Thursday, 16 October 2008

Cat and fiddle

Fairytale night at Brownies tonight. Daughter is going as the Cat and the Fiddle (dressing as a cat, carrying her violin). Daughter's friend is going as Jack from Jack and the Beanstalk. Various other Brownies have been coming up to me excitedly all week to tell me what they plan to be.

So, getting in the spirit of things, I've been inspired to dress up too. I picked up cat's ears and a tail from Woolworths yesterday. So who am I? The cat's mother!

Sunday, 12 October 2008

Right to Learn

We were doing Right to Learn and they soooooooo got it, it was great!

The girls played North, South, East and West then I suddenly started saying the instructions in Finnish. They were very confused but gradually worked out which direction was which till they completed the game. Then we talked about how they felt: "confused, disoriented, liked learning new words and they were easy to remember after a while" and how it must feel to be in a country where you couldn't speak the language, imagine if you were at school and all the teachers spoke Finnish and all the children, and even the food was labelled in Finnish. There's a German family in the school for a year and all three boys have no English (including one having his first taste of school, it must be doubly hard for him) and the girls really clicked that this must be what it is like for those boys.

Then they made a learning ladder, which was a ladder with 9 rungs on a sheet of paper, and they started on the bottom rung with something they were learning now, like how to cartwheel or how to play an instrument and worked up and up with things they want to learn in the future and ended up with things they would like to learn years in the future like driving or parascending!

Then we played a game where you pass pens crossed over to each other and state: "I pass these pens crossed and that is right" but whether it is right or not actually depends on whether your ankles are crossed not the pens. We went round the circle twice and the second time about 3/5 of the girls had worked it out, so then we talked about how it felt to have worked out the rules "excited, wanted to show I understood" and how it felt to have not worked it out when others had started to "I hated being left behind, it didn't matter when no-one got it but once they did I felt stupid".

So then we talked about girls in other countries not always having access to education and the reasons for that and how that means they get left behind and the girls even worked out that it was important for everyone to be educated, not just the individual. They related that to the learning ladder because none of them had put that they wanted to be a doctor (lots of teachers, writers, vets and other professions, just no medics) but they realised doctors were important so they understood that meant others needed to be educated not just them.

Finally, they made cards for people who had helped them to learn a skill, with a slip inside for the recipient to say how the card made them feel and the girls have to return the slip to complete the badge.

They really "got it" with this badge, I was very proud of them.

Sunday, 5 October 2008

On form

When you take Brownies away for a sleepover, holiday or camp, there are lots of people who need to know about it. So with our Science Museum sleepover looming, I have now got the forms sorted.

The easy bit was printing off a G/C and a G/H form for the girls. That's a consent form where the parents get all the details of what's going on and agree to let their daughter participate, and a health form where they put in any relevant health issues we may need to know about. The Guiders need to do a health form too.

I also did an information sheet with details of what they should bring, when they should be there and directions to the train station we will be using on a different line, since our station has work going on that weekend.

The next step is an A/A form. This is to let people in Guiding know what we are up to (for Guiding insiders, there is also an A/S you can use when it is just a sleepover, but our county prefers the A/A and asks you to use it when possible as it has more detail about participants) so I had to print five copies.
  1. I keep one, this is just an extra since I'm not actually going.

  2. The Guider who has stepped into my shoes for this event signs the remaining four, keeps one and posts three on.

  3. The Division Commissioner (her "boss") gets the remaining three, signs them all and keeps one. Normally the District Commissioner does this but that's who stepped into my shoes so we have to go one up the chain.

  4. She posts the remaining two on to the Brownie Holiday Adviser for our county. This ensures she knows which Brownie unit is on holiday at which time. She signs both, keeps one and sends the final copy to the Holiday Adviser that covers the area we are going to, London North West.

  5. Finally, this adviser signs the last form and tears off the bottom piece (called an A/C) and sends it back to the beginning of the chain, to show she is aware we will be there.
I got the chain started by dropping round to the DC's house, getting her to sign all four then going to the Div Comm's house on the way to the supermarket this morning and popping the remaining three through her door.

So I think we're on schedule. Now all I have to do is give out and collect back in 14 health forms, 11 consent forms, the A/C, the 26 one day forms for Disney on Ice and the 26 one day forms for going to sing for a local old folks home.

I won't even tell you how much paper this has involved - but I did print the one day forms two to a sheet to cut back a little.
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