. We then explained that their nests were to reflect who they were as person and the things they liked (and not to copy their neighbors). The girls had a lot to choose from. We had the packing paper that we had shredded, shreds of construction paper, remnants from fabric, yarn, pom-poms, foil and a few other things I can't remember at the moment. Each bowl came out so well! They definitely were a reflection of each girl.

With the few minutes to spare, we then had the girls make their investiture invites. We pre-printed the info for them. All they had to do was pick what color paper they wanted, decorate it, address it, and then glue in the info. It was simple, but it also gave them a sense of pride to know that they made the invitations themselves for their ceremony.

Next week, we're going to be making a team bird bath, that in April, we will have the opportunity to put in one of our local parks (that is in conjunction with a petal activity and community service).

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Investiture and Rededication prep

Raise your hand if it feels like our little girls were just babies!!! Ok, it's nice to know I'm not the only one with my hand up. Our fearless leader and I started planning our investiture and rededication ceremony the other night. We have a few girls who were Daisies last year, but most of them are new. We did the generic Google search for Girl Scout ceremonies and got a lot of good material to work with. The short version, we took pieces from a few ceremonies we found and smooshed it all together into one big happy thing.

First site we looked into was this one. We thought it was a good jumping point, and we knew we liked the idea of having each girl being able to say something. That lead us to this gem. We took the second part and put that into our ceremony. After that, we started looking for something that we could do to involve candles. Our fearless leader thought it might be a really nice touch (and I agree!). While searching, we stumbled upon (literally, used Stumbleupon) various candle ceremonies and got an idea for what we wanted to put in there.

In the mean time, we worked out the rest of the kinks for the ceremony. Seeing as how each girl will have a line, we made index cards. Each card had the girl's line on it, as well as who she would follow. The lines are short, and very easy. Some of the lines, as you can see from the ceremony above, are representative of the GS law. Next up, was making the board we would be using for the petals. Now comes the fun....

What you will need:
2 poster boards (1 can be in green)
1 roll of velcro, with sticky backing
hot glue gun
glue stick or a bottle of glue
1 cut out in each of the Daisy colors- blue, light blue, yellow, spring (light) green, red, orange, purple, magenta, green, rose, violet

For the full photo, head over here

2 short candles
1 tall candle, wrapped in yellow ribbon (or already yellow)

For the petals:

Step 1: Print out the petals over 4 sheets of paper (to do this, I used the program Print Shop, which allows you to "blow up" posters)

Step 2: Put together your 4-page "poster" of the petals over a poster board (to give it a "solid" backing)

Step 3: Begin to cut out your petals, but do not cut all the way (this allows you to properly line then up

Step 4: Place your velcro over each petal and the center

Step 5: Place the petals on your green poster board

Step 6: Finish cutting out your petals

Step 7: Using small post its, label each petal (so the girls know where to place it)

Ok, so maybe that was a little bit of overkill, but I'm a bit of a perfectionist (or as my husband puts it, slightly neurotic). In addition to the lines on the note cards, we also wrote which petal each girl will have to place, and who they will speak after. As you will see from our program below, not every girl has a petal to place, but it ended up working out to our benefit. Most of our troop is comprised of first graders, but we have a few kindergartners mixed in. We gave those girls the short lines that had no petals to place (we tried to make it easier on them). It killed me a little because those girls are super smart, but we had to be fair all around.

Obviously, the girls who are rededicating, will not be receiving their pins this year (since they got them last year). We didn't want to leave them out though, so I had a nifty little idea. I love working with Fimo (polymer clay), so I decided to make them some cute pins that we could give them (a "fun" pin). Now, onto the fun stuff!


Girls will line up and walk in, then line up at designated spot

ALL: Pledge of Allegiance

Leader: Welcome and thank you everyone for coming out tonight for troop {troop #}’s Investiture and Rededication ceremony. I’m {leader name}, and this is my Co-leader {co-leader name}.

Co-leader: Tonight we will be inducting our new girl scouts and welcoming back our returning girl scouts. We’d like to start out with one of the songs we start our meetings out with.

Opening song, I’m a Little Daisy

Petal Ceremony.....

Leader: Troop {#}, you are about to become Daisy Girl Scouts. Together we will
explore all the fun and adventures of Girl Scouting. Do you know about scouting?

Girl 1: The founder of Girl Scouts was named Juliette Gordon Low.

Girl 2: Her nickname was "Daisy".

Girl 3: We are named after her.

Girl 4: Together we will learn more about Girl Scouting.

Girl 5: The Girl Scout Promise is the pledge that tells us how to be good citizens and scouts.
(Place the blue Promise Center in center of felt board.)

Co-leader: In Daisy Girl Scouts, the girls will earn the 10 Learning Petals. Each petal is a different color, which represents a different phrase from the Girl Scout Law.

ALL: I will do my best to:

Girl 6: (place light blue petal on felt board)
Be honest and fair

Girl 7: (place yellow petal on felt board)
Be friendly and helpful

Girl 8: (place spring green petal on felt board)
Be considerate and caring

Girl 9: (place red petal on felt board)
Be courageous and strong

Girl 10: (place orange petal on felt board)
Be responsible for what I say and do

Girl 11: (place purple petal on felt board)
Respect myself and others

Girl 12: (place magenta petal on felt board)
Respect authority

Girl 13: (place green petal on felt board)
Use resources wisely

Girl 14: (place rose petal on felt board)
Make the world a better place

Girl 15: (place violet petal on felt board)
Be a sister to every Girl Scout.

ALL: Raise right hands and recite the Girl Scout Promise
On my honor, I will try:
To serve God and my country
And to live by the Girl Scout Law!

Pinning Ceremony

Leader: Each living thing begins as a small ray of light, of hope. The seed needs to be nurtured in order to grow. In Girl Scouts, these rays of hope are the girls of the world. Each seed is planted with love. The value of each young girl is recognized by older people-parents, siblings, friends, neighbors, leaders, and community members. Our Daisies have been nurtured in their homes and in their community. They are now ready to bloom!

Co-leader: Troop {#}'s Daisy meetings will be a place where each girl's individuality is valued. It will be a place where the importance of caring for ourselves and others will be emphasized. We will learn about our world and ways to care for nature. We will have fun! Our troop will be a place for each girl to live the new Girl Scout motto, "Girl Scouts. Where Girls Grow Strong!" We are here to greet the newest buds in the Girl Scout world. It is time for our new Daisies to emerge!

Leader: Our precious Daisies, at this time, you will officially become Daisy Girl Scouts. As we place this trefoil pin on your ribbon, notice that we will be placing it upside down. Each time you do a good turn, your parents can turn it for you, until you have it right side up.

Co-leader: We hope that by our next meeting, all of you have your pins right side up. We can’t wait to hear about your good turns! At this time, we will call you one by one to receive your pins.

(pin girls)

Leader: In addition to our newest members, we have several girls who are rededicating themselves tonight. I've worked with these scouts, and helped them to grow. I'm sharing them now, but want you to know... These girls are precious, as precious can be. Love them, take care of them, and you will see a bright new memory with every day. They grow in such a special way.

(pin girls)

Candle Ceremony

Leader: This candle represents the spirit of Girl Scouting. It burns eternally to represent the friendship and fun we will enjoy together.
(lights center, big yellow, candle)

Co-leader: This candle represents tonight’s investiture by welcoming our new girl scout sisters
(lights first small candle)

Leader: This candle represents our girl scout sisters who have rededicated themselves to a new year of scouts
(lights other small candle)

ALL: Line up to do a semi-circle friendship circle (leader on each side) and sing the Friendship song, turning out when done

Make new friends,
But keep the old,
One is silver and the other’s gold!

Co-leader: Let us pause for a moment in this rededication and investiture, quite mindful of the Girl Scout Promise and Law to uphold, remembering our duty, to serve God and country, and to live our lives by the Girl Scout law. And so when we travel away from each other, we will still be alike in our hearts and our minds. Girl Scouting will guide us, our Promise will bring us together as the great world of the Girl Scouting sisterhood.

Leader: We proudly present to you the Daisies of troop {#}!

In addition to the pins, we made a few fun things for the girls. Our fearless leader is a nifty knitter, and knitted some fabulous hats for the girls. I made some awesome pencils for the girls much like these pencils, and we made some cool certificates for them. At this very moment, I still need to make rededication certificates, but I did finish these nifty investiture certificates:

Here's the full version in case you want to use it:
Investiture Certificate

And, we also made a rededication certificate that is very similar to the investiture certificate:

For full version, go here

The day of our ceremony is also going to be our kick off the year party for our meeting. Our plan is to practice the ceremony once or twice, and then let the girls let loose and have fun. We're going to have some fun games for them to play. An hour after our meeting we will be having the ceremony, with a pot luck dinner to follow. We still have a few weeks to go before our ceremony, so that means the girls should all remember their lines by then (we sent out the ceremony cards after meeting 3, and our ceremony will be after meeting 6).

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Meeting Four Prep

For meeting four, we will be reading a few passages from 5 Flowers, 4 Stories, 3 Cheers for Animals! Including Perfect Surprise in the Garden and When a Camera Meets a Nest. That will then transition into our project, making all about me nests. We looked around for things that we could use to make these nests and were a little shocked how much some of the supplies cost. Our next idea was to head out to one of the local parks to gather materials for free, until it started raining.

So, just like a couple weeks ago, we were looking around my house for inspiration. It just so happened that my awesome father-in-law had just sent a box to my fabulous husband. It had a long wad of brown packing paper in it. We noticed that the paper was crinkled up, much like the pre-cut crinkle paper you can buy in the gifting supplies section at most stores. That's when it hit us. The next thing I knew, I was standing on my kitchen counter looking in the cabinet above my fridge for paper bowls (yes, I realize that might be an odd spot to keep them, but it's the only free spot I had).

For our first moment of deja vu, there we were, on my living room floor, cutting up the paper. We wadded it up a little more and cut it in thin(ish) strips. Not knowing exactly much we would need for 15 bowls, we cut up the whole thing (which was roughly 20 feet long). The strips were on the thick side (roughly a half inch wide), but would be perfect for what we were doing. Our intentions were to have the girls glue the paper in the bowls, and then using whatever they could find in our arts and craft box, pick out what they like and what represents who they are. For this specific craft, we added a few things in, including pipe cleaners, tissue paper, foil, pom-poms, ribbon, and asked the girls to bring small things from home they might want to put in.

What you will need:
15 paper bowls (16 if you want to make an example)
brown packing paper, wadded up and cut into thin strips
paint, or crayons, or markers, or colored pencils
misc. items, such as ribbon, pipe cleaners, tissue paper, foil, cotton balls, pom-poms, buttons, Easter basket grass, and other small things that you might find in a bird nest

The how to is pretty straight forward- just glue it all in, color it, or whatever their little hearts want to do with their nests. That's the beauty of this project- the nests are about them, so they get to decorate it to reflect their personalities. All of our girls in our troop are so unique and all have a lot of the same and varied interests. I am a chef and a writer, but I also like to do things such as sewing, knitting, scrap booking and more, so my fearless leader and I each made a nest as an example to show them who I am.

I can not wait to see what they come up with tomorrow!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Meeting Three and a parade!

Last week, we learned about the Girl Scout Law and Promise. The promise is short enough that it makes it very easy for the girls to remember. Even though I was a scout for eight years, and a leader previously, I still can't always remember the law. Our fearless leader had a brilliant idea- Red Rover, Red Rover, but instead of calling the girls names, assign each of them a line from the law and promise, and call them over that way. Learn from our mistake- make sure you remember the law, otherwise you'll have to write it on your hand (or do what we did and have our notebook in front of us). It was a HUGE hit with the girls, and when we were done playing, they wanted to play again!

As much as we wanted to play one more time, we had something fun on the agenda. We got to march in a local parade yesterday, so we had banners out for them to make signs. The lesson that we learned yesterday was, butchers paper, even when reinforced, will still tear if it is really windy. The signs were so cute though; the girls did an amazing job on it. Halfway through the parade, our largest sign gave way, but the small sign was salvageable. My leader and I trudged along with the sign while the girls held hands behind us, and their parents walked behind them. And, the best part, they're getting a fun patch for being in the parade!

Next week, we're going to be making bird nests. We got really creative in the prep for those, and we know the girls will have fun. So, be on the look out for that prep post!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The Songs We Are Using

If you do a Google search and type in "girl scout songs," you will be amazed at how many there are! I remember learning quite a few during my years as a Girl Scout, but not as many as the search turned up. Daisies are primarily 5 and 6 year olds, so they might not remember a lot of songs, hence why we limited it to 4 (5 if you count the friendship song).

Tune: Brownie Smile Song
I've something in my little hand that you just cannot see...
It's very very special and it's now a part of me.
The Girl Scout Daisies showed me how to put it into place...
And when I clap my little hands you'll see my HAPPY FACE!!!
First line: Cup both hands together, palms together
Second line: Bring cupped hands to chest over heart
Third line: Open hands and cover face with open hands
Fourth line: Clap on the word “clap” then place hands under chin and smile

Tune- Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star
Daisy Scouts are bright and gay,
See us work, and see us play.
We can dance, and we can sing.
We can do most anything.
We have fun, and help each day.
Daisy Scouts are here to stay.

Tune- I'm a Little Teapot
I'm a little Daisy, dressed in blue
I am a Girl Scout, you are too
When I go to meetings, I sing and shout
I love being a Daisy Girl Scout!
I'm a little... hands together, at side of face, head tilted.
dressed in... hands pick up hem of uniform smock
I am a Girl Scout...make the GS sign
you are too... point to neighbors
When I go...hands out, palms up
I sing and shout...hands cup around mouth
I love... point to heart
Daisy Girl Scout...clap once on each word

Sung to the tune of Bingo, sung 5 times, each time replacing a letter with a clap
There was a girl who had some fun
And Daisy was her name-o
D-A-I-S-Y, D-A-I-S-Y, D-A-I-S-Y,
And Daisy was her name-o!

FRIENDSHIP SONG (with all 8 verses)

Make new friends,
but keep the old.
One is silver,
the other is gold.

A circle is round,
it has no end.
That's how long,
I will be your friend.

A fire burns bright,
it warms the heart.
We've been friends,
from the very start.

You have one hand,
I have the other.
Put them together,
We have each other.

Silver is precious,
Gold is too.
I am precious,
and so are you.

You help me,
and I'll help you
and together
we will see it through.

The sky is blue
The Earth is green
I can help
to keep it clean

Across the land
Across the sea
Friends forever
We will always be

So far, the girls have done an amazing job learning the songs. As I said once before, these girls are SMART! Maybe during the second semester of school we'll switch it up and learn 4 new songs.

Meeting Two!

I must say, after our second meeting, I have a LOT more respect for teachers of younger children than I did before! My leader and I only spend about an hour and half with these girls each week, but man, it can be draining at times! It's worth it though. They all seemed to enjoy this week's meeting, and they got to learn a few things.

We were able to start our meeting with our normal routine this week. We did the potty and water fountain shuffle, and then lined up to say the pledge. After that, we began to teach them the Girl Scout Promise, which then lead into teaching the Girl Scout Law. Some of the girls remembered it from the previous year, which really surprised me. The girls in our troop are incredibly smart!!! Our next point of business was teaching them a new song. My leader and I decided that instead of singing the same song at every meeting opener, we would rotate about four songs to give them some variety. We learned the first song last week, and it was hit. I'll make a fresh post for you all with the songs we choose.

For our first activity, we did that trefoil project I mentioned, just like this one. It was a great way for the girls to learn and remember the Girl Scout sign. It was also the perfect transition into learning more about the promise, which lead into our next activity.

Our flower craft seemed to be a huge hit with the girls. Our fearless leader also took it as a great way to remind the girls to share. She gathered all the crayons we needed ahead of time and divvied them up. A few colors we had extras, while others the girls had to take turns with. We did have a few girls who got impatient and kept trying to get ahead, but you know how some kids can be!

Next we did our snack and closing circle. We finally got a chance to do our friendship circle the proper way, and teach them the friendship song. We only taught them the first verse, but also in part because we couldn't remember the other verses. Last night, my leader and I learned that there are eight (I know!!!) verses in total to the friendship song! Maybe later on we'll teach them one more verse, but, these are a bunch of five and six year olds, so we'll see.

Next week, we will be playing Red Rover, Red Rover, Girl Scout style!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Meeting Two Prep

For our second meeting, we will be learning about the Girl Scout Law. We will also be introducing the girls to the Daisy petals. My awesome leader and I were up late this past Saturday night trying to come up with an activity. During some chit chat, I remembered that I was saving toilet paper rolls to make this craft. That's when it hit us- instead of using 6 petals, like the craft calls for, use 10 and have the girls color them while we talk about it. It was going to take some prep work though....

With fifteen girls in the troop, we had to use all of the toilet paper rolls I had been collecting. We also made a couple extras to use as an example. To complete the flowers, we took some blue construction paper and cut out circles that we later glued on to it.

What you will need:
38 used rolls of toilet paper, cut in fourths (for 15- 10 petals per flower, one roll yields 4 petals)
15 blue, circle cut outs (can be done with one sheet of blue construction paper)
hot glue

What you will need for the meeting:
Crayons or markers in each of the petal colors- violet, light blue, yellow, light green, red, orange, purple., magenta, green, rose

The ahead of time prep:
For the toilet paper rolls, simply flatten them before you cut them. It doesn't have to be perfect, just cut in fourths. After that's done, cut out your blue center.

The original craft has you gluing each piece and holding it together with clothes pins. For this, you'll use your glue gun and place some glue at the edge of each piece to stack them up, like s0

Repeat this until you have all 10 petals glued. At that point, you will let them fan out to glue them together

Once you have that done, simply glue the blue center on

Tada! A nice Daisy for the Daisies to decorate

I'll let you know how it goes. Hopefully it will be a hit, and something easy for the girls to do.

Our First Meeting

Well, we survived our first meeting last week. It was a bit of an eye opener for me, though. My last experience leading a troop was when I was in college, and I co-lead a junior's troop. Daisies are a whole other world. For starters, they need to be kept occupied at all times and you have to switch up the activities every 10-15 minutes to keep them from being bored.

The run down... our first meeting was an introduction to the year for the girls. We learned a song, introduced ourselves to each other, did a coloring activity relating to our introductions, and taught the girls about the friendship circle. On paper, it really doesn't sound like a lot, but with 15 little girls running around, it took up the entire time!

Our coloring activity... our awesome leader found some booklets that teachers often use at the begining of the school year, similar to this one. The girls were able to draw pictures of themselves and their families, things they like to do, their pets, favorite foods and more. Once they were done, we all sat in a circle and shared these things. It was also a great opportunity for everyone to learn each others names and learn a little bit about each other.

Stay tuned for a post about meeting two's activity (it's really cool!)