During the middle of your second year as a Daisy Girl Scout leader or a Brownie Girl Scout leader, you will want to start looking into what your troop has to do to fulfill the necessary bridging requirements to move to the next level. The Girl Scouts of America want Daisies and Brownies to share their excitement about scouting with younger girls. Even though they are only in elementary school, that’s a “big girl” to a four or five year old!
A terrific project that your troop will love to do for the Daisy or Brownie bridging requirement is to put on a puppet show. Even the shyest child will be able to perform from behind a curtain!
Here is how to plan your puppet show.
First, you will need an audience. The easiest thing for you to do is find a first year Daisy troop to watch you perform your show. The entire project is futile without someone watching! Contact your Daisy Service Unit team member and ask her to send an email out to the other Daisy troops to see who is interested in watching your performance. You may also want to speak at your leader meeting and ask if anyone is interested in having their troop see your show.
More than likely, you will have to attend another troop’s meeting for this piece of the requirement. If you do, you will need to get field trip permission and make sure your troop can attend the performance.
If you want to aim for a younger audience, like girls entering kindergarten in the fall, you can look for a preschool or day care center that might let you perform your puppet show. This may be trickier to schedule time-wise, but if you already meet after school, this can be a simple field trip to a nearby center. Call the director to make arrangements.
Once you secure an audience, the girls can start creating the show. This will take several meetings because you need to write a script, make the puppets, and make the puppet theater.
The puppet play could be about:
Fun Things Daisy Girl Scouts Do
The Girl Scout Promise
Girl Scout Law
Discuss with the troop what they want to write about and what message they want to convey to younger girls. They need direction before they can put words to paper. Anything related to Girl Scouts will be appropriate for this project.
As first graders, the girls will need assistance writing and staying on task. This is where your parent volunteers will come in handy. Email parents and ask for their help. Your troop size will determine how much help you need. Six and seven year olds will need more direction on what to write and some may need you to dictate for them.
You may also want to contact an older Junior or Cadette Girl Scout troop to help out with this project. They also need tohelp younger girls as part of their bridging requirements. Being a sister to every Girl Scout is very important in the movement. Again, your Service Unit contact will be able to help you get in touch with an older troop.
For Brownies who will soon be fourth graders, less help will be needed. In fact, because they are older, they should be doing most of the work themselves. Supervision is necessary to make sure the girls stay on track and write things that are appropriate. Give older girls a writing framework and then let them run with it. They should work in small groups and then come together at the end of the meeting to see where they are. As leader, you will have to make corrections in a helpful and non-critical manner.
Photo by Hannah Gold
Once the script is written and finalized, the girls get to make the puppets. One idea for a play is to make one about the Girl Scout Law:
I will do my best to be
honest and fair,
friendly and helpful,
considerate and caring,
courageous and strong, and
responsible for what I say and do,
respect myself and others,
use resources wisely,
make the world a better place, and
be a sister to every Girl Scout.
One girl can be the narrator, others can be each law and write about it. Each puppet is one of the Girl Scout laws. The Color Me Hand Puppets are perfect for this craft. The girls can color in the front and the back with magic markers. They can use the color associated with each law to illustrate the point. On the back they can write the law or ways to demonstrate the law to others.
The puppets can also be used as a play about “being a sister to every Girl Scout” and show how Girl Scouts support one another and help other people and animals. Girls can be very dramatic and this is one way to use drama in a positive way!
You can make the puppets fancier by adding yarn hair and fabric clothing. This will take additional time, so include this as you map out meetings to create your play.
The Puppet Theater
Another thing the girls will need to create is a puppet theater. It is unnecessary to invest in a fancy store-bought one that will be used once. Even if a girl in your troop has one, do not use it. It is better for the girls to make one themselves. A large empty box, paint, and some fabric are all you need. Again, older Girl Scouts can help your troop make this. Instructions for making a simple puppet theater can be found on many different websites, each with it’s own degree of difficulty. Find one that will work for your girls.
Once the script is finished, the puppets are made and the stage is complete, it is time to put on the show! Make sure someone is videotaping it so the girls can watch it later. The Daisy to Brownie and Brownie to Junior bridging requirement is one that the girls will remember.
Make Your Own Puppet Kits
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(price as of Mar 23, 2016)