Thursday, 28 January 2016

Brownie friendship

One of the things some girls asked for when we surveyed them was a friendship evening. So tonight, that's what I delivered, using an old resource that has served us well for years, Right Now, for inspiration.

To start, we shared a smile about something that made each of us happy. Then we played a game about sharing resources when we have lots, I had a well set up two tables with lots of pens and a big sheet of paper each and sent a small number of girls there, and two mats on the floor, one with a sheet of a4 and a few pens and another with a sheet of scrap and a few pencils. I sent larger numbers to these mats, asked them to draw something important to them, and told them they could see what others were doing but musn't share resources. After, we talked about how it felt to have little, how it felt to have plenty but not share, and whether one person should get to decide who gets what or if speaking up, questioning and taking action could make a difference.
Then they had sheets where they had to find girls who got into each box - could swim 50m, had been to Brownie camp etc, so  learned a bit about what makes us the same and different - all three Brownie leaders present were not born in the county where we now live much to the girls' surprise!
Finally, we made Envelopes Of Sadness. Each girl writes her name on the envelope in front of her and has lots of small sheets of paper. We ask all the girls to write something nice about one girl, the notes are collected (checked just in case but we had no issues) and places in her envelope. The envelopes are sealed, filled with lovely things the other Brownies said about that Brownie, if she ever feels sad she can open it up and see the lovely things inside.
Fun night, we just squeezed in envelopes for the 23 Brownies we had present, I had hoped to also do them for the 2 girls we had absent but we ran out of time and I didn't want to run over into the Guide meeting straight after, that's just not fair on them. 

Friday, 22 January 2016

Mongolia and pack holiday

Pack holiday will NOT be in Mongolia. Rather, we hosted two county leaders who are taking a Senior Section group there and are fundraising by running Mongolia meetings. They run them for all sections, from Rainbows to Trefoil Guild and have had excellent feedback. 
The girls seemed very engaged and as we were collecting in money and slips for our pack holiday and thinking day, we were happy to have some spare capacity to take care of that paperwork during the meeting.
We have 19 girls signed up for pack holiday in the summer, a really pleasing number - more detail to follow on the plans for that. And 14 signed up for our cross section division thinking day event.
We were also able to use the time to sort out the rent cheque for the term, and a few other bits and pieces.
Oh, no post from last week's meeting as I was absent to attend a parents evening for one of my kids, they had a games night and had great fun. I'm looking forward to next week, a friendship evening using the right now resource from a few years ago and picking and choosing a few appropriate activities.  

Friday, 8 January 2016

New Year New Home

First meeting of 2016 and we moved into our new permanent home.

It's 11 years since we started the pack and for the first 10 years we met at the local school. While they were undergoing building work that temporarily cut down the size of the meeting space we moved out to the Scout Hut where many of our Brownies' brothers attend - along with my own son!

They made us very welcome and we had an enjoyable year there, with storage space, kitchen access, it was great. However, the meeting space, while local, is outside of our district so was never a permanent solution for us.

As well as the possibility of returning to the school, a community hall was being built so we considered both for our return and the hall won out - we have storage which the school just can't offer as they need the space themselves, and we have kitchen access for drinks and some simple cooking.

So, last night we moved into our new home and held a drop in meeting so that the girls and families could visit but we could also use the time to get to know the new space. We used the time for badge testing, Children's University passport stamping, and answering any questions parents had. More than 30 badges passed, more than 50 hours stamped, and lots of questions answered!

Here's to 2016!

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