Monday, January 19, 2015

Special Event: Fall Camp - Reindeer theme and Feeling Good badge

Reindeer Challenge

Feeling Good badge (FG)
Camp Out badge (CO)
Discovering You: Discover What’s Important to You (DY1)
Discovering You: Discover Your Creativity (DY2)
Discovering You: Stay Fit and Healthy (DY3)

Beyond You: Explore the Outdoors and Nature (BY2)
Beyond You: Learn About Our Environment (BY4)

6:30: Arrival

DIY Buddy Burners - GPS1504 - burners-1-258.jpgPick Reindeer Name – The Patrols were all Santa's Reindeer names. The girls picked the name out of a hat when they arrived.

Make buddy burners -- Girls were asked to bring a tuna can, so once they had settled and picked out their bunk, they tightly rolled the cardboard into the tin cans while waiting for everyone to arrive. Once all the cans were done, we melted wax and poured it into over the cardboard to make buddy burners.

7:30: Camp rules and Ice breaker game
Safety/Fire Drill (CO#5, CO#6, CO#9)--We went over the safety rules. For the fire drill, I took an idea from another Guider and on Saturday we put up a picture of fire so that when someone found the picture, they were to call out "Fire" and everyone needs to go outside.

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Playing Animal Name Game
Buddy System (CO#6, CO#9)

Pick secret pals (DY1#5)--We always pick secret pals for the weekend (including the leaders).

Ice Breakers: I found a document on line that has lots of great ideas for ice breakers. (Ice Breakers) We played Animal Name Game and Bunny Bunny, except I changed Bunny Bunny to Rudy Rudy and we played with a stuffed reindeer.

Pass out weekend activity books including zentangle pages and blank word search pages
(Reindeer Activity Book, PDF)

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Mug up!
8:00: Mug Up – Reindeer Themed Snack -- Our quartermaster had fun with the Reindeer theme and we had lots of fun reindeer food. Mug up was a wagon wheel with pretzels and m&ms, plus apple slices. I believe she used a kitchen torch to lightly melt the chocolate to make things stick, but you could just as easily using icing.

8:30-9:30 – Campfire (CO#7): We tried to choose songs that fit with our "Feeling Good" theme.
Fire's Burning
Buddies and Pals
Ging Gang Gooli
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Singin' in the Rain (though we changed Rain to Snow)
Everywhere We Go
Magalina Hagalina
On My Honour
Softly Falls the Light of Day

9:30 PJs
10:30 Lights out -- At lights out, we read them a story from Relax Kids: The Wishing Star. They really liked this and asked for it again the next night. (FG#5)

7:00 – Wakeup

8:00 Breakfast and cleanup: Breakfast was pancakes, scrambled eggs, bacon, orange slices, bananas, and juice/milk.

For the morning, we set up 5 stations. We ended up only having 4 leaders available to run the stations, but Station #3 could run on its own.

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Great-to-Be-Me jars
Station 1: Create a ‘Great-To-Be-Me’ jar –  the girls were requested to bring empty plastic mayonnaise/peanut butter jar for this activity. We gave them scrapbook paper, stickers, ribbons, etc and they all turned out beautifully! (Jar labels, Word doc) (FG#1, FG#3, DY3#5)

Station #2: Spa Kit creation and marketing slogan  – We made the Spa kits with the following items: Organza Drawstring bag from Dollar Store (get in in the craft section), Mini Nail Polish bottles (x 2 colors), Emery Boards, Q-tips, Cotton balls, plus all of the other items we made – salt scrub, face mask, stress ball.

We then took our ‘Spa Kits’ and went to a Bristol board and wrote out ideas.  If we were going to sell this kit to raise $$ how would we market it?  How much would we sell it for?  Lots of good ideas came out of this.  The biggest theme was that it was home made, and you can relax at home.  The going rate was $10 per kit.
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Sugar scrub and lip balm, with spa kits in the back
Station #3: Fillers for the Great-To-Be-Me’ jar – We gave them some forms to fill out with questions about themselves, plus some popsicle sticks that they could write ideas for activities they could do when they were bored. (Jar fillers, Word doc) (FG#1, FG#3, DY3#5)

Station #4: Make Mask/Scrub and/or Lip Balm – (FG#6)

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Making stress balls

Station #5: Stress Balls – We made stress balls using balloons and flour. These are the instructions we used: Stress Balls. We happened to have cake flour, and found this made the balls squishier than using regular flour, though either will do. To make funnels, we just cut the bottom off of a disposal water bottle.

We also put three layers of balloons on them, and I read them the riot act about how these were not balls that could be thrown around in the bunk room! (FG#7)

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9:00-10:30: We rotated through 3 stations.

10:30-11:00 Morning Snack--Cheese strings, carrots with dip, crackers. Again, our quartermaster had fun turning cheese strings into reindeer!

11:00-12:00: We finished the final two stations.

Displaying buddyburners.jpg12:00-130: Lunch – Buddy Burners and Camp stoves for Grilled Cheese and Soup. One problem with being a long-time leader is that you forget when you last did things. It felt that we did Buddy Burners all the time, until one of our girls told us that she'd heard that grilled cheese sandwiches on buddy burners were delicious! Oops. We promised her we'd do that at our next camp so here we are.

We also use camp stoves when we tent camp, but we thought it might be good exposure for the girls to use them more than just once a year, so we had them make their own soup on the camp stoves as well. It takes longer when they make their own food, but it also teaches them useful skills.  (BY2#2)

1:30-200: Cleanup

2:00-4:00: Outdoor Activities

Oh Deer game: A running game where they also learn a little something!  (BY4#4)

Land Art & Outdoor Gallery: This was really cool. I always love when we give the girls a free creative activity, because they always blow my mind with their creativity. The leader who ran this says it works better in the spring or summer, when there are more colours available in nature, but I thought the girls came up with some great ideas.  (CO#7, FG-#9, DY2#6)

Clockwise from left: A face (made with moss, leaves, and wood), a cow (sticks make the outline and leaves fill it in), three campfires, a jellyfish (they found the stone with paint already on it)

4:00-6:00: Free Time

Skit preparation (Reindeer Themed)
Bunk Time
Hat Crafts (emery board spa lady, plus a couple other Reindeer Themed or Spa Themed Hat Crafts)
Secret Pal crafts

6:00-7:00 – Supper--spaghetti, garlic bread, caesar salad

7:00-7:30 – Cleanup

Displaying chocfondue.jpg7:30-8:30: Skits and Reindeer Nails and Facials (DY2#3, FG#6)

8:30-9:30: Chocolate Fondue--Always a favourite activity! These are just mini buddy burners, with a tea light underneath a soup can. We use foil cups to hold the chocolate chips for melting, and they get strawberries, bananas, marshmallows, and teddy grahams for dipping. We make each girl light her own candle.

9:30 - 10:30 – PJs

10:30 – Meditation story and lights out

7:00 – Wake Up & Pack (CO#2)

8:00 Breakfast: Sunday breakfast is always grab and go! Muffins/yogurt/fruit

9:00-10:00 - Reveal our secret buddies, Apples and Onions, give out badges (CO#7, CO#8, DY1#5)

1000 - Home

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Meeting #10: Program in a Plastic Bag


Program in a Plastic Bag is a great meeting, because once we get there, the leaders don't need to do much, other than observe and help facilitate some of the activities, but the girls do most of the leading.

We did this activity two years ago and we ran it basically the same way. I took away some of the activities, and told them they had to do #3, #5, and #14, as these are the ones that count towards the Camping badges (Basic Camper and Camp-Out).

Meetings like this are great, because it makes the girls step up. The third year girls should know how to make a bedroll and they can teach the newer girls. There is problem solving that they have to do and some groups struggle with this. If they can't figure it out, they turn to an adult to bail them out. Don't tell them the answer--make them work at it!

Basic Camper
Girls at this age are perfectly capable of lighting a match but are rarely given opportunity in their everyday lives.We knew we would be lighting matches at our upcoming camp and this gave them some extra exposure to it. After many years of teaching match lighting, I've a list of things I tell them now to help lessen their fears.

1. Take the match from the box and then close the box back up. Never light a match with the box open.
2. Hold the match firmly and push it away from you along the scratchy strip.
3. When the match lights, the flame will make a "Whoosh!" and then settle back down. The "Whoosh!" can be scary, but don't worry! It will be over quickly and the flame will get smaller.
4. Once the match lights, turn the match so the flame is up, not down! Fire is lighter than air and always goes up. If you hold the flame down, the flame will go up the match and try to get your fingers.
5. When you light the candle, move the match away from the candle before you blow it out. If you blow it out over your candle, you will blow out your candle too! How many have done that before? (All of the third years raise their hands, because almost everyone does this their first time because they are anxious to blow the match out!) This shows the first-timers that they don't need to feel embarrassed if they blow out their candle and match at the same time.

Program in a Plastic Bag (Word Doc)

Meeting #9: Volunteering at Food Bank

You in Guiding: Be Involved in Your Community (YiG4)
Supporting Your Community

We went to our local food bank to help out for the evening. We started out by hearing a presentation on how many people use the food banks in Nova Scotia each year and how many are children and of all the ways Feed Nova Scotia helps the community. (YiG4#1)

Then we sorted through parsnips and onions that they'd received in bulk from farmers. We had to remove any that were rotten and repackage the rest into smaller, more manageable boxes. The girls had lots of fun with it and worked very diligently and got it all done before it was time to go.

It's always so rewarding to help out at the food bank, no matter what the task and the girls always seem to really enjoy it. (YiG4#3)

And this was our 5th year going as a unit, and Feed NS gave us a plaque, thanking us for our service!

And they're even all wearing their uniforms, more or less. 

Friday, January 9, 2015

Meeting #8: Remembrance Day

You in Guiding: Be Involved in Your Community (YiG4)
Beyond You: Discover Your Community (BY1)

Remembrance Day fell on our meeting day this year. We couldn't have our meeting at the school that night, but we could attend the community ceremony!

Our whole District participated and we had over 120 members in attendance! The Guides, Scouts, and Cadets all contribute to the ceremony--we parade in, we have members "stand guard" at the cenotaph. This year, one of my Guides read In Flanders Field.

Lined up, ready to march in 

I think this is an important activity to be involved in and am always pleased at how well the event is attended by our Guiding community!

And I always tell the girls that there is very little that we do that doesn't relate to programming in some way. Participating in the ceremony is an activity of our choice that helps us be involved in the community (YiG4#6) and as a Unit, we participated in a community event (BY1#3).

Meeting #7: Valentines for Vets

You and Others: Learn How to Plan (YaO3)

You in Guiding: Be Involved in Your Community (YiG4)

Event Planning
6:30-7:00: Patrol time--We gave the girls evaluation forms so they could evaluate the planning and execution of the Halloween party we had. Party Evaluation form (Word doc) (YaO3#1, EP#4)

7:00-7:15: Horseshoe--We had 3 new girls join after our Bring a Friend night, so that was great! We started off explaining to the new girls a bit about Guiding. Then we had 2 girls who had brought in treats they'd made for the Tasty Treats badge and present what else they had done for the badge.

7:15-7:30: Our meeting next week falls on Remembrance Day so we decided to spend the night working on Remembrance Day activities. We handed out the Peace badge worksheet that we'd created a few years ago for them to fill out and bring back to earn the Peace badge.

Then we talked about what Remembrance Day was and what veterans were. 

7:30-8:00: -Valentines for Vets (Guider Cara on the Brownies Meet blog has a great write-up on Valentines for Vets)--We gave them lots of supplies so each could make a Valentine that we could send to Valentine's for Vets. Since Valentines need to be sent early in January, this seemed like a good time to do Valentine's for Vets, with the war time/Remembrance Day theme.

We gave them preprinted verses that they could glue in the cards (we took them from theValentines for Vets site), and a preprinted label that said "4th Hammonds Plains Guides" to glue on the back, and lots of stamps and stickers and pretty paper that they could use to decorate the cards with. (YiG4#3)