guideydiary

keeping track of my adventures in guiding!

Let the plotting and planning begin!

Okay, so its not yet 2014, and I probably *should* have better things to do with my few days of holidays before starting The Great Plotting, but, well, I’ve got an hour or so, and ideas have been swirling in my head in recent days, so what better way to preserve them than blogging?!

Firstly: Rangers. I’ve been thinking a lot about what to do about the Rangers group. Since the Rangers leader left very unexpectedly – and with no notice – at the beginning of term three, co-leader and I have managed to keep the group limping along. But how we’ve been going is simply not sustainable. Both of us have been taking it in turns to take the fortnightly Rangers meetings in addition to our weekly Guide meetings. There’s a half-hour overlap between the groups (Junior & Senior Guides from 6.30 to 8.00; Rangers from 7.30 to 9.00), and by the time we tidy up after Guides, whichever leader is helping with Rangers only joins the girls from about 8.15, meaning they have 45 minutes effectively unsupervised. Which isn’t terrible – they’re teenagers (13-16 year olds), we’re in the next room, its hardly like they’re being left alone, but it seems that unless they’re doing something planned by the leaders, or using the kitchen, that they are a bit directionless.

In theory, the Rangers plan their own program, and implement it. But the reality is, without a leader there to keep them on track, they tend to drift. And I’ve noticed that they’re re-enforcing that drift by having poor attendance on non-cooking nights. I think also with growing homework pressure, if what is planned is just ‘games night’ or similar, which they have to prepare, then it becomes easy to just not go.

Co-leader has also commented that she doesn’t really like the late nights – and I know her natural inclination is towards the brownie-aged Juniors anyway, so Rangers isn’t her natural cup of tea.

So, my current thinking is as follows – still to be discussed with co-leader, mind you!:

I’ll take on Rangers as a default, at least for two terms. For ‘week A’, I’ll do as we’ve been doing so far – spending the full night with the Guides, and when that’s finished, moving into ‘lightly’ supervise the Rangers. For ‘week B’ though, I’ll spend the first hour with the Guides, and when the Rangers arrive at 7.30, I’ll join them for the full hour and a half, with the idea that I will run the activities that week – so they only need to turn up and engage. That will leave co-leader ‘alone’ for 30 minutes at the end of the meeting, but if we structure the program reasonably well, that should be fine. We also have a mum who has been helping occasionally, and I *think* she would be willing to commit to helping out on those nights specifically.

I’m also thinking that rather than going back on week two of term one, I’ll see if the Rangers are willing to start week one – perhaps we can have an outing and plan the term – maybe even two terms at once – over noodles?

So, that’s my Rangers thinking. I guess we’ll see how it goes.

As for Guides – well, we’ve already got a camp booked and planned, and 10 girls signed up with deposits (two have actually already fully paid!) (there are 24 spaces available, so 10 already is pretty great!), so that is exciting! It will be the ‘Crazy Critters Camp’, with a nature/insects/bugs theme. I’ll be getting assessed for my indoor camp qualification, which is scary/awesome. 🙂

In terms of programming – I’m thinking we’ll try and get the Seniors to aim for at least one patrol attending Lady Stradbroke Cup camp, which is a competitive, very traditional patrol outdoor camp – we’ll need to increase their outdoor cooking skills, and do lots of knotting and gadget work. I saw some fabulous fun ideas for making mini-gadgets recently, using twigs and fine string, rather than sticks and rope, which looked like a lot of intricate fun – you essentially end up with dollhouse sized camp gadgets! For the Juniors, I know co-leader wants them to work towards the ‘homes’ badge, using the old brownies ‘hostess’ syllabus, which I think they’d really love… and finally, I have an odd hankering to do the ‘numbers’ badge at some point (perhaps in the winter terms), as I’ve had a bunch of ideas around codes, number patterns, counting in other languages, games based on numbers, etc. I think there’s a fabulous wide game in there somewhere too!

So, much to consider. We always lose girls over the long summer break, but I think retention this year should be reasonable – I think of our 24 girls enrolled, we should have about 20 of them return in February… fingers crossed!!

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End of the year!

Final night of Guides for the year. Always a mixed feeling – its been a long term, so I’ll be glad of some time away from planning and doing Guides, but I know in about three weeks time I’ll be wondering what to do with myself! We don’t go back until the first week of February, so its quite a break!

We were meant to have a longer meeting than usual tonight, starting off with Christmas carols at the local hospital. Unfortunately, they’ve had an outbreak of gastro, so some last minute emails and text messages flew around cancelling – don’t want the kids getting sick!

So we just met for our usual hour and half, and had some games and a bit of a party – I put up streamers in the hall, we played some games outside, had some ‘party’ games inside with ‘stick the star on the star’ (a bit like pin the tail on the donkey), and musical chairs. We also ate some munchies, did a little brainstorming for next year, and handed out a bunch of badges. We also gave the girls each a tiny Chrissy present – a ‘Merry Christmas’ badge and a chocolate Santa 🙂

The very cute Merry Christmas badge we gave the girls:

Christmas Guide badge

After Guides I joined the Rangers – all two of them (??) – and we played some Guiding Snap and ‘Cheat’, using the playing cards designed by Super Keen Badge Guide, and then had quite a detailed chat about how Rangers might work next year, and a long discussion about which girls we thought were likely to stick with the group. With one girl going up to Rangers from Sister Unit, we think there will probably be about 5 girls in the group – the trick will be having them regularly attend, and having things structured enough that they are working towards badges and goals, rather than the gossip club its kind of morphing into.

Anyway. That’s things to think about over the summer. No doubt there will be bloggy pondering to come! 🙂

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Shop for service

Short Guiding interlude to my Sunday – one hour of service, with five keen kids, wandering about our local Kmart, finding gifts for the Wishing Tree –  http://wishingtree.kmart.com.au/

Its a service activity I was introduced to back when I was a Guide – the first year it started, my unit walked down to our local shops and bought gifts for the Tree. It must have made a deep impression on me, as every year since, its been part of my Christmas tradition. Since going back to Guides as an adult, I’ve extended the tradition to the two units I’ve worked with. Hopefully it will stick with my Guides as well as it has stuck with me.

This year, we did it as a weekend activity, rather than a unit night activity, just because we had too packed a term!

As for the activity itself – its very girl-directed. They’re given a set amount of money, and allowed to walk around in a group, staying broadly in the same area as a leader, but don’t have to explicitly stay with us.  As a group, they have to work out what age and sex of person they wish to buy for, and then set about deciding on gifts. The girls were given $30, and they decided to split this into three gifts – for a 3 year old boy, a 3 year old girl, and a 9 year old girl. They looked at books, and stationary, and toys, and sports equipment, and ended up – after much discussion, checking of prices, and negotiating! – deciding to get a mix of things for each gift, including a soft toys, crayons, colouring books, play-doh, and soccer balls.

It was a very guidey activity – building teamwork, negotiation, decision making skills, while being oriented towards service and helping others. And they had fun!

This week – final Guides and Rangers. Should be fun!

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Ceremonial celebrations!

Special night tonight, as two of our girls were presented with their JBP and BP Awards.

The first 30 minutes or so were spent setting up – we split girls up into groups with specific tasks – balloon blowing up, hanging up streamers, putting out the chairs, setting up the front table, helping out in the kitchen – and left them to it, while I drilled the girls selected to do colour party.

There was just enough to be done to keep them all busy for 15 minutes, then we rehearsed the  two songs for part of the ceremony – Bravo, and This Little Guiding Light (just the first verse), and a more complicated version of our usual step in. The girls were all fabulously engaged in the whole process, and listened properly when we had a quick reminder about properly marching into formation, rather than their (all too regular) moseying into circle!

We then had a short break while Awesome Co-leader explained to the girls about how we would be participating in the worldwide Thinking Day Postcard Exchange, and that in order for the postcards to reach their destinations in time for Thinking Day next year, that we would need to write up the cards tonight. It turned out to be the perfect activity for the time slot, and a great way to calm them down before the ceremony proper.

Finally – the ceremony. The girls remembered everything, and all behaved beautifully, marching exactly right, and singing wonderfully!

So pleased and proud, and the two girls receiving their awards (and their families) were delighted 🙂

We finished up with supper – cake, fruit, and chips, and cups of tea and coffee, which the girls helped with serving – or at least, they did in between bites of cake!

Final week next week before our summer break!

Here’s the amazing themed cakes baked by Awesome Co-leader! (After a ceremonial cut each by the Awardees, in case you couldn’t tell!)

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What do we teach? (Part 2)

A while ago, I pondered ‘what do we teach?’ https://guideydiary.wordpress.com/2013/02/09/what-do-we-teach/ inspired by a post at Trefoil Knot.

Today, I noticed a similar post, by a retiring South African leader:  http://mandycollinswriter.wordpress.com/2013/11/27/teach-your-children-well/

It’s a fabulous post, which draws out some of the skills/benefits of Guiding – the focus on games and play which is often not competitive, or is competitive for ‘no reward’, the basic ‘life skills’ which somehow are so novel now – lighting matches, threading sewing needles, etc – and the way that Guiding tends to encourage and enable a certain about of ‘try it yourself’ led failure, which is the only way to figure out how to do it better next time.

Well, at least I hope those skills and qualities are what we are teaching… and that I manage to live up to them myself!

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Patrols and Promises

Good but unusual sort of an evening –

For the first half, we finished off our pets badge with a series of activities aimed at enhancing patrol work, with the central aim of getting through a series of challenges while protecting an egg. The original plan was for each patrol to have a blown egg, but time got away from me! Luckily, an emergency trip to the craft shop (which is conveniently 2 minutes walk from my bus stop!) yielded Styrofoam eggs, which worked quite well.

So the series of activities (pretty much made up on the spot by me and co-leader!) for each patrol were as follows:

  • Human knots – get out of, and then back into – a human knot, while protecting the egg
  • Get from the corner to the main driveway, transferring the egg person to person, without using your hands.
  • Get from the main driveway to the next corner, again transferring person to person, without using your hands or arms.
  • Using things you can find in the garden, make a nest for your egg that you can transport to show the leaders.
  • Do Scouts pace one by one up the other footpath, keeping the egg safely tucked into the back of your collar
  • With your egg on a spoon, walk to point one, hop to point two, then skip to point three.

Overall, it worked pretty well, with a couple of the girls commenting that it was a bit like a wide game, with working through a series of challenges in their patrol. Given the group loooooooooooooooooove wide games, I’m going to call that as high praise 🙂

After the girls had mostly got through the activities (some of the patrols didn’t quite complete the final task, but close enough), we quickly got set up for our final Promise ceremony of the year. Three lovely newbies made their Promise for the first time, and two of our Juniors moved up to Seniors.

I say it every time, but gee I love Promise ceremonies. The girls are all so serious and solemn, and the girls making their Promise are both excited and nervous… and so many parents come up afterwards and say “oh I was so proud! I was just about in tears!”. Our very traditional ceremony is, I think, a lovely way to impress on the girls that in being part of Guiding, that they’re part of something special. It also seems to move parents from “oh its a club that little Suzie does because her friend Sally does it too…” to feeling like being a Guide is something different, and something to be proud of. So yes, I love our little ceremonies, with marching in, colour party, and lots of candles!

Next week – more ceremonies as we present our first JBP Award in two years, and first BP Award in three! Woohoo!

One of the ‘nests’ for the eggs – pretty creative!

IMG_1358

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Scone service!

Fun day today – the Church where my unit meets was celebrating a major anniversary, and had a fete type event to celebrate. So my unit helped out with serving scones and cups of tea – a nice and easy way of being visible and providing service.

Service of course is one of the seven fundamentals of the Guide program, and I find it can be a tricky one to integrate well into the program, so opportunities like this are good to seize when they happen. I really like service activities where the girls can see a clear link between the work they’re doing, and the recipient – rather than, say, raising money for a distant “good deed”. Today’s activities also had some useful skills training – learning how to make cups of tea properly, cut up the scones, whip the cream etc. The girls also helped with the cleaning up – gathering plates and cups, stacking the dishwasher correctly, and wiping up as we went along.

But it wasn’t all hard work, with seven Guides helping out, there was really too many to help in the kitchen at any one time (three was the maximum, really, to be useful rather than in each other’s way), so they were able to go off in pairs and groups and check out the other activities – a jumping castle, a reptile show, mini golf etc. So, it was a fun day, just a couple of hours, and raised our profile as well – at least a few kids and parents seemed interested in Guides, so I guess we’ll see if anything comes of that 🙂

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Doggies and bunnies and games, oh my!

Thanks to the unreliability of Melbourne’s weather, tonight’s plans of pets in the park had to be abandoned at the last minute, in a flurry of last second emails and text messages!

So instead, we were back in the usual hall – but visited by two bunnies and nine dogs!

The girls had fun showing off their pets, and meeting the pets of others – and they were all fabulously well behaved! Only one dog was a bit ‘over enthusiastic’, but that was okay!

After the last of the pets had headed home with families, we played a few games – first one called “A What?” – which was a bit of a variation on Chinese Whispers, which was quite funny, as multiple pet-related “items” went around the circle… turns out the girls are very unfamiliar with the word “budgerigars”! (Storms of protest: why didn’t you just say bird if its a bird?!) (Because I have to amuse myself as well!)

Followed up with a game of Monkey Tiggy, which was quite funny to watch, and then I put them in pairs and gave each a plastic animal. One of each pair hid the animal, then the other was guided to it with “hotter/colder”. My next suggestion of Duck Duck Goose was vetoed (girl lead guiding!) and they organised themselves into a game of Run the Gauntlet instead, keeping it in theme by using the little animals as objects to collect at one end of the gauntlet.

Finally, we had 15-20 minutes left, and I was over the noisiness, so decided I’d give them a quick first aid challenge. A bit of whinging ensued “we KNOW how to wrap ankles already!” “Excellent, you won’t need the book then and can show me that you can get it right first time” “Okay!” Heh. Anyway, despite the whinging, the whole group ended up practicing, and even those who thought they didn’t need the book ended up learning a bit and improving. So glad I invested in a set of bandages just for practice a while ago!

Next week we’ve got games outdoors, followed by a Promise ceremony for 3 newbies. And in other excellent news, awesome co-leader will be back, and we had a third visit from another newbie, so I think we’ll be signing her up properly next week 🙂

 

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Pets escape wide game

Here’s the wide game I put together as part of the pets badge. There were two patrols looking for scruffy, two looking for mittens. I had the younger girls looking for mittens, so the tasks were slightly easier. The wide game took about an hour and a quarter.

The story:

Scruffy and Mittens have escaped! We’re going to need all hands on deck to find them! Juniors – could you please do your best to find Mittens? Seniors – we’ll need you on the look out for Scruffy! When you’re looking for our fluffy friends, you’ll need to follow the clues, complete the challenges, and DO YOUR BEST.

Order of activities:

1. Make a ‘missing’ poster

 Equipment – paper, pens etc.

  1. Decode a clue

The clue was done using an English-to-webdings font, and read something like “please help find me, my paw prints look like this:” with a clip art picture of dog or cat paws.

  1. Paw prints trail

 Leading from the hall in different directions were paw print trails with different coloured backgrounds to indicate which patrol should follow which trail. The trails eventually lead to the next task.

  1. Gather water for bowl

 Equipment – buckets, bowls, spoons and/or cups. Buckets full of water were set up in a line, one for each patrol. Bowls for filling were set up opposite, about three meters away. Beside the buckets for the older girls (hunting scruffy) were tablespoons, and beside the bowls for the younger girls (hunting mittens) were plastic cups.

  1. Make a long lead

 A pile of ropes of all different lengths were provided. You could also use string or wool or fabric or grass or…

  1. Make a mini shelter

 A pile of balls of wool and paddle pop sticks were provided. This didn’t work as well as I imagined, perhaps pipecleaners or something else might be more useful. Or just pop a box of crafty bits where you want this activity to happen, and see what they come up with!

  1. Find a bone or fish

 This was just a clip art picture cut up and hidden.

  1. Scout’s  pace

 Always a good addition to a wide game!

  1. Ball/wool toss

 Provide tennis balls for the scruffy teams, and balls of wool for the mittens teams. I just had them aim for an area, but you could set up targets of some sort if you wanted to add complexity.

  1. Mud trail/wool trail

My fabulous junior leader set up these trails – for ‘mud’ she coloured in bits of paper brown and ran a trail about, while for wool, she used a whole ball of wool and ran it all around the grounds, ending up with poor mittens in a tree!

Here are the instructions for the teams – I had them printed & in envelopes and numbered. Guides were instructed only to open a clue when they’d completed the task prior.

Enjoy!

Scruffy Mittens
With Scruffy missing, you’ll   need to make up some posters to go around the local area!

Each guide will need one piece   of folded paper.

Everyone should do one third,   then refold to hide the top third and swap posters and do another third, then   swap again.

1)      On   the top third, write Missing and Scruffy’s name

2)      On   the middle third, draw the Scruffy’s head

3)      On   the bottom third, draw Scruffy’s body and some imaginary contact details for   anyone who finds Scruffy!

When everyone has done a   poster, stick them up on the wall near the stairs, and then move onto your   next task.

 

With Mittens missing, you’ll   need to make up some posters to go around the local area!

Each guide will need one piece   of folded paper.

Everyone should do one third,   then refold to hide the top third and swap posters and do another third, then   swap again.

1)      On   the top third, write Missing and Mittens’ name

2)      On   the middle third, draw the Mittens’ head

3)      On   the bottom third, draw Mittens’ body and some imaginary contact details for   anyone who finds Mittens!

When everyone has done a   poster, stick them up on the wall near the stairs, and then move onto your   next task.

 

Decode the information to find   your next task!

 

Decode the information to find   your next task!

 

Paw prints trail Paw prints trail
Pets always need plenty of   fresh water. Scruffy is sure to be thirsty when he is found, so make sure   there is plenty of water in his dish!

Out in the main courtyard, using   the spoon provided, transfer enough water from the bucket to fill the water   dish.

Take it in turns, and remember   you cannot move either the bucket or the dish.

When you’ve filled the dish, go   back to the hall for your next task!

 

Pets always need plenty of fresh water. Mittens is sure to be thirsty when she is found, so make sure there is plenty of water in her dish!

Out in the main courtyard, using   the cup provided, transfer enough water from the bucket to fill the water   dish.

Take it in turns, and remember   you cannot move either the bucket or the dish.

When you’ve filled the dish, go   back to the hall for your next task!

 

Scruffy will need a nice long   lead for walks when he returns.

Using three of the ropes   provided, work as a patrol to make the longest possible plaited lead.

 

Mittens will need a nice long   lead for walks when she returns.

Using three of the ropes   provided, work as a patrol to make the longest possible plaited lead.

 

Using the paddle pop sticks and   wool, build a mini kennel for Scruffy, thinking about what a dog would need   to be comfortable and secure.

Show a leader when you’re   finished to get your next clue.

 

Using the paddle pop sticks and   wool, build a mini basket for Mittens, thinking about what a cat would need   to be comfortable and secure.

Show a leader when you’re   finished to get your next clue.

 

Scruffy will need his bone when   he comes home. He’s probably buried it in the front garden…

 

Mittens will be looking for her   little fish toy when she gets home. She probably lost it in the front garden…

 

Dogs like to run, but if you go   too quick, Scruffy will get tired! As a patrol, practice your Scout’s pace   (20 steps walking, 20 steps running), going one at a time along the footpath   from the entrance to the carpark, down and around the corner to the front   door of the hall, and back again.

Remember to keep to the paths!

 

Cats like to run around, but if   you go too quick, Mittens will get tired! As a patrol, practice your Scout’s   pace (20 steps walking, 20 steps running), going one at a time along the   footpath from the entrance to the carpark, down and around the corner to the   front door of the hall, and back again.

Remember to keep to the paths!

 

Dogs like to play with balls,   and play catch! So you’re in practice for when Scruffy gets back, work with   your patrol to throw a tennis ball from the curb near the big tree out the   front all the way into the little circle of seats.

Be accurate!

When you’re done, find the   barbeque to begin your final hunt for Scruffy!

 

Cats like to play with wool! So   you’re in practice for when Mittens gets back, work with your patrol to throw   a ball of wool across the hall, from one set of windows to the other.

Be accurate!

When you’re done, find the   barbeque to begin your final hunt for Mittens!

 

Scruffy left a trail of mud   when he ran away… chances are good that following the mud will lead to   Scruffy…

 

Mittens left a trail of wool   when she ran away… chances are good that following the wool will lead to   Mittens…

 

 

Scruffy Mittens
With Scruffy missing, you’ll   need to make up some posters to go around the local area!

Each guide will need one piece   of folded paper.

Everyone should do one third,   then refold to hide the top third and swap posters and do another third, then   swap again.

4)      On   the top third, write Missing and Scruffy’s name

5)      On   the middle third, draw the Scruffy’s head

6)      On   the bottom third, draw Scruffy’s body and some imaginary contact details for   anyone who finds Scruffy!

When everyone has done a   poster, stick them up on the wall near the stairs, and then move onto your   next task.

 

With Mittens missing, you’ll   need to make up some posters to go around the local area!

Each guide will need one piece   of folded paper.

Everyone should do one third,   then refold to hide the top third and swap posters and do another third, then   swap again.

4)      On   the top third, write Missing and Mittens’ name

5)      On   the middle third, draw the Mittens’ head

6)      On   the bottom third, draw Mittens’ body and some imaginary contact details for   anyone who finds Mittens!

When everyone has done a   poster, stick them up on the wall near the stairs, and then move onto your   next task.

 

Decode the information to find   your next task!

 

Decode the information to find   your next task!

 

Paw prints trail Paw prints trail
Pets always need plenty of   fresh water. Scruffy is sure to be thirsty when he is found, so make sure   there is plenty of water in his dish!

Out in the main courtyard,   using the spoon provided, transfer enough water from the bucket to fill the   water dish.

Take it in turns, and remember   you cannot move either the bucket or the dish.

When you’ve filled the dish, go   back to the hall for your next task!

 

Pets always need plenty of   fresh water. Mittens is sure to be thirsty when she is found, so make sure   there is plenty of water in her dish!

Out in the main courtyard,   using the cup provided, transfer enough water from the bucket to fill the   water dish.

Take it in turns, and remember   you cannot move either the bucket or the dish.

When you’ve filled the dish, go   back to the hall for your next task!

 

Scruffy will need a nice long   lead for walks when he returns.

Using three of the ropes   provided, work as a patrol to make the longest possible plaited lead.

 

Mittens will need a nice long   lead for walks when she returns.

Using three of the ropes   provided, work as a patrol to make the longest possible plaited lead.

 

Using the paddle pop sticks and   wool, build a mini kennel for Scruffy, thinking about what a dog would need   to be comfortable and secure.

Show a leader when you’re   finished to get your next clue.

 

Using the paddle pop sticks and   wool, build a mini basket for Mittens, thinking about what a cat would need   to be comfortable and secure.

Show a leader when you’re   finished to get your next clue.

 

Scruffy will need his bone when   he comes home. He’s probably buried it in the front garden…

 

Mittens will be looking for her   little fish toy when she gets home. She probably lost it in the front garden…

 

Dogs like to run, but if you go   too quick, Scruffy will get tired! As a patrol, practice your Scout’s pace   (20 steps walking, 20 steps running), going one at a time along the footpath   from the entrance to the carpark, down and around the corner to the front   door of the hall, and back again.

Remember to keep to the paths!

 

Cats like to run around, but if   you go too quick, Mittens will get tired! As a patrol, practice your Scout’s   pace (20 steps walking, 20 steps running), going one at a time along the   footpath from the entrance to the carpark, down and around the corner to the   front door of the hall, and back again.

Remember to keep to the paths!

 

Dogs like to play with balls,   and play catch! So you’re in practice for when Scruffy gets back, work with   your patrol to throw a tennis ball from the curb near the big tree out the   front all the way into the little circle of seats.

Be accurate!

When you’re done, find the   barbeque to begin your final hunt for Scruffy!

 

Cats like to play with wool! So   you’re in practice for when Mittens gets back, work with your patrol to throw   a ball of wool across the hall, from one set of windows to the other.

Be accurate!

When you’re done, find the   barbeque to begin your final hunt for Mittens!

 

Scruffy left a trail of mud   when he ran away… chances are good that following the mud will lead to   Scruffy…

 

Mittens left a trail of wool   when she ran away… chances are good that following the wool will lead to   Mittens…

 


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Pet skits!

Fun (and easy for me!) night tonight as the girls put on pet-themed plays. Three out of the four patrols did really well – one… somehow missed the point almost entirely, but oh well, they seemed to have fun!

What did work quite well is that we asked the girls to bring along any ‘pet care items’ they had – leads, brushes, food, feeding bowls etc, and probably about a quarter of them brought at least something, which meant that they had some fun props for the plays.

After the rehearsals and then the show, we still had about 40 minutes to go, so I decided to play ‘ladders’, but with a pets/animals theme – this meant that instead of numbering off the pairs, they were given animal names – dog, cat, fish, horse, donkey, piglet etc. Probably half the girls had never played before, so we had to go over the rules, and have a ‘walking’ practice or two before they were allowed to run, but they did have fun!

After that, we tried cat and mouse (the ‘streets and lanes’ version), to… hmm… varying degrees of success, and then their old favourite of no-fruit ‘fruit salad’, which started out pet themed, and ended up just normal as I ran out of ideas!

Fabulous co-leader was away last night (overseas, lucky gal) but thankfully two mums were able to help out, which was just lovely. One got stuck in, the other pretty much just played with her phone, but that was fine – I just needed an extra pair of hands in the unlikely event of one of the kids injuring themselves!!

Next week should be decidedly interesting as we kick up the pet theme a bit further and let them bring their pets to a night in the park… in theory, the pets only stay as long as the parents do… I certainly hope I don’t end up inadvertently responsible for 24 small people plus their dogs!!!

 

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