Make new friends, keep old ones… you know what the rest will be. Or, if you’re attending the Girl Scout Leadership Experience (GSLE), do so. These future-leading women are building their own futures with the help of Birmingham’s Junior League (JLB), and they’re teaching them something soon.
Two missions perfectly matched
The GSLE and JLB partnership is more than your favorite comfy sock. The Girl Scout Supergroup of North-Central AL Girl Scouts began about a year ago and has grown into more of a movement than an after-school activity. Mary Frances Collie fell in love with Girl Scouts and was so excited and passionate about it that she joined the project.
“It couldn’t be better as a mashup of two missions for an organization. JLB is focused on developing women to be community leaders – confident leaders. It’s something we’re trying to do with these young girls too. But working with these girls teaches us a lot too.”
Mary Frances Collie, Chair of the Girl Scouts Leadership Experience
Full STEAM Ahead
Girl Scouts focus on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM). A set of STEAM-focused badges are available to ensure a balanced and balanced learning experience. However, it is different from learning in a classroom.
“What I love about Girl Scouts, and what I fell in love with, is how hands-on it is. is not.
You can tailor the experience to what your girl is interested in. We show them the various patches they can work on and ask them which ones they would like to work on. They then get a say in what they choose to do for the rest of the year. ”
In fact, there’s so much fun going on in Girl Scout supergroups that they don’t even realize how much education goes on. It’s like letting me in.
you’ll tell me, i’ll tell you
Last year, a group of five JLB members led a squad of about 25 girls.
“The co-chair of the project is one of my best friends, so it was a lot of fun doing this together. No, we don’t have kids — but it’s been really good for us and it’s been a lot of fun.”
From Badge to Shine
One of Mary Francis’ favorite badges featured a series of scientific experiments. The girls think they are just crafting, but they are actually learning how substances react while making slime.
Girl Scouts, of course, are best known for their fin tints and rhyming words. .
“For example, selling cookies is a lot of fun and exciting for them. But they are learning things like confidence, responsibility, and keeping up with money.
Little things like building a stand outside Walmart. We teach them customer service, we teach them math skills when it comes to counting change in sales. They are having fun, so they don’t realize it. ”
Growing up very shy, I can’t imagine myself today if I had been in a program like the Girl Scouts in my life. It’s really brutal for girls to face in middle school.
Learning to be kind is invaluable
This past year has been full of favorite moments, badges and activities for Mary Frances. But what really struck a chord with me was the Friendship Her badge, and I can understand why.
“We all know bullying and how hard it is to be a girl in this day and age. We did role-playing about what we could do, we did these little skits where we disagreed with someone but was kind and respectful or ‘what not to do’. ”
Scenarios included situations such as when you see someone behaving this way in gym or classroom and you know it’s disrespectful. In connection with the lesson, the craft they did that day was to make a friendship bracelet. As you may know, Girl one of his Scouting mottos is “Make new friends, keep old ones. One is silver, the other is gold.”
“They made a silver and gold bracelet with the letters ‘MNF’ on it. Make new friends. So we ask them to go back to school and find a girl who looks like they need a new friend, or who looks like they’re having a bad day, or who they’ve never talked to before and give them a friendship bracelet. I challenged you to pass the
We encouraged them to put in the effort to build a relationship with someone new and then come back to our next meeting to tell them how it went.
What does GSLE include?
As with everything, plans for what GSLE will look like this fall will change. The group will meet him twice a month, either online or at a socially distanced location. My goal next year is to spend more time doing community work, including visiting Vulcan and the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute.
The only sadness I felt after learning more about GSLE was realizing I was too old to participate. Good news. The changemakers of the future are making their way to the world.
Want to know more about GSLE? Follow JLB on Instagram, Facebook, and their website to get involved in this project and many others.