Guide Program

Thursday, 5 September 2019

Getting Ready for a New Guiding Year!

It's time for a new Guiding year! Come join us! Remember to register at Guides, Pathfinders and Rangers all start on Tuesday, September 10th!

Sunday, 9 June 2019

Tekarama 12: Witches in Tents

For our year-end camp, we attended Tekarama 12: Witches in Tents at Camp Teka in Paris, Ontario. This event was put on by an amazing group of Guiders and everyone had a great time!

Friday night started with Arrival, Setting Up Tents and  Registration. We only had to put up two tents, so finished quickly and then headed off to our first activity. The majority of the evening was spent working on Crafts, followed by a Snack, and then Bed

The crafts were set up so that groups could come as they finished setting up and work through them in any order. We made a Wand, Lightning Bolt Bookmark, and Owl Letter Holder. 

Before the end of the evening, we had a change to go over Camp Rules and Safety Information, before enjoying our Snack (Rice Krispie squares and chocolate milk) and then getting ready for bed and settled for the night. 

For the weekend, the Guides and Guiders are split up into a number of different Patrols. Guiders generally don't have any of their own Guides in their Patrol, and the Guides only have 1-2 other Guides from their own Unit. This means everyone has a great chance to make new friends!

Saturday Breakfast was waffles with berries and whipped cream, cereal and juice. After we had eaten and washed our own dishes, it was time to do our Patrol Duty for the day. Duties include planning Sunday's opening, Guides' Own, and Campfire, cleaning the lats, wiping down tables, filling dish basins, cleaning the LDU screen, etc. 

Our first activity was for everyone to get their Wand License signed by Albus Dumbledore so that they would be able to use their wand for the various sessions throughout the weekend.

A snack of watermelon, and then it was time to head to our first session, Care of Magical Creatures. Here, we found out that:
Hagrid has been called away to Romania to care for his dragon, Norbert, and now all of his magical creatures have disappeared! Dumbledore contacted the Ministry of Magic and found out that the creatures have been trapped in photographs by Voldemort!
Our mission was to find the photographs and use the information each creature has to solve the first puzzle. Once all the creatures were found, we had a batch of letters that were used to find a spell (Alohamora). The spell was used to determine the number code for a locked box, which contained two more locked boxes and some envelopes. By solving a 'Who Am I?' puzzle, the right envelope was chosen and the small box opened to reveal another clue (Black). This clue was used to solve the combination to the final box, which contained a wand. The wand was used  to cast the Redicio spell to release the creatures from the photographs!

Our second station was Charms, where we learned about different spells and proper wand movements.The Guides were also paired up and had to create a new spell to teach the rest of the group. We then played a game where the Chamber of Secrets had been breached and two monsters were on the loose! If a monster caught you, you were petrified (frozen) and had stand with your arms stretched straight up in the air. To be unpetrified, another player must stand in front of you and sweep their wand down in the air from your head to your stomach.

After finishing these two sessions, it was time to break for Lunch, which was sandwiches, fruit, veggies and a colourful potion to drink (dry ice with food colouring, Sprite poured over it).

The afternoon saw us heading to Herbology, where we potted Mandrakes. To make the screaming part of the mandrake, a hole is punched in a plastic bottle cap with a needle and a string put through it and fed out the hole in the bottom of the clay pot. When the string is wet, and you pull your fingers down it, it makes a squealing noise - for better effects, wear a plastic glove! The mandrakes themselves are made by filling a knee high stocking with a bit of grass seed and gravel (making a grass head). Then orange raffia is tied around the knot in the stocking and the whole thing place din the pot. If watered and cared for, the mandrake will sprout grass like a chia pet!

Our final session of the day was Potions, where we had a demonstration of Regenerating Snakeskin and created Hues of Effervescence.To Regenerate Snakeskin, powdered basilisk skin (powdered sugar) and horn of bicorn (baking soda) were mixed together, packed into a tiny cauldron (medicine cup) and inverted into a glass dish. Before the cup was removed, dragon drool (isopropal alcohol) was poured in. The cup was removed and the drool lit on fire. As it burnt, the snake skin was regenerated! To create Hues of Effervescence, each Guide was given 6 tiny cauldrons (medicine cups) and placed a small amount of horn of bicorn (baking soda) in the bottom of each one. A few drops of food colouring were then added to create the colours of the rainbow. Vinegar was then squirted into the cups in a line creating a very messy rainbow!

Everyone then had some free time to rest, read, spend time with friends, and finish up crafts until supper time. Supper was tacos-in-a-bag, rice and pickles, with Sorting Hat Cupcakes for dessert. 

Evening Program was a round-robin of 5 different activities:
  • Pin the Scar on Harry
  • Ministry of Magic Mailboxes - Guides were divided into teams and had to launch paper airplanes through labelled holes - the smaller the hole, the more points scored - but if a plane went through the other teams mailboxes, they would get the points!
  • Quidditch - Played with balloons, where each team tried to get their 5 balloons through the other teams goalposts without them touching the ground.
  • Hermione's Closet - Relay race to dress up (skirt, shirt, tie, cape) and then return everything to the line for the next player.
  • Ravenclaw Bingo - Harry Potter-themed bingo

The day ended with a Campfire, snack and bed!

On Sunday morning, we began packing as as we got up, then enjoyed a breakfast of cereal, fruit and leftovers before returning to our site to pack up the tents and remaining gear. Camp ended with a Guide's Own in the Reflection Circle. We had a great time and plan to go back to Tekarama in the future!

Tuesday, 28 May 2019

Advancement & Awards

The end of May means it is time for Advancement as we send our 3rd-Year Guides up to Pathfinders. This year's theme was Red Carpet to go along with showing the movies the Guides made earlier in the month. We also had a photo booth that was very popular and 3 of our 3rd-Year Guides finished up their Mixology Badge by making punch for everyone to enjoy with cupcakes. 

Guiding is a journey. Some start as Sparks, while others join later as Brownies, Guides, Pathfinders, Rangers or Guiders. Some will travel along the Guiding path from beginning to end, while others will take breaks along the way. Each person’s journey will be different, but each will be the star of her personal Guiding journey. 

This year, we embraced the new Girls First Program. We now work on Theme Badges and Program Areas rather than checking off boxes for specific activities. This puts our Guides, Pathfinders and Rangers in charge of their Guiding experiences.

In the Guide Together Program Area we find out about Guiding in Canada and around the world, as well experiencing the sisterhood of Guiding. This year we voted on options for the new uniform, explored Guiding history, took part in a community campfire, bridged with Sparks and Brownies for World Thinking Day, and held our annual messy night.

The Build Skills Program Area helps us to build important life skills. We’ve practiced teamwork and leadership skills, learned how to be prepared for emergencies at home, spent time in the kitchen, and made first aid kits.

The Explore Identities Program Area is all about us! We explore what makes us special and learn to appreciate differences in others. This year we shared our dream careers with Girl Guides of Canada and earned the Team Girl badge for the International Day of the Girl.

Our favourite Program Area is <>Experiment and Create because we get to try hands-on science activities, build our own creations, and explore the arts. This year we learned about caterpillars, explored space and astronomy, built with LEGO, wrote and created our own movies, and tried our hand at clay modelling and different types of painting.

Be Well is the Program Area about being healthy – mentally and physically. We’ve learned how to recognized and manage stress, stayed active with lots of games, and built relationships with each other through board games.

Activities in the wider community fall under the Connect and Question Program Area, where we explore our local community, Canada as a whole, and the wider world.  We’ve visited the Caledonia and District Food Bank, celebrated Pancake Tuesday, and explored Maori culture by earning the New Zealand Guide Maoritanga badge.

Service is a big part of Guiding, so the Take Action Program Area is the place for us to explore issues we care about, learn about advocacy and make a difference. We found out how the Food Bank works, packaged items for Christmas hampers, explored issues that impact girls around the world, filled a three shoeboxes for teens living in transitional housing, and took part in the Students Rebuild Ocean Challenge.

Next year a new Program Area will be added called Into the Outdoors, with three theme badges all about camping and outdoor fun! We still went into the outdoors this year with outdoor games, fire lighting, winter camp, emergency preparedness in the outdoors, and cooking on buddy burners.

Tonight we have 5 Guides who are getting ready to star in the next stage of their journey. Sierra, Jaime, Anna, Kennedi and Marika are all receiving the Guide Challenge Pin to remember their time in Guides and a gift to help them keep track of their adventures, use their creativity, explore the world around them, and always be prepared.

Sierra, Jaime and Anna have also earned the Lady Baden-Powell Challenge, the highest award for Guides. To earn this award, they had to complete the Guide program, take part in service and leadership activities, share their Guiding experiences, find out about Pathfinders and learn about Lady Baden-Powell.

Congratulations Guides!

Tuesday, 21 May 2019

Messy Night

Our final regular meeting of the year was our annual Messy Night! This is a night where everyone gets wet and messy with paint, shaving cream, water and anything else we happen to include!

The way Messy Night works is we provide a variety of activities, and the Guides, Pathfinders and Rangers choose which ones they want to try. The main rule of the evening is that you cannot get someone else wet/messy without their consent - meaning those who want to stay dry are able to do so. 

As it was somewhat cooler this May than in past years, we were unable to do some of our favourite activities, such as Paint Twister and the Paint-Water-Shaving Cream Slip 'n' Slide. This year's activities included:
  • Shaving Cream Marbling
  • Face Painting
  • Sidewalk Chalk
  • Hair Chalk
  • Shave the Balloon
  • Bubbles  
  • "Pie" Eating (Whipped Cream)
  • Finger Painting


Tuesday, 14 May 2019

Movie Making

Based on ideas from the Guides, we devoted the first two weeks of May to storyboarding, scripting, designing and creating our own mini-movies!

Each week started with our usual opening ceremony, followed by an active game before diving into our activities for the evening. 

We broke up the steps to help everyone be successful. Our broad steps were:
  1. Brainstorm - Come up with ideas for your topic, setting and characters.
  2. Who, What, When, Where, Why - Create a brief overview of your movie, answering the 5 W questions.
  3. Storyboard - Design each scene in your movie on paper, including what each character will do.
  4. Scrip -  Write your script to match each scene on your storyboard.
  5. Produce - Create your props, costumes, cartoons, LEGO structures, etc. and rehearse your movie.
  6. Film - Check in with a Guider and make your movie a reality!
  7. Edit - Watch your movie on the computer and make any changes needed.

To get everyone thinking, we started off with a brainstorming session about the types of movies that could be made and ideas for themes and topics. Everyone them broke up into groups or decided to work alone. We had three individuals doing LEGO based movies, one working on Anime, and another on cartooning, then one group making an advertisement and two groups creating live action videos.  

Each Guide/Group worked to map out their movie using words and pictures, before moving onto creating the images, structures and supplies they would need to put their plans into action. 

Production, filming and editing took place the second week and resulted in 7 unique videos that we will be showing at Advancement. 

Each week ended with clean-up and reminders for next week, and closed with Taps.

Useful Links:

Tuesday, 30 April 2019

Maoritanga Badge

We ended April with a change of pace by earning the Guide Maoritanga Badge from Girlguiding New Zealand!

As everyone arrived, each Patrol was given a sheet with words and pronunciations in Maori, and challenged to learn greetings, numbers and the cardinal points of the compass. 

We had our usual opening ceremony and then played an active game, using the points of the compass in Maori. This was just a variation on the simple game where players start in the middle of the room and the four walls are used as north, south, east and west. By using the Maori words, we added a twist that meant everyone had to think as they played!

Our next activity was to learn a bit about Maori culture. As part of this, we learned about Matariki, a star cluster that appears in the night sky in mid-June. According to the Maori lunar calendar, the reappearance of Matariki brings the old lunar year to a close and marks the beginning of the new year. The new year was traditionally marked by lighting ritual fires, making offerings and celebrations to the dead, honouring ancestors, and celebrating life.

We then learned about a Powhiri, a welcoming ceremony traditional held in the Marae (meeting house). This ceremony was traditionally performed as a process to find out whether the visitors were friends or enemies. Once they were determined to be friends, the ceremony becomes a formal welcoming.  We watched a YouTube video of a Powhiri performed at the Tamaki Maori Village, Rotorua, New Zealand.

Staying with the theme of welcoming ceremonies, we used an activity sheet found online and had each girl write a Mihi, which is a formal greeting where people introduce themselves and tell a bit about where they come from. A traditional Mihi would be performed at the Marae, and include both your connections to other people and to the land and water. 

After presenting our Mihis, we learned about Kapa Haka, a performance that includes songs, poi, dance and facial expressions. We watched a video of a performance by Tuku Iho Living Legacy. 

Next we learned about Ti Ti Torea, the Maori Stick Game. The game was useful exercise for boys and young men, developing flexibility int he wrist, arm and shoulder in preparation for weaponry skills, but was also practiced by girls and young women as a form of physical activity to enhance coordination and agility. We watched a performance from the Polynesian Cultural Center before trying our hands at the game. 

Ti Ti Torea is played with two or four players. Each person has a pair of wood sticks (Te Rakau). Players kneel on the floor across from each other, holding their sticks upright, ends touching the floor to begin. In unison, they perform a series of movements with their sticks, tapping the sticks together or against their partner's, progressing to throwing a stick to their partner while catching one being thrown to them. The aim is to keep going for as long as possible without any players dropping their sticks. 

Our final activity of the evening was to create Koru Designs. A koru is a type of fern with the same basic shape as a fat comma. Designs can be as basic or as complex as the creator wishes. Traditional colours are red, black and white. 

We finished off the evening with clean-up, reminders for next week, and closed with Taps.


Tuesday, 23 April 2019

Space: The Final Frontier

As Guides arrived for our second Space-themed meeting, they were asked to work with their Patrols to think about what a shelter for a research team on another planet might look like and what humans would need to survive. 

We had our usual opening ceremony, followed by an active game. 

Our main activities started off with a bit of Astronaut Training! We found out about the importance of strong muscles and bones and tried some Strength Training with squats and push-ups. We also explored reflexes and hand-eye co-ordination with a bit of Hand-Eye Reaction Training, where the Guides had to try catching dropped objects before they hit the floor. There are lots of great activities at Mission X: Train Like an Astronaut (see the link below).

We then explored food in space. Astronauts use dehydrated and freeze-dried foods in space, rehydrating their meals before eating. To get an idea of what it would be like to eat in space, we tried out some dehydrated foods - Hawaiian Rice with Chicken, Sweet Corn, and Apple Almond Crisp. Everyone agreed that the Sweet Corn was the best!

The remainder of the meeting was devoted to building space vehicles. We had a variety of space ships, rovers, rockets, and other creations that could be used for space travel!

After cleaning up, we had a bit of time to share each Patrol's space shelter and everyone's space vehicles. 

We ended with reminders for next week and closed with Taps.