Guiders' staff room - tea, wine, chat and optional dancing around the toadstool

(600 Posts)
MadBadandDangerousToKnow Tue 03-Mar-09 21:57:13

Thought it might be nice to have a place to swap ideas and experiences. Shall we do introductions first?

My name's MadBad and I've been a Brownie guider for about 5 years.

frasersmummy Tue 03-Mar-09 22:00:57

Hi I'm frasersmummy and have been a brownie guider for 18 years now.

I was brown owl till I fell pregnant then I handed the reins over to younger fitter brownie guider and became barn owl

MaureenMLove Tue 03-Mar-09 22:02:52

Evening. <<offers left hand and salutes>> I'm Mo, obviously, and I've been a Rainbow Guider for 8 years, with a splattering of Assistant Guide Guider, since DD is there now. She is a young leader at Brownies too, so I think we cover all the bases! grin

I also have a small problem. I appear to have hidden extra-curricular activities from my viewing list and I can't work out how to get it back! grin

MaureenMLove Tue 03-Mar-09 22:04:15

Ah.blush Customize! There it is. <<points to the top of the page>>

As you were!

mummyfantastico Tue 03-Mar-09 22:08:52

Hello! I'm mummyfantastico and I've been a Brownie Guider for 4 years and I'm just about to help start up another Brownie pack too for some reason.

Hi, I've helped at Rainbows and Brownies for a couple of years and became a Guider about six months ago.

pickledHAN Wed 04-Mar-09 14:51:13

Hi, Another one guilty here - quite a long story which I will keep brief - have always been involved in guiding, I inherited it from my own mum! Am now a Guide and Senior Section Guider and have a dd at brownies. Also hold a couple of other roles within our local (and wider) structure, and work weekly to make my team at work undertsand why i do it, and why I dont need to be paid!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 17:57:42

Ooh. Hello everyone. Lovely to meet you.

I'm barely keeping my head above water, running one pack. (Until recently I was sole Guider but have just found an assistant, hooray!). If Guiders still had hats, I would take mine off to those of you who have two units or wider responsibilities within the district/division!

OK, then, what for you is the best thing about being a Guider?

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 19:17:24

OH, I've just remembered I'm the District Secretary too! It's easy to forget, I don't do it very well!

Best bit? Not sure really. I love the Rainbowsd best. They are still innocent, but I like the Guides too, because you can have real deep girly chats with them. I just love kids tbh.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 19:42:38

Really?? I've only ever 'done' Brownies but I find the Guides with all their teenage listlessness quite exasperating. Ours lollop in front of the Brownie cupboard while they're waiting for our meeting to finish and theirs to start and then seem taken by surprise when I ask them to move so I can cram all our junk vital equipment back in the cupboard.

Cybermum Wed 04-Mar-09 19:52:44

Hello! I'm a guide guider and --for my sins-- have coped with teenage angst for almost 5 years. But it's fun and I enjoy it!

Cybermum Wed 04-Mar-09 19:53:36

Aaaagrh can't do crossings out!

frasersmummy Wed 04-Mar-09 19:55:18

best taking the kids away .. I love pack holiday. Its soo often the first time the girls go away from home apart from to grandparents its magical to be part of the experience

I have just taken on the role of divsion pack holiday advisor chance to pass on the pack holiday bug!! wink

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 19:55:21

Oh no, Don't like Brownies much! It's the age. I can't relate to them as well as I can 5 year olds and then teenagers! Suppose that's just the environment I've been in for so long. Childminder for 12 years, with littlies and then working in a secondary school with the oldies!

I am doing Brownies in a couple of weeks though. Brown Owl is on holiday and since DD is a young leader there, I've said I'll do it for her.

scienceteacher Wed 04-Mar-09 19:56:21

I started with Brownies 18 months ago, and am doing my LQ.

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 19:57:56

I go to camp as an extra, but I'm not keen on even more responsiblity and paper work to do my camp permit! I've got Rainbows anyway, so it seems an awful lot of work for only 23 hours away!grin

What's everyone got planned for Centenary then? I'm going (with the Brownies!) to Butlins in January. Is anyone else in LaZer region and going?

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 19:59:33

<<Waves at cybermum>>

To cross out, you have to do each word separately, with -- on each side of each word.

I love pack holidays but I've always done a joint holiday with a much more experienced Guider, who's now retired. Aargh!

So are you lot all going to be mad enough to take charge of your own pack of brownies dressed as brownies in amongst the thousands of other brownies all wearing the same clothes at major theme parks which have been closed down for the day?

If you lost one of your's it would be like looking for a needle in a haystack

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 20:02:06

<<waves at science teacher>>

Maureen - I'll be at Butlins! Shall we meet or would you prefer to remain incognito? You've got 10 months to decide!

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 20:03:45

Are you? Where's your theme park? The Rainbows have got London Zoo.

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 20:04:57

No! We must meet! grin My Guider friends are not an issue with MN! Kbear is going too!

hatwoman Wed 04-Mar-09 20:06:36

I'm really really not sure if I'm into Brownies at all...but dd has always been desperate to join and there isn't a local pack round us...and some kind soul is starting one...but could only start it off with help. which is where I come in. I'm only helping out every other week - but have got roped into the planning etc as there's one proper guider and two total novice helpers. I do like being with kids of this age (love helping out at school trips, like talking to them when they come and visit, like doing activities with them) but am a bit terrified that I've bitten off more than I can chew. We're starting up after Easter. so I'll be calling in here for ideas etc.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 20:06:50

What's all this about theme parks and London Zoo? Have I missed something vital?

<<Fishes Guiding magazine out of the recycling>>

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 20:09:18

hatwoman - Please stay around. I thought I'd just be an occasional helper and ended up running the pack!

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 20:33:20

Mad - all the info should be filtering down to your district soon. I know London Zoo with the Rainbows has come down from Region, at least.

Maybe your region/county/division is not quite decided on things yet.

We've also just been allocated tickets for something going on at Crystal Palace in September. Not sure I'm going to do that though. We've already got about 4 paying activities and we haven't sorted anything for District yet. Parents are paying £10 a month for Butlins as it is!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 20:38:55

That's why we need this thread!

I hadn't thought of taking instalments for Butlins. I've been pointing out how much they'll need to pay and when, but maybe they'd find it easier to hand the money over bit by bit instead of keeping it under the proverbial mattress. Mind you, I still haven't heard that we've definitely got the places.

And we're going to CP. I reckon that all these things are our pack holiday substitute.

I am not a leader i just have apair of brownies.

They have had a letter home saying that Wicksteed park will be closing down for the Brownies one day next year.

question you wonderful ladies - i want to enrol my DD into rainbows, i've emailed the lady i think who deals with it and no response. I'm in Havant, Portsmouth. any advice thanks??

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 20:42:05

I think it has to be paid by September, but Browe Owl and Kbear, who are in charge of their units, decided to get it all in before the summer holidays. September is always an expensive month for paying fees for various clubs.

What Division are you in?

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 20:44:10

I would go to their meeting place and ask. Maybe she didn't get your e-mail or it has slipped her mind.

Alternatively, you could go to any of the Brownie or Guide units and get the number for the District Commissioner. She'll be able to give you phone numbers for all the Rainbow units in your immediate

I'm not sure where our closest unit is. Is there a place i can find out??

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 20:47:38

Muppets - There's an online joining form here. That should get routed to your local unit. There's a text box where (I'm guessing) you could mention that you've had no response from one unit - but please remember that not all Guiders are very e-email minded and it may just be that she will reply in due course!

thank you - I know she would love it

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 20:49:55

Maureen - Please excuse my neurosis but (especially after that other thread where I posted large chunks of the Manual) I'd rather not say where I'm from on a public forum. I'm happpy to chat at Butlins!

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 20:59:32

No problem. We'll get in touch nearer the T'will be quite hilarious if we are very close to each other!grin

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 21:06:56

I'm beginning to think that we probably are!

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 21:08:46

Well, I know you must be in my Region, since CP and Butlins are both regional do's, but London & South East is an awfully big place!

frasersmummy Wed 04-Mar-09 21:09:58

Tell me something ladies .... did we all pay the same amt in census ??

I have a feeling that at £21 we are paying a local premium...

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 21:11:35

<<Ransacks her files>>

I think we paid £18.

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 21:12:56

Ours was £16 this year I think. Only £2 was coming back to Division.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 21:15:19

Yes, we did.

frasersmummy Wed 04-Mar-09 21:16:22

ha.. I knew our county was taking a fair chunk...

well when I am doing p/hol trg this weekend I shall be expecting a very nice lunch

MrsWeasley Wed 04-Mar-09 21:21:16

I'm a Brownie guider and have been for 6 years, I do sometimes help at a Rainbow unit too.

Census was £20 for us.

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 21:34:38

Do you all pay for it out of subs? Or do you ask parents?

<As a parent ours was paid out of the gift aid that had been raised on teh subs I think>

frasersmummy Wed 04-Mar-09 21:38:28

we gift aid our subs and that usually more or less covers the census.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 21:52:40

We pay out of subs (which are set with that in mind) but the second thing I've learnt tonight is that we ought to get our gift aid sorted out. It had slipped off my to do list.

Frasersmummy - at all our trainings we have to supply our own lunch. envy

MrsWeasley Wed 04-Mar-09 21:55:24

What I ask what Subs you charge your girls?

We charge £10 per half term.

Census comes out of subs.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 22:08:51

We charge by the term but it's the same - £20. We don't charge extra for census but we do charge £12 joining fee to cover the cost of the Brownie box, Adventure and Badge books, Becoming a Brownie booklet, first badges etc. We have a very mobile population and high turnover, so before we introduced the joining fee we found that the cost of equipping new Brownies was making a massive hole in our finances.

Our other gambit is that we copy the local ballet school in charging extra for late payment of subs. I am patient and understanding up to a point, but when we're trying to plan a budget we need to get the subs in, to be sure of where we stand. And we'll be better off once we get our gift aid going, of course.

And may I ask your opinion on something different? I was mooching around ebay tonight when I found a seller - who says she is a Guider - selling some slightly damaged Brownie uniform trousers, a very worn (she admitted) t-shirt and a gilet for £25. As they would be £33 new, that seemed an awful lot. Do you agree? We sell nearly-new uniform (when Brownies donate it) for pack funds for about £2 an item. Or am I being silly and charging too little?

frasersmummy Wed 04-Mar-09 22:12:26

£10 per half term??? whats half a term

we charge £25 twice a year, at the start of and then just after christmas so that £50 a year.

We provide their badge book and adventure(on) books, all the other usual stuff and we pay the census from this plus our gift aid

We never have much money come the end of the year but we have always run on the basis that the parents pay the money expecting it to be spent on the girls not squirreled away

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 22:21:54

Frasersmummy - Those are the lowest subs I've heard of. Another benefit, I imagine, of gift aid.

We spend nearly all our income too - I agree that it is wrong to have hundreds of pounds sitting in the bank.


I have just kitted DTDs out from ebay (or am in teh process of) and so far I have paid £23 + about £6-7 P&P for the following (from various sellers) - all described as very good condition apart from some bobbling on tops hoodies

2 T shirts
2 trousers
1 skort
1 hoodie

So I think that seller is overpriced TBH. And mine seem to be in teh most populat sizes (24" trousers 30" tops) so they seemed to be more expensive that teh smaller/bigger sizes.
I think I just need to get another hoodie and I am sorted.

MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 22:44:26

We charge £20 per school term. So, 3 times a year. This easily covers hall charges and census. Rainbows don't have a lot of other outlays tbh. At least, mine don't! I beg, borrow and steal most craft stuff. School is very good at giving me paper and the childminder in me, still can't help saving yogurt pots etc!grin

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 22:50:03

Ah. We have an occasional splurge on Baker Ross! And we spend a fair bit over the course of the year on drinks and healthy snacks.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 22:50:40

Ah. We have an occasional splurge on Baker Ross! And we spend a fair bit over the course of the year on drinks and healthy snacks.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 22:51:09


MaureenMLove Wed 04-Mar-09 22:56:55

I am a mean Guider! I don't let them have a drink! blush The little darlings all have to go to the toilet once whilst we're there as is it and we've only got an hour! grin

skramble Wed 04-Mar-09 23:02:44

Thought I would say hello, I am a parent helper with special crafting duties grin.

Oh any ideas for easter activities. I have lots of colouring, and cut out and glue together ideas, but I need something a bit more substantial to make at camp (souviner), and any other non paper/gluing activities and games on the easter theme. TIA

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 23:03:17

We have an hour and a half. We were finding that - particularly after an active game - so many were asking for drinks that it was simpler to build a quick drink and snack break into the programme. And it sometimes doubles as a pow-wow. We vote on what game to play next, etc.

skramble Wed 04-Mar-09 23:03:33

Oops sorry I should say with Brownies

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 23:12:07

Hi skramble.

At camp we always do a treasure hunt where the list spells out the camp theme. So how about something like

Something awful [could be a smelly sock!]
String etc etc

They don't need to find the actual object but can improvise - blade of grass for string etc.

Have you ever done potato hedgehogs/owls? For Easter you could adapt it to chicks.

We often do a decorated shoe box treasure chest to take home all the other crafts, but that's very much paper/sticking/painting.

skramble Wed 04-Mar-09 23:19:50

Treasure hunt is a good idea as I am trying to get more outdoor ideas, you never know it might be dry.

Potato Hedgehogs???

Like the idea of treasure boxes, but would need to put out an APB on shoe boxes, might not have enough before we go.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 23:31:21

Ok. Was going to go to bed but very quickly

Potato hedgehogs

1. Take a large (raw) potato
2. Make holes over the top half of the potato with a skewer [job for adult helper]
3. Into the holes insert twigs or any other natural material scavenged from outdoors. These are the prickles (or feathers for owls or chicks)
4. Make two further holes at the front of the potato for eyes [adult helper again]
5. Insert acorns, small pebbles etc for eyes
6. Voila! A hedgehog.

The scavenging for materials is at least half the activity. If you can keep the potatoes upright, and adjust accordingly, you can make owls or chicks.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 04-Mar-09 23:37:18

Forgot to say, do you know Kick The Can? Very popular with our Brownies. I'm hazy about the rules but I'm sure they're online somewhere.

And yes, the shoebox thing is tricky. We always put out an APB, but there's always one parent who doesn't 'get' it (they get it but they don't 'get' it, IYSWIM) and sends their Brownie without one, saying something like ' but I always put ours in the recycling'. To which my bite-my-lip response - as I empty the cereal out of its packet to provide their Brownie with a box - is 'couldn't you have scrounged something from a neighbour/shoe shop then?'

Oh dear. I do sound grumpy. Must go to bed.

frasersmummy Thu 05-Mar-09 07:52:38

skramble what about maiking great big easter eggs from balloons, paper mache and paint

I know its messy and takes time but thats what camp is all about

you could also just scatter loads of easter eggs made out of card around your campsite and send them to collect them

Of course some really wicked guiders lock one in the inside of their car and then disappear with the key!!!!!! grin

You can make spring lambs.. get a sheep template (size dependant how busy you want to keep them .. loads of white wool and just wrap the wool around and around till card is covered .. one of our young leaders then colourered hers black and declared she was black sheep!!

frasersmummy Thu 05-Mar-09 07:54:41

snack time in our pack is diluting juice and biscuits blush

well its after tea dinner time and its only once a week

pickledHAN Thu 05-Mar-09 13:09:43

OOh centenary - now theres a topic!

Have already admitted I have too many Guiding hats (and hats in life in general!) and 2010 is no exception!

Within our county we are having a Guide event somewhere archiological, a Senior Section shopping challenge, and a finale at a local county house.

I am also involved in centenary camp, and am leading a pre centenary international thi ssummer.

Hmm - lookign forward to 2011 for a rest!

skramble Thu 05-Mar-09 20:28:08

Ooh thanks for the extra ideas, I have developed some of the activities into a bit of a easter egg epic challenge.

I think the egg hunt will fit in well with that, we were doing a hunt with chocolate eggs but this could be good too, to expand it a bit more.

Paper mache might take too long to dry, maybe one for normal pack night then they can dry for next week.

It is so true about asking parents to provide things, never get a good response.

Like the idea of potato hedgehogs, if I can get a supply of feathers we might do chicks, but I might store that idea for future and do it as hedgehogs.

I have started activity cards to note down ideas and what is required for them to file for reference.

pookamoo Thu 05-Mar-09 20:58:57

Hello, I'm Pookamoo and I am a Guide Guider, SS Guider and helper-outer at Brownies grin
Well... I am on "maternity leave" at the moment but still...

frasersmummy Thu 05-Mar-09 22:03:02

so you are just a little busy pookamoo???

our county are looking for centenary ideas from guiders.. looks like we are as on the ball as ever!!!!!!!hmm

shopping challenge sounds interesting.. what does that entail

pickledHAN Fri 06-Mar-09 14:10:17

Not sure what a shoping challenge will cover yet! Havent written it with mt team - am a bit hand to mouth with guiding at the moment! I'm thinking buying set items a la Apprentice may form part of it, some free time to shop as SS members know may have to feature, also may have to buy items with a set amount to complete a challenge at the Youth hostel. Any other thougths welcome! we have between now and mid 2010!

Kbear Fri 06-Mar-09 20:14:18

Can I come in? I'm not officially a Guider but I suppose I'm a unit helper and I'm taking some Brownies to Butlins in January with another pack! I'm too scared to be a real live Guider LOL

frasersmummy Fri 06-Mar-09 20:48:25

Hi kbear you are very welcome

I bet you do just as much as a unit helper as you would as a fully fledged guider.

In my experience the unit helpers who say ooh I couldnt do what you do are usually a brilliant right hand woman

The shopping challenge sounds fab..

I will be doing p/hol training for our county tomorrow... trying to persuade everyone that its great fun to have a licence!!

MaureenMLove Fri 06-Mar-09 22:51:35

Quick, grab Kbear and drag her in! Get her into a uniform! grin (btw, she's my rl bessie mate, so she won't mind!) She is doing all the work for her Brownie unit to Butlins.

Kbear Fri 06-Mar-09 23:09:39

stop it

pickledHAN Sat 07-Mar-09 18:49:37

hmm - something rings a bell - thats what they aid to me when I was doing a hoiday/ camp and an international trip - youre doign all the hard work anyway -may as well fill in the book and get the qual!! (And I saill cant say no - thats how I am ending up doing my large scale lic this summer - arrg!)

BrownOwl18 Sat 07-Mar-09 21:39:18

Hello all
Just found you grin. As my name suggests I'm a Brownie Guider. I'm also County Pack Hol Adviser. I used to be a Rainbow Guider as well (many moons ago) but gave that up when the first of the DCs - that's children, not commissioners, arrived.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Sat 07-Mar-09 21:57:33

Hi there!

pickledHAN Tue 10-Mar-09 16:41:09

I guess its all gone quiet on here because we are into the week and our various unit meetings - I have the joys of a division centenary launch planning meeting - 2000 members in one space 5-6th sep. What was I thinking?! Anyone got any solutions for getting through these super massive style events?!!

frasersmummy Tue 10-Mar-09 18:32:52

after being part of the millenium committee the best advice I have is dont volunteer to help!!! grin

sorry we started with a small commitee to work out what we wanted and then we grew the committee depending on what we needed

eg we needed roped off areas and marshalling points so we grew the committe by a guider who was in the TA knowing that she could rope in some squaddies to build temp fencing

eg2 we needed a balloon race so we grew the committee by a guider with her own special events company

eg3 we needed to get word out there and our district division channels dont always work so we added a guider who works in pr

is this what you were looking for???

MaureenMLove Tue 10-Mar-09 18:37:45

I've decided not to do our local Centenary Launch. I wonder if it's the same as yours HAN? CP, first weekend in September?

Anyway, we're not going! I decided, we have far too many other things going on in District & Division to get involved. And I've only been allocated 6 tickets, which means some of them will miss out (do Rainbows btw)

I've no idea how we're going to get through the whole year tbh. DH is going to get cross at some point. He's usually pretty laid back, about how much I do, but aside from Centenary, it's District Xmas parties, Division Carol Services, and our turn to host Thinking Day. Then there's the Rainbow spring party. No, just too much, to get involved in tbh.

MaureenMLove Tue 10-Mar-09 18:41:17

Oh and we've just hit on a fab idea for our own unit launch.

One of my Rainbows had to create a super hero at school last week. She made Rainbow Girl! Wrote a bit of a story and made up a song. It was really good.

So on our last day of Summer term, we'll have a show. Exactly what we're going to do is not clear in my head yet, but we'll do tea and cakes, acting, singing, dancing or something for parents and during the next term we will add to Rainbow Girls story, then I'll get it printed as a book and the parents can buy them from us!

We'll send proceeds to our chosen Centenary Charity!

skramble Tue 10-Mar-09 23:40:33

I just want to get camp overwith before I start worry ing about centenary stuff grin.

So what have we forgotton, I wonder.

Any camp pearls of wisdom. It is our packs first time away.

MaureenMLove Wed 11-Mar-09 06:22:41

Not a clue about camp I'm afraid. I purposesly don't have a camp license, so it's not my job!grin

The other problem with all these things going on of course, is many of us, I assume have dd's in Guiding? My DD came home from Guides last night with 3 functions for Centenary for September and October. My poor DH will think we've both left him! grin

frasersmummy Wed 11-Mar-09 08:49:39

skramble do you mean camp as in under canvas or are you using a generic term meaning pack holiday

I dont camp so wont be much help if you mean camp but if you mean pack holiday then I will help anyway I can (dons p/hol advisor hat)

pickledHAN Wed 11-Mar-09 09:51:30

Hi All - meeting went really well actually - had said I would go and represent one of my Rangers who I am mentoring through her Queens Guide - as she couldnt make the first meeting, but agreed that our District reps would organise the music slots for the pm and a Guide/ SS/ adult campfire after the event.

What can we do to help with the resiential/ camp skramble? I always seem to be doing weekends away for my various roles - whats your theme? Dont do everything, thats why you have a team!

Indith Wed 11-Mar-09 09:57:38

book marking you all, dd just woken from her nap so back soon! Maybe..Rainbows tonight!

skramble Wed 11-Mar-09 10:44:08

Oh no not under canvas, its brownies and I think Brown Owl would pass out if I suggested a tent holiday.

No we are in dorms, the theme is easter, it is Brown Owl and her two new and shiney assistant leaders first camp with their own pack, they did have a few girls away on another packs camp.

We have our timetable and I have pretty much organised a programme of activities, cook is organised and very experienced so not worries about that side of things.

No major things to sort out really, just looking for any tips and hints that some of you may have learned over the years, or things that you often see newer leaders forgeting or not preparing for.

Any major disaters grin, good ones I can tell BOwl all about to panic her wink.

frasersmummy Wed 11-Mar-09 19:08:32


I dont want to sound patronising so please just tell me if you have already done this

but my top tip would be arrival checklists for every brownie.

When they arrive we give them an a4 sheet that tells them to find and make up their bed, put their pj's under their pillow, hang their jackets up, put their wellies at the back door, hand in their medicine, health form and tea towel, and hang wash bag and towel in the toilets
We give them the list and a pen and tell them mum and dad can leave when its all ticked off

If the kids have forgotten something vital this gives the parents a chance to bring it to you before bedtime

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 11-Mar-09 23:35:35

frasersmummy - That's a fantastic idea.

<<gets notebook>>

pickledHAN Thu 12-Mar-09 11:36:54

Hmm - just checking in. I would say calpol sachets rather than a bottle, a list of short challenges they can complete for points/ sweets if they finish whatever you have planned.

Make sure the girls bring a tea towel (and cake?!) as you will be suprised how many you go through/ how wet the ones you have will get.

Where are you staying? have you been to visit and do you know what is there - if not and its a first holiday etc, I would recommend a quick visit.

Hmm - what else for younger girls? Nappy sacks to line sick boxes are useful - no holes in there, and plasters with stickers help the ouch factor (how can you tell I always First Aid our County events?!)

Make sure you have fire lists etc as usual (on all exits) Will keep thinking for you!

skramble Thu 12-Mar-09 12:15:56

Arrival check list sounds interesting, due to its location parents have been encouraged to get together and organise who can drive them out to minimise traffic in the lane, so not all parents will be dropping off their own.

We wil have one of the Sixers their early (my DD) so she will be welcome brownie and show girls to their dorm while leader talks to parent. Once the other sixers arrive and get sorted they will be asked to help the younger ones get organised. Might make up a check list though, not sure what B Owl will think.

I have been up to look at the site, didn't get inside, outside area is quite big and open and has a goo clear boundry. Inside their appears to be two big rooms, but I think we only have use of one, not sure but their seemed to be other stuff stored in one of them, bit of a pain as the one I think we get is also for meals, so will have to have quick changeovers from games, crafts, meals and whatever else.

Thankfully not transporting the girls so not worried about sick bags [phew]
Will suggest to first aider getting 'fun' plasters.

skramble Thu 12-Mar-09 12:20:34

Anybody thinking about getting a parachute, Tesco has 3m ones, has 16 handles, is quite sturdy. Would be better if it was a bit bigger but a bargain at £9.99

frasersmummy Thu 12-Mar-09 16:32:31

I'm not sure what size ours it..pretty small I think we only have 10 handles but the kids love it I would say its well worth £10 skramble

If you have a hall that doubles as a craft room and a dining hall then somewhere for the kids to store finished/unfinished crafts.

We have bought really cheap pillow slips, decorated each girls with fabric paints on the Friday night... and then hung them on the wall.

The girls can keep their crafts in it during the weekend and you arent left trying to pair crafts left under bunks with girls at the end of the weekend

are you seeing a theme? fm likes an easy life

frasersmummy Thu 12-Mar-09 16:39:44

Talking of first aid

when you are doling out medicines such as calpol or something prescribed by doctor should I get another guider to witness it and sign the treatment sheet ?

I never have

But we had a nurse at our last trg and she said she is more qualified than me and yet she has to do this in her job and therefore it should be best practice for us too

BrownOwl18 Thu 12-Mar-09 16:49:37

I would always have a second adult witness treatment and sign a treatment record accordingly. (But I was a nurse many years ago!)

frasersmummy Thu 12-Mar-09 18:19:41

I guess I am missing a trick there then.. shall make this our standard practice from now

And shall suggest all the units in our divsion do the same

skramble Thu 12-Mar-09 19:58:52

I was really surprised that the first aider can give out medicines such as calpol etc, really really surprised as I do not think a first aider has any training in this at all, no first aid course I have been on or heard of deals with prescribing or providing medication. I am trained in using automatic defribulators (SP?) but not trained in handing out meds, OK I am a mum of two and can read a packet but thats enough anywhere else.

I thought only pre arranged medication would be allowed. So confused why they Guiding organisation so tied in red tape do this.

I have no worries at out camp as the first aider is a retired childrens nurse.

Thought about craft storage and we will have poly bags pinned along the bottom of the notice board with names on.

skramble Thu 12-Mar-09 20:04:33

Oh and how do you split them in dorms, the camp BOwl went on last time split them with the younger ones in one dormand the older ones in the other, I would mix them if it was me as I would want a couple of older ones to tkae a bit of control of the little ones. Also we are using the smae teams for activites so crazy to have a team of little ones.

We have a little new one who is so cute and desperate to make her promise, I even spotted that she got one of the older girls to help her practice last week, with no prompting from us, aw! she is so excited, makes me realise why I like doing brownies, the rest of the time it is hell on earth, What is it with the screaming?

frasersmummy Thu 12-Mar-09 20:23:45

on a normal brownie night you couldnt give out medications

However the parental signature on the health form actually allows the 2 named people on it to act as local parentis.

The section on right hand side of the form allows you to fill in medications that you are carrying with you. We go further and write in there see attached sheet

we then attach a list of absolute everything in the kit right down to scissors and such

We dont take too much just ... as I tell my parents...stuff you would have at home. We usually have calpol, tylix, plasters, burn spray, bite & Sting relief and antiseptic cream.
Though given headlines the last few weeks I will be reconsidering the txylix

frasersmummy Thu 12-Mar-09 20:29:09

In terms of rooms we do ask the girls who they want to share a room with which usually means an age split.

If your older ones are all in one room they are less likey to keep youngsters awake

Howeer during the day we mix them all up. For activities and duties we allow the youngsters a chance of being the group leader for the weekend... a chance to boss the sixers about !!

I do think you need a range of ages for treasure trails etc.. otherwise the oldies are back in 10 mins and the youngsters are there for an hour

I shall be quiet and let someone else get a word in edgeways now

BrownOwl18 Thu 12-Mar-09 20:55:00

I agree with you frasersmummy, at least some of the Brownies have a sporting chance of getting to sleep before 4am if the littlies are together. Having said that I'm having all 20 in one room when we go away in April!!

Sleep is for the weak as they say wink

pickledHAN Fri 13-Mar-09 09:07:29

We akways tke a set of MAR forms (not a nursing byt social care background here but similar thoughts!)Medical Adminstrative Record sheet nd this allows 3 different types of medicacation,dosage and time of admin and signature to be recorded. These then slot in behind the G/H form in your event file so the whole lot can be handed to any meds you need to call.

The pillow slips is a great idea - on the same vein when Guides make delicate crafrs we hve some small washing up baskets or have aked them to bring a shoe box with them to take goodies home with them.

Oh and going back to the first aid during meetings thing - some of our units have asked parents to sign a general meetings health form (listing names of guides, paracetamol, plasters, afterbite etc) as you are also acting in loco parenti for the hour and a half that you have them each week and whilst mum is generally up the road, you may still need to 1st Aid. Also, at the same time we renwew our perission to leave the meeting place (eg for games in the park, rounders, fire laying up the road etc) as parents need to give specific permission for this too - even if they are dropping off and collecting from somewhere else .... arrg!!

skramble Fri 13-Mar-09 10:19:41

I see what you mean about the younger ones in together, in the hope they can get to sleep when they need to,but does that actually happen grin. We do have a couple of very young very new ones and I think having a matter of fact (bit brash) older girl in with them will help if the bottom lips start to quiver. Some of the older ones are fantastic with the little ones and I hope this shines through at camp.

SO about the screaming, do your girls (brownies) have a severe tendency to scream a lot.

BrownOwl18 Fri 13-Mar-09 15:27:40

Dear Lord yes, the screaming is enough to drive you round the bend.

skramble Fri 13-Mar-09 23:03:21

I keep threatening to defect to the cubs grin.

frasersmummy Sun 15-Mar-09 21:20:56

we are all very quiet...

what is everyone up to at the unit this week??

skramble..boys are worse.. they just dont listen

BrownOwl18 Sun 15-Mar-09 22:05:20

Tis very quiet.

I've spent this afternoon printing out G/H, kit lists etc for Pack Hol parents meeting tomorrow night.

The Brownies are going to be making Mother's Day cards using pressed flowers. Depending on how much mess they make with the glue (their current favourite pastime hmm) there may also be time to make a coaster.

pelvicflawed Mon 16-Mar-09 17:42:16

Just wanted to say Hi - I'm an Assistant Guide Guider and Division PR rep (not that I've done much PRing recently). Have been doing guides for 10 yrs now and keep threatning to change sections!!. Love camping (our unit Guider has a licence)but due to us both popping out little ones over the last few years we haven't done much. Off to Guides to night - they are meant to be finishing off doing their unit guidelines and making something for mothers day (I stress the meant as we are quite a chaotic unit and plans change but hopefully we have loads of fun!!)

skramble Wed 18-Mar-09 22:29:39

Hi again, any ideas for a pack night activity, something a bit different and very absorbing. Last pack night before camp so I expect them to be a bit hyper and they are bad enough at screaming their way through games, Brown Owl will be with parents so I think we need something fairly quite. So that we don't look totaly out of control wink.

I have exausted myself with coming up with activities for camp, games always get a bit screamy and playground like. Have spent the last two weeks doing a big poster, so already done lots of colouring in etc.

Need to wow them into submission and silence grin.

frasersmummy Thu 19-Mar-09 08:06:52

campfire magic???

such as mr moon, or the scissors games ??

skramble Thu 19-Mar-09 20:24:59

Frasersmummy, what are those, please explain grin.

SlubberdegullionMaNaMaNa Thu 19-Mar-09 20:37:59

ello ello, only just spotted this. I'm a Rainbow Guider. My unit was exactly 3 weeks old today. I am all fresh and shiny and new (and keen) grin

frasersmummy Thu 19-Mar-09 20:58:48

hi slubber

welcome aboard... well done you on starting a new unit.. howis it going so far?

mr moon.. brownies all sit in a circle.. guider has a pencil or pen in her right hand

Guider pretends to draw on the floor and says :

this is mr moon (big circle)
he has 2 eyes (2 dots)
a nose (a small circle)
and a big smiley face (big semi circle)

guider then moves the pen from right hand to left hand and then passes the pen/pencil on to person on their left saying please may I join the moon club.

Tell the girls if they do exactly what you do they can join the moon club..if they dont then they cant

The girls will be so busy worrying about drawing mr moon they wont notice that your pen swapped hands and 99% of them will pass it on with their right hand

As your girls get savvy to it they will "draw" more and more elaborate mr and mrs moons.. leaving new recruits even more bamboozled

frasersmummy Thu 19-Mar-09 21:07:10


guiders sit on the floor with the brownies with their legs out in front. The guider has a pair of scissors

tell the girls you are going to pass the scissors round the circle . They can pass them to person next to them either open, closed or crossed .. by saying I pass these scissors to you eg open

show them scissors in the 3 postions (open is kind halfway open .. crossed is as open as you can get the scissors ifyswim)and then
pass them on

the secret being that if the scissors are crossed your legs will be crossed and so on. You will of course have showed them this in the demo but they will be so busy watching the scissors they wont notice what your legs are doing

just watch the frustration .. they are crossed brown owl!!!

frasersmummy Thu 19-Mar-09 21:07:49

I have a few more of these if you think they would help

frasersmummy Sun 22-Mar-09 20:12:04

where has everyone gone

scienceteacher Sun 22-Mar-09 20:18:13

We had a parade service at church today and had a fantastic turnout from our Rainbows, Brownies and Guides. The last few were pitiful, and it is so embarrassing to reserve the front rows, only for them to still be empty at the start of the service.

I did tell my Brownies that their mums would get a bunch of flowers, and that is probably what spurned them into action.

It was my turn to do intercessions, so I shared it out with my three girls (one from each section), so it looked like a real Guiding initiative, rather than just the luck of the draw in terms of church rotas.

Oh my lord I am shattered. We had a Mother's Day tea and craft session for our Rainbow unit today. The mums did crafts with their LO's and then we served tea and cakes. Lots of grandparents came too and seemed to really enjoy it, but blimey was it ever hard work.

skramble Mon 23-Mar-09 20:50:49

You lost me with the Mr Moon, too complicated for our lot I think, they still haven't mastered listening to simple instructions.

All still a bit wild and screamy, difficult to get quiet to explain instructions. Argh!!!

Can I ask you ladies if you sing a pow wow song and if so, what is it? At my Brownie unit they sing a very old one which is traditional apparently but it makes me cringe so much I can't bring myself to join in. This is it:
We are the red men, tall and quaint
in our feathers and war paint,
Pow wow, pow wow.
We're the men of the Old Dun Cow,
All of us are red men, feathers in our head men
down among the dead men,
Pow wow, pow wow.
We come home from hunts and wars
greeted by our long-nosed squaws4,
Pow wow, pow wow.
We can fight with sticks and stones,
bows and arrows, bricks and bones,
Pow wow, pow wow.
Am I being over sensitive or could I maybe encourage a move to something more in tune with the times?

skramble Mon 23-Mar-09 21:01:37

We sing "Ding Dong, Oh Lord our God" at the very end, and "We're Brownie Guides" at the start.

Yes, we do those too, but they like having a song to start off Pow wow. And I hate that one.

skramble Mon 23-Mar-09 21:37:52

There are song books on the website, maybe something on there. I am just trying to remember what tune goes with what grin

nymphadora Mon 23-Mar-09 21:51:34


I am an Assistant Rainbow leader(just finished the book!) and have been helping for a couple of years.

I have also helped with Brownies when they are short but I prefer the younger ones.

I have no idea what is going on for next year round this area so anyone in the NW that has any ideas, pass them on!

skramble Mon 23-Mar-09 22:00:50

Just wondered how far in advance you all plan your programmes and what structure your nights take.

SlubberdegullionMaNaMaNa Tue 24-Mar-09 18:24:22

Can I teach my rainbows Little Bunny Foo Foo? I loved that song when I was a Brownie, but have concerns considering what some mners choose to call their genitalia.......

SlubberdegullionMaNaMaNa Tue 24-Mar-09 18:25:12

nymph there is a Rainbow day being planned at Chester Zoo at some point afaik.

skramble Tue 24-Mar-09 22:18:09

SlubberdegullionMaNaMaNa i was going to do that one at camp as my party piece, never even thought of MN use of Foo Foo, now I will be giggling like a 7yrold when I try to sing it grin.

SlubberdegullionMaNaMaNa Wed 25-Mar-09 17:54:01

Little bunny foo foo bouncing through the forest, scooping up the field mice an bonking them on the head.

Yeah, mn has ruined it fo me too grin

skramble Wed 25-Mar-09 23:03:11

LOL grin, i will still have to sing it, as it is my planned party piece for camp fire, will have to think angelic thoughts.

hatwoman Wed 25-Mar-09 23:16:39

hello all. can you answer a question for me as I'm in a bit of a quandary. is it ok to get into the whole Brownies thing if you don't believe in God/aren't Christian and you're not particularly fond of the Queen? I'm starting to help out at our brownies - and I have an awful lot of time for the underlying ideas of being a constructive part of the community and learning about the rest of the world, in fact more than an awful lot - it's something I feel very strongly about. but, I just don't believe in God, nor do I agree with the principle of a royal family. am I a complete hypocrite? I really really don;t want to drop out but I do feel vaguely uncomfortable - and have no idea if any of the guiders in our area are similar, or if they're all wholly committed to all aspects of it (doesn;t quite seem appropriate to ask).

I'm a card-carrying atheist and fervent republican if that's any help. I just kind of skim over the supernatural bits.

skramble Wed 25-Mar-09 23:24:03

I am not into organised religion and definatly not the Queen, it isn't really a big part of guiding.

The God bit of the promise is taken more as "my god" which can mean many things to many people, could be mother nature or whatever. The Queen bit I take as being more to do with your country and the bigger picture.

Brown Owl has it in her head we have to do Grace at camp, but the rest of the leaders have pretty much dismised the idea as outdated. But we do sing Oh Lord our God each night, but hey its a Christian country so its part of our culture.

Same as at home I have a bible in the house but to me it is a collection of good stories, my kids can take it as they want at their level.

hatwoman Thu 26-Mar-09 09:27:23

thanks - I feel better now. I was happily thinking to myself oh I'll just skim over all that stuff, but then I saw the stuff about singing oh lord our God, and the pledge etc and it made me feel more awkward than I had anticipated. but if it's not a case of me being a lone rotten apple in a barrel of godly royalists then I don't mind so much.

frasersmummy Thu 26-Mar-09 12:27:43

My take on serving the queen is taken from a very old brownie handbook

The queen is head of the govt and therefore ultimately makes the laws so therefore serving the queen means not breaking the law of the land

As for the god bit as skramble says the promise was changed a good few years ago to read "my god" so that basically means anything you personally believe in

That all sounds a bit deep .. as a guider of too many years I would say if you are committed to passing new skills on to the girls and teaching them right from wrong then you will be a great addition to any unit

welcome aboard!!

skramble Thu 26-Mar-09 22:32:44

I find most of my time is spent trying to figure out how to shut them up and make them listen, God doesn't always help much with that wink.

skramble Thu 26-Mar-09 22:33:26

Oh and can I have a big ARGH!!!!!! camp tomorrow. hmm what will I forget???

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Thu 26-Mar-09 22:53:13

Yay skramble! Hope it goes well!

skramble Thu 26-Mar-09 22:55:56

I feel like I have planned the whole thing and I am only a parent helper grin.

How does this happen you go along one week to help with a craft activity and the next thing you are palnning a whole camp programme and probably the whole term up to summer hmm. Don't you just love volunteering, this is why I always avoided the PTA.

Good luck Skramble. Ours isn't until the end of May. I'm trying to blot it out.

skramble Mon 30-Mar-09 22:58:53

Well camp was fine, only bad point was our invited license holder (our Brown Owl doesn't have hers yet), she was shocking, everything was "you HAVE to do this" she preached how to do things, which mostly seemed to be how she chose to do things, but as she dictated everything it was hard to tell what things were actually compulsory in relation to the accomodations rules, getting your license rules and her own bloody way of doing things, so frustrating.

I could hardly contain myself when she decided to try and tell three grown woman how to mop a floor, with the words "You have to pick two lines and mop between them" FFS one of the ladies being preached to is a school cleaner. I decided to burst out laughing rather than having a go at her, but I really wish I had bloody told her where to go!

I also could have done with some more technical crafts which would have lasted longer, I mostly had colouring and cut out and stick stuff, which they got through rather fast.

But hey we all survivied grin.

frannikin Tue 31-Mar-09 14:19:25

Ooooh guidey thread!

I was a Rainbow and Brownie Guider but then selfishly moved abroad and BGFIC don't seem to want to know me. I'm still Division Guiding Development Advisor for Adult Leader Support though, as I can do that from a distance. I've never quite figured out why I need such a long title for being our division's chief mentor honcho but there you go. And it looks nice on the appointment card.

skramble shock at your license holder - she sounds awful!

skramble Tue 31-Mar-09 23:22:53

There will be further action taken re License Holder, we had a stand in on the Sat as said LH had another engagment. A lot was said to her and she will be further updated on more things I am just hearing about now as I missed some of the antics when I went home to my lovely peaceful bed grin.

Apparantly she is the area camp advisor, I can't honestly believe that anyone would allow her to get this position, she has only had her license about 1 year and done 1 camp with her lot on that license, I think. Regardless she is totally unsuitable for that role and did more to put off our leaders from getting their license than anything else.

She also contradicted herself and did things wrong, like telling us to prop open fire doors at night, the key holder told us it was ok while loading our gear in but they should be shut once girls arive. Also did not put down an alleged tomato allergy on her form, and told the cook she had to have an alternative for her dinner. Told BrownO not to sweep incase anyone had asthma but swept under the tables in tha hall all weekend when the girls were in the room. Never again!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Thu 02-Apr-09 00:10:52

Skramble - shock

Can I pick all your brains on some of my current dilemmas: what to do with late payers and late bookers?

Our subs are payable termly. I am happy to accept instalments but our policy is that late payments (ie more than a month into term) attract a supplement. Perhaps that sounds harsh but I don't want to have to spend weeks and weeks chasing parents for subs and not being able to budget because I don't know what our income's going to be. Even so, we have parents who pay extremely late. We also have parents who ignore booking deadlines for events and send forms back weeks after they're due.

I think maybe I've created this problem by being too laidback - hence the late payment supplement to try and get things back on track. Is that too harsh? And should I refuse to take bookings after deadlines? Again, I think I probably should, but I've always taken the line that I shouldn't penalise the Brownie just because her parents are not good at paperwork, although it does create a lot of extra hassle for the leaders.

What do others do? Any tips to share?

skramble Fri 03-Apr-09 18:49:56

I suppose I am one of those parents who is crap at paperwork and I have real memory problems, but being on the other side too I know how much of a pain it is for leaders.

With booking forms etc I would maybe give a week extra, explaining that if it is not in that week child can not go as it has to be paid to the centre by that date. Then cut it off.

For subs that is difficult, we were weekly then went monthly as girls that were off one week simply didn't pay the next week so missed out on money. Again I would give them a week or maybe two if it is per term and then let them know the child can't continue to attend as they are not covered by insurance or something like that as they have not paid so can not be classed as members.

But to help the parents give out reminder notes when things are due and give all information straight to the parent, my DS's scouts are bad for just telling the boys the information and with most of them as daft as my boy they forget by the time they leave the hall.

skramble Fri 03-Apr-09 18:55:23

oh didn't see these grin and smile aw they are so cute.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Fri 03-Apr-09 23:08:07

Thanks, skramble. smile

Well, it's all come to a head today. I've just heard that we will not be going to our region's big centenary event because it was massively over-subscribed and we're getting nothing. We applied well within the deadline but we would have applied three weeks earlier if it had not been for the late applications/payments. So, maybe it would not have made any difference, but maybe that three week wait for the chronically disorganised cost us the chance of going to the event.

So now I'm going to be ruthless about deadlines!

<<Tries to look tough. Blows Brownie whistle in an 'I mean business' way>>

skramble Fri 03-Apr-09 23:15:29

The whistle never works after the first blow wink.

Oh well, who has there programme planned up to the summer yet? We are meeting after Easter to plan our programme, its always a bit vague, so I am going to push for a more defined programme. As the craft and activity person I need to know whats needed and it helps the leaders to actualy know whats coming up.

How far ahead do you all plan? Do you have it all set in stone or is it a case of seeing what happens?

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Fri 03-Apr-09 23:35:09

We tend not to plan very far in advance. When we're doing an interest badge or Right Now, that is the basis for several weeks' meetings but I'm reluctant to plan a whole term at a time because (a) it means more time spent on admin and planning meetings and (b) more importantly, it makes it more difficult to pick up things from Guiding magazine or elsewhere. I quite like the flexibility of having gaps which can be filled at short notice.

skramble Fri 03-Apr-09 23:46:04

hmm i see what you mean, but we seem to have a lot of unplanned nights though, we turn up and nothing is planned.

Luckly the other week I took a few stand bys with me as BrownO was meeting with the parents, but the other leaders hadn't been asked to plan anything. So I used all my ideas and we had quite e good night.

This week I was off, feedback fromother parent helper was nothing was really planned a bit of a post camp chat, a few games and handing out badges, they seemed surprised that the girls were wild, I thought the week after camp and lst week of term they need something quite interesting to keep them busy.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Sat 04-Apr-09 00:09:34

Ah. Maybe we're at cross-purposes here.

I always turn up for meetings with a clear plan of what we're going to do. We never just 'coast' through a meeting. But what I don't do - which I know some other leaders do - is have every meeting for the term fully planned from the beginning of that term. Some of our meetings are planned the day before. But they're always planned and always have a central activity. I wouldn't regard handing out badges as an activity, even though it's a fun part of our Brownie circle. hmm


skramble Sat 04-Apr-09 00:14:25

Ah see I wouldn't mind if it was planned the night before or whenever, but there is a lot of coasting as you call it.

maybe I am a closet BrownOwl, but while I can't commit to everyweek I will remain a parent helper. It is still a fairly new pack and to be fair BrownO and the other leaders have had bugger all guidance, me and the other parent helper (ex cub leader) do what we can.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Sat 04-Apr-09 00:21:31

Hmmm. Training for new leaders isn't all that it should be, in my (pretty grim) experience.

I agree that there ought to be something planned, even though not every week can be a sensational blockbuster event. There are lots of instant activities and fillers in the Brownie Adventure resource packs (of which there are now 3) and on the website - do you use those? Do you really use the Adventure and Adventure On books? I have finally convinced the Brownies to bring them every week and we now use them if we have a spare 10 minutes to fill - again, there are lots of quick activities in them.

frasersmummy Sat 04-Apr-09 08:54:55

I gave up the role of brown owl abou 4 years ago now but when I was brown owl our planing started well and fell away

We are in Scotland so we start in August and we run till May. We would sit down in July and plan fom then to Christmas. In Jan we would say we would need to do next term.. we would get a few meetings laid out and say okay we'll have a think. By Easter we are deffo running week to week

And yes I have to admit some weeks I have just coasted...blush

having said that I have 3/4 different treasure trails all sitting in the cupboard that can be laid out with 5 mins notice. I also have loads of square paper for origami which can fill loads of time and we have worksheets for simple badges that can be completed in a few weeks

So I guess its only coasting cos I have done the prep weeks/months/years before grin

The girl who took over from me had been with me since she was 14 .. is now mid 20's.... and she has the same attitude to planning!! grin

skramble Sat 04-Apr-09 15:45:49

Thanks its good to see how others tackle planning. I tend to take some sort of standby with me in my bag of tricks, but it really should be a standby.

frasersmummy Sat 04-Apr-09 16:48:07

the thing is skramble as a unit helper or even assistant guider you shouldnt need to be worrying about having an activity just in case.. thats brown owl's job

The biggest problem I found on "coasting" nights were that my guiders didnt know what was in my head and therefore didnt get involved. Frustrating for them and me.

Now I am an assistant guider I wouldnt think to take an activity with me unless brown owl said can you do XXX or I am on holiday can you organise next week completely

Sounds like you are ready willing and able to take on a bigger role wink

skramble Sat 04-Apr-09 16:57:29

Unfortunatlly my job and studies (ok studies nearly finished now) involve a lot of the same night as Brownies, so I really don't want to commit further as I feel it is unfair.

But finished studies, well one more assignment then a big huge project and the focus of my work is changing a bit, so perhaps in the future I could commit to being a fully signed up leader.

I do seem to be the designated craft and actvity person, which I am happy to be, but really should be coming up with activities within a more structured plan I think.

I basicly planned the whole camp programme, Brown Owl thinks she did wink but hers was more of a timetable where I fitted in the activities. It was our units first camp and I was happy to take some of the pressure off BrownO she had enough to worry about what with our horrible licence holder to contend with.

I think me and the other helper will have to push her to develop some more of her own ideas but sit back a little bit ourselves.

skramble Wed 22-Apr-09 00:34:31

Time to get back to it ladies grin.

Well looks like I will be planning this terms programme, Brown Owl is standing down, not sure who is taking over, horrible feeling they may look to me shock. Anyway, in the handing over period, I am doing programme, one leader is doing the finances and register etc and the other is doing badges (well I am making her wink).

So planned a few nights at our meeting but not much planning as most of the night was shock at the announcment.

Thought about doing the Jelly babies theme night tomorrow night. Has any one done this? How did the packaging quiz go? I thought it was a bit simplistic as they just read it and go back and write it down. I thought about doing it more Kims game style where they get bag to study for 2 mins then take away bag and ask questions.

Also how many bags will I need for 4 sixes about 18 girls in total? trying to think how many they might use for the jelly baby towers.

Any thoughts

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Sat 25-Apr-09 23:02:03

Ooh. Tell me more about the jelly babies thing. Is it in one of the adventure files?

skramble Tue 28-Apr-09 23:11:27

Don't know if it is in the adventure files, I got it from


Packaging quiz- Give each six a bag of jelly babies and tell them they have 2 mins to study it. (you have to tell them not to open it grin). Then collect in the bags and give each six paper and pencil. Ask 10 questions eg, How many grams in the bag, What is the green jelly baby doing? How many flavours of babies?

Jelly Baby game- Like port/ starboard. But shout. Babies on skateboards, babies sleeping, babies play in 3s (they have to get into groups of 3.

Jelly baby anagrams- give each six the letters JELLYBABIES on seperate cards then give clues like. 1. A loud shout (YELL). 2. Part of a boat (SAIL), they have to work out the word then lay out the letters or hold them up to spell it.

Design a Jelly baby- Each six designs a baby, picture, name, hobbies, age, accesories etc. Present to the pack.

Jelly babies acrobatic display team- Give each six a bag of babies each and a pack of cocktail sticks, explain they have to make a model together like a tower or a pyramid (they get it if you say like cheerleaders).

Jelly Baby song- (happy birthday tune)

Jelly babies are fun,
they skip and they run,
I love jelly babies,
The're bright like the sun.

Jelly babies for me,
The're cute and cuddly,
I love jelly babies,
and I know they love me.

I made up little bags of jelly babies to take home as they ones we used were a bit mangled.

So 4 bags for challenges (one for each six) and 4 divided up into 18 bags to take home.

I can email full details.

skramble Tue 28-Apr-09 23:15:21

So what are the rest of you up to this term?

I am becoming a leader (just a unit helper atm) then as BO has given up her post I am taking over as BO after the summer shock. How did that happen I only came along to help with the crafts grin

So doing a couple of nights to finish the seasons badge, 2 nights on brownie traditions and 1 night agility, a fun theme night and then a party. Also getting adventurous and going on a day trip.

Once you start you just can't stop! grin

Hi -just found you. I'm a Guide Unit leader. Why is it they never say anything to you, so that after flogging your guts ou for weeks to organise something all you see is a room full of preteen / teenage attitude.........and then you speak to some of the mums who say how much their daughters love it, and come home raving about how much fun they are having?

Also, why do most of the mothers assume that you are a SAHM because you do Guiding? I've lost count of the number of slightly bemused telephone messages that say, "I tried calling you at 11.00 am, and 12.00, and it's now 3.00pm, and I need to ask if Gerty Guide needs to bring X tonight, can you call me back before 5.30?" Errmm , sorry, no because at 5.30 I'm speeding back down the motorway from work.

Sorry for venting - I really do enjoy it, honestly I do. smile

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Tue 12-May-09 13:22:22

Nice to meet you, Itsthawooluff.

Your post made me smile as I recognise so much of what you say (even though I'm a Brownie guider). One reason I'll never move up to Guides is that I don't think I could cope with the attitood. Ours arrive in the hall just as Brownies are tidying away, lollop right in front of the Brownie black hole cupboard and look amazed when anyone asks them politely to get out of the way. I believe they are quite articulate with their own leaders but they mostly communicate with me by means of grunts!

Please don't get me started on the mothers who expect us to stay at home waiting for their phone calls and/or late night visits to pay subs which should have been paid a fortnight ago.

And yes, I enjoy it too, but I do also think I could write a sit com about it all!

pookamoo Fri 22-May-09 15:47:33

Hello, have posted once on this thread before, but I need to pick your brains.

We need to open a new bank account for our guide unit because we are merging with the Brownie unit for admin purposes. Which banks do you use for your units? We're currently with HSBC and the Brownies are with Lloyds, but I had heard that some banks don't pay interest on "charity" organisations' accounts... ?

And Itsthawooluff I know exactly what you mean - they don't realise Guiding isn't your full time paid job! We had a parents evening when it got really bad, did a slide show of photos from the year, and also a "get to know your guiders" bit, where we told them what we do in our "other" lives, a gentle way of letting them know we are volunteers!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Sat 23-May-09 23:50:09

Hi Pookamoo.

We're currently opening a bank account. When I took over as Leader, we didn't have any bank account and it's taken me this long. hmm

I first applied to Lloyds, but they had given me an old-style form and were adamant (after I'd spent ages gathering documents and signatures) that I'd have to start again on the correct form and so I decided to take my valuable custom elsewhere. I'm now applying to NatWest. There's an agreement between Girlguiding UK and Nat West which (allegedly) means that there are fewer hoops to jump through to open an account for Brownies or Guides, but that's not my experience. They rejected my first application because I took too long to send the form back (they hadn't mentioned that there was a deadline and it took a while because I don't see my helpers every week to gather signatures). So I submitted a new form, but meanwhile they lost the certificate you have to obtain from CHQ to prove you're a bona fide Leader and so I need to contact CHQ to get another one. Grrr. So I can't see how this is any less complicated than opening an account with any other bank - the Nat West requirements aren't any different from Lloyds' - but nevertheless this is the arrangement CHQ have made.

These accounts were publicised in Guiding about a year ago. I think there was a second bank offering something similar - maybe you could track down a back copy of Guiding? Sorry. That was a bit long.

I'm liking the idea of a parents' evening. It was an innocent question, but there was a thread a few days ago when a Brownie mother asked whether the leaders on a pack holiday would be washing all the Brownies' clothing every night.

Aargh - just found out our hall is being used as a polling centre on Thursday - Brownie night! Would have been nice if they had let us know we wouldn't be able to use it!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Mon 01-Jun-09 20:00:55

That used to happen to us when we met on Thursdays. We were never informed - 'tis lucky I'm a bit of a politics anorak.

Would a sherry help here, LGP?

Problem solved - we're going to go on a nature walk instead - so fingers crossed for fine weather! Just got to ring round all the parents now.
<<knocks back sherry and holds glass out for refill>>

nymphadora Mon 01-Jun-09 20:52:22

Am back! I forgot about this thread.

I have just got my certificate so am now officalgrin

We are having a 'music festival' thing for our area centenary celebrations. Bit dubious about the price though. £12.50 each , it has put off most of my rainbows (as well as the fact its over an hour away and in the evening).We also need 1:2 staffing so have to rope in parents to come too.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Mon 01-Jun-09 22:30:32

Hello again, nymphadora. Well done on becoming legit! I've heard other Guiders mention that many centenary events don't really 'work' for Rainbows.

<<Faints at the mere notion of having to recruit enough parents to achieve 1:2 ratio>>

Here, Lady Glencora and I were just starting on the sherry. Would you like a swig small glassful?

Has everyone seen the thread in chat about what it is or isn't reasonable to expect Brownies to be capable of doing on pack holiday? It's been an eye-opener.

Hasn't it just! Mind you I went on my first pack holiday recently and that was an eyeopener! But I dare not say all of the reasons why for fear of being flamed! One reason I will admit to, however, is that I was gobsmacked the sheer amount of work that the two guiders who organised it put into every detail of the arrangements. I hope to get a pack holiday licence eventually, and went along to learn the ropes, but it really made me realise the work involved in getting your licence.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Tue 02-Jun-09 00:06:20

Argh. The holiday licence. I did the work but didn't submit my book for auditing (real life intervened). Think I'd have to start again now. Ho hum.

We're doing skramble's jelly baby challenge this week. Three cheers for MN, skramble and this thread!

More sherry?

We need to plan our Rainbows centenary stuff too. None of the official events are near enough to be viable for us so I'm not sure what is going to happen. Brownies is not such an issue as we have some very active local packs and we will figure out something together, but there are not many other nearby Rainbow units.
Pass that sherry over, I'll have a swig.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Tue 02-Jun-09 11:13:36

Oh sorry. I didn't come back last night. Do you want it now? shock

A cold drink will be fine now. Perhaps a gin and tonic later when the sun is over the yard arm.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Tue 02-Jun-09 11:21:38

Ok. Glass of homemade lemonade coming right up. It's distressingly late by the time the sun gets over the yard arm now, methinks. Anyway, must get back to the Brownie accounts.

<<drags self away>>

nymphadora Wed 03-Jun-09 18:37:49

Think that there is only 5 rainbows & my 2 (brownies who 'help') and all are coming with Mum except 1 who is related to the other Leader so we have done OK with that!

We had a fundraiser for t-shirts a couple of weeks ago so everyone will have a pink t-shirt including the adults.

How many helpers do you have?
We are doing really well atm with 3 adults, 2 guides, 2 brownies (dubious helping though dd1 does help wash up!) and a young leader who went to Uni but helps in holidays!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 03-Jun-09 19:54:47

Helpers? I am in deep gloom at the moment because, after years me being the sole guider, we got an assistant guider six months ago but she's already leaving as she's moving away. So that leaves me as guider and two unit helpers. The unit helpers are fantastic but I do so want to find an assistant guider!

How did you raise funds for the t-shirts?

<<Passes MBD a large glass of cold white wine.>>

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 03-Jun-09 20:40:30

<<Wonders whether Lady Glencora knows her in real life or whether (perhaps more likely) all Guiders develop a white wine habit as a coping mechanism>>

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 03-Jun-09 20:41:40

<<Realises she has forgotten her manners>>

Thank you, Lady Glencora. Time for that G&T now?

I'll stick with the wine thanks. I don't know about knowing you in real life, but I think your second option is probably correct.
Now I'm off to track down glowsticks and out-fof-print Lorna Hill books for DD's birthday.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Sat 06-Jun-09 17:55:53

I just wanted to thank Skramble for the ideas for the jelly baby theme night. We did it this week and it was a great success. grin

nymphadora Sat 06-Jun-09 18:20:57

MAdbadetc- Sponsored sing!How many songs in an hour (well we did stop for drinks and a snack as weel)

skramble Tue 09-Jun-09 23:22:53

Hello ladies, glad the Jelly Babies night went well, I am planning something similar with malteasers next year.

Just done my first day trip with the brownies, bit scary as it was there first day trip as a pack too. But it went well the timings worked out really well. I think it really help that myself and my unit helper managed to visit the country park first and worked out the different things they could to, sorted out the main bits and a few fillers and the day just flowed, did keep checking my watch all day though. Had a few stroppy brownies that were pains and pushed me all day, but after me laying down the law in the morning and issuing a few threats they eased off a bit ( well a little bit and I stopped focusing on them grin).

Last night this week and my first party night, saying goodbye to Brown Owl too and hello to the new one ME! Got her a nice pressy, hope she likes it, in fact I hope she turns up shock.

Then its planning planning planning for next year, my two leaders looked shocked when I mentioned planning for after the summer grin, they aren't exactly used to planning, but I am sure they will appreciate actually having something to do with the girls on pack night other than games and screaming hmm.

We had a great session last night - the local police dog handling team came and gave the girls a talk and put the dogs through their paces - a really good display. One policeman pretended to be a criminal and fired a gun (blanks obv) at the dog, who ran straight at him and brought him down. Then the sniffer dog found some hidden packages of drugs. It was fab.

bumsrush Sat 20-Jun-09 00:08:21

Oh that sounds good with the dogs. Whas that with Brownies?

Yes, with Brownies. I help at a Rainbow pack too, but I think it was more suitable for the Brownie age group.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 08-Jul-09 19:47:15

How's it going, everyone? Looking forward to the end of term?

We had our last night tonight. Lovely Brown Owl is stepping back, and not so lovely old me is taking it on. What have I done?

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Thu 09-Jul-09 22:37:41

<<Passes a glass of chilled white wine, for fortitude>>

sweatybits Fri 24-Jul-09 23:40:13

Ah see you are all just finished I am due back in a month and have a meeting soon, argh, new job means less planning and prep time.

Can anyone join? I'm a guide guider, and have been for 9 nearly 10 years now!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Tue 18-Aug-09 22:37:59

Sorry, I've been away on my hols.

Good to see you, LTSF. Would you like a glass of wine?

MadBadOnlyReadsTheBroadsheets Sat 05-Sep-09 12:57:02

Wishing all my fellow Guiders and helpers a very happy centenary. We're going to a centenary launch party this afternoon - wish me luck!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Tue 08-Sep-09 14:18:00

Back again with a uniform question.

I have just spent ages attaching all dd's Brownie badges to her new sash but have a horrible feeling I've done it wrong. She always wears it over her left shoulder but the only pictures I've found show Brownies wearing them over their right shoulders: have I got it wrong?

<<Cobbler's children emoticon>>

Right shoulder as far as I know. grin DD2's badges cover both sides of her sash though. Just make like you meant it that way.
We start back tomorrow and it will be DD3's first meeting. I think I'll buy her a gilet, I hate those bloody sashes.
Have you got lots of centenery plans?

Or even centenary plans. blush
Just working out what we are going to choose for our challenges - so I can offer the Brownies some options to choose from tomorrow. We want to do the Brownie Skills and Brownie Traditions badges this term too.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Wed 09-Sep-09 13:21:48

Drat. Always better to do one's research before the event, don't you think? hmm

We don't have Centenary plans (besides attending Saturday's launch event) so that'll be the subject of our first pow-wow. We recently did Brownie Traditions at Icando, but Brownie Skiils sounds like a good choice.

The next thing I need to research is whether Changing The World has ended or not. We were told that all projects had to be finished by September, yet there were charities there on Saturday trying to get more units involved. I didn't get time to go and investigate so am confused. I tried to take the summer off from Brownie duties but now need to get into gear!

nymphadora Thu 10-Sep-09 10:37:37

Just found this on my watched threads .

The big gig at the weekend went down well except for the bit at the start when various leaders got up and sang guiding songs and most people did their best to ignor e them !

Rossco Thu 10-Sep-09 10:43:36


I'm Rossco and I'm a District Comm & Brownie Leader.

Off to Brownies tonight for a toilet paper fashion show grin. Might throw in some crepe paper too for a bit of colour.

MrsWeasley Sun 20-Sep-09 11:17:11

Oh we had a fashion show this week too but with a wedding theme, Lots of old net curtains grin One of our guiders is getting married so we designed her dress, strange but she choose to wear her own design on the big day grin

Our brownies loved the centenary launch party and the weather was kind most of the afternoon. But nothing could dampen the girls spirits even when the disco tripped the power supply, cue for a giant circle game, LOL!
Oh and I found out last night that I won a raffle prize which I think I will hide away until xmas grin

We held a little coffee morning yesterday to raise our profile and a little extra money(always useful) The Brownies really enjoyed themselves. <<mental note: check supplies of hostess badges>> Its lovely to see the girls growing in confidence, We have one new Brownie who doesnt speak and she was taking orders and selling cakes.

We have a guide dog coming in this week which should be good. (only trouble is it was to finish off a disability badge which we did last term but the Guide dog handler and our unit guider got their dates in a muddle. As we have loads of new Brownies we will be redoing some of it.)

We have gone from having an old unit (lots of 10 year olds) to a young unit (lots of 7 year olds) having managed to pass our 10 year olds off to guides.

We are planning a Centenary Disco, Swimming party and a talent show (maybe even a sleepover!)
Does everyone take their Brownies on sleepovers? Am thinking of doing my overnight licence!

Whats everyone else up to?

The first week back I took them through the Adventure 100 programme and they chose all the stuff they want to do. Last week we had games night and this week we are finishing off the Friend to Animals badge which we started last term. We have lots of Centenary stuff planned, as well as a big Thinking Day service and a Gorgeous and Golden day.
We go on pack holiday with another pack whose leaders have holiday licences, but I am wanting to get the overnight licence too.
We are planning a party in the dark for later on this term and and outing in the dark too for badger watching if possible.

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Thu 12-Nov-09 21:38:46

So, how's it all going then? Have you started your Adventure 100 stuff? We've already for 5 points each. hmm

LadyGlencora - What's a Gorgeous and Golden day?

<<pen poised>>

BrownOwl18 Fri 13-Nov-09 14:56:16

Trying to get as much Adventure 100 in as possible - some of us have got to the dizzy heights of 25 points! We're going to the panto at the end of term which not only avoids having to have a Christmas party but also adds points grin.

I'm doing my Brownie Camp module next summer - have had my Holiday Licence since the Dark Ages. wink

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Fri 13-Nov-09 17:07:11

A panto counts for points? I must check my booklet!

Gorgeous and Golden is a weekend Brownie celebration that is happening in the South-West region on April 25-26. There are things happening at District and Divisional level and the Brownie units in our districts are joining forces for an activity day focused on the theme of golden - golden food, gold coloured crafting, gold nail polish, and anything else golden we can think of really.
We are pressing on with Adventure 100 - I think we have 15 points now and our end of term session is going to be a glow in the dark disco! We did Science Investigator badge last week and next week we are having a concert - having discovered that every single Brownie in the unit plays an instrument of one kind or another, they are all bringing them in and they are doing their party pieces and we'll have a bit of a jam session. Could be interesting...

BrownOwl18 Sat 14-Nov-09 23:01:26

Ooh yes - What a Performance item 4 - it's worth 10 points. There's usually a method in my madness gringringrin

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Sat 14-Nov-09 23:43:04

That sounds fun.

We're supposed to be having a fundraiser at the end of term - have just bought lots of plain hair slides for us to decorate and sell (hopefully) at a profit. Last year we spent a lot of time making sweets which nobody bought!

MrsWeasley Thu 19-Nov-09 10:02:37

Oh thought I would mention this magazine that I have re-discovered. (Creative Steps)

I used to subscribe a while ago but forgot to renew!blush
I have just found an old xmas copy and it has inspired me to subscribe again. It is out 6 times a year and I remember several times thinking "umm what shall we do next term with my Brownies?" then it would turn up on the mat! grin

I just got 30% off by quoting NCMSAV30

Just thought I would share with other guiding folk. It covers ages upto 11 so is great for Rainbows, Brownies and young guides.

nymphadora Sun 22-Nov-09 12:38:29

I am trying to transfer dd2s brownies. We have moved house and so far dd1&2 both carried on at the same Brownies as Dd1 is going to Guides after Christmas.

I was told that DD2 would get priority into a new pack as a transfer but so far I havent had a response from the new pack and I cant find any info amoungst my Guiding stuff.Dealing with Rainbows we havent had any transfers.

Anyone know about this?

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Mon 23-Nov-09 00:06:14

Hi nymphadora

I've only ever had one Brownie transfer in (and none transfer out - we're a bit like the Hotel California - you can check out any time you like but you can never leave, ha ha).

I thought that existing members transferring in got priority. fairly helpful This page on the website certainly seems to imply so, but I haven't actually been able to find anything that states categorically that tranfers go to the top of the waiting list (I've looked in the online version of the manual but suspect it's in one of the other booklets).

Sorry, not much help and must go to bed now!

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Mon 23-Nov-09 00:09:44

Err, please forgive spelling and other mistakes.

nymphadora Mon 23-Nov-09 18:31:20

Finally got hold of the leader last night and she has just had a drop out so dd2 can go after Xmas!

That's great, Nymphadora!

I've been doing Rainbows today as their leader was ill and we did a great update on Mr Grasshead - we made Mr Jedwards! Can't wait to see their hair grow.

nymphadora Mon 23-Nov-09 19:25:27

LOl, I miss doing Rainbows but since I moved its more difficult to get there and my work has been very hectic and now I cant commit to another troup

MadBadandDangerousToKnow Mon 18-Jan-10 14:39:20

Hello everyone.

Just back from our Funtenary event, where we had a wild time and notched up plenty of points for Adventure 100. grin

May I pick your brains again, on how to manage/meet the needs of girls who are waiting to go up to Guides, consider themselves too sophisticated for Brownies and consequently sneer at the younger ones, who they consider 'lame'. There's the Brownie Go For It, obviously, but more than the practical stuff I'm looking for advice on how to respond to the 'too cool for school' attitude here. Over the weekend, some of these girls have been quite mean to the 7 year olds and I wnat to nip this in the bud. All advice and tips gratefully received!

What's the news from your units?

TrowelAndError Sun 14-Mar-10 20:27:33

Centenary bump?

ASmallBunchOfFlowers Wed 28-Apr-10 10:45:33

<<Puts the kettle on, in case any Scouting or Guiding volunteers wander in from the thread about waiting lists>>

Rossco Wed 28-Apr-10 10:52:15

I've got a meeting tonight with the unit team to sort out what we will do over the coming term.

Anyone got any crazy ideas? The girls love to try new things but because we are soooo rural we don't have a lot of the options that suburban unit do.

It's our County Rainbow Centenary Event next weekend, lots of excited Rainbows in the district just now smile

ASmallBunchOfFlowers Wed 28-Apr-10 11:06:00

We're having a Brownie election next week, where each six will present its manifesto and then we'll have a secret ballot. Their policy commitments include "no boys in Brownies" and "stop pollution". grin

Have you ever had a pamper night? We do hand massages, hair styling and foot soaking (bring a mop). Both of these will earn you Adventure 100 points!

Earlier in this thread there was a description of a jelly babies theme night. We tried it - it was brilliant!

asmallbunchofflowers Sat 29-May-10 11:40:04

The kettle's on, wine's in the fridge and sticky buns on the table.

To anyone dropping in for the first time - welcome.

Rossco - Tell me more about your rural activities. We are a super-urban pack so maybe we could swap ideas and experiences?

YouMightKnowMe Sat 29-May-10 12:06:49

Morning all......sips tea....and then wanders off to ikea.

{I am just doing my ALQ with bronnies BTW}

4andnotout Sat 29-May-10 13:51:29

Hello everyone, I'm doing my ALQ too, I'm doing my Rainbows and Brownies sections.

We are a rural group too from South West Norfolk. We have been handing out reusable bags today in a local town and raising funds for the seaside sparkle centenery event. I'm knackered now!

ASmallBunchOfFlowers Tue 24-Aug-10 16:45:57

So, what will we all be doing this term? Any great Centenary moments planned for October?

Claire2301 Tue 24-Aug-10 16:48:35

I'm waiting to see what my guides want to do but we've got a district event on 20th Oct for contrary. Have you got anything planned?

UniS Tue 07-Sep-10 22:41:57

May I ask a question of wise guide and scout leaders?
I'm starting my sons camp blanket as he has a small accumulation of patches. What kind of blanket are people using nowadays? will fleece work? mine is wool but its from teh 70s.

lovetochat01 Wed 08-Sep-10 20:20:03

Hello All

I am new so please bear with me ha ha, I am an outsider in this conversation but I work with the Body Shop at home and we do different kinds of fund raising aevents to raise money for your own good causes, I am sure you hold quite a few fund raising events but would this appeal to anyone?

Waltons Fri 10-Sep-10 21:58:35

UniS, on the camp blanket I would go for something that is washable at a low temperature/hand washable. Camp blankets are mostly worn at campfires and they reek of woodsmoke after one use.

Well done to you for starting one though - I am ashamed to say that none of the members of our Scout Group possesses one!

ASmallBunchOfFlowers Sun 12-Sep-10 23:40:56

Unis - Hello! None of our Brownies has a camp blanket but the Guides do. They bought cheap fleece throws from Ikea, although there are Brownie and Guide blankets available through Girlguiding UK. So, do you prefer authenticity or practicality? wink

Lovetochat - You are very cheeky. Advertisements on MN are meant to be paid for!

Hi, Waltons. How long have you been involved in Scouting?

UniS Tue 21-Sep-10 22:43:18

Have gone for Fleece as boy was getting demanding for it to happen NOW and I had a fleece one around. its got about half a dozen badges on it so far.

ASmallBunchOfFlowers Tue 21-Sep-10 22:51:18

Excellent start, UniS. Will Boy be joining Beavers soon?

UniS Tue 21-Sep-10 22:54:37

not yet. 18month or more till that day. IF he chooses Beavers over ballet as they clash.

Scout19075 Tue 21-Sep-10 22:56:32


ASmallBunchOfFlowers Tue 21-Sep-10 23:05:58

<<proffers biscuits>>

Hello Scout. Let's see if we can breathe some life into this thread. What hot topic should we debate?

Unis -Duh. I should have done the maths. Of course he's not old enough yet for Beavers. Should I admit that I rather hope he sticks with ballet?

Scout19075 Tue 21-Sep-10 23:09:16

Mmm, biscuits.... Fancy any more Girl Scout Cookies, Small? Think I found some more in the 'fridge....

Are there any Senior Section advisors/mentors/leaders (whatever the new appropriate term is) here?

Euphemia Wed 29-Sep-10 16:07:42

Recently completed Module 1 to get my Brownie LQ (I already did Modules 1-4 for Rainbows) and just found out I'm not allowed another LQ badge. Hmf! I have a Rainbow badge tab AND a Brownie badge tab and I don't want to have to swap the badge over twice a week.
I WANT A BADGE!!!! grin

ASmallBunchofFlowers Sat 02-Oct-10 19:50:49

Hello, Euphemia.

<<displays ignorance>>

What's an LQ badge. I haven't got one.

<<badge envy>>

shongololo Sat 02-Oct-10 19:56:42

hello, im from the dark side (scouts) - can I join in?

ASmallBunchofFlowers Sat 02-Oct-10 20:04:34

Yes, of course. You might want to be careful you don't trip over the toadstool. confused

How long have you been a Scout leader? Perhaps we should have a controversial discussion about Scouting being mixed while Guiding is only for girls. wink

<<waits for the Woodcraft Folk to join us>>

shongololo Sat 02-Oct-10 20:15:17

ive been a beaver leader for 5 years! We have about 1/4 girls - all roughty toughty types who don't do glitter (usually have a couple of big brothers) but surprisingly they often move up to Brownies rather than Cubs. They usually come back for Scouts though!

We have just monster waiting lists locally - do you? Possibly as we have 1 Rainbows that caters for an area of over 20k people. AND they only take 16 lasses. As a consequence, all local Beaver Scout groups are full to overflowing.

we are lucky to have 3 warranted leaders plus 2 or 3 regular helpers and 3 young leaders.

ASmallBunchofFlowers Sat 02-Oct-10 20:21:10

Yes, we have a monster waiting list. Our centenary has brought us lots of membership applications, but from girls rather than potential leaders.

There are hardly any Rainbow units in this area - in all the time I've been doing Brownies, I've only had one girl who's been a Rainbow.

Scout19075 Sat 02-Oct-10 20:43:47

We have two Rainbow units in our district but both have waiting lists as they can only take a certain number because of adults available. I'm not sure if there's a Brownie waiting list (lots more units) and I know in my village there isn't one for Guides as we never turn anyone away. Certainly no waiting list for Seniors! But I've got my Seniors unit up and running and some Guides excited to come up over the course of this year!!

Sounds like waiting lists are common everywhere -- there was always a massive one in my area back in the States (for Girl Scouts) but I never turned anyone away and consquently had the largest troop in my Service Unit (District).

EduStudent Sun 03-Oct-10 17:02:36

Just marking my place. Used to be a Young Leader a few years ago, and am trying to get back into a pack now I'm at uni. Just waiting for the Guiding lady to get back to me

She looked quite excited when I said I would do Rainbows, Brownies or Guides...

fluffles Sun 03-Oct-10 17:12:18


guide guider here - but knackered, busy at work and getting married this friday - need an activity for the girls on monday for about 20mins (they're doing go for it's first half)
any ideas??? i'm usually good but today have run 16.3miles and as i say getting married at the weekend but still have to be at work on monday and tuesday to finish up. eek!!!

times like these i wonder if it's not a bit much to handle...

please help me [hopeful emoticon]??

Scout19075 Sun 03-Oct-10 19:44:38

Hi fluffles. Congratulations on your upcoming nuptuals! What sort of activity are you looking for? Can I suggest a couple of games if the girls are doing Go For It!s? How about Fruit Bowl and/or Ladders?

fluffles Sun 03-Oct-10 20:13:38

when they're doing go for it's they kind of need something they can do in groups when they finish as they all finish at different times... something sitting down and quiet preferably grin for while the others are clearing up their carnage..

thanks for any suggestions though.

Scout19075 Sun 03-Oct-10 20:37:25

Have you/they done their Adventure 100 challenge? Lots of good ideas there. Things like designing a future uniform, do 100 of something, water taste test, etc.

Or do you have any girls going to make their Promise this term? You could do Promise-themed activities like Design a World Badge (and explain the symbols they chose) or a Prayer flag.

Or you could do a "Finish the Story" type activity and, if you want, they could make up a skit to share.

fluffles Tue 05-Oct-10 20:33:29

thanks scout, i prepared some balloon games but the girls got a bit hyper so i ended up sitting them down with a wordsearch which they actually really enjoyed and calmed them down a lot.

goes to show you have to prepare for every eventuality.

4andnotout Tue 05-Oct-10 20:38:08

Phew found you all again!

Scout19075 Wed 06-Oct-10 18:42:36

fluffles, glad it all worked out in the end! I ended up not going to Guides this week due to a migraine -- gutted that I missed one of my older young leaders teaching Irish Dancing. Ah well, next time!

Scout19075 Thu 14-Oct-10 20:33:27

Is anyone else really looking forward to the end of the Centenary year/celebrations?

Scout19075 Wed 20-Oct-10 06:23:49

Happy Centenary Finale Day to all of the Guiders out there!

Rangirl Wed 20-Oct-10 17:42:21

Indeed ,
2010 2010 2010
We must be half way to the next one!!!

MaureenMLove Wed 20-Oct-10 18:00:58

Have a good evening everyone! I've had to bow out of our District do, at the last minute. Got a meeting at DD's school, which I'm afraid takes priority over voluntary work!

What's everyone doing then? If I remember at 8.10, I'll silently take my promise again with you all! grin

Scout19075 Wed 20-Oct-10 18:07:54

I was meant to be out our County event with my two units but they said no babies (BabyScout is >1) and MrScout can't get home from work until 8. So I've waved my girls off and wished them a happy celebration. When BabyScout gets to sleep I will "celebrate" by catching up Guiding things, emails, paperwork, etc.

Indith Wed 20-Oct-10 18:10:48

Hope you are all having fun tonight!

ASmallBunchofFlowers Wed 20-Oct-10 22:58:47

Just back from Trfalgar Square. It was quite a moment.

mummyofteens Wed 20-Oct-10 23:13:23

My daughter has been to our local 'celebration' and absolutely loved it. She is 15 and has stayed on at guides as an 'helper' - doesn't want to leave and there isn't a ranger group to go to.

She went all the way through from being a rainbow, then brownie and then guide and gets such a lot out of the organisation

asmallbunchofflowers Wed 24-Nov-10 12:02:08

Hello everyone.

We have our Christmas bizarre bazaar coming up and I need some ideas for things which the Brownies can make and will look professional enough that people will want to buy them. Any ideas?

Scout19075 Wed 01-Dec-10 17:37:39

Small, are you looking for theme-specific things? And how much per craft are you able to spend?

RatherBeOnThePiste Mon 03-Jan-11 12:22:18

My friend runs a very large guide group with its own Brownies Rainbows and Senior section too. They are looking to revitalise their popular Handicraft competition, and she's been asking for ideas for new competition categories. They already have drawing, decorating biscuits etc. My DD loves guides ( she is 13 ) but is far from crafty! The age groups go from 5/6 all the way up to seniors, but that doesn't mean each age group has to.

Does anyone on here have any ideas - she would be grateful. I think she just feels lacking in inspirations!

RatherBeOnThePiste Mon 03-Jan-11 12:23:27

Sorry PS - the competition takes place towards the end of the Spring Term.

Many thanks!

asmallbunchofflowers Tue 04-Jan-11 20:23:13

Some of these ideas come from our local horticultural society:

decorated greetings card (Easter?) - you may want to specify whether cards made from scrapbooking kits from craft shops are acceptable. Some of our very young competitors who had drawn their cards were disappointed (I think rightly) to be pipped to the prize by an older child whose card was made from a kit of ready-cut shapes

vegetable animal

paper bag puppet

wooden spoon puppet

garden on a paper plate/in a shoe box

decorated egg

junk model - specify a theme?

plasticine model - specify a theme?

HeadsUp Sat 15-Jan-11 21:22:17

Just popping in with a glass of wine to see what you are up to this term, we planned out our Brownie programme up to easter with the girls this week. Chocolate night is a definate, lol. Next week we are doing a quiz/ game show night, not quite sure of the format yet ??????

LaVieEnTechnicolor Thu 20-Jan-11 20:00:52

That's impressive planning. We tend to wing it from week to week blush but we have four badges planned for this term at the Brownies' request.

BadRoly Mon 24-Jan-11 20:58:41

Hello, do you mind if I sneak in here? I am new to MN (about a week). I have been with my current Brownie pack since we moved last April (well May with Brownies) and have been put in charge of planning our meetings...

BadRoly Mon 24-Jan-11 21:00:42

HeadsUp - do you always plan with the girls? How much of a say do they have?

LaVie - we have been winging it a lot which I think is why I have been nominated...

LaVieEnTechnicolor Tue 25-Jan-11 20:26:53

I should say, though, that we are working our way through the badges that the Brownies have chosen and, once the clocks go forward, we'll also start work on our Brownie garden. We always grow some plants from seed. So it's maybe not as wing-and-a-prayer as I made it sound.

We always give the Brownies a say, but sometimes we have to take the basis of their ideas and turn it into something more practicable/feasible!

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 09-Feb-11 19:05:19

After yesterday's bunfight on AIBU, I wondered whether anyone fancied a cup of tea or something stronger?

Scout19075 Wed 09-Feb-11 22:36:57

Yes please! (Still waiting for our cup emoticon!)

Scout19075 Wed 09-Feb-11 22:38:48

Met with my mentor for my new level this evening. Really could have signed everything off (silly that the leader qualification doesn't distinguish program levels like the holiday/camping ones do) but she wants to come to one of my new section meetings.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 09-Feb-11 22:39:29

What would you like, Scout? We have tea, wine, gin!

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 09-Feb-11 22:40:34

We had a great meeting last night, if I do say so myself. How was yours?

Scout19075 Wed 09-Feb-11 22:41:09

Sounds silly, but could really go for a big glass of milk and Girl Scout Cookies (tis the season of Thin Mints!).

Fancy a Girl Scout cookie, Maud?

Scout19075 Wed 09-Feb-11 22:42:16

Ours was alright. Most of the night was Go For It!s and we started our Thinking Day pennies. Did you do the baking I think you said you were doing?

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 09-Feb-11 22:46:15

Yeah, I'm always up for a GS cookie.

::proffers glass of milk::

Yes and I found an activity on the website which tied in with food, global poverty and Thinking Day, so it all fell into place very neatly. Phew.

Scout19075 Wed 09-Feb-11 22:49:43

I LOVE when plans come together!

Do you (or anyone) know why you shine pennies for Thinking Day? 'Tis not something I'd ever done and when I asked last night why they were going to do it (don't normally do it but for some reason we did this year) no one could tell me (even the Guiders and Helpers of a certain age).

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 09-Feb-11 22:54:28

We don't - it's rare enough for anyone to remember to bring their coin for TD! I think it's just because you can make a more impressive emblem if the coins are nice and sparkly. I'd forgotten about it, but now I can remember shining 2p pieces with Duraglit when I was a Guide.


ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 09-Feb-11 22:55:16

And I am very much of a Certain Age. Cough.

Scout19075 Wed 09-Feb-11 23:01:24

Maud, these are retire-from-uniform Certain Age.

The answer I got was "tradition" and I pushed "well, why is there a tradition? What started it?" and they looked at me blankly.

BabyScout has his pennies ready for next week.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 09-Feb-11 23:05:26


::Feels quite youthful again::

Yep. I suspect it's just one of those 'always done it this way' traditions. Maybe it came from Baden-Powell himself - it's on a par with whitewashing stones and other things that the British Army used to do!

Scout19075 Wed 09-Feb-11 23:07:00

Just curious, why do people volunteer?

Scout19075 Wed 09-Feb-11 23:08:57

Whitewashing stones? Really? That's a new one on me!

Scout19075 Wed 09-Feb-11 23:10:53

Are there any other Senior Section/Ranger people out there and can I pick your brain?

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 09-Feb-11 23:21:38

An account of whitewashing stones.

Why do people volunteer? It baffles me sometimes! But, seriously, because it seems to me that - despite all the advances of the last century - it's still pretty much a man's world out there, so a girls-only space where girls can learn new skills, have fun and gain confidence is a valuable thing. I see Brownies as the junior wing of the Women's Liberation Army. And our local pack would have folded if new people hadn't got involved and I wanted it to still be there so that, when the time came, GardenGirl at least had the choice whether to be a Brownie or not.

What about you?

Scout19075 Wed 09-Feb-11 23:36:51

GSUSA got ahold of me as a child and never let go. LOL.

While I'd like to give the answer "I do it for the girls" and "I do it to give back to my community" in all honesty I do it for those reasons and, frankly, for myself. I enjoy the girls. I enjoy the friendships I've made with fellow leaders/volunteers. I enjoy the different activities, trying new things, teaching and learning new skills.

Girl Scouts has a lot to answer for in helping me become the person I am now and I want other girls to have the opportunities I did. When I was young and single it was good for girls to see a young "old" person and to hear of the recent past and what was achievable (trips, awards, opportunities). I volunteered within a month of my wedding here in the UK as a way to meet people in my new country (that, and this sounds sad, there was gaping hole in my life without Girl Scouts and I only missed six weeks of the new school year).

Heck, Girl Scouts/Girl Guiding gave me MrScout -- who needs more reason to volunteer than that?! wink

madwomanintheattic Tue 15-Feb-11 17:42:51

oo, we're not quite into cookie season yet here (scout popcorn just disappearing over the horizon) but looking forward to the mint. grin

currently a scouts canada cub leader and girl guides of canada pathfinders leader. we set up a new beaver colony and cub pack last year (next week is our first anniversary grin) as there was a big gap for the boys in our remote little corner of the world. and they needed something to do.

first love is the girls, and am loving the 'empowering girls' theme for this thinking day.

current issues include trying to youtube 'kub kars' to find out wtf. (as an entity our sole experience of kub kars being one leader once saw an episode of south park where they were featured...confused) we've made them (race numbers and varnish this week) wink but are now required to build some sort of race ramp (um. ok) and challenge other local groups to races. (um. ok)

anyone have any idea at all on regulation sizes for kub kar ramps? <schedules nervous breakdown>

but on the plus side - three weeks until winter camp - snowshoeing, skiing, possibly ice-fishing, and artist's badge ahoy (snowy landscape saves on paint colour choices wink)

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 15-Feb-11 20:32:42

That sounds great, Madwoman! (Are you the first Mrs Rochester, by the way?)

HattiFattner Tue 15-Feb-11 20:39:43

madwoman if you want to get your Beavers linked to my Beavers,send me a PM....we are a very old group- one of the first, and have a busy beaver colony. Tried linking up with some Candaians some years ago, but never really heard from them after initial contact. Would love to link up with some international Beavers!

Scout19075 Wed 16-Feb-11 12:46:55

Just had a huge compliment today. Was at a toddler group with BabyScout and the group was in the village where I am a Guide/Seniors leader. Saw a mom of two of my former Guides (one of which who is now in uni). Apparently the girls LOVED me, especially the younger one, and always loved going camping with me. Sounds like she still talks about it years later and they used to make their mom make one of the (American) treats I taught them how to make at camp.


ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 16-Feb-11 19:32:04

Feedback like that is always lovely to hear, isn't it?

Scout19075 Thu 17-Feb-11 08:57:44

It definitely made my morning! Especially since I had only just moved to the UK when I had her daughters and was still learning about Guiding (which is, in a lot of ways, different than Girl Scouts).

Scout19075 Thu 24-Feb-11 19:29:37

Does anyone live in a county or region that has different "Challenge Badges" that girls of all ages can work on and then send away for a badge? My Seniors are wonderful but look at me stupidly when I ask "What do you want to do next week/next month/this term?" I'm trying to gather lots of those badges to use as a jumping point of something to do with them. They're also really good for "downtime packs" at camp.


ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 01-Mar-11 16:14:39

Sorry not to have posted sooner.

We did a South America challenge badge a while back but I can't remember where we got it from. I was in the shop at CHQ recently and there were two different badges for sale on the counter - could you contact them and ask for details?

chrisrobin Fri 08-Apr-11 22:53:27

Scout- hope this isn't too late for you but Girlguiding Cymru are doing the Beyond the Duck challenge- badge is a pink duck, went down very well with my girls. Warning though, it may send you quackers!

Scout19075 Sun 10-Apr-11 11:28:25

chrisrobin, never too late! I've been collecting challenges and keeping them in a book and the girls go through and choose what they want to do next. Would the badge be easy to find?

chrisrobin Sun 10-Apr-11 15:21:18

The badge is available through GG cymru, its on their website, Beyond the Duck but its a 2011 thing only. Am having trouble accessing GG cymru site today, it may be down for maintainance.

Scout19075 Mon 11-Apr-11 14:19:02

Thanks chrisrobin! Took a bit to get into but I'm there and it looks like great fun and just the sort of thing my girls would get a kick out of!

Scout19075 Sun 01-May-11 08:06:30

To any former or current Guides out there, can you think of any songs that have the words prince/s and/or princess/es in them?

woolleybear Sun 01-May-11 10:39:18

Do you know the words to Princess Pat?

Hi, I've just found this thread, I'm a Guide Guider in Surrey.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 03-May-11 20:36:34

Are you still working on the Royal Wedding badge, Scout? We had a hoot tonight - and more to follow next week!

Scout19075 Tue 03-May-11 22:44:04

Maud, my Senior girlies have finished it but now I'm doing it with our Guide girlies. So far so good!

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 03-May-11 23:08:07

Sorry, Woolleybear. I meant to say hi. Tell us your Guiding stories.

FlorenceMattell Wed 25-May-11 15:01:03

Hi everyone

Im a guider with a Brownie Pack. Our Brown Owl doesnt share anything with the rest of the team. We had five new Brownies start this week and she didnt introuduce them to us or the girls.
Am fed up with her not sharing anything. We (other Guiders) never know what is happening at meeting, yes we plan theme but thats is it.
Also the account are only seen by her. She never answers when asked how much is in account etc.
To be honest I would leave but my niece is in the pack and would be unsafe.
She once had 30 Brownies outside by a pond with 2 leaders.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Sat 04-Jun-11 17:07:32

Florence - That doesn't sound right. Do you have regular team meetings to plan your programme and generally share stuff? Do you feel able to speak to your district person about this?

Scout19075 Sat 04-Jun-11 21:22:49

Hiya Florence. I agree, you should try to get your District person (whether it be the DC or the level liason) involved because that just isn't right.

Scout19075 Sat 04-Jun-11 21:26:36

Calling all experienced Guiders (or former Guides who remember these things) -- HELP!

I'm doing my Senior Section camping test this summer and have been working on the daily schedule and have realized I don't know the proper way to do Colors/Prayer over here. I can do the US way in my sleep, and always want to slip into that so tend to not let my Unit Guider (for Guides) pass that part of camp to me.

Are there any GG publications that will walk me through British Colors/Prayers or can you walk me through what I'm meant to do?


ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Sun 05-Jun-11 18:27:23

Scout - As I said, I'm clueless about Guides in general and colours in particular, but my (cough) well-connected in Guiding circles friend tells me that if you contact Archives at CHQ they will find something for you in one of the old handbooks.

Scout19075 Sun 05-Jun-11 19:32:36

Thanks Maud, that's fabulous! And thanks for thinking of me and asking around. grin

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Sun 05-Jun-11 20:00:16

You're welcome. I bumped into my friend by chance and took the opportunity to interrogate ask her a friendly question.

Scout19075 Sun 05-Jun-11 20:33:26

I'm going to ask some of my lifer friends as well when I see them but will email CHQ and maybe region.

Have I mentioned what our camp theme is?

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 14-Jun-11 11:42:01

No! Do tell .....

Scout19075 Tue 14-Jun-11 22:22:16

"Camp Makes Me Quackers" and we're doing the Duck Challenge from Wales that another Guider (on here) pointed me in the direction of. We're having a long weekend of ducks. grin

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 14-Jun-11 23:53:12

Duck challenge? Duck challenge? Do I know about the Duck Challenge?

Scout19075 Wed 15-Jun-11 06:26:31

Maud, it was mentioned here in April. But I will PM you with the details. It's another fun looking one and last night at our camp planning session the girls went through and picked their activities, laughing as they did.

lizzieloubee1 Sat 02-Jul-11 17:33:55

Hi, I'm new smile

I'm a Guide Guider. Is anyone else on, a forum for Guiding people?

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Sun 03-Jul-11 22:41:38

No, Lizzie, but I think I should be. Yet again I need advice on how far I can/should go in addressing our feeble attendance at church parade. Does the site get much traffic?

Scout19075 Mon 04-Jul-11 20:57:39

I'm not either, Lizzie, but it sounds interesting and will have to check it out!

What's up, Maud?

Oh... and is anyone else struggling with all of these new forms/processes for camps/holidays/etc?

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Mon 04-Jul-11 22:09:09

I had a look last night, and was raring to go, but then saw a huge long spiel about bullying which really put me off. So I haven't yet taken the plunge.

Oh, Scout, things are going from bad to worse. CP is the least of it, as of today.

::sobs a little::

Scout19075 Mon 04-Jul-11 22:16:05

Oh poor Maud -- do you want to have a rant brew and tell me about it?

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Mon 04-Jul-11 22:56:04

That's really kind of you Scout, but it's just the same old same old, with a few new bits thrown in.

woolleybear Tue 05-Jul-11 09:36:05

Hi, I'm an assistant Guide Guider, thought I'd better say! We are just planning for camp at the moment, does anyone know of any good sites for wide games? Thanks

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 05-Jul-11 12:24:56

I justs bought a wide games book from the CHQ shop.

nonemus Wed 13-Jul-11 18:03:10

help! I have just found this on advanced search. My teenage daughter has been helping at Rainbows for some time and decided to train as a leader. However in a year her mentor hasn't managed to see her. I think she's supposed to have some sort of book to record what she is doing, she hasn't got it. Can anyone tell me what is supposed to be happening?

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 20-Sep-11 22:08:54

Oh dear. Sorry for the delay, Nonemus, this thread slipped off my active list.

Is your daughter an adult or a young helper? Either way, she should have received a booklet which outlined the tasks she had to complete and the skills she had to demonstrate. Has nobody been helping her with that? The leader of the unit (even if she's not her mentor) should be making sure that things are happening for her.

Scout19075 Tue 20-Sep-11 22:14:18

Sorry, nonemus. Same excuse as Maud. blush

Maud speaks truth and wisdom.

Your daughter should have a mentor, most likely NOT in her unit and most likely a Guider of the same age level (so, another Rainbow leader in her case). The mentor should meet with her, see how things are going in the unit, offer her some of the materials she needs to read, go through her "Pink Book" (her Leadership Qualification book) to see what still needs to be done, etc. The leader of her unit should be involving her in planning so she can make sure the activities she needs to do get planned in. The mentor will probably go to a meeting or two with her, and, if she's having problems in her unit, act as a go-between/mediator.

Does that make sense? Feel free to ask any questions!

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 20-Sep-11 22:17:51

Scout is very kind but she has been a leader far longer than me so the truth and wisdom is hers, not mine.

Scout19075 Tue 20-Sep-11 23:45:16


But I've only done UK Guiding for six years.

Hi, having been a Brownie and a Guide myself then oldest daughter gone through Rainbows, Brownies, Guides (and is now young leader with Brownies and just joined Senior section!) and youngest daughter at Rainbows I really feel I would like to put something back in myself by volunteering. Dilemma is they really need a new Rainbow leader in our village but this just isn't my age group (and cant work times in with school pick ups of older children), would love to help with Brownies but don't want to cramp my young leader daughter's style (she loves being treated as a grown up there and thinks mum being there will mean shes back down to being a "little girl"). Then there's Guides but if I am at Guides as a leader I can't get my own girls to Brownies so I am really struggling for a practical solution. Could fit times in for Senior Section but not sure what this entails as never been involved so haven't a clue types of things they do. Any senior section leaders able to offer any insights please ?

ragged Thu 22-Sep-11 10:08:04

I want to ask some (doubtless minor) questions about DD moving from Brownies to Guides; okay for me to ask here or should I start a new thread? Ta!

Scout19075 Thu 22-Sep-11 12:28:27

Sure, ragged, ask away.

And tracey I am both a Guides and Seniors leader -- ask away!

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Thu 22-Sep-11 12:40:35

Tracey - Scout will give you excellent advice about being a Senior Section leader, but if it really doesn't work for you to be a leader at regular meetings, could you take on another role? There are often vacancies for (say) county advisers on different types of activity (such as holidays, walking or watersports) or for people to do accounts for units or for the district. Could you be your district's/county's volunteer coordinator?

I completely take your point about the difficulty in being a leader in the unit your daughter attends - I sometimes think my daughter gets a worse (and certainly a different) experience at Brownies simply because I am the Guider and so she doesn't get quite the same chance to explore things away from the home and school environment that the other Brownies do. But I couldn't get her to any other nearby pack and besides mine is better than the others.

Ragged - Ask away!

Well Scout, my DD1 has just joined her senior section group and they seem keen on D of E awards. Whilst I think this is great for the girls and whilst I love camping I am not into map reading and camping without a nice loo ! I am willing to have a go at most activities/crafts/music etc etc but couldn't do a D of E expedition. What types of things do you do with your senior section ?

ragged Thu 22-Sep-11 17:00:13

Ta smile.
DD is leaving Brownies (she has loved) & joining Guides (many friends already there), probably in January, soon after turning 10. How would I know if she wasn't ready for Guides? And beyond uniform & older girl-ness, what to expect? Is it just more of the same? Guides seem to do fewer badges, so what do they do instead of badges? Is there a different ethos about the purpose of Guides rather than Brownies? I assume the Guides summer camp might be longer or further away or more challenging... Any other transition difference I might not be expecting? TIA.

Scout19075 Thu 22-Sep-11 17:58:01

Just popped online briefly to see if MrScout has emailed me to tell me what time he'll be home (crazy work schedule so I never know!). It's witching hour for ToddlerScout (two next month!) but I've seen both of your questions and will be able to answer both. I'll do so when TS is in bed.

Awww, Maud. blush

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Thu 22-Sep-11 19:03:21

Ragged - I can talk a bit about the transition from Brownies to Guides from the Brownies' perspective. What my Brownies notice (and of course some of this may be about the way I run my unit and the way the Guides run theirs) is that they have to put a lot more effort in and become much more responsible for themselves when they reach Guides. At Brownies if they want to do cooking (for example) I find a suitable recipe, go and buy the ingredients, bring in the pots and pans. At Guides they would be expected to share those jobs with other Guides and if the girl responsible for bringing the pans doesn't do it the whole activity will fall apart.

I would say that the ethos is the same, but the older the girls get the more autonomy they have in choosing their activities (Brownies get some choice of course but Guides get more). If your Guide unit does few badges, that may be why.

How does your daughter feel about going up to Guides? We are heavily oversubscribed so I encourage mine to go as soon as they're 10, but sometimes those who joined Brownies late (at 9, say, rather than 7) stay for an extra term.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Thu 22-Sep-11 19:05:08

Oh, and if your Brownie and Guide units are both sufficiently well off for volunteers that they can each run a camp, just thank your (and your daughter's) lucky stars!

ragged Thu 22-Sep-11 20:21:46

Ta, I'd love DD to get into a mindset of being more responsible for self! I will try to prep DD for that. You do hear a lot about people who loved Brownies but didn't get on with Guides.

No problems here with being over-subbed or too few volunteers, girls stay on 'til nearly 11 sometimes, though, just coz they like Brownies, I guess. Am not sure why, but numbers are sharply down for pack membership and going on pack holiday (all ages, am involved in FOG so I hear operational gossip). Presumably that's because of "the current economic climate."

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Thu 22-Sep-11 20:31:03

Yes, the economic climate is probably behind some of it - although as Brownie subs are about a third of the costs of a term's ballet/gymnastics/whatever, I'd expect Brownies to be the last thing to be dropped.

Our pack holidays have always been quite poorly supported. They're incredibly cheap but everyone has such busy lives that giving up a whole weekend for Brownies is tricky.

ragged Sat 24-Sep-11 05:56:39

Well, it just happened last night was a pack leaders/FOG meeting & I even felt up to going.

They are very low on numbers in 4/5 packs (1 Rainbows, 3 Brownies), so I offered to help recruit. Suggested that numbers low because Brownies are not adventurous enough. They are convinced locally that Cubs/Scouts have poached all the girls.

Do you think 7:15 or 8pm finish is too late on a school night for Brownies? Other people seem to be saying it is.. and actually, I remember thinking how late it was when DD started Brownies, too.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Sat 24-Sep-11 17:10:12

Hmm. I've heard it said before that Cubs 'poach' girls but, really, girls (and parents) make the choice. I guess that on the whole Cubs may be more adventurous than Brownies, if only because (again, on the whole and with exceptions either way) Scouting groups seem to meet in bigger halls with bigger outdoor spaces and can offer more in the way of outdoor rough-and-tumble games. I've also seen it said on MN that Scouting groups take a more laissez-faire attitude to health and safety (I have no way of gauging how true that is) so that, coupled with the interests and preferences of the respective leaders, may also create a difference.

Our Brownie groups finish at 7.30pm, which parents do seem to think is quite late enough for girls who are only just 7. Then again, my friend's daughters attend a Cub pack which ends at 8.45pm.

mascarpone Tue 27-Sep-11 14:52:55

Hi I've just found you all! I've been a Rainbow Guider for the past 5 years and before that was a Brownie Guider. We've got 2 units in our town which pretty much run back to back - the leadership team is shared across both, so we all plan together and both units do the same activity.

At the moment we're really low on numbers so we are doing a recruitment drive and a Bring a Friend night next week (faints just at the thought!). It seems to go in waves with us - either we're completely over subscribed or struggling to fill the spaces!

We've just had a little girl join us from South Africa who was a Teddy there, so if anyone knows any South African guiding songs which would help her feel at home, that would be great!

I've just got my overnight licence so we'll be planning another sleepover in the new year I think. I must be mad....

Also DD1 will be joining Rainbows next month which I think will be interesting. Any tips for what to do with her when she becomes a limpet and will only refer to me as 'Mummy'??

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 27-Sep-11 16:51:44

That's a really tricky one, Mascarpone. I insist that my daughter calls me Brown Owl like all the other Brownies do and make a point of not working with her group when we split into groups for activities. But it is difficult, as everyone knows she's my daughter. I'm probably harder on her when she misbehaves than I am with the other Brownies, just because I can remember being in units where the Guider's daughter was Brown Owl's or Captain's (yes I'm that old) pet.

mascarpone Tue 04-Oct-11 14:33:29

Well, I think we may have solved the problem now. DD1's going to join the other unit with her friend, which I actually think will be much better all round. She's often better if I'm not there - no chance of hiding behind me which forces her to be a bit braver. It means me making a mad dash home from school with her and her friend, tea and then straight out to Rainbows, but friend's mum will bring her home and deliver her to DH while I am on my way out to run the other unit!! The complicated things we do....

Had a good night last night - Bring a Friend night went well so it's just fingers crossed that some of them actually want to join! They made marshmallow and chocolate caterpillars and then butterfly fridge magnets with nail varnish and sequins.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Mon 10-Oct-11 18:29:02

How do you make marshmallow and chocolate caterpillars?

::need new make-it ideas::

madwomanintheattic Tue 25-Oct-11 18:28:27

hello, lovely ladies, i'm going to gratuitously keep bumping this as i'm looking for a UK brownie pack that would like to receive pen pal letters from a brownie pack in Canada so that my girls can earn their 'pen pals' badge as part of their 'all about me' key - purlease! purlease! at least one reply back would be (as they say here) awesome...

i've got 20 girls at the mo (i enrolled 16 brand newbies last night from sparks - rainbows equivalent) and they are very enthusiastic! and it's snowing here, and i might even send y'all some chocolate mint girl guide cookies to share <beg beg> if i haven't eaten them all myself by then!

pm me if you might be interested...

and look out for the bumps until someone succumbs... grin

(oh, and i would really like someone to get me a proper toadstool as well, can send uk cheque. they are all brown here hmm and i would be the envy of the region if i had a red and white one... wink)

madwomanintheattic Tue 25-Oct-11 20:14:42


madwomanintheattic Tue 25-Oct-11 22:19:13

aren't you all back from brownies yet and partaking of wine and mn?

MaureenMLove Tue 25-Oct-11 22:27:13

grin Gotta love your perssistance!

I am a Rainbow leader, but of course, I know plenty of Brownie leaders! I will enquire if anyone is interested for you!

MaureenMLove Tue 25-Oct-11 22:28:07

Oh and it's half term, so most Guiders are probably drunk under the table, celebrating a week off! grin

madwomanintheattic Tue 25-Oct-11 22:39:38

oh gawd, it is, isn't it. grin i'd have bored myself rigid doing that for a week.

do let me know if you find a willing pack!

(and if not, i'll resort to combing the thread and pm-ing everyone who has confessed to being a brownie leader grin - you have been warned!... )<spooky hallowe'en type stare>

thanks m!

madwomanintheattic Tue 25-Oct-11 22:40:07

<i have next week off grin>

MaureenMLove Tue 25-Oct-11 22:42:44

He he! Top tip - I just scrolled through to see what I was saying, and in one of my very early posts, I suggested getting my best mate Kbear into uniform. She catagorically said no.

She's in uniform....... Brownie unit helper uniform.winkgrin

madwomanintheattic Tue 25-Oct-11 23:00:31

grin our tawny owl is leaving at christmas, so i'm in full-on recruiting mode. unfortunately, don't think there any other mners in this neck of the woods!
<makes mental note k-bear>

PurpleRabbit Tue 25-Oct-11 23:45:03

Hi madwomaninthe attic,

I'm in Scotland, so our half term break was last week! I'm sure my Brownies would love to write to yours - I've PM'd you.

madwomanintheattic Wed 26-Oct-11 00:06:49

oooooo! grin

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Tue 22-Nov-11 11:18:06

Anybody who gets disheartened at how little Guiding seems to be valued by some (I stress, not all) parents might want to look at the AIBU thread about Beavers. The comments there about the value of what the volunteers contribute are really uplifting.

JennyWren Mon 30-Apr-12 23:23:27

Can I resurrect this thread (please!). I am a Guide leader in need of inspiration. Ideas for a Switzerland-themed craft anyone?
Thank you!

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 02-May-12 19:16:02

Please do! It would be lovely to have some regular Guiding chat particularly after the drubbing the Baden Powell groups got on the recent Woodcraft Folk thread.

Don't have any Swiss ideas, though, apart from growing edelweiss or cooking with cheese!

MaureenMLove Wed 02-May-12 19:22:06

Have you looked on here for ideas. I expect there's lots actually, if you dig deep enough, given Our Chalet is there! grin

I made on of those safety pin badges with the Swiss flag on, when I was at HQ last year. I was with Brownies and they all managed.

goingtoexplodesoon Sun 26-Aug-12 01:24:06

Sorry to invade! Scout leader here. I'm also a Browie leader (I have camps every week it seems). I'm currently planning activities for a coordination between Beavers and Brownies. If anyone else wanders onto this site, even if it's monhs after my post (it's already months after the start of this conversation) can anyone give me ideas? I was thinking survival skills, den-making, catch-the-flag kind of game, putting-up-tent competitions, kayaking, raft-building and ghost stories.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Wed 29-Aug-12 20:42:29

Oooh, I'm glad someone's breathed life into this thread!

That joint activity sounds fabulous, gointoexplodesoon. We don't have any Beavers nearby, otherwise it'd be great to do something similar.

EcoLady Sun 09-Sep-12 10:30:07

Just waking up the thread in readiness for a new term. smile

I've got 5 newbies starting Brownies including one with SEN who'll have a Support Worker with her. This is new territory for our pack. We've met with her at home and talked lots with her & her parents. Most of the girls already know her through school, so I think we'll be OK!

Meanwhile DS is moving from Beavers to Cubs and DD is off on an watersports-based Guide camp next weekend.

ComeIntoTheGardenMaud Sun 09-Sep-12 20:22:29

Yes, we've got lots of newbies this term, because we've also got our biggest ever group moving up to Guides together. We also gave several outings this term.

::drowns in paperwork::

JennyWren Wed 03-Oct-12 20:24:39

I have a question and I can't find anything on GO, so I hope that someone here can help smile. Does anyone know if there are any guidance notes available on becoming a Brownie helper/what the role entails - I'd really like something that is aimed at the girl rather than the adult. I can't find anything in the G File and I'm not sure where else to look.