National Brownie Day

Did you know December 8th is National Brownie Day? Well, now you know! Every year, the delicious desserts we recognize as brownies are celebrated on December 8th. As Girl Scouts, we know this tasty dessert is not the only “brownie” that deserves to be celebrated! Brownies, the second program level in Girl Scouts, is open to girls in grades 2-3. So why not take National Brownie Day to celebrate both the scrumptious and the scouting?   

Check out these 5 easy ways to celebrate National Brownie Day with your favorite Brownies this year!  

  1. Bake and eat brownies with a Girl Scout twist! Enjoy some warm, chocolatey brownies with your favorite Girl Scout cookie added to the mix!  
  1. Explore the history behind brownies! Have you ever wondered how brownies came to be? National Brownie Day is the perfect day to explore the history of each one! We recommend starting with the chocolatey dessert! You can take this time to research who invented them and how they became such a classic dessert! Can you guess the 5 ingredients that make up the classic brownie recipe?  

Additionally, you can have fun learning about how Girl Scouts became known as “Brownies”. Did you know that Girl Scout Brownies were originally called “Rosebuds,” but the name was later changed? The term “Brownies” was suggested by Lord Robert Baden-Powell, a close friend of Juliette Gordon Low. The term was originally used in folktales to describe small individuals who were both helpful and magical, also known as fairies! Various versions of these classic stories have been included in the Brownie handbooks over the years, and they are the basis for the traditional Brownie investiture ceremony. Check out the Brownie Story here.   

  1. Learn a Girl Scout brownie song and make a new one! As Girl Scouts, we love to get together with our friends and sing. Learn the “Brownie Smile” song below and then try creating your very own song! Maybe you can even include lyrics about your favorite brownie desserts! 
  1. Make brownie inspired SWAPS! SWAPS stands for “Special Whatchamacallits Affectionately Pinned Somewhere”. Traditionally, these are made by Girl Scouts to exchange with others as tokens of friendship! So to celebrate National Brownie Day try making brownie inspired SWAPS. If you would like to recreate the one pictured you will just need a sponge, construction paper, brown paint, writing tool, and glue!  
  1. Recognize a special brownie in your life! It’s National Brownie Day? What better day to thank a Girl Scout Brownie with a nice treat! Make a card or write a letter for a helper making your life sweeter!  

Post by Gabby Dietrich

Fall Traditions: Girl Scout Promise and Law

Girl Scout Traditions provide both girls and adults with a sense of history, connection and belonging. One tradition at the very center of Girl Scouting is following the Girl Scout Promise and Girl Scout Law. Both the Girl Scout Promise and Law guide Girl Scouts through the mission of building girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place.  

Reciting the Girl Scout Promise and Law can be easily included in most meetings, ceremonies, special events and virtual gatherings. They serve as great ways to check in with the troop about the true meaning of being a Girl Scout. While it is important to help the girls learn the Girl Scout Promise and Law it can also be a fun way to complete a step towards the Girl Scout Way badge as well!  

The Basics 

When saying the Girl Scout Promise you should start by making the Girl Scout Sign. To begin raise three fingers of the right hand then use your thumb to hold down the pinky finger. The three fingers represent the three parts of the promise.  

Girl Scout Promise (Learn and follow along with GSHPA Girl Scouts here)

On my honor, I will try:  
     to serve God* and my country, 
     to help people at all times,  
     and to live by the Girl Scout Law

*members can substitute wording appropriate to their own spiritual beliefs  

Girl Scout Law (Learn and follow along with GSHPA Girl Scouts here)

   I will do my best to be 
       honest and fair, 
       friendly and helpful, 
       considerate and caring,  
       courageous and strong, and 
      responsible for what I say and do,  
     and to   
      respect myself and others,  
      respect authority, 
     use resources wisely, 
     make the world a better place, and  
     be a sister to every Girl Scout.
  

Here are 3 fun activities you can do to help your girls learn the Girl Scout Promise and Girl Scout Law!  

Girl Scout Paper Sign 

Materials: construction paper, GS Promise trefoil cut outs, scissors, tape/glue, pencils, and markers/crayons. 

Directions:  

  1. Each girl will need 1 piece of paper to start. They place their hand flat on the paper then begin tracing their hand with the pencil. Once traced they will want to cut it out.  If easier you can provide your girls with a preprinted/traced hand they can simply cut out instead!  
  1. Then fold/bend the pinky and thumb until they meet in the middle to create the Girl Scout Sign.  
  1. After that have your girls cut out and decorate trefoil cut outs which include the GS Promise.  
  1. Then tape/Glue both the hand and trefoil onto a piece of construction paper. After everything is attached they can also decorate their creation! 
  1. Afterwards have them over the promise individually or together so the girls learn it by heart. 
  1. Try making the hand gesture/symbol with their own hands, now that they see how it’s supposed to look with the paper! 

Girl Scout Law Popsicle Hanger 

Materials: 12 Popsicle Sticks (per girl), ribbon, colored pencils/crayons, a marker, and glue.  

Directions: 

  1. Once each girl has her materials, have her write the Girl Scout Law on the 12 Popsicle sticks with her marker.  
  1. After the writing out the Girl Scout Law, color each stick a different color. 
  1. When the Popsicle sticks are colored you will then glue them onto a piece of ribbon in the order they are said when reciting the Girl Scout Law. If you would like hang up your Girl Scout Law simply make a “U” shape out of the ribbon with the round curve at the top. Then add your Girl Scout Law sticks!  
  1. After the glue has dried encourage your girls to hang/place their creations somewhere at home!   

Girl Scout Law SWAPS  

While this activity will help your girls learn the Girl Scout Law, it also allows them to participate in another longtime Girl Scout Traditions: SWAPS. The term “SWAPS” is short for: a Special Whatchamacallit Affectionately Pinned Somewhere and is an amazing Girl Scout tradition! Each Girl Scout will make their own SWAPS to exchange with other Girl Scouts promoting friendship and connection.  

Materials:  beads, safety pins, string, and a card with the Girl Scout Law (you can make your own or use this). We recommend using the corresponding bead colors included on this print out.  

Directions: 

  1. Each girl will get a copy of the Girl Scout Law, beads, a key ring and string. The girls should begin placing their beads on the string in the order they appear on the card. As they do this, explain each color and its corresponding line of the Girl Scout Law.  
  1. Once all the beads are in place, tie off the string and attach a safety pin to the top of the chain.  
  1. Afterwards encourage girls to hang onto their Girl Scout Law SWAP or try swapping it with other members in the troop!  

Post by Gabby Dietrich

5 Activities to Center Your Gratitude This Fall!

November is officially here and for many of us this month marks the beginning of the holiday season! Although many of our holiday plans may look different this year than they have in the past. We may not have the opportunities to connect with family and friends in the same ways. So it is important to keep in mind all the things we have to be thankful for and to practice gratitude with those around us!

Gratitude is being thankful for all the goodness in our lives. When we take the time to be grateful we are able to connect to those around us and acknowledge all the goodness in our lives. Research consistently shows that pausing to embrace gratitude allows people to feel positive emotions, appreciate good experiences, improves overall heath and aids in building strong relationships.

Keeping the importance of gratitude we wanted to give you some ideas to practice gratitude this holiday season!

  • Gratitude Pumpkin: A great activity that can be utilized all month long! All you will need is a pumpkin and a sharpie. You can write/draw something that you are thankful for each day on the pumpkin. At the end of the month you should have a pumpkin full of gratitude that will also serve as a perfect center piece for a holiday meal!
  • Gratitude Stones: Add your very own messages of gratitude to stones of all shapes and sizes! Afterwards these stones can be placed as reminders around the home, used as a holiday centerpiece, or placed outside for others to find. For this activity you will need rocks (large enough to paint on), paint, Modge Podge, and gratitude messages! Once you have the supplies just glue/paint your grateful messages on the rock and seal with a coat of modge podge.
  • Gratitude Tree: A great way to combine nature and gratitude! You will need sticks, pipe cleaners, a jar/vase, paper, string and a writing utensil. Start by creating a tree shape with your sticks, add pipe cleaners to hold it together and place it in your jar. Afterwards cut the paper in to leaf shapes and write messages of gratitude on each; you may also want to punch a hole in each leaf. Simply attach these leaves to your tree with string and your tree is ready! Gratitude trees make great holiday centerpieces!
  • Gratitude Scavenger Hunt: Scavenger hunts are always fun, but a gratitude scavenger hunt is fun with a purpose! This activity can be done all month, during a troop meeting, or at a holiday gathering. Make your own list or use ours.
  • Gratitude Conversation Starters: Talk to your loved ones about gratitude! Use these conversation starters around the table, before bedtime, to start a troop meeting, or wherever you find fit! If talking it out isn’t your thing- they could also be utilized as journal prompts. Make your own or use ours.

Whatever this holiday season brings for you, make sure to take time to acknowledge the goodness! We would love to hear what you are grateful for this holiday season.


Post by Gabby Dietrich

Catch the Colors of Fall with this Fun Craft!

Bring the beauty of fall indoors with these fall leaf sun catchers! This is a fun craft that can be easily made with a few materials that might already be in your kitchen.

All you need is:

  • White round coffee filters
  • Liquid watercolor paint or food coloring
  • Paper to make leaf template (You can draw your own or use ours)
  • Scissors
  • Paint brush or dropper

Steps:

First create your leaf template! It will be used as a guide to cut the coffee filters into leave shapes! Once you have your leaf guide grab your coffee filters and start cutting! Due to the thin nature of the coffee filters you can pile 3-5 filters to cut through at once to speed up the process.

After you have your leaves cut out its time for the color! To have fun without extra mess we recommend using a plate or a tray to put underneath the leaves you are painting! We made our own trays out of aluminum foil. Now, begin painting your masterpieces! Liquid watercolors or food coloring (diluted with a few drops of water) work best for coloring the leaves. We used red, yellow and orange to stick with the fall theme. Once your colors are ready, use an eyedropper or paintbrush to apply to the paint to the leaf.

When the leaves are finished you may want to gently move them to a safe (liquid resistant) surface to dry. A plastic bag or aluminum foil would work well! And be careful when moving your leaves they are a little delicate when wet. After the leaves have been moved to a safe location allow them to dry fully!

Once the leaves have fully dry pick them up and add some tape! You will want to create a tape loop and stick it to your creation. After that simply stick them to a window with a loop of tape sticky side out. My girls got excited about the fall theme and ended up adding a few pumpkins too.  Once the colorful creations are hung up, stand back and enjoy the beautiful color shining through!

We hope that you enjoy this fun colorful craft and would love to see your creations so please send us pictures!