This week we finished working on the Invention badge. We’ve taken our ideas from the Meeting In A Box: Inventing from Quebec.
This week we split the girls up into two groups. Each group did a different activity at one end of the gym and then we switched. We have a large unit so this gave each girl more of an opportunity to participate.
At one end of the gym we ran Invention Jeopardy using the questions from the meeting in a box.
At the other end of the gym we ran Inventor Speed Improv.
This was an exciting night because for some of our third year girls this was the last challenge they needed to finish their squares. Just a few pieces of the Lady BP challenge to finish off for them now.
This week we started working on the Invention badge. I’ve been looking at this badge for a couple of years and I had difficulty figuring out how to make it fun. Luckily for me, other Guiders had more luck. We’re using the Meeting In A Box: Inventing as our guide. But I also found some great ideas from the Caladonia Girl Guides. We’re going to spread the badge out over two weeks so we don’t need to feel rushed.
This week we worked mostly in Patrols. We started with the intro activity and had each patrol discuss what inventors they knew, whether or not they thought they could be an inventor and what qualities you’d need to be an inventor. They shared their thoughts at horseshoe after our opening.
Then we went onto the second activity. Each patrol was give four current inventions to use as inspiration. They had to combine and two of them into a new invention. Then prepare a poster and a skit marketing their invention.
I will admit I’ve looked at the inventing badge a number of times but I could just never see a way to make it fun for the girls. In the book the badge looks so dry. Then I came across this meeting from Quebec’s collection of Meetings in a Box on Inventing. So much more fun then anything I would have come up with on my own. This is why I value instant meetings so much.
Additional fun ideas for this badge can be found on blog of the Caledonia Girl Guides.
The only permanent rule in Calvinball is that you can never play it the same way twice!
—Calvin, Calvin and Hobbes
In the comic Calvin and Hobbes, the pair were often seen playing Calvinball. A game in which a variety of sporting equipment was used and the rules were never the same twice. You can reproduce this in your unit. This is ideally done in a big space. Give each patrol a selection of sporting equipment such as balls, hoops, skipping ropes, rackets etc. Give each patrol 15 min to agree to some rules for their game and then another 15 min to try their game out. Then have them share with the unit what went well and what they would change if they were to play again.
I came across a blog post entitled The $20 Game Designer’s Tool Kit recently that made me realize how easily this could be adapted to a Guide meeting.
Before the meeting, head to a dollar store and buy a collection of the following:
- play money
- glass beads
- deck of cards
- blank cards
- poker chips
- small figurines or race cars
- replacement game pieces
- assorted erasers
- digital timer
Divided up the material between the patrols. They don’t need to have some of everything. In fact, I think it would help focus their attention if they only had four or five options.
Give each patrol 30 – 40 mins to create a game. It could be on a theme related to other program work or you could just leave it up to them.
Then have each patrol switch their game with another patrol. The other patrol has to try and play their game. After everyone has tried a game, have them practice constructive feedback.