Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Food Drive Ideas

Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast host the Helping Hands Food Drive has a month long community service project in April, time when local food banks have the biggest need. Check out these ideas to make your food drive fun and successful:
  1. Place a food collection box at your school, place of worship, recreation center or a local business. Remember to ask permission first!
  2. Hold a traditional neighborhood food drive. Create fliers and distribute them to homes where you will go back to collect food the following week. Be sure to include the date and time you’ll be returning!
  3. Make posters about the food drive and post them in public locations. Include a list of items most needed by food banks and locations where donations can be dropped off.
  4. Hold a can building contest. Judges can award prizes to groups with the most creative construction and most cans. Be sure to be safe!
  5. Use door hangers to alert neighbors that you’re collecting food donations. We have a template for you to use here.
  6. Assign each girl in your troop a color of box or can. The girl with the most cans and boxes wins a prize!
  7. Pick a theme! Focus on collecting a certain type or group of food—breakfast foods, jars of peanut butter, healthy snack foods, etc.
  8. Plan a special event and "charge" a food donation for admission.
  9. Have a themed potluck dinner. Have everyone bring the recipe to share and a bag of the nonperishable food ingredients in their dish.
  10. Make thank you cards to give to people who donate food to your collection drive. We have a template to help you get started here.
Girl Scouts can also earn the Helping Hands Food Drive patch. Get more information here.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Encourage Access to Girl Scouts

GSCCC members in North Carolina, please support North Carolina Senate Bill 400 sponsored by NC Senator Erica Smith-Ingram.

S400 - This bill would encourage regional schools in North Carolina to facilitate access for students to participate in activities provided by the Boy Scouts of America, and its affiliated North Carolina groups and councils, and the Girl Scouts of the United States of America, and its affiliated North Carolina groups and councils. Student participation in any activities offered by these organizations shall not interfere with instructional time during the school day. Find details of the bill here.

Allowing Girl Scouts to give information on, and provide activities from, the Girl Scout Leadership Experience will help us reach more girls and serve our mission of helping build girls of courage, confidence and character, to make the world a better place!

Find members of the North Carolina Assembly – Whorepresents me?

Gold Award Spotlight: Preschool Educational Program for The Watermen's Museum

Girl Scout Ambassador Evelyn from Yorktown has earned the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest honor and achievement in Girl Scouting. For her project, Evelyn developed an educational program to prepare preschoolers for a field trip to The Watermen’s Museum. Each year, the students from Chestnut Memorial Preschool take a field trip to the museum, but the students were unprepared for the amount of information they’d be learning in once day. To address this issue, Evelyn developed hands-on educational activities to engage the children in information about the ecology of the Chesapeake Bay before heading to The Watermen’s Museum.

Before she started creating her program, Evelyn decided it would be a good idea to get experience working with preschoolers. She spent some time volunteering with young children at Vacation Bible School. She then spent time researching teaching styles and learning more about Chesapeake Bay wildlife.

With this experience and knowledge, Evelyn developed six activities to help prepare the children for their annual trip to the museum. Her activities included creating a habitat song to help the children learn about what is necessary for survival, teaching them about the parts of the blue crab, showing them how to identify the difference between clam and oyster shells and familiarizing the preschoolers with the map of the Chesapeake Bay. She also taught them about the animals that are native to the area and helped them compare and contrast the fish species in the bay.

Evelyn teaches preschoolers about the animals in the Chesapeake Bay
“I chose this project because I knew I could use my teaching and leadership skills to make a difference,” Evelyn said. “I was once a student at Chestnut Memorial Preschool, and I wanted to give back to the children who are students there today.”

One week after Evelyn’s final lesson with the preschoolers, they went to The Waterman’s Museum and had a fun day of learning and exploration. The teachers noted that that since the students were well-prepared and because of that, they gained a lot from their time there. The teachers plan to use Evelyn’s lesson plans to continue to prepare their students for this field trip in the future.

Evelyn and students from Chestnut Memorial Preschool look at fish from the
Chesapeake Bay during the school's annual field trip to The Watermen's Museum
The Gold Award requires girls to identify an issue in their community and carry out a Take Action project to address the matter through leadership work. Nationwide, less than 6 percent of eligible Girl Scouts earn the Gold Award, which adds Evelyn to an elite group of female leaders across the country with the honor.

Monday, March 23, 2015

White House Science Fair

Over the past few decades, women in the United States have made great strides in education and entry into the workforce. However, they remain underrepresented in the science and engineering fields. The age-old perception that girls are not high achievers in math and science persists, despite findings by the American Association of University Women that show high school girls and boys perform equally well in math and science. High school girls even earn more math and science credits than boys, but according to a study by the Girl Scout Research Institute, only 13 percent of girls say a STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) career is their first choice.

Organizations, such as Girl Scouts, are committed to helping to fill the gap between STEM interest and career choice for girls. This is especially important in the quest for gender equality because the Department of Commerce found that women in STEM jobs earn 33 percent more than those in non-STEM occupations. They also found that the wage gap between men and women in STEM jobs is smaller than in other fields.

Lauren was one of  nine guests invited to take part in a
roundtable discussion in the Vice President's Ceremonial
Office during the White House Science Fair.
Today, Girl Scout Ambassador Lauren from Newport News was an honored guest at the White House Science Fair. Hosted by President Obama, the fair showcased a broad range of inventions and discoveries by young scientists and engineers from across the country. It also included a specific focus on girls and women who are excelling in STEM and inspiring the next generation with their work. Lauren has a similar mission, and through her Girl Scout Gold Award project, she shared her own passion for STEM in an effort to engage more girls, women and minorities in STEM.

Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast offers unique opportunities for girls of all ages to explore and discover in the STEM fields. It’s an important way for us to give girls the chance to find what they’re interested in and interact with role models in the STEM fields. Here are some upcoming ways that you engage your girl in STEM with GSCCC:
 
Fun, Sun and Wind- Head to the Outer Banks with your Girl Scout on April 25 for a day of science and exploration at Jeanette’s Pier in North Carolina. There will be tons of activities for girls with all sorts of interests— learning about the animals who call the intertidal zone home, discovering how to harness energy from the wind and so much more! Register for this event by April 10 here.

Financing Your Dreams- Show your Girl Scout that it’s cool to be good at math! The Tidewater Chapter of the Virginia Society of CPAs will be hosting a financial literacy workshop for Girl Scout Daisies and Brownies on April 26 to teach them all about money matters. They’ll learn about needs versus wants, ways they can save money, how to make a budget and so much more! Register for this event by April 10 here.

STEM Day on the Tracks- On May 9, your Girl Scout can enjoy a day of fun and STEM-learning at Motor World in Virginia Beach! There will be special activities just for Girl Scouts to teach them about what makes amusement park rides go around, how go-kart engines work and more! Register for this event by April 21 here.
Science Alive- On September 26, Norfolk State University will be hosting the 5th annual Science Alive event for Girl Scouts. During this fun-filled day, Norfolk State University staff and students will lead hands-on STEM activities for girls in areas including engineering, chemistry, medicine, biology and physical science. Register for this event by September 13 here.

Read more about girls’ perceptions, attitudes and interests in the STEM fields in Generation STEM: What Girls Say about Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, a report by the Girl Scout Research Institute.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Get Creative. BLING YOUR BOOTH!

When it comes to Girl Scout Cookie booths, we all know that plain is BORING!


Blinged out cookie booths can attract new customers and increase cookie sales. This year, Girl Scouts of the USA is hosting a contest, and SIX Girl Scout troops will win $500 for their creative booths! And, the council with the most entries into the Bling Your Booth competition will win $5,000! That's a lot of money for us to use for fun girl programs!

So far, at least 24 GSCCC troops have entered the contest, but it's important to keep those entries coming in!

Here are a few great entries from GSCCC troops into this year's contest. Check them out for inspiration, and then go and vote for your favorite booth and add yours to the contest here.

Girl Scout Troop 365 from Moyock picked a creative tropical theme!
Can you believe that this is the first-ever booth for
 Girl Scout Daisy Troop 1398 from Williamsburg?
Bright colors, balloons, cookie costumes... Girl Scout Troop 348
from Poquoson knows how to attract cookie customers!
Girl Scout Troop 990 from Virginia Beach created their own
eye-catching cookie decorations!
View the complete contest details and enter your blinged out booth here. Once you upload your entry, share it with your friends and family to rack up the votes! The deadline to enter your booth is April 30, 2015.

We've also added some really exciting March Madness incentives for cookies. Check them out here.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

GSCCC Girl Scout Heading to the White House

Girl Scouts will be in full force at the White House on March 23, when President Obama will welcome young scientists and engineers from across the country to showcase their inventions and discoveries at the 2015 White House Science Fair.

This year, Girl Scouts are represented by Lauren, a Girl Scout Gold Award recipient from Newport News, whose project aims to reverse the small percentage of minorities and females participating in the fields of aviation and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). Lauren will be joined at the White House Science Fair by a Girl Scout Daisy Troop from Girl Scouts of Eastern Oklahoma who invented a battery-powered page turner for people with arthritis, people who are paralyzed, or “people who have no arms.”

Hosted by President Obama, the fair will feature innovative projects, designs and experiments from students all across America from a broad range of STEM competitions. This year’s fair will also include a specific focus on girls and women who are excelling in STEM and inspiring the next generation with their work.

Lauren, who attends the Denbigh High School Aviation Academy, began her Girl Scout Gold Award project after discovering the small percentage of minorities and females partaking in the fields of aviation and STEM. Prox worked with local scouting troops and youth-serving organizations, developed aviation-themed scavenger hunts that aligned with scouting requirements for patches and made aerospace-centered lesson plans for scouting leaders to use in the future. For older audiences, she gave presentations regarding her STEM experiences, from flying a plane to interning at NASA.

According to the Girl Scout Research Institute study Generation STEM: What Girls Say About Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math, 82 percent of girls see themselves as “smart enough to have a career in STEM." However, only 13 percent of girls say that a STEM career is their first choice. Girls are aware that gender barriers persist in today's society. Researchers found that 57 percent of girls studied agree that if they were to pursue a STEM career, they would “have to work harder than a man to be taken seriously.”

View the White House Science Fair live on Monday, March 23 starting at 11:55 a.m. here.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Hatteras Island Girl Scouts Hold Tagalong Tango

Outfitted in their best dresses with bows in their hair and smiles on their faces, 65 Hatteras Island Girl Scouts stepped out for a night on the town on Friday, February 27 for the Tagalong Tango. This annual dance, which was held at the Hatteras Island Civic Center, is organized especially for Girl Scouts and their dads, grandfathers or other significant adult males who play important roles in their lives.

Members of the military from Coast Guard Station Hatteras
with Girl Scouts Sally, Delaney, Elizabeth and Kimber 
This year, five military members from Coast Guard Station Hatteras Inlet joined the fun after learning about the event from a local Girl Scout leader. They decided to get involved so that all of the girls, even those who came without a date, had a dance partner. Their volunteer efforts were worth it; everyone had a good time dancing the night away. 

“This is one of our best attended events,” Dawn Wimmer, membership specialist for the Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast said. “It’s an opportunity for dads and granddads to get involved in the organization their girls are passionate about, and girls appreciate the special time they get to spend with their dad or other caring adult.”

Girl Scout moms and volunteers supported the event by serving food and stepping up as the designated clean-up crew.

The Tagalong Tango is named in honor of a Girl Scout Cookie variety, Tagalongs, the third best seller among the eight varieties that are being sold by area Girl Scouts through March 29. You can find all the varieties at cookie booths. To find a booth near you, use the Cookie Finder app or visit www.girlscoutcookies.org to enter your zip code and find cookie booths nearby.

It’s not too late in the year for girls to join the fun of Girl Scouting. For information about how to get started, visit www.gsccc.org.