Grey Squirrel/Red Squirrel

The hiding of nuts and seeds in the fall is an essential part of the a squirrel’s life.  This wide game simulates two strategies for hiding winter food

Note: I was taught this game using unshelled peanuts as markers.  That is probably not the best choice given how many allergies are associated with peanuts but whatever you substitute, it should be bio-degradable as it is likely they won’t all be found.  Dried fava beans would make a good substitute.  

This game is best played in a forested area.  You will need 20 markers per girl.   If you have an odd number of girls, one can be the Blue Jay, otherwise a Guider or Girl Assistant can be the Blue Jay.

Start by explaining that Grey Squirrel’s hid their nuts and seeds in many different cashes while Red Squirrel’s pick one well chosen cash.  Grey Squirrel’s have been observed making fake cashes and pretending to hide their winter food to trick other squirrels. The Grey Squirrels should hide their markers in at least 4 different places.  The Red Squirrels should look for the single best hiding spot they can but can have fake hiding places as well. Divide  the players into team Grey Squirrels and team Red Squirrels.  Then give each of the teams 10 minutes to find good hiding spots for their markers.  Whoever is playing the Blue Jay should cover their eyes.

Once all the players have returned, the leader should explain that it is now December.  It is getting colder, but there is still some food around for the squirrel’s to eat.  They all need to go a fetch 2 markers to supplement their diet.  It doesn’t have to be the ones they hid.  But they need to go and get two markers.   The Blue Jay is also sent to find two markers.  

Continue this with the following rounds…

  • January 6 markers
  • February 6 markers
  • March 6 markers

How many of your squirrels had enough food to make it though the winter?  Was it easier for the Grey Squirrels or the Red Squirrels?  How did the Blue Jay do?  What are the advantages and disadvantage of each strategy.   

Backpack Reflectors

This is an easy craft I learned at a training to help identify unit members on urban hikes and keep them safe.

Materials:

  • reflective tape (such as the type used for bikes)
  • Duct tape
  • fun foam
  • shower curtain hook

Instructions:

  1. cut two identical shapes out of the fun foam (this can be pre-done).  You can go with a simple square, or mix it up perhaps based on patrol/pod
  2. sandwich the shower curtain hook between the two pieces of fun foam so that the opening is above the fun foam and the base is between the fun foam. 
  3. secure with duct tape
  4. Add reflective tape on top of the duct tape
  5. attach to backpacks or zipper pulls

Throwback Thursday: WAGGGS/UN Hunger Challenge

On October 9th the UN World Food Program was recognized for it’s work with the Nobel Peace Prize

If your unit would like to mark this, consider the Yunga/UN Ending Hunger Challenge Badge

There are five sections to the challenge:

  • Hunger and the Hungry,
  • The Right to Food,
  • Causes of Hunger,
  • Ending Hunger
  • Take Action.  

For each section there are activities for 5-10 year olds, 11-15 year olds and 16 plus.

The badges are available from the WAGGGS Shop.

 

Girl Powered Nutrition

I completely over looked this virtual challenge on Girl Powered Nutrition from WAGGGS on nutrition that was released last summer.  All the activities are suitable for anytime Guiding and many could be done on a virtual meeting.  

Part 1 – In your country, what does a rainbow plate look like?

Part 2 – What you eat now is important for your health today and also your future.

Part 3 – It is important for girls and young women to know what information is reliable so they can make good choices about what to eat.

Part 4 – Healthy food can be tasty, cheap and easy to cook!

Part 5 – Its time to set a goal for action!

Part 6 – Take action and speak out!

Challenge Tracker

The Movable Enrolment

This is the enrolment my Pathfinder unit used last year but it is easily adaptable to a socially distanced enrolment this year. It was loosely based on a movable feast. With a different “course” at each stop. We hiked though the neighbourhood around our meeting place with each stop being at a different park but it could be done on a trail hike as well.

Start – request that Pathfinders stay quiet until the first station and reflect on their Guiding years or what they would like to do in Guiding. Suggest for girls very new to Guiding that they could pick something that we had done already, or something they would like to do.

Stop 1 – the Pathfinders share one of their favourite guiding experiences or skills that they have learned or would like to learn

Stop 2 – Discuss the Guide sign and handshake.  Practice

Stop 3 – Recite the motto and discuss how they uses this in their lives.

Stop 4 –   Recite the Guide Laws and share which is the hardest and which is the easiest to follow

Stop 5 –  Recite the Guide Promise and share how you follow it in your life.

End – Enrolment pins, badges and closing

Throwback Thursday: Night Eyes

Night Eyes

To prepare for this game, you need to make a set of night eyes.  Take black Bristol board or foam core and cut it into pieces approximately 10 cm to 15 cm.  Cut eyes out of red reflecting tape (the type used for bicycles).  Peel off the back and stick them to the boards.  Poke a pair of holes near the top of the board and thread through a loop of string so you can hang the boards from trees or bushes.

At night, flashlights will pick up the night eyes from a distance and they will appear like a slightly scary eyes in the night.

You can use night eyes in a variety of ways.

  1. Set a trail through the woods to a nighttime snack
  2. Put one word of a longer “passphrase” on each card.  The girls gather up all the words and then must solve the puzzle
  3. Use the eyes to mark the location of different parts to a puzzle
  4. If you are more crafty, you can cut the eyes out to represent different types of nocturnal animals. Then the girls can guess what sort of animals they are suppose to be based on the shape of the animal and their height off the ground.  You can also make different shapes, I once made a set representing the planets in our solar system.

For younger girls, if you want the eyes to be “on” all the time, you can cut eye shaped holes out of a toilet paper roll, and stick a light stick inside.

Once your game is over, be sure to collect them before they are destroyed by the dew.  My set has lasted me for years.

Knock Knock

This is a listening/get to know you game that would work either in person or online.

Each player needs a piece of paper and a pencil.

If you are playing online have all the participates turn off their camera and send a private chat message to the girls who’s turn it is.

Otherwise, have the girls close their eyes and gently tap two participants on the shoulder.

The first participant says “Knock, Knock”

The second participant says “Who’s There”

All the others write down who’s voice they just heard.

Repeat rounds until everyone has a chance to speak and then see who got the most voices right.

Students Rebuild: Changemakers

Each year Students Rebuild challenges young people to learn about issues and make art.  This years challenge is called Changemakers.

  1. Register your project
  2. Identify changemakers in your community who are making a difference
  3. Make a homemade change maker award for your community changemakers.
  4. Photograph the award before you give it to them and submit the Students Rebuild.  Donations will be made based on how many awards there are.

This is a lovely project that can scale really nicely from Sparks all the way up to Rangers.