Monday, April 26, 2010

Just something fun!

I have been working on a scrapbook page for my troop for the Service Unit book. I needed some embellishments and had the worst time finding what I wanted. So I created my own. I love this little Daisy. As you can see she has earned all her petals and is wishing you a Daisy Day!
Have a Daisy Day!
Click here to download!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Month #8 -- Earning our Green and Rose Petals

Our meeting this month was on Earth Day, and I thought it was the perfect day to learn about and earn our Green and Rose petals for using our resources wisely and making the world a better place. I started the meeting by talking with the girls about what Earth Day is. Most of them had learned about it in school and grasped the concept pretty well. We then started talking about recycling, I was very happy to hear that most of the girls do some sort of recycling with their families. I handed out recycling stickers for them to label their recycling bins. These stickers are available for free at our library and are sponsored by our Municipal Utilities. We then began to talk about reusing items that can't necessarily be recycled. An example I gave them was of the fairy house I made with my daughters out of an old orange juice jug. We hot glued all kinds of found objects to the jug, anything bright and shiny that our local fairies might like (glass pebbles, marbles, sea shells, old jewelry, beads, mirrors, etc). The girls then placed the fairy house outside and we waited for a garden fairy to move in. This project allowed us to use a jug in a new way, decorating our yard instead of throwing it in the local landfill.
Our Fairy House
The girls and I then talked about how taking care of the Earth can make the world a better place. If we practice good habits like picking up litter, we might brighten someone else' day or inspire them to pick up a piece of litter too.
Our craft project this week was to create Bird Nest Kits. We wanted to reuse a seemingly useless item from our everyday lives. The girls agreed with me that nests made out of sticks might be pokey to sit on, so we thought the birds could use our old dryer lint to line their nests. I found this project in an Earth Day Craft book, the original instructions saying to use milk cartons. Since part of the lesson was to use resources wisely, I explained to the girls that I didn't have any milk cartons, but I did have miniature cereal boxes. Before the meeting I asked the parents of the troop to save their dryer lint and bright pieces of string. I then cut "windows" into the broad sides of the cereal boxes. At troop meeting, the girls stuffed their boxes with their dryer lint. Some girls forgot their dryer lint or did not have enough to fill the box, so we shared. The boxes were then tied with hemp cord so that the girls could take them home and hang them from their trees.
Bird Nest Kit 2
Unfortunately, less than half of my troop attended this meeting, so I sent out e-mails asking them to work with their parents on a project that recycles or reuses household items we would normally throw away. The girls will officially earn their petals when they tell me about what they made with their mom and dad. The girls have no rules on these projects except that we don't want to pollute our yards if we can help it. We should try to use items that will degrade naturally like papers, cardboard, natural strings and glues.

Month #7 -- Earning our Violet Petals

To earn our violet petals, my girls made a pen pal kit to send to our sister daisy troop in Kentucky. You may remember from previous blog entries that I met another beginning troop leader on Facebook who is from Kentucky -- the same town I lived in for 4 years before coming to South Dakota. We gathered a few things and sent them off to Kentucky to show our sister scouts what South Dakota is like. Our first item was a letter from myself to their troop. Here is the text:
Dear Troop 730,

Hi! My name is Sarah, I am the troop leader for Daisy Troop 50382 in Watertown, South Dakota. There are 9 girls in our troop, they are all in kindergarten. We are learning many new things in Girl Scouts this year. We have participated in a SWAP, we made cookies for “Love Our Community” Day and we just visited the fire station to earn our Red Petals.
We are excited to learn about Kentucky. Most of the girls in our troop have never been to Kentucky but my daughter S was born there! My family lived in Danville for 4 and ½ years. My husband worked at a local manufacturing company, I worked at a local veterinary hospital and we went to church at Centenary United Methodist.
We are enclosing a few things to help you learn about our town and our state. Watertown has some really great ways to keep kids busy. We have a zoo, a big library, a water park and an opera house that gets educational displays like dinosaur fossils. We also thought you might like some of our SWAPs!
Thank you so much for being our Sister-Troop and for helping us to learn how to be a sister to every Girl Scout!

The next item included in the pen pal pack was a picture drawn by each of my scouts of their favorite thing to do here in Watertown. Everyone drew swimming! I think it was a hint that the girls were sick of winter. Each girl signed the Pen Pal letter as well. We included enough of our SWAPs for each girl in their troop and a map/tourist information on Watertown. We are excitedly waiting their letter!

Month #6 -- Earning our Orange Petals

I apologize, I missed a meeting in my blog entries! This should have been between the first cookie shop entry and the end of cookie sales.
Cookie sales gave us a nice opportunity to teach the girls about being responsible. During our March meeting we went over the basics of how to behave at the cookie shops. We talked about the rules and asked the girls for their ideas. Then we set up a mock cookie shop and I pretended to be the Girl Scout selling cookies. Becke was the customer. We showed the girls that they must speak politely to the customer if they want to sell cookies. We also showed the girls possible scenarios they might encounter at cookie shops. We discussed things like:
1. Speaking clearly to customers
2. Answering questions for the customers and not being afraid to ask Mom, Dad or the troop leaders for help.
3. Never following a customer to their car.
4. Always saying thank-you after speaking to a customer, even if they don't buy cookies from us.
Our goal was to help the girls be responsible for their own words and actions. I think it worked pretty well. We also talked with them about listening to the volunteer Moms, Dads & the troop leaders when we are selling in public. People might not want to buy cookies from a Girl Scout who does not respect authority, so we were able to sneak in an early lesson towards our Purple and Magenta petals.