Girls and Social Media: A Facebook Live Chat

Here at Girl Scouts, we love social media—through Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, we can communicate with volunteers, parents, and girls, (and all those who care about them) in real time. It helps us celebrate our girls’ achievements in such a cool way and gives us a platform to join together and lift each other up when we need it most.

That said, the do’s and don’ts of social can sometimes be tricky even for seasoned adults to navigate. Add kids into the mix, and the terrain gets even more complicated. On one hand, you want to keep them safe—but on the other, you don’t want your child to be left out of their social circle when all of their friends are on Instagram, musical.ly, or Snapchat.

That’s why we’re excited to announce next week’s Facebook Live event, featuring Girl Scouts’ developmental psychologist Dr. Andrea Bastiani Archibald in conversation with Kayla Santalla, Girl Scouts’ senior digital media strategist on Wednesday, May 24th at 3:00 pm ET.

Andrea and Kayla are excited to take your questions about kids and social media both live and in advance. (You can direct-message them to us via Facebook starting today.) They’re eager to tackle topics including:

  • How young is too young for social media?
  • Should you check up on your kid’s account, or is that an invasion of privacy?
  • What privacy settings and other tactics can you use to keep your kids safe online?
  • Are there certain posts that parents shouldn’t share about their children?
  • What’s the deal with screen time and kids overall? Is it really so bad? We’ll make sense of the confusing reports.

So don’t forget to RSVP and join us this Wednesday, May 24th at 3:00 pm ET. We’ll see you there!

Source: Girls and Social Media: A Facebook Live Chat

Celebrating Our Success: A National Award for the Library at the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace!



Guest Blog Post by Cindi Malinick and Lisa Junkin Lopez

Since its opening more than two years ago, tens of thousands of Girl Scouts and visitors from around the world have enjoyed Girls Writing the World: A Library, Reimagined, an installation at the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace in Savannah, Georgia. This week, the exhibition was awarded a National Recognition from the American Alliance of Museums for “Excellence in Exhibition” for “Creating Big Change in a Small Package.” This tremendous honor places Girl Scouts of the USA in the company of the National Museum of African American History and Culture and the Getty, among other recipients this year.

What were these big changes in a small package? The library was transformed from the traditional historic house museum presentation (static and singular-sensory), with little connection to Girl Scouts or even Juliette Gordon Low, to an interactive and layered space. Visitors are encouraged to touch, listen, and see the importance of the written and spoken word as necessary tools to building girls of courage, confidence, and character. The exhibit includes different languages and learning styles, as well as a seamless intersection of art and history, resulting in a bright, creative, and thought-provoking space. Some of the first Girl Scout badges are displayed, highlighting the importance of learning different languages. iPads feature video content of a poetry recited at the White House by Rita Dove, the former Poet Laureate of the United States (and a Girl Scout!). The room’s historic furnishings are filled with a revolving collection of books by, for, and about girls and to underscore the multiple roles and contributions they’ve made at Girl Scouts and throughout history. Whether visitors are leaving their own lines of poetry under the “PoeTree,” inspired by a 1920s Girl Scout silhouette graphic; playing Scrabble in Spanish; or reading Juliette Gordon Low’s musings from her journal, there are plenty of opportunities for them to find their own voices and connect. All within the cozy heart of a library!

Beyond the museum community, girls, troop leaders, and other visitors have also shared their love for the installation. In 2016, the birthplace conducted three months of focused evaluations to understand how visitors experience the birthplace, including the library. Juliette Gordon Low believed that Girl Scouts should be decision-makers for the organization, saying, “if it isn’t right, the girls won’t take to it, and it won’t last.”[1] Birthplace staff followed her advice, turning to girls (and their troop leaders!) to understand how the library exhibit resonates. Their responses were overwhelming: girls feel the library is engaging, historically rich, and relevant to today’s girls.
“Dear Daisy, I felt very honored to visit your house today. My favorite room in the house was the Reimagined Library, because we did so many hands-on activities. My favorite thing we did was making our own self-portraits, because we learned how empowering art is for us. We heard about how you made a difference by founding Girl Scouts. Here’s how I would like to make a difference: keeping your legacy [alive] for as long as I can.”

                 —Morgan, age 13, participating in the “Dear Daisy” postcard activity

 

“When I tell my friends and family about this house, I’ll say that it was fun and educational at the same time. I would recommend it to my friends.”

—Anonymous Girl Scout

 

“In the library, it was neat to see that communication was a key element for Girl Scouts to focus on! Then and now!”


—Anonymous Girl Scout volunteer

So, what’s next for the birthplace? This year, the site is introducing two new Girl Scout Troop Experience programs that promise to be a big hit. The first, She’s Got Game, uses vintage Girl Scout activities, theater games, and mindfulness exercises to encourage risk taking and confidence building. The second, Over Cups of Tea, launching next month, offers a special tea experience for Seniors and Ambassadors in the parlor. The program explores how women and girls have historically launched new social movements—such as Girl Scouts, women’s suffrage, and the Civil Rights Movement—from their own parlors, kitchens, and dining rooms.

Planning a visit to see the birthplace and Girls Writing the World? For more information on our programs, tours, and other projects, visit www.juliettegordonlowbirthplace.org.

[1] As remembered by Dorris Hough in Juliette Low and the Girl Scouts: Juliette Low Goes Camping, p. 114.

Source: Celebrating Our Success: A National Award for the Library at the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace!

Girl Scouts Stands with Faith Communities

Girl Scouts is focused on developing the potential for leadership in all girls. GSUSA established a positive relationship with the highest leadership of the Catholic Church to benefit and support Catholic Girl Scouts throughout the country.

Unfortunately, some have chosen to perpetuate misinformation that the Catholic Church leadership has acknowledged to be false. Girl Scouts is always willing to work with any and every person or organization in order to fulfill our mission of building girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place.

Girl Scouts of the USA is proud of its 100-year relationship with the Catholic Church and is pleased that the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has on its website the following resources: Questions and Answers About Girl Scouts of the USA and About Catholic Scouting; Background on Girl Scouts of the USA and USCCB Conversations.

Three Ways to Inspire Girls to Explore IT and STEM

Today is the perfect day to encourage girls to use their science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) skills to make a real, positive difference in our communities and our world.

That’s because April 27 is International Girls in ICT Day (ICT = information and communication technologies), a day when Girl Scouts take the lead to explore how STEM can make the world a better place!

Since International Girls in ICT Day launched in 2014, more than 240,000 girls and young women have taken part in over 7,200 celebrations in 160 countries worldwide.

Let’s keep that going—and growing—in 2017 and beyond!

There are so many ways you can launch or enhance Girl Scout STEM activities in your community now to reap the benefits later:

1. Plan an event! Let’s get people talking, thinking, and learning more about information and communications technologies. Consider hosting hands-on workshops, career fairs, or one-on-one events with female role-models. Use your imagination, create some excitement, and watch girls’ interest in technology soar! Find more ideas and resources at www.itu.int/girlsinict.

2. Go exploring! There are super-simple ways to find teachable moments in your day-to-day life—and show girls how they can learn about STEM and have fun at the same time. You don’t need to be an expert to introduce girls to STEM, you just have to start the conversation, and she’ll learn the rest. Spark curiosity with these simple activities.

3. Get coding! Young girls are fascinated by science, but research shows that their interest declines as they reach their teens. Made with Code, a pioneering project from Google, reignites that interest in STEM through coding. When girls learn to code, they’re better able to communicate their ideas using technology, so those ideas are brought to life in bigger, brighter, and more creative ways.

On International Girls in ICT Day, let’s work to create a global environment that encourages girls and young women to consider careers in STEM fields. Because what’s good for girls is good for everyone. And the more girls become comfortable with science and technology, the more they can use those skills to forge a better world for all of us.

Let us know how you’re putting the “innovator” in G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader) ™ as you acknowledge International Girls in ICT Day. Share your story, and you could be featured on the Girl Scout Blog or in articles and videos on the Our Stories hub.

Source: Three Ways to Inspire Girls to Explore IT and STEM

Take Three Steps to an Amazing Global Youth Services Day!

Get ready to experience the unstoppable power of young people on a global level!

Because April 21 is Global Youth Service Day, when kids and teens from around the globe unite to make the world a better place. Sound familiar? (Hint: look no further than a green trefoil.)

This year, Girl Scouts across the United States will roll up their sleeves and lead the charge in bringing innovative, youth-led solutions to real-world problems.

And it’s not too late to get in on the action! Here’s how, in just three steps:

  1. Raise your hand. Ask your troop leader or council staff for information on how to participate in your area. Or look up information on getting involved individually, with an organization, at school, or with your family.
  2. Pick your project. Make a difference in one of six key areas: health, environment, poverty and hunger, education, human rights, or community building.
  3. Take action! Get out there and change the world! Show everyone how Girl Scouts take the lead to improve ourselves, our families, our communities, and our world.

Want some inspiration? Look no further than your Girl Scout sisters! Check out Our Stories to see what Girl Scouts are doing every day to make the world a better place!

Let us know how you, as a G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™, will celebrate Global Youth Service Day. Share your story, and you could be featured on the Girl Scout Blog or in future Our Stories articles and videos.

Girl Scouts—and all young citizens of the world—can make a big difference. Let’s do this!

Labels: #girlscoutsgiveback

Source: Take Three Steps to an Amazing Global Youth Services Day!

Girl Scout Blog: 5 Steps to Earning Your Ranger Patch

5 Steps to Earning Your Ranger Patch

Girl Scouts is continuing our exciting partnership with the National Park Service and the “Girl Scout Ranger Program,” a joint venture connecting girls with National Park Service sites throughout the United States, including monuments, seashores, and urban sites.

Through this program, girls are invited to play outdoors, learn about national parks and why they’re preserved, and develop essential leadership skills. Even better, girls have the opportunity to earn patches, complete journeys, and achieve Take Action and Gold Award projects!

So, how exactly do you earn your Ranger patch? It’s simple!

  1. Choose a National Park Service site.

Visit http://www.nps.gov/findapark/index.htm. Choose a national park, a monument, or any of 417 sites protected by the National Park Service. Explore nature, learn the history and read the stories to discover why it is important to preserve your park.

  1. Imagine Yourself in a National Park.

Brainstorm activities that you might want to experience at a national park. Consider working outside with a geologist or inside identifying fossils. Maybe wildfire restoration, building a bridge, or a night sky project interests you.

  1. Contact the park and make a plan.

Call the park (the phone number is on the park’s website under Contact Us). Identify yourself as a Girl Scout. Ask if there is someone who works with the Girl Scout Ranger program or a volunteer coordinator. Express your ideas to the coordinator. Together, plan a project to help the park and fulfill your goals.

  1. Go to the park and Have Fun!

If your park does not have a volunteer program or is too far away to visit, create a Take Action Project.

  1. Share the experience

Share your best shots on Instagram and Twitter using  #FindYourPark and #NPS101 (don’t forget to tag @GirlScouts!) and invite your entire troop to do the same!

Ready to learn more about becoming a Girl Scout Ranger? Click here to read FAQs!

Labels: #FindYourPark, National Park Service, National Park Week, Outdoors, Ranger Patch, Take Action

Source: Girl Scout Blog: 5 Steps to Earning Your Ranger Patch

Girl Scout Blog: Five Ways to Thank Your Girl Scout Volunteer During Volunteer Appreciation Month

We know it, you know it, but do they realize it?

Our extraordinary volunteers are what make the adventurous Girl Scout world go round. And during April, we’re ensuring they hear how much girls and parents appreciate that.

Here are five fun ways to show your favorite volunteer your love and gratitude during National Volunteer Appreciation Month (and beyond!):

1. Make something. Who doesn’t love a handmade gift from the heart? Show the one-of-a-kind Girl Scout volunteer in your life just how much they mean to you by breaking out those arts and crafts supplies and getting creative. They’ll love it!

2. Shout ‘em out on social media. What better way to make your favorite Girl Scout volunteer feel special than to broadcast your thanks far and wide? They’re the best, and you’ll shout it loud and clear: I love my Girl Scout volunteer!

Be sure to include a line about why this volunteer (or volunteers!) is so special to you, and include the hashtag #NVW2017 to call out National Volunteer Week, which runs April 23–29.

3. Write them a love letter. Imagine their surprise when they open their mailbox and find a love letter from you. Need a little inspiration? Check out the letter Girl Scouts put together for these amazing volunteers!

4. Send an eCard. Is your Girl Scout volunteer a digital genius? Get innovative and send them a personalized eCard! It’s easy; pick your favorite G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™ design, type their name, and share the card on social media or through email. Get started today!

5. Have your girl decide. Girl Scouts is girl-led, after all! The relationships between a Girl Scout and her volunteers are precious, so her thank you can be, too! Ask your girl how she would like to give back to volunteers this month. Does she want to sing a song, cook a delicious meal, or save up to buy flowers? Get those creative juices flowing, and help her take the lead!

Source: Girl Scout Blog: Five Ways to Thank Your Girl Scout Volunteer During Volunteer Appreciation Month