Nature Sketch

The Robert Bateman Foundation runs Nature Sketch classes to help kids and adults connect to nature through art.

Their website contains contains a number of short sketching tutorials and this cute little Mini-Sketch Booklet

 

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Gel Candles

 We made these candles at a recent camp with Pathfinders and Rangers but I think with a little more supervision Guides could easily make them. These are a nice option in place of other kinds of candle making as each one ends up very unique.

The wax is fairly expensive so it is important to keep the glass containers small and encourage the girls to fill their container at least 1/3 full of embedded material to ensure you don’t blow your budget.  We also discovered that it is important not to stir the wax while it is melting.  That added too much air to the wax and caused the candles to be a little cloudy.  I would also heat the wax straight on the heat rather then in a double boiler and unlike regular candle wax, the gel wax is easier to clean off the pot.

Materials:

  • 1 clear glass or jar per candle
  • gel wax
  • gel wax wicks
  • stuff to embed in the candles such as sand, shells, glass pebbles, or flowers
  • gel candle dye (optional)

Equipment

  • melt pot
  • heat source
  • glue gun
  • pencils or sticks
  1. Cut a piece of wick and secure it to the bottom of the container with hot glue.  Tie the other end to a stick to keep it from falling in the container.
  2. Decorate the bottom of the container with embedded objects.  While use of the gel candle should be stopped when it burns down near the embedded material it is still a good idea to use materials that will either not burn or will burn safely.  If necessary you can use another small drop of hot glue to secure the pieces in place but this is best avoided if possible.
  3. Melt the gel wax on the heat source.  Keep a close eye on it.  Once melted it can catch fire easily.  Keep a method to smoother fire close at hand.
  4. Pour gel wax into containers.
  5. Once the wax is cooled, trim the wick.

 

Festivals and Celebration Challenges

The Festivals and Celebrations challenges are a challenge from the BC International Committee.  There is one challenge for each WAGGGS region.  Each regional challenge included three countries from that region, information about Guiding in that country and lots of activities from that country.  To earn the center crests girls are suppose to try at least one activity from all 15 countries.  You could also work on the sections individually, exploring one region at a greater level of detail.

Shadow Hand Puppets

When camping,  I frequently find the girls want to spend a little time messing around with flashlights.  So why not make it part of the plan.  If they learn to make some of the shadow puppets, then can make shadow skits for the other girls in the unit.

This video shows some simple options

This one shows some more advanced options for older girls or experienced shadow puppet makers

Ice and Snow Camp

I always pick a theme for camp because among the myriad of activities you could do at camp, I find a theme helps me (and/or the girls) focus on what to do at this particular camp.  I was recently discussing this with a fellow Guider and she was worried that themes sometimes take away from girls time to just enjoy nature.  So I thought I’d put together this simple theme to show how you can do both.

This theme would also work really well for multi-branch unit camps or multi-unit camps as many of the ideas and activities could easily be done by Sparks or Brownies.

If you wanted you could easily add in activities from the Polar Challenge as well.

Theme: Ice and Snow 

This outline is for an residential winter camp.

Program Connections:

  • Art Studio
  • My Physical Self
  • Science Lab

Opening and Closing

There is an often sited “fact” that the Inuit have 52 words for snow.  That idea has been largely discredited by modern linguists as to find 52 different words you have to count the same word in multiple dialects.  That said, both the Inuit and English speaking Canadians have a lot of words and phrases for ice and snow.

Put up a large blank sheet of paper at the beginning of camp and challenge the girls to write as many words for ice or snow as they know.  At the end of camp, count up how many words they came up with.  Did they get to 52?  You can check this list or this one if you need to extra words to fill out the list or to get the girls going.

Activities

Crafts

Games

  • snow snake
  • freeze tag
  • Coloured Ice Scavenger Hunt (From Winter 2019 Canadian Guider)

Readings

White Quilt

Too Much Winter

The Day The Snow Finally Came

Snowflakes

A Snowy Day

Food

Campfire