Girl Scout Journey FAQs Frequently Asked Questions

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1 Girl Scout Journey FAQs Frequently Asked Questions 1. How do we pick which Girl Scout Journey to do? 2. How long does it take to complete a Girl Scout Journey? How long is a typical Girl Scout Journey meeting? 3. Do girls have to complete every activity in the girl book and Adult Guide? 4. Can we adapt the activities in the girl book and Adult Guide? 5. How do we know what has to be done to earn the awards? 6. Girl Scout Journeys feel like schoolwork and our girls don t like to read from the books. Suggestions? 7. How does the Adult Guide work with the girl book? 8. Does each girl need her own Girl Scout Journey book? 9. Do adults need the Adult Guide? 10. Do you have to finish the Girl Scout Journey in the number of Sample Sessions indicated in the Adult Guide? 11. How do you incorporate the three processes: girl-led, learning by doing, and cooperative learning? 12. What does it mean to Take Action and how do we tie it into the Girl Scout Journeys? 13. How can individual girls do Girl Scout Journeys? 14. How can we tie badges, product sale programs, field trips and council events into Girl Scout Journeys? 15. Is there an opportunity to network with other volunteers and their experiences with Girl Scout Journeys? 16. Do you have to complete the Girl Scout Journey before starting the Girl Scout Bronze, Silver, or Gold Award? 17. Is it possible to complete a Girl Scout Journey and Girl Scout Bronze Award in two years?

2 1. How do we pick which Girl Scout Journey to do? There is one Girl Scout Journey from each series available for each grade level-- so at every grade level, girls have three choices! Girls can pick and choose which Girl Scout Journey(s) they wish to experience at every level. They may choose to focus on one series at every level, or dabble in all three, completing various Girl Scout Journeys from the three different series at each level. Each Girl Scout Journey is a series of activities grouped around a theme. Each offers an invitation to explore and take action, and an opportunity to reflect, reward, and celebrate. Get the girls input on which Girl Scout Journey they want to work on. Have the appropriate Girl Scout Journey books at your next planning meeting to help girls make a decision. You could also have 1-2 activities from each book ready to facilitate with girls to give them an idea of what the Girl Scout Journey is about to help them make a decision. 2. How long does it take to complete a Girl Scout Journey? How long is a typical Girl Scout Journey meeting? There is no definitive answer to this question. Each Girl Scout Journey is unique and girls need to decide what they want to get out of their experience. Do they want to earn one award, all of the awards, or complete the Take Action project? How involved will their Take Action project be? The time spent on a Girl Scout Journey will also depend on what additional side trips (field trips) or related badge work girls want to do. How often does your troop meet? Every week, twice a week, twice a month, once a month? Consider the non-journey related activities girls enjoy as well throughout the year such as the Girl Scout Cookie Sale Program activities, council events, community service, planning for a troop trip, etc. when determining the length of time to devote to completing a Girl Scout Journey. Girl Scout Journeys have been done over the course of a full year, within a couple of months, or even over a few weekends. Girl Scout Journey meetings can happen multiple times throughout the year to meet your group s schedule, for minutes per meeting, or as a weekend retreat. 3. Do girls have to complete every activity in the girl book and Adult Guide? No! Each Girl Scout Journey is unique and girls need to decide what they want to get out of their experience. Do they want to earn one award, all of the awards, or complete the Take Action project? Do the girls want to do side trips (field trips), or earn related badges? Girls do not have to complete every activity from the Adult Guide and/or girl book. If girls are doing the Girl Scout Journey to fulfill the pre-requisite requirements for the Girl Scout Bronze, Silver, or Gold Awards, they must complete all awards including the Take Action project. If a troop decides what activities they will be working on during meetings, girls can continue to add to their experience by doing anything else from the Girl Scout Journey that interests them on their own.

3 4. Can we adapt the activities in the girl book and Adult Guide? Absolutely! Do you have a group that is high energy? Very creative? Or enjoys hands-on activities rather than book work? Feel free to tailor the activities to meet the needs and interests of your group. While adapting activities, keep in mind you want them to reach the outcomes and goals of the sessions. 5. How do we know what has to be done to earn the awards? Each Girl Scout Journey gives direction for each award within that Girl Scout Journey about the activities that need to be completed to earn a particular award. Encourage the girls to look in their girl book for the award guidelines (often found in the front or back of the book), in addition to referencing the awards section of the Adult Guide yourself for specifics. 6. Girl Scout Journeys feel like schoolwork and our girls don t like to read from the books. Suggestions? Ask the girls for their input on making their experience better. Is it the theme of the book they don t like? If so, try a different Girl Scout Journey. Have they been sitting all day in school and are sitting again working directly out of the Girl Scout Journey with pens? If so, create a more hands-on, learning by doing experience by adapting the activity to meet the needs of your group. The girls do not have to read directly from the book. Is there a way to adapt the activities and messages in the book to be more hands-on so it feels less like school work? Brainstorm and determine side trips that the girls are interested in that relate to the Girl Scout Journey they are working on. Ask yourself if the experience is being girl-led. Do the girls feel it is being girl-led? If not, adapt the delivery-- refer to the Adult Guide for tips on incorporating the girl-led process. 7. How does the Adult Guide work with the girl book? The Adult Guide is the driver for the Girl Scout Journey, with Sample Sessions, award guidelines, and other valuable information needed when working with the girls in your troop. The Adult Guide often offers ways to introduce and set up activities in the girl book, giving specific language that adults can use so that the activities are more meaningful for the girls. It explains how the focus of the Girl Scout Journey is important to girls development. It further explains the steps to the awards girls can earn. Information on the National Leadership Outcomes is provided specific to that Girl Scout Journey.

4 Throughout the Adult Guide there are creative suggestions, resource guides, side (field) trip ideas, ways to expand a topic, and much more! It provides tips for adults to ensure the Girl Scout Journey is girl-led. Try looking through the girlbbook first to get an idea of the topics for the activities, and then look at the Adult Guide, or vice versa. Sample Sessions in the Adult Guide are provided to show one way to organize the Girl Scout Journey into a specific number of sessions. Make adaptations and mix and match activities as necessary if -OR- choose not to follow the lesson plans at all and work side-by-side with your girls to create a plan for going on the Girl Scout Journey based on their interests and desires. There is no one way of doing it correctly! There are activities in the Adult Guide that are not in the girl book and vice versa. Encourage girls to complete activities from their girl book that are not in the Adult Guide if they wish to do so. The girl book is filled with stories, activities, and ways to reflect on their experience in Girl Scouts. The younger girl series correlate more to the Adult Guide. The older girl books are used as a resource and enrichment to the Adult Guide. Both are valuable to the success of the Girl Scout Journey. 8. Does each girl need her own Girl Scout Journey book? Absolutely! Each girl deserves her own book! Book costs are less or comparable to books parents would buy from a bookstore. Troops can use troop funds or proceeds from the product sale programs to pay for a portion or all of each book. 9. Do adults need the Adult Guide? Yes! The Adult Guide provides a wealth of information on the three processes, Sample Sessions, activities that are not in the girl book, ideas for reflection, planning the final ceremony, details on carrying out the Take Action project, traditions, and so much more! 10. Do you have to finish the Girl Scout Journey in the number of Sample Sessions indicated in the Adult Guide? Absolutely not! The Sample Sessions offer just one example of how to sequence activities from the Adult Guide and activities from the girl book to bring the Girl Scout Journey experience to life for the girls. Don t feel like you and the girls must do everything in the Sample Sessions or in the order given. Think of Girl Scout Journey activities as pieces that can be mixed, matched, and coordinated according to the needs of your girls.

5 11. How do you incorporate the three processes: girl-led, learning by doing, and cooperative learning? It s not just what girls do, but how they are engaged that creates a high-quality Girl Scout experience. All Girl Scout experiences are built on three processes that make Girl Scouting unique from school and other extra-curricular activities. Using the three processes together ensures the quality and promotes the fun and friendship that is so integral to Girl Scouting. In the girl-led experience, girls will lead their experience playing an active part in figuring out the what, where, when, how and why of their activities. Adults will coach the girls to lead the planning, decision-making, learning, and fun as much as possible. This ensures that girls are engaged in their learning and experience leadership opportunities as they prepare to become active participants in their local communities. Girls will learn by doing, a hands-on learning process that engages them in continuous cycles of action and reflection that result in deeper understanding of concepts and mastery of practical skills. As they participate in meaningful activities and then reflect on them, girls get to explore their own questions, discover answers, gain new skills, and share ideas and observations with others. Finally, through cooperative learning, girls will work together toward shared goals in an atmosphere of respect and collaboration that encourages the sharing of skills, knowledge, and learning. The Adult Guides offer tips throughout the book to help volunteers maximize opportunities for girl leadership. More information can be found in the Adult Guide on the three processes. 12. What does it mean to Take Action and how do we tie it into the Girl Scout Journeys? Opportunities for girls to Take Action are built right into the Girl Scout Journey! Each Girl Scout Journey s Take Action project is themed to that Girl Scout Journey series. It s important to note that the Girl Scout Journey girl book and Adult Guide may not call it Take Action. For example, in Media, it s called a Remake Project and in WOW! Wonders of Water, it s called a SAVE Project. Each Girl Scout Journey has ideas for the Take Action project, some in the girl book, some in the Adult Guide, and many in both places. Take Action is different than community service in that it: 1) addresses a root issue, 2) has a measurable impact, and 3) creates lasting change-- sustainability! With progression between the Girl Scout levels, there is similar progression in girls understanding and incorporation of these three concepts in their Take Action projects. 13. How can individual girls do Girl Scout Journeys? Girls wishing to do Girl Scout Journeys on their own is similar to girls working on a Girl Scout Journey in a group. She selects her Girl Scout Journey, uses the three processes: girl led, learning by doing, and cooperative learning, determines what her goals are (does she want to earn the awards? does she need to earn the awards within a specific time period?), and adapts activities and/or incorporates side trips as she prefers. She does this by partnering with an adult. The adult should have the coordinating Adult Guide to the girl book.

6 14. How can we tie badges, product sale programs, field trips and council events into Girl Scout Journeys? In keeping with the journey theme, side trips such as badges, the Girl Scout Cookie Sale Program, camping, council-sponsored program activities, and events are the natural complement to Girl Scout Journeys. A Girl Scout Journey gives girls a consistent experience that ties their whole year together. Badges, the Girl Scout Cookie Sale Program, camping, program activities, and events enable girls to further explore topics of interest. Once you understand the topics and themes of the Girl Scout Journey, you can identify community organizations or businesses that can expand girls Journey experiences. Throughout the Adult Guide you will find field (side) trip ideas. Before girls even open their Girl Scout Journey books, ask what the Girl Scout Journey s theme means to them. Maybe the theme ignites a discussion that helps the girls chart their course for the year! Probe to find out what the girls are most interested in accomplishing and enjoying over the year. This is your chance to encourage girls to dig deeper: Which badges can the group work on to deepen their skills in this area or another area of interest? Can they organize and plan a field trip to find out more about the topic? Are there events that tie into their interest? Can the girls find an expert in the field to invite to their meetings? Each Adult Guide also has more tips for customizing the Girl Scout Journey. Did the Girl Scout Junior Agent of Change Journey spark an interest in animals or animal shelters? Maybe girls will want to earn their Animal Habitats or Flowers badges, or earmark money from the Girl Scout Cookie Sale Program to fund a Take Action project benefiting their local shelter. Are your Girl Scout Daisies inspired by the stories in the Welcome to the Daisy Flower Garden Journey? Maybe they ll want to visit a farmer s market, eat garden veggies, or explore a working farm! There is a world of possibilities waiting for your girls. 15. Is there an opportunity to network with other volunteers and their experiences with Girl Scout Journeys? Yes! We strongly encourage that volunteers attend their service unit leader meetings. This can be the perfect environment to network with other volunteers about all things in Girl Scouts, including Girl Scout Journeys. Watch for other Girl Scout Journey enrichment program activities facilitated by the council throughout the year. Read stories from other Girl Scout troops and leaders who have worked with the Girl Scout Journeys in our Journey Stories section.

7 16. Do you have to complete the Girl Scout Journey before starting the Girl Scout Bronze, Silver, or Gold Award? Yes. The Girl Scout Journey is the pre-requisite requirement towards earning the Girl Scout Bronze, Silver, and Gold Awards and must be completed before any other work on the awards begins. Note: The Take Action project associated with the Girl Scout Journey is not the Girl Scout Bronze, Silver, or Gold Award leadership project. The award leadership project s topic may organically relate to the theme of the Girl Scout Journey or the Girl Scout Journey Take Action project, but it is a separate project. 17. Is it possible to complete a Girl Scout Journey and Girl Scout Bronze Award in two years? Yes. Most girls and/or troops complete their Girl Scout Journey in 4th grade and their Girl Scout Bronze Award in 5th grade. It is also possible for girls to complete a Girl Scout Journey and earn the Girl Scout Bronze Award in one year, depending on the frequency of meetings, the time during meetings devoted to other Girl Scout activities, and whether or not the group meets over the summer.

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