A Residential Camp for Girl Guides
Theme: This camp is based on the Mighty Minds Challenge. With additional ideas from Girl Scout Mental Health Awareness Challenge and the Mental Health Week Instant meeting
Guide Program Work: This camp was designed to allow girls to work on their Feeling Good badge.
Patrols: Patrols could be named after different emotions
- Stress Balls
- Beady Nerons
- Anti-stigma t-shirts
- Mighty Me Jars
- Worry Dolls
Invent a whole new game
If you are happy and you know it
This is an interesting article on the Japanese practice of Forest Bathing.
Forest bathing—basically just being in the presence of trees—became part of a national public health program in Japan in 1982 when the forestry ministry coined the phrase shinrin-yoku and promoted topiary as therapy. … Just be with trees. No hiking, no counting steps on a Fitbit. You can sit or meander, but the point is to relax rather than accomplish anything.
I don’t think it will be a surprise to anyone in Guiding that being outdoors in nature is good for Mental Health. But this piece can serve as a good reminder that we don’t always need to be so goal driven when we are in nature. I’ve given my Guides time to just be with trees while we were on hikes. Just wonder among the trees. Smell the forest. Feel the bark. Some of the girls really enjoyed it, some didn’t really know what to do.
Worry Dolls are a Guatemalan tradition. The idea is that rather then let your worries keep you awake at night, you tell your doll the problem and they will take over worrying about it for you while you can get some sleep. Hopefully by morning the worrying is all done.
These are great instructions for making easy worry dolls. They are a little bigger then some of the ones I’ve before but that makes them a lot less fiddly.
Mindful Eating is an activity where we challenge the girls to really experience a food. To practice mindful eating you need one serving of a food that can be eaten slowly. Most versions of this I’ve seen use a single square of chocolate, but lollipops or a piece of fruit can be used if allergies or nutrition is a concern. Before they start to eat, have the girls examine the food carefully. What does it look like? What does it smell like? How do you feel when you look at the food. Take a small bit. Hold it in your mouth and let it melt on your tongue. How does it taste? Challenge the girls to take as long as they need to really enjoy eat bit of the treat. How was that different from the way they normally would eat a treat?
I have found this can make a great break on a nature hike, especially if you can find a great location where there is an inspiring view.
I know these are called many different names but when I was a kid we called them Fortune Tellers.
Fortune Tellers are an easy origami project. This video shows the basics of how to fold them.
There are lots of ways fortune tellers can be used in the program such as:
Girl Guide History from Owl and Toadstool
Girl Guides of Canada from the Brand Center
Promise and Law
I was a a recent training where they made Mighty Mind fortune tellers with self care suggestions inside such as take a deep breath, read a poem, stand in a power pose, dance etc.
Colouring can be very relaxing even for older girls. It is an easy activity as all you need are the Mandela and some basic colouring material (pencil crayons and/or markers). There is a great Girl Guide themed Mandela in the Might Minds challenge and there are also some great ones on the Owl & Toadstool blog.
Older girls who like to draw may even want to make their own
How to draw a mandela