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I’m easily entertained.
For the last few weeks, I’ve been experimenting, working on various projects that I want to try with the Girl Scouts this coming school year. You see, one of the moms said she and her daughter would only stay on if things were “interesting” this coming year. And yours truly took that as a challenge. Then I read through the badge and journey books and found them to be… boring. Sure there’s some interesting stuff in there, but it’s been presented as dull, dry, and devoid of fun. And for all of Girl Scouts emphasis on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), there was danged little of it appearing in either book. So I started looking for ways to rewrite the books, ways that included doing more interesting activities. Like say, learning basic electronics by making LED throwies.
To be clear, I checked with people at our service unit and council to make sure I had leeway to do this. The girls do NOT have to earn any badges. They can do whatever activities they want. But anything we do that doesn’t comply with the badge guidelines can only count toward patches. What’s the difference between a badge and a patch? As I understand it, badges are approved by Girl Scouts USA, and the guidelines to earn them are in the Girl Guide books and Journey books. Patches are for any other activities the girls participate in. Badges go on the front of the sash or the vest. Patches go on the back.
Right now, I’m pulling together a list of projects the girls can do, some of which they can earn badges for and some of which they will earn patches for. Wherever possible, I’m shooting for badges. A lot of the badge requirements can be dressed up as a lot more fun than they’ve been presented. But if I come across a cool project or activity that we don’t have a badge for, and the girls want to do it, then we’re doing it. Because you know what? We don’t need no stinkin’ badges. They’re nice to have, but we don’t need them.
What we do need is to educate girls to be leaders, and to get them excited about STEM. So I’m doing all I can right now to make that happen. I’ll be sure to share the results with you as we go along