Friday, 27 March 2009

They came, they spied

Spy Night was a big hit!

All but two remembered to bring disguises. They came up with a secret sign for each six that they used throughout the night then they spent ten minutes each on the following tables:
  • Food - Nice biscuits, with writing pen icing and tiny little letters, they wrote in code on each
  • Fingerprints - They took their own fingerprints using an ink pad, then drew on them to turn them into animals etc
  • Code - I taught them Pigpen code and they wrote messages then tried to decipher each others messages...3 of the groups grasped this, one group just tried to draw random grids that made no sense, I spent the whole ten minutes saying your grid HAS to look like mine, usually I'll let girls find their own level but you can't draw a 40 square grid then expect it to make sense when you try to do the Pigpen code!
  • Secret writing - writing with lemon juice and wax candles.

Then they ate their biscuits and some sausage rolls one of the Guiders had made and had a drink.

There was just time to give out the Changing the World badges, the summer term calendars and say goodbye to the two girls leaving to go to Guides, plus our district commissioner came to give one of the Guiders her leadership qualification badge.

The two Brownies who were leaving gave us a card and some chocolates, and one gave us a bottle of wine too! They also had sweets and a muffin cake for each girl as she left. So the girls left in disguise, clutching codes, candles, badges and cakes!

Thursday, 26 March 2009


Two people asked what is semaphore after yesterday's post.

When you use flags to spell out the alphabet.

Like this:

It's one of the things I remember doing as a Brownie (though sadly I can't remember the actual alphabet!)

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Get set for summer

We've planned the summer term at Brownies. We had a meeting on Monday night...50% planning, and after that 50% wine!
We will be doing the following badges: AgilityOut and About and Seasons. We'll also be doing the Time Travel badge.
As part of that, we will be:
  • learning to read maps
  • walking around the area
  • learning to use a compass
  • learning Semaphore
  • planting butterfly-attracting plants
  • painting plant pots and water dishes for birds
  • going bowling...among other things.

We'll also be having a sleepover, and going to a local campsite with a kitchen to cook a two course meal and biscuits to take home.

We'll wrap up the (school) year by having a joint campfire with our Guide unit (as we do every year).

Sound like fun?

Saturday, 21 March 2009

Spy update

Some great suggestions for spy food, thanks everyone! Had some great ones on Facebook too, the favourite being Casino Royale with Cheese from daughter's godfather.

At the moment I am thinking Apple Spies (I can buy the individual Mr Kipling ones), anagram scramble biscuits and one other thing.

Any more suggestions, here or on Facebook, warmly received!

Current plan is:
  1. Secret six signs (each six comes up with a secret sign they have to keep using to each other throughout the evening)
  2. Disguise - dress up in the secret agent clothes you brought
  3. Sneaking about - girls in a circle, keys in front of the blindfolded one, 2 Brownies try to sneak up and grab the keys
  4. Then each of these, moving round 3 tables after 10 mins each time: code cracking, writing with lemon juice, writing with wax
  5. Food
  6. Another game (not sure what yet, but I have a few ideas, it's just what is practical to organise)
  7. Find out if each six spotted the other sixes' signs
  8. Say goodbye to the 2 Brownies leaving us to go to Guides
  9. Hand out summer term plan (we're meeting on Monday night to work out the details)

Friday, 20 March 2009

What do secret agents eat?

Advice needed: We're having a secret agent night at Brownies next week. I'm going to have them dress up in disguises, create secret signs in their sixes, work out a code, write using lemon juice and write using wax candles.
So I need help with two things: firstly a game to have some activity rather than just sitting writing...can anyone think of a game I can do with a secret agent/spy twist?

And secondly, what do secret agents eat? I want to give them some food, but all I can think of is Martinis and I am not sure the parents would be very impressed. Inspiration needed.

Sunday, 1 March 2009


We had selection for the Guiding swimming gala this afternoon; the Rainbows swam for an hour, then the Brownies for an hour, then the Guides.

First, a Rainbow nearly drowned and her dad had to batter on the glass of the viewing gallery to get the lifeguard's attention. She was fine afterwards, but she had been going under and didn't have the strength to get herself to the side.
Then when the Brownies started, one girl cut her toe. This was treated and she swam on.
Then a Guide turned up 30 mins early, slipped on the side of the pool and spent the rest of the time sobbing in a heap on the side of the pool with the lifeguard and her mum beside her, meaning we had to watch the girls in the pool. She eventually went to hospital with her mum, I have to confess I didn't pay her much attention as we had to watch the Brownies.
Then the same Brownie cut a different toe on the same foot on the way out!

On top of that, and much less important, we originally had 9 girls competing for 8 places in the swimming gala:
One didn't bother to show up or call (saw her playing out when I drove back)
Two didn't want to compete
One's mum realised they were away that day
So I selected the remaining 5 for a race each and the three fastest for the relay.
And have just had a text from the mum of one of the 5 saying they are on holiday that day so she has to pull out.
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