Daisy Girl Scouts: Earning the Courageous and Strong Petal
What are Daisy Petals?
Juliet Gordon Low was born in Savannah, Georgia. Her nickname, given to her by her uncle when she was a baby, was Daisy. When Daisy was young she loved being outdoors and with animals. Daisy became friends with Lord Baden-Powell, founder of the Boy Scouts. She decided to follow his example, and start a similar group for girls.
The Girl Scouts offers opportunities for girls from grades kindergarten through high school. The youngest group of girl scouts, girls in kindergarten and first grade, are called Daisies. As they learn the Girl Scout law, they earn petals which they wear on their uniform. The Girl Scout Law reminds girls how they should act towards themselves and others.
Each petal stands for a part of the Girl Scout Law. The girls have opportunities to learn the meaning of each part through stories, songs, games, crafts, and trips. Girls have fun, while taking on new challenges.
Courageous and Strong Women
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Courageous and Strong: the Red Petal
A girl scout is courageous and strong.
Those are words with big meanings. When we think of people who are courageous and strong we think of firefighters, police officers, military service people. Those people are indeed courageous and strong. However, we often overlook the other ways that people demonstrate their courage and strength.
While we do want our girls to grow strong in body, and courageous in times of great peril, it is important that they build the foundation by having the courage to stand up for their believes, and the strength to do the right thing at all times. Even in kindergarten, children are faced with situations where they must make difficult choices.
The other kids don't talk to Suzy because she dresses different than they do. She looks lonely. Should I ask her to play with me?
I was running in the garden and stepped on Mom's flowers. She'll be mad. What should I do?
The teacher says I have to read my report in front of the class. I'm really scared.
These may not seem like monumental events to adults, but think about them in these terms:
You are on Jury Duty. Everyone else thinks the person is guilty, but you are not certain. Do you go along with everyone else, or speak up?
You were in a minor car accident and have to tell you spouse what happened.
You are receiving an award, and are expected to give a three-minute speech.
It's not easy to be courageous and strong! It's not comfortable to put ourselves in situations where we don't know if we will be successful. It is often extremely difficult to stand up for what you think is right, when it seems like everyone around you disagrees. That is why it is so important to give the girls a safe environment to take those risks and develop the confidence they have inside them.
Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I'll try again tomorrow.— Mary Anne Radmacher
Stories are full of women who are courageous and strong, and most of them are princesses. The girls relate to the princess stories, and many are good examples of how to stand up for yourself. However, don't forget to include stories of courageous and strong girls, whose challenge is not an evil witch or trying to save an entire kingdom.
- Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell - A great story about standing up for yourself and being who you are with confidence.
- The Story of Ruby Bridges by Robert Coles - This true story shows girls how their actions can inspire others.
- The Wildest Brother by Cornelia Funke - The brave brother will stop at nothing to protect his sister. A funny story where imagination brings out courage and bravery.
- Sheila Rae, the Brave by Kevin Henkes - Another wonderful story about involving the power of our imagination.
- The Recess Queen by Alexis O'Neill - Standing up to the bully in the playground, by asking her to be a friend.
- The Little Engine that Could by Watty Piper - Classic story that shows the courage to do something that others think is impossible, and succeeding with perseverance.
- Spaghetti in a Hot Dog Bun: Having the Courage to Be Who You Are by Maria Dismondy - A wonderful story on how to deal with a bully in a positive way.
- Elmer by David McKee- Elmer want to change the way he looks because the other elephants make fun of him. But he learns it is best to be true to yourself.
Courage is the most important of all virtues, because without it we can't practice any other virtue with consistency.— Maya Angelou
There a many songs about being courageous and having the strength to do what needs to be done. The songs listed here are just a starting point. Listen to what the girls are listening to and talk to them about the lyrics. And don't forget to build up your courage...and dance.
Any activity where the girls are learning a new skill or performing in some way provides an opportunity to practice being courageous and strong
- Yoga for Kids - Dare to look silly while strengthening your body.
- Karaoke - Will you sing in front of everyone? How about adding a little dancing to your performance?
- Taste testing - Try new foods. Go with a theme like "Foods that are green."
- Charades - Act it out. Guess what it is. This game is all about risk taking. There is a great app that makes this game easy to play anytime, anywhere. It's called...Charades!
This is a great opportunity to invite a guest speaker to come visit the girls. There are many careers where people have to be courageous and strong. There are also many people who have had experiences where they were called upon to be courageous or strong. Keep in mind the age of your girls. They will not sit for a very long time. Keep the topic age appropriate. While someone who is serving in the military service is a great choice for a speaker, they probably should not share their more graphic experiences.
- Fire fighters
- Police officers
- Doctors and Nurses
- Emergency Medical Technicians
- Animal Rescue Worker
Any trip to a new place requires the girls to be courageous and strong. Here are some fun places to go that may test their physical as well as their emotional strength.
- Rock Climbing
- Dentist Office
- Horseback riding
Lead by Example
You are the adult leading the girls on these adventures. If you are worried that you will look silly, or that someone will make fun of the way you sing, then you will have girls that have the same worries. As Ms. Frizzle, from the Magic School Bus, would say "Take chances, make mistakes, get messy!"
Need some adult inspiration? Go watch a fabulous movie called Auntie Mame. Auntie Mame lived life to the fullest, never turning away from an adventure nor letting fear stand in the way of success. Her message for life was "Live! Life's a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death." Feast on life's banquet, and invite your girls to do the same.
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Ideas to engage girl scouts as they learn what it means to respect authority and earn their magenta daisy petal