Hand Signals

I was looking for something else in an online copy of Scouting for Boys, when I came across a section on hand signals that would be familar to most modern Guiders:

Hand or Flag held straight up over head, means “Stop”, “Halt”

The book also included several other hand signals which some modern units might find useful:

Hand or flag held high and waved very slowly from side to side, at full extent of the arm means “Close in”, “Rally”, “Come here”

Hand or flag held high and waved very slowly from side to side at full extent of arm means “Extend”, “Go farther out”, “Scatter”.

Hand waved several times across the face from side to side, or flag waved horizontally from side to side opposite the face means “No”, “Never mind”, “As you were”

When a leader is shouting an order or message to a Scout who is some way off, the Scout, if he hears what is being said, should hold his hand level with his head all the time, If he cannot hear, he should stand still making no sign.  The leader will then repeat louder or beckon to the Scout to come nearer.

The first three could easily be practiced as a running game.


New Girl Kits

This is a recruitment idea I stumbled across from the Australian Guides and would be great if you are holding a bring a friend night, a try now pay later or having an interested family just checking out a meeting.

In the girls kit:

  • welcome letter
  • a crest for their camp blanket
  • Girl Guide pencil
  • Notebook with a Girl Guide sticker on it (covering up any other logo)
  • A Girl Guide balloon

Promotional material are available from your provincial office and what is available and how you access it varies from province to province.  You could easily substitute a bookmark, nail art or Thinga-ma-jig.

The original post suggests having a separate pack for the parents.  For these I’d suggest you include a promotional pamphlet,  letter explaining registration and an H1 form.

Post It Note Feedback

This can be used to evaluate your whole Guiding year or adapted to evaluate different parts of a camp or other event.


  • Signs with major meetings and events throughout the year
  • post-it notes. At least one per sign per girl
  • pens or pencils


  1. Review your year and make signs.  I included all the camps or outing we went on as well special meetings from thought the year.  I also included a couple of key words to help the girls remember the meeting.
  2. Post the signs around the room.
  3. Hand out a stack of post it notes to each girl.
  4. Let the girls wonder around and write feedback on each event.  If they weren’t at an event they can just skip over it.
  5. Gather up all the post its and review the feedback.

Facebook as a Guiding tool

One of my co-Guiders complemented me on the meeting plan and asked “Where did you get this idea”.  “From Facebook, like most of my best ideas!” I responded.  And I was only half joking.

I belong to several active Guiding Facebook groups and the ideas and sisterhood I get from them are often the best part of a visit to the Facebook website.  I belong to Unofficial groups for Guiders at the National and Ontario level as well as group for my Community.  There are less active but still valuable groups for Guide Leaders, Camp Themes, Program Ideas and Buy, Sell or Trade.  I’m also a member of of the UK based Girlguiding Challenges group.  All of these groups feed me ideas of things I can do with my Guides.  Sometime I end up squirreling the ideas away for years before I find the right moment to use them.

Most of the time the community on Facebook can also be a great source of sisterhood.  Guiders who don’t know how to deal with a situation often find good advice or at least a sympathetic ear.  Hardworking moderators do their best to keep any drama to a minimum.  I appreciate that a lot.  Good online communities are often built on good moderation.

The down side to Facebook is that the search feature works less well then I’d like.  It can be hard to find that post you read days or weeks ago let alone something you read last year.  That is why I choose to record so many of my ideas in a blog that is easier to search and link to.