Opening Meeting and Brainstorming

Choosing Your Own Direction #3

The opening meetings for both of our Guide and Pathfinder units were very similar this year.

We started with making name tags and a get-to-know you game for the Guides since we have a bunch of new girls from a different school moving up from brownies (Hi, My name is Holly and I like Hiking. Courtney likes Crafts, Maddi likes Monkeys, etc…). All of our Pathfinders were returning girls that we knew well, so we caught up on all the summer news!

We did a quick introduction to the program and their program books, before jumping into our brainstorming sessions!


I got this idea from a Guiding friend and I really like how it went! We posted topics on the walls around the gym and gave each girl a pad of post-it notes and a pencil. The girls got a couple of minutes at each station to write down activities they’d like to do in each theme on their post its and stick them to the wall.

For Guides we used the following topics:

  • “What would you like to learn about?”
  • “How could we help people in the community?”
  • “What crafts would you like to do?”
  • “What have you always wanted to try?”
  • “What badges would you like to earn?”
  • “What would you like to do outdoors?”
  • “What games/sports would you like to play?”
  • “Who would you like to come visit our unit?”
  • “What songs do you like to play?”
  • “What special events would you like to do?”
  • “What outings would you like to do?”

The question format worked well for the Guides! For the Pathfinders, we went even simpler and just posted:

  • “Games/Sports”
  • “Outings”
  • “Service Projects”
  • “Special Events”
  • “Badgework”
  • “Outdoors”
  • “Crafts”

After they had each been to every station, we collected the signs and stuck all the post-it notes to them. After the meeting, we typed up all of their ideas and now we have a whole sheet of activities they want to do this year! For the Guides, it will help us plan our meetings and they came up with some great ideas! For the Pathfinders, we’ll keep the list with us for their planning meetings, in case they need some prompting or ideas for their next self-planned meeting (more about our Pathfinder meeting structure later)

At the end of the meetings, we set aside some time for games. The guides played Pac-man Tag and the Pathfinders played the hand game – both by request! They were the most popular games last year.

Pac-man Tag: The girls are only allowed to run along the gym floor lines, away from the girl who’s “it”. They can’t pass each other on the lines, and if they get caught, they have to sit down on the line and block it so that no one can get through. Once most of the girls are caught and sitting on the lines, we start the game again with a new “it”

Hand game: All the girls sit in a close circle, facing in, with both hands flat on the floor in front of them. Everyone takes their right hand and moves it between the person on their right’s hands, so that everyone’s hands are alternating. Whoever starts chooses a direction and slaps one of their hands. Then the hand next to the starting one, in the chosen direction, slaps. The “slap” continues around the circle until someone double slaps, which switches the direction back the other way. If anyone slaps out of turn, they remove that hand from the circle. The last two girls in the game, win!

Categories: Badgework, Guides, Pathfinders | 1 Comment

Time Capsule

Discover Your Community #5

We did this at the end of last year, with the plan to open it at the end of this year at a bridging event with the Pathfinders (so the girls who were Grade 6 Guides last year will be there for the opening!).

However, this could could just as easily be used at the beginning of the year with the plan to open it at the end of the year. Then you could also include the girls’ wishes/hopes for the Guiding year (and get some ideas about what they want to be doing!)

Each girl made their own personal time capsule in a ziploc bag with their name on it. Inside the bag, they put:

  • Their completed time capsule sheet
  • They traced their hand and their foot on a sheet of paper (so they’ll be able to compare when they open it!)
  • A piece of string that’s their height (In pairs, the girls helped each other cut the string to the right length)
  • A couple of photos of themselves that they picked out of the ones we took at meetings and events (At the beginning of the year, you could snap a photo at a meeting, or ask them to bring one)

We put all of the personal time capsules into a box along with the following:

  • We chose a couple of the badges that we worked on this year (we always end up with extra now that everything is ordered online), and together wrote about what we did to earn the badge and what we liked about it. Everyone had an opportunity to write a comment about it.
  • The girls also chose some photos from their favorite activities. Again, we wrote on the back of the photos why we chose it and why it was fun.

After putting everything in and closing it up, we decorated it and sealed it up with packing tape! The girls loved this part!

Time Capsule

The completed Time Capsule!

The time capsule now lives on the top shelf Holly’s laundry room, until the end of this school year – when it will be opened! Hopefully, the girls will have forgotten about it by then (or at least forgot about some of the things we did!) so that it will be a surprise. Either way, I’m sure they’ll have fun comparing their strings to their current height, seeing how much they’ve grown, and reading about all of their favorites from the year before (“That is SO last year!”)

Categories: Badgework, Guides | Leave a comment

Hunger Games Camp

With the movie release and the massive popularity of the books among our Pathfinders and senior Guides (who were invited to attend Pathfinder camp), we decided to make this year’s Pathfinder camp Hunger Games themed! … with some modifications of course. Like the girls were specifically told NOT to try and kill each other off.

The theme, though, was a great way to incorporate some of the outdoors survival skills from their program!

Outdoor Know How # 1, 2, 3, 6

Finding Your Way # 2, 4, 6, 8

Survivor Girl # 1, 2, 8, 10

We prepared “challenges” in advance, and with the help of my creative mother, came up with rhyming couplets for each challenge. I printed them and glued them into gold cards (from the dollar store), sealed with a Capitol logo.

Messages from the Capitol

We used gold envelopes with the Capitol logo to add suspense and intrigue to the camp!

Categories: Camp, Pathfinders | Leave a comment


Welcome to Hollah Guiding!

We’re Holly and Sarah (get it?  Holly + Sarah -> Hollah 🙂 ). We’re Guiders for a Guide unit and a Pathfinder unit in Newfoundland, Canada. We’re also Co-commissioners for our District.

As busy Guiders – we LOVE finding ideas and plans from other Guiders! We figured it was time for us to give back and post some of our ideas and meetings.

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