Discussion in 'General Guiding' started by Foxi, May 18, 2017.
Girlguiding is in the news today...
Girlguiding overhauls badges to help girls 'thrive' - BBC News
There's some really excellent PR going on today so we're encouraged to get involved via social media. We only get one bite of the cherry on days like this so make the most of it...
Some good ideas have been coming forward, lots of ways that we can embrace our heritage and newer ideas!
One reflection I have though is on calls for things like a "social media" badge. I'd say arguably we have moved on to social media being a clause within other badges as it has become more intergrated within everyone's lives.
I agree, Social media is the tool to many ends but maybe for the time being it's important on knowing how to use the tool to the most effective end and how to safely. Clearly it will change as technology changes...
Lots of good ideas though, I'd love to see an inventor or engineer badge..
The badge syllabus does need an overhaul. I loved badges as a Guide (in the 90s) because there were exciting and challenging stuff to do. I have fond memories of people coming in to help complete certain badges, such as crime prevention (a police officer), radio communications (radio enthusiasts), flower arranger, and the staged badges were pretty neat because you could show that you were getting better at the things that interested you.
It would be awsome to have staged badges that span over all sections, so you could start a badge at the basic level in Rainbows and Brownies and end it later as you improve as you get older in Guides or the Senior Section.
Some of the current badges need to be scrapped. If I hear one more girl say she wants to do the chocolate badge I'm going to cry!
Personally I think the sports badge needs to be split up again into different sport types. Having a second identical badge if they complete it again in a different sport is a bit discouraging.
I hope there are lots of opportunities to do STEM badges. We're currently doing some sewable electronics at Guides!
I'd love to see a few of the older badges brought back. There is no crime prevention or road safety available to the Guides currently, and my goodness, the amount of times I see teens (an adults for that matter) just walking out into the road because they're reading stuff on their phone is ridiculous! And these girls carry this expensive technology around with them and don't often keep them safe and out of sight.
I'd love to see a badge that they work towards that help them understand budgeting, saving, and generally being savvy with money.
Whatever badges we have, I'd like to see leader's badge books that give not only the clauses, but also additional help (ingredeints needed for science experiments, for example). To give the girls a wide range, we offer a variety of badges, but don't always have the knowledge or experience of delivering them. A leader's badge book would be great as it would save so much time Googling and researching. One example is slime - there are so many recipes on the internet, so as well as researching it (along with any reviews if available), we then need to find out whether ingredients are available in the UK (as many sites are American) and what they are called over here. Then we need to have a try at it before going into the unit, to see how much time to realistically allow, how much of each ingredient is actually needed, whether a substitute will do if unable to source something, and to make sure that an essential piece of equipment isn't forgotten.
If it was an online 'book'. pages could easily be updated, which is especially important for subjects such as technology.
Oooh what would be really nice is a badge book app, with all the different sections and criteria available as a reference guide. That way it would be reasonably portable and offline available. This would be to compliment physical copies.
Yup, bring back "Hints and Tips on Guide Badges" by Ms Janson Potts!
I think we need to bring back the old badges again. We were at camp this weekend and some of the brownies commented that they liked my thrift badge (pink pig). They didn't know what thrift ment so we're quite interested when I tried to explain it.
I loved range of badges available when I was a guide in the early 90's but lot of the old badges are probably viewed by the public as just that - old, however, this is where Guiding needs to get smart.
For me a lot of the 'home maker' badges - Cook, Child Care, Hostess, Sewing/ Seamstress, Knitting/ Craft, Thrift etc need re-branding as Life Skills or for older girls How to Look After when you Leave Home.
Two weeks ago we did fire lighting with our girls - many for the first time and they all got stuck in and enjoyed it. Last week we did a bit of sewing - making plate bags and sewing with big needles and thick thread. I was very surprise at the number of girls who were far more daunted by a bit of sewing that lighting a fire from scratch.
I suppose the point I'm making is that I think ALL the skills we teach girls at Guides are important. It's about presentation and relevance. By teaching girls Life-Skills we don't have that worry that perhaps one set of activities is too home makery and skip over them for something more outward bound. Everything has a use somewhere.
I agree with Burghilly. Life Skills and Independent living appear to be wholly undervalued. As a Brownie I remember being taken to the phone box to use the coin from my pocket to show that I could call home: I knew my number and could contact home in emergency. I knew how to contact emergency services.
I could make a cup of tea and a simple meal (beans on toast or similar using a pan and a grill) before I was 8. I could sew a button and do hand washing soon thereafter.
So many of these small old fashioned skills are actually completely necessary for everyone.
I don't think they are undervalued as such, I think people still value such things. The badge goals idea is a marketing stunt which is getting people talking about what skills and areas are important now...... I don't think anyone wants to go back to having a knotters badge but knowing some basic knots are useful and we teach them as part of other activities eg tie a reef knot whilst wearing a blindfold ...
After the dreadful incident on Monday maybe we need to consider other essential life skills. Do the Guides know their home telephone number or mum or dads mobile ? If they needed to ring without their phone could they do it ? It's an extreme situation but there are other scenario's where it could be helpful. Sometimes it's just updating the things that we learnt and putting it into a modern setting.
One SS leader I know used to take her girls on a night out and taught them some safety skills, don't leave drinks unattended etc, sticking together etc..just different life skills.
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Why not? ( no pun intended! )
While few of us might actually use many of the knot in real life, some of them are very decorative and I'd certainly say rope work came under the 'Crafts' umbrella.
This would be a great badge to for a Guide to kill a couple of hours over a summer holiday if they are the crafting type. Fairly cheap and probably wouldn't involve them having to make a poster!
I would like to see a knotter badge come back. For those who want to, they can just work through the badge, but it could also represent skills learned over time - reef knot learned while tying bandages, square lashing and snake lashing for camp gadgets, clove hitch for pioneering...
I think the re-launch of the badges is such a fantastic opportunity and I think it is possible to blend the old with the new. As I said in an earlier post, it's all about presentation.
Yes - there will be some old badges that no longer translate to modern life, simply because technology has moved on, but I think it's about giving girls the choice to try something different or try something that might be historically old and traditional but will be 'new' to them.
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