Brownie Designing Robots Badge Part 1

designing robots poster.jpg

I was super excited over the summer when they announced the new S.T.E.M badges. We have been trying to incorporate more S.T.E.M activities in our home for the girls. Last year we got the girls the Dash robot for Christmas and they seem to genuinely have an interest in the programming fun.

When the requirements for the badges came out, I have to admit, I was a bit confused. I must have reviewed the Volunteer Toolkit way too many times and then I realized, like with most of the resources offered, they always seem to be lacking creativity and visual explanation. So, I took to trusty Pinterest to assist with my research and planning.

Here is Part 1 of the Designing Robots Brownie Badge. I do recommend doing this in 2 meetings. It's A LOT and not a badge I would try to cram into one session. They won't take away much if you rush it and that defeats the purpose, right?

Robots Imitate Nature

I was so not a fan of the video recommendations on the VTK. My girls have such a short attention span so anytime I show a video it needs to be engaging! Here is a great substitute that also reinforced their Daisy Flower Garden Journey they completed last year (in case you are a multi-level troop)

Different Robot Parts

For this step, the girls partnered up. Each pair got a marker and a sheet of blank paper. One partner was given an example and they had to pose like a robot. The other partner had to draw what a robot would look like in that pose. Example of a pose: Robot playing basketball. 

Each person was given a chance to pose and draw/ We discussed the different examples of robotic parts they used in their drawings.... joints, gears, levers, pulleys, wheels, sensors, etc.

The girls went on to build their own robotic arms to further explore how robots are like humans and biomimicry. They built arms that could both extend and grab an object.

We lightly taped white lunch bags (filled with little prizes) to the wall for our mystery bag challenge! We taped them slightly above the girl's reach. To my surprise, the extender arms worked (for most)!!! This activity was a suggestion from the VTK. I liked the idea of building the robotic arms but their explanations and materials list left me so confused. There was no direction or suggestions on how to build, just a list of materials to let the girls explore. Now, I know we want to keep it Girl led but my girls could play with a box of the supplies all day and still be confused. So I needed to create an example for them. 

Extender Grabber

So this prototype took ME about 10 minutes to make which means the girls needed a solid 30 minutes to do it themselves.

Materials:

  • craft sticks (NOT the jumbo kind)
  • Shake straws (NOT regular straws)
  • tape
  • toothpicks
  • scissors
upload.jpg

First, you will want to make 4 sections like this...

20171121_103651.jpg

You will need two craft sticks, two 2 inch pieces of straw, and duct tape. Insert the end of a craft stick into the straw piece slightly less than halfway. Insert the other craft stick into the opposite end of the same straw piece. Leave a gap between the two craft sticks to allow for a toothpick hole. Secure craft sticks and straw bits with tape. Take your other straw bit and insert it into the open end of one of your craft sticks just short of halfway. Again, leave just enough room for a toothpick hole and secure with tape. Do this 4 times.

Next

Create your joint by taking one of your sections and punching your toothpick through the center of your straw piece. Take the second section and punch a hole with the same toothpick from your first section to overlap the two sections to make an X.

Take your two remaining sections that you have not used yet and attach them to the opposite straws bit (circled in picture below) using the toothpick punching method. 

20171121_103949.jpg

To finish your extending grabbing arm...

You will want to create something that resembles pinching/fingers. I cut a craft stick in half and attached each half to the end of an open end craft stick with tape (see the bottom half of the picture above).

The extender grabber is now finished and at this point, you can have your girls test it out and troubleshoot areas for improvement. They might need more stability(tape) in an area. Have them play around with the arm and try the mystery bag challenge!

Plan out your Robot

Once the girls understood the different parts of a robot and how they can make one actually work, they got to brainstorming ideas for their own prototype. We discussed simple projects or tasks that would be helpful to have a robot do. 

Suggestions:

  • Feeding a pet
  • retrieving a newspaper
  • Picking up dog poop (LOL)
  • Moping the floor
  • Taking out the garbage
  • Tub scrubbing robots 
  • Trash picker upper

We decided to do the tub scrubbing robot. We found a helpful video online and the girls planned out the materials they would need. Next meeting the girls will have an opportunity to make the robots!

This concludes part 1 of our Designing Robots badge. I will make sure to post updates when we have finished part 2 of the badge with our scrub bots!!! 

Stay tuned!

Don't forget to comment below and share what your troop did for the designing robots badge!!

Mini Bagel Pizzas

mini pizza.jpg

Today I'm excited to share with you a super easy snack that even your littles can put together. We used this idea for the brownie snacks badge and the girls loved it. There are so many ways to use this recipe!

What you need:

  • Mini bagels
  • pizza sauce
  • mozzarella cheese
  • spoon
20170726_110620.jpg

Instructions:

  1. slice the bagels in half (open face). Try to get a brand that has them pre-sliced to make your life easier.
  2. Spoon 2 spoonfuls of sauce on each half and use the back of the spoon to spread.
  3. Sprinkle cheese on top!
  4. If you want to take it a step further you can pop them in an oven at 350 degrees for 8-10 minutes.

These make a great after school snack or you can pack the components in their lunch for a pizza lunchable. I would recommend getting the little cups to put the sauce and cheese in. When we did this with our girl scout troop I had the sauce and cheese divided into these cups for them to make it slightly more organized. You can also store the cheese and sauce cups in your fridge so the kids can help themselves.

20170726_111632.jpg

Brownies: Making Friends Badge

Hello! Welcome back! Today we are covering the steps for the Making Friends Brownie Badge. I personally think this is an excellent badge to cover at the start of the scouting year! It gives the girls a chance to get to know any new girls in the troop. It's also a great "ice breaker" for the year.

  1. Make friendly introductions

    1. Have the girls practice introducing themselves to each of the girls. Have them pretend it's their first time meeting and share their names and one interesting thing about them. 
    2. Use a large bounce ball or beach ball (from Dollar Tree) and write fun questions. Start by passing the ball, when the girl catches it she can say her name and read aloud and answer the question that is facing her. Check out this site for more details.
  2. Show friends you care

    1. Emoji swaps for friends (this one is my fav!)
    2. Write a pen pal letter about why you enjoy being friends with someone
emojiswap2.jpg

 

  1. Share in favorite activities

    1. Have each girl write on a piece of paper their favorite activity or game. Fold them up and put them in a hat and have them guess which activity belongs to which girl. After you have gone through them all save time to play a few games.
      1. Go fish
      2. Eye Found it card game
      3. Jump rope
      4. musical chairs
  2. Learn how to disagree

    1. Friendship skips: Have the girls break up into small groups (2-3 work best) and act out scenarios on how to be a good friend and handle conflict.  We bought these cute turtle craft foam kit. The girls got to decorate their own turtle and attached them to sunglasses and used them with their skips as puppets. They were turtle "scouts". You can also attach them to wooden craft sticks if you don't have sunglasses. 

Skits are a fantastic way for girls to express themselves and build courage in their voice. The girls have a ton of fun with them too! 

  1. Practice friendship

    1. Visit a park and have the girls practice introducing themselves to the other kids. Get a game of tag going with other friends at the park.
    2. Consider creating a buddy bench at school
    3. Have the girls create and sign a Friendship Pledge". Include in the pledge. Examples of what to include could be: I will befriend the new kid in class, I will include everyone on the playground....

For more Brownie scout ideas check out our Brownie page here!

Posted on July 28, 2017 and filed under Girl scouts.

Brownie Snacks Badge

This was a fun badge to work on because what kid doesn't like to eat? I find that my troop is always hungry regardless of what time our meeting is so snack time is a great motivator and mood booster! Rather than spending an entire meeting pigging out on snacks we decided to break this badge up and have one snack each meeting. 

  1. Jump into the world of snacks
    1. Visit a Farming CoOp- visit Cabot Cheese for some program ideas and how you can earn a free patch!....
Posted on July 13, 2017 and filed under Girl scouts.

American Girl: Summer Camp, Friends for Life Movie!

Have you seen it?

American Girl came out with a new movie! Summer Camp, Friends for Life! I was so excited to watch this with my girls. We've watched all of the other American Girl movies but this one in particular touched our hearts as we love CAMP! Summer Camp would make the perfect movie night for your Girl Scout troop!  It's full of summer fun, mystery, and making friends! I see an outdoor movie night on the deck with the troop in the near future!

Brownie First year and Bridging Certificates!

Hey guys!!

I've been meaning to post these. Just needed to at add the finishing touches. These are available for free to download through our Mighty Girls Rock Community group on Facebook! Just look under the "files" section. Come join us!

 

Mighty Girls Rock Community join here!

 

Check out our new printable troop party banner!!!

Troop Party Banner
7.00

For your next Court of Awards or troop party this is the perfect troop party banner! Colors are Mint/light green, dark green, and pink.

 

***Digital file only. Your purchase will be for a printable digital file that you can print off of your own computer. I recommend using a thick cardstock for the best look and durability.

 

There are no refunds on digital products due to the nature of the item.

Add To Cart

Printable Girl Scouts Troop Banner

Well Ladies, it's that time of year that I start planning out our troop's year end Court of Awards ceremony. I like to save the last couple badges the girls earned for their ceremony along with our Cookie Awards. We try and make this day as special as we can as we close the year. 

As part of this year's planning I am in the process of creating a themed printable set for the party. Right now I just have the troop banner. Time has gotten away from me creating the whole set... which will probably wait until next year. But for now, I leave you with this....

Here it is!

You can purchase the printable banner below!

Troop Party Banner
7.00

For your next Court of Awards or troop party this is the perfect troop party banner! Colors are Mint/light green, dark green, and pink.

 

***Digital file only. Your purchase will be for a printable digital file that you can print off of your own computer. I recommend using a thick cardstock for the best look and durability.

 

There are no refunds on digital products due to the nature of the item.

Add To Cart

Brownie Pets Badge

This was a pretty popular badge with the girls and their first choice when they voted on which badges to work on. I think they all thought we would get a troop pet...lol While I considered the idea, the work and organization that would need to go into that seemed more than I wanted to invest for one badge. It's still on the table as the girls keep asking. Maybe a hamster:)

Here are some suggestions for completing the steps.

Pet Journal

At the beginning of the meeting I passed out the pet journal to each of the girls. They were to complete this at home and if they didn't have a pet they could used a stuffed animal. This is a great activity to have them follow up with what they learned and take ownership.

You can find the pet journal here--->> Pet Journal <<---

Step 1 Find out what care different pets need

  • Make a collage. Make a welcome home kit for a specific animal. Use magazines or online pictures to put together a collage of what your pet would need the first day home. You can also use pet store sale ads.
  • Have girls bring small pets (if they have any) to a meeting and share how they care for them. We had a girl bring in all her frogs, lizards, and a bearded dragon! They got such a kit out of it!
  • Put on a pet fair! Have the girls pick a pet and create a presentation board. 
  • Field Trip Idea: Take a visit to a pet shop and calculate the costs.

Step 2 Keep a pet comfy

  • no-sew pillows (fleece tie pillows)
  • Clean out a small animal/fish tank (check with your scouts to see who has small animals for pets)
  • Field Trip: Visit a local farm or barn and clean out the barn or stalls

Step 3 Help a pet stay healthy and safe

  • Field trip: Visit a pet hospital.
  • Build a small pet obstacle course. We also used the suggestion from the VTK and made mini obstacle courses for small pets. You can use items from around the house: construction paper, clothes pins, pipe cleaners, toilet paper rolls, ect. The girls really enjoyed this activity!

Step 4 Make a pet feel loved

  • Braided sock ropes: For this step our troop created pet toys!! We "used resources wisely" and took old socks (mismatched or holes) and cut them up to make braided dog toys. The girls each brought in three socks. While the meeting started I had one adult volunteer cut the socks in half to double the length.

Step 5 Feed a pet

  • Make a feeding schedule for a pet.
  • Dog treats: There are plenty of dog treat recipes on Pinterest through a simple search. I've included a few for you below and a peanut free option!

Treat recipes:

Pumpkin Apple Dog treats

Banana Peanut butter dog treats

Guinea pig treats

Posted on May 3, 2017 and filed under Girl scouts.