There aren’t many kids that I haven’t been able to win over with a fun game. Even older girls taking Program Aide training (learning leadership skills through assisting at troop meetings, events and day camp) love the section when they get to learn new games, and practice them of course!
I do love teaching older girls to lead games, because I get to help them understand why adults love games just as much as the girls. While girls love games simply because they are “fun”, adults know there is more to a game than meets the eye. Games allow us a break while preparing another activity and can also help the girls prepare for what is coming next. Whether I’m helping a group get to know each other, energizing girls, or preparing for an overnight by calming them down, I have a game that can help me make these transitions exciting for the girls, and easier for me!
Whenever I’m at an event I have a list of games in my mental “back pocket” and I’ll share them with you through my “Games With a Purpose You Can Use” blog post series. I’ll explain when I use the game and how you can use them to your advantage during a troop meeting, at a camp overnight or any other time your girls need something to do!
This is a great getting to know you (or getting to know you better) game. Rather than a game that encourages memorization of a lot of names at once, this get to know you game delves a little deeper and helps girls get discussions going with other girls with the help of a few challenges!
Ask girls to pair up into groups of two, preferably with someone they don’t yet know, or don’t know that well. I encourage adults to be included in this as well!
Once you have your groups, each pair of two will a.) introduce themselves and b.) find four things they have in common.
Girls may discover the “easy” route such as: “we are both girls”, “we are both Girl Scouts”. Most of the time groups come up with VERY unique commonalities such as ”we can both swim like mermaids”, “neither of like pea soup”, etc.
After your pairs have each found 4 things in common have them find another pair. The four should then find an additional 2-4 new items in common. They shouldn’t be the same as any of the previous eight common ties.
Continue until you have one large group or a few large groups. Then ask the group to share their commonalities. Ask the group if they thought before they started that they would find so much in common. Ask them how they feel about each other, now that they know they have so many things in common. This can be helpful in building relationships with new girls who may have joined your troop or during an event with several troops from your service unit participating throughout a weekend!
That’s all for this week of outdoor program with Angela Ventris. Check back next week for more excited news and adventures in outdoor program!