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New Programme - Discuss!

Roo

Beginner (10+ posts)
My DBS ran out while the DC was changing, and after I'd had a short break from Guiding, so I'm not getting GUiding magazine ATM, even though I'm paid up with census, so I might be missing some of the answers here. I have a couple of things I'm pondering.

The new Brownies Archaeology badge. I was just wondering what this entailed. My undergrad degree was in archaeology and I can see it has the potential to be either very very good, or very very bad. I can't see the badge requirements as the website tells me to buy the book, and I do Guides now, not Brownies. Does anyone know what girls will have to do? The aim of the badge should be to educate people into protecting the historic environment (the number of times I've upset my own children by not letting them walk on the barrows at Stonehenge, which now have huge trenches carved into them by foot traffic erosion!) and to understand what archaeology actually is. I really hope it does not encourage irresponsible behaviour WRT the historic environment.

The whittling badge. I was very excited to see this. My son has a knife, which he uses for whittling. He is 10. It is an opinel, which is a French make. I have taught him how to use it safely. He has still cut himself. I have cut myself on it (doing something for Guides!) where the locking mechanism failed and I opened my knuckle to the bone! I love the fact that girls are being encouraged to learn about traditional outdoor skills, and especially ones that were traditionally boy skills. However, I was a bit concerned to see int eh badge book only a cursory bit of information about safety, for example, there is no information about sitting when whittling, and putting your elbows on your knees to avoid any possibility of slipping and cutting your leg (and femoral artery!). There's no information about what makes a suitable whittling knife. My in-laws once gave my son a kitchen knife to whittle with while he was staying with them, and I had to remove it, as it was blunt and just not safe. There's also the problem of children being unable to buy knives until they are 18, and the Government is currently considering legislation to make it illegal to buy knives over the internet. This month's bushcraft magazine has more information on this.

Similarly, I'm ecstatic to see a backwoods cooking badge, but again there is not adequate safety information. Given that girls are supposed to be doing interest badges at home, I'm worried that there is potential for injury without correct instruction and supervision. I did backwoods cooking with my guides back in eh summer and before we lit anything, we had a big discussion about responsibility when firelighting, checking it's a minerla soil for example, and about safety with long hair, and clothing.

Lastly, I love geocahing. It's a hobby my family have done since about 2011. However, the instructions given in the badge book are dire! Geocaches, when placed, are for the long term, and any cache that's placed will need maintenance. There's also an online safeguarding element. There was no information about the difference between swag and trackables, for example, or about staying safe when out caching.

Don't get me wrong, I'm really loving these new interest badges, but I have my concerns about the information provided around them. Are girls really expected to do these at home with no expert support?
 

Batty Owl

Veteran (100+ posts)
Roo, Here is the Brownie archaeology badge.
1. Dig it up. Find three objects, either by digging in a place where you have permission, or by looking around your home. You don't need to physically collect these objects, just make a note of the most interesting ones. Next imagine these objects belong to a person you have never met. Think about who that person is, what they are like and what their story is- this is their profile.
2. Future finds. Metal, bone stone and pottery don't degrade. This means archaeololgists find these materials more often. Fabric, plants and wood do degrade, become water-logged or dissolve. This means they don't get found as much.
What will archaeologists of the future find that tells them about us? Explore your local area with an adult and investigate what you think might last from what you can see. Make sure to note down your findings.
3. Buried message. Archaeologists have uncovered messages like cave paintings which help us to understand how people used to live. Make your own message to share what your life is like today. Draw or write a favourite memory, an idea or story. Then bury it in the ground. As you bury your message, survey the area. This means taking notes of special features like trees, rocks and objects, so you can remember the location. Draw a map to help you. After a week, carefully dig up your buried message. Did you remember where it was accurately? Was the map helpful? Share how it felt to be an archaeologist.
 

JJJJ1980

Brownie Leader x 3
Hi
I have a question
When girls move to the next section do they move up with the UMA's and skill builders that they haven't finished?
No they are section specific so while the next section leader can see what they have achieved to allow them to plan building on those skills the girls themselves can not carry any time or badges over to the next section.
 
No they are section specific so while the next section leader can see what they have achieved to allow them to plan building on those skills the girls themselves can not carry any time or badges over to the next section.
We were told that the skills builders DO move up. If a girl does a Stage 3 Skills Builder in Brownies, and does not get a theme award for that theme, then her stage 3 progress is transferred to Guides, as they also do Stage 3.
 

browniebeth

Brownie Leader
Staff member
GuiderPlus
Moderator
I am not convinced that you will be able to see the half completed things, though. I think it may be a flaw of the system that although half-completed things should travel through, they don't....maybe one day!
 

AnotherOwl

Regular (50+ posts)
We were told that the skills builders DO move up. If a girl does a Stage 3 Skills Builder in Brownies, and does not get a theme award for that theme, then her stage 3 progress is transferred to Guides, as they also do Stage 3.
As far as I know, to get a theme award you have to have done a SB in that theme in the section you are getting the award in (eg. Guides in your example).
 

Squirrel-Nutkin

The Wicked Witch of the West (15,000+ posts)
So far this term we have had 2 Rainbows miss two different meetings where we ran different SBs. They won't earn those badges.

It's now the nature of the beast. Miss the activity, miss the badge. It'll be a fortunate Rainbow in our unit who will earn a theme award.

this is the bit that will be harder for rainbows for sure as brownies have another year to get additional SB if they miss out first time round and guides have another 2 years... whereas the youngest section of guiding who only in 2004 GG were telling us were too young to understand and to issue a roundabout badge irrespective as to whether missed a week or not has gone to the other extreme

re SB transferring to next section, if they did stage 2 for something in rainbows they would need to start at stage 3 for that theme in brownies, but nothing they did in rainbows would count towards brownie theme awards or gold award
 

BigBlueCanoe

Beginner (10+ posts)
Have just tried explaining the new programme to my Brownies using the provided resources... got lots of blank looks in return.... so ended up going with "You've got lots of new badges and I'll tell you when you need to tick things off in the book!" Looking on the positive side they liked the idea of getting a badge in return for having adventures!
 

Trinny

Veteran (100+ posts)
re SB transferring to next section, if they did stage 2 for something in rainbows they would need to start at stage 3 for that theme in brownies, but nothing they did in rainbows would count towards brownie theme awards or gold award
This irritates me immensely. If a girl has done one activity from a Skills Builder, even incidentally, she is blocked from using that to gain a theme award in the next section. For example, if a 10 year old Brownie attended an end of term outdoor walk/penny hike, that would incidentally count for the Have Adventures Explore Stage 3. But when she attends guides, she then has to do stage 4 explore, or a camp skills builder (which need a lot more equipment etc) to get her theme award. Whereas, if she hadn't attended that one night at Brownies, she would have a lot more choice at guides, and could work on a skills builder appropriate to her level of ability. It is especially unfair when it is more than likely that clause would also be covered at guides, so she could have fully completed it at guides and counted it for a them either award (had it not been for that fateful penny hike a Brownie).

As a leader, this suggests to me that Skills Builder are for short, focused bursts rather than ongoing learning - as it is much better to have got the badge for 5 activities, but you are penalised in a later section for doing 4.
I will suggest to my Brownies that they tick off their skills builder clauses in pencil in their badge books, and any unfinished at the end of Brownies are not mentioned. I don't think I'll be in any hurry to put individual clauses into Go - only completed SBs.
 
As a leader, this suggests to me that Skills Builder are for short, focused bursts rather than ongoing learning - as it is much better to have got the badge for 5 activities, but you are penalised in a later section for doing 4.
We did our first Skills Builders last night - and thanks to secondary open evenings, had 4 girls missing. We're completing these this term, but now I have four girls who will need to do that first activity in order to gain a badge. By the time we've done all 5 nights, there will probably be a larger list of girls, all of whom are missing at least one of the 5 SB activities.

We're hoping to do a catch up SB for those girls - but it could end up being that case that we can't repeat all of the missing ones in the same meeting. I don't want to penalise those girls for their parents commitments. This is where a Skills Builder should include options. i.e., 4 out of 5 completed. Or include up to 8 options so it's 4 or 5 out of 8. That way we can run activities that everyone can do without risking repetition and cover every girl.

At this point, I'm likely to invent a 6th activity in line with the other 5 to accomplish this. Remembering that Girlguiding is about doing our best and I want to do my best for our girls!
 

ker-stee

SGP Enthusiast
GuiderPlus
So, we're going to take a slightly different approach to SB this term.... We're not going to complete a full one, either in groups or as a whole unit.

What our plan is over the next few weeks to do some 'taster' activities from various different topics (I think we have 4 planned) as this will allow the girls to see the range of activities available in the different themes, but also gives them the chance to make informed choices on how which they will complete after Christmas in smaller groups - I have quite a lot of new leaders too so I hope this will give them more confidence in running a range of activities before I have to leave them with a specific topic/set of actvities ;) .
 

Willow

Veteran (100+ posts)
This irritates me immensely. If a girl has done one activity from a Skills Builder, even incidentally, she is blocked from using that to gain a theme award in the next section. For example, if a 10 year old Brownie attended an end of term outdoor walk/penny hike, that would incidentally count for the Have Adventures Explore Stage 3. But when she attends guides, she then has to do stage 4 explore, or a camp skills builder (which need a lot more equipment etc) to get her theme award. Whereas, if she hadn't attended that one night at Brownies, she would have a lot more choice at guides, and could work on a skills builder appropriate to her level of ability. It is especially unfair when it is more than likely that clause would also be covered at guides, so she could have fully completed it at guides and counted it for a them either award (had it not been for that fateful penny hike a Brownie).

As a leader, this suggests to me that Skills Builder are for short, focused bursts rather than ongoing learning - as it is much better to have got the badge for 5 activities, but you are penalised in a later section for doing 4.
I will suggest to my Brownies that they tick off their skills builder clauses in pencil in their badge books, and any unfinished at the end of Brownies are not mentioned. I don't think I'll be in any hurry to put individual clauses into Go - only completed SBs.
Hi Trinny, can I ask where this information is from?

My understanding is currently:
  • a girl could start on Explore Stage 3 in Brownies (intro e-learning, SB e-learning) and complete up to four activities
  • when she moves to Guides, any unfinished Brownie awards are marked abandoned (GO help file on recording the new programme)
  • she could then start this level again at Guides, and complete it (I have no source for this bit, so this is what I would like to check)
 

Willow

Veteran (100+ posts)
We did our first Skills Builders last night - and thanks to secondary open evenings, had 4 girls missing. We're completing these this term, but now I have four girls who will need to do that first activity in order to gain a badge. By the time we've done all 5 nights, there will probably be a larger list of girls, all of whom are missing at least one of the 5 SB activities.

We're hoping to do a catch up SB for those girls - but it could end up being that case that we can't repeat all of the missing ones in the same meeting. I don't want to penalise those girls for their parents commitments. This is where a Skills Builder should include options. i.e., 4 out of 5 completed. Or include up to 8 options so it's 4 or 5 out of 8. That way we can run activities that everyone can do without risking repetition and cover every girl.

At this point, I'm likely to invent a 6th activity in line with the other 5 to accomplish this. Remembering that Girlguiding is about doing our best and I want to do my best for our girls!
We're in much the same boat!

One week into the SB, and a number have missed it, for unavoidable reasons...

But, whilst we'll try and arrange another session, I am definitely not going to substitute another activity at this stage. The reason is that whilst I would like the girls to earn their badge, I also want Girlguiding to see how the programme actually works. If loads of people appear to be getting SBs, they have no reason to change it as they will assume it is working well. If we can feed back that we have 15 disappointed members, who were unable to attend for perfectly valid reasons, then they have a reason to consider change. Similarly, if they can see that lots of girls started a SB but never finished it, this is a clear signal that the system isn't working.
 
Has anyone tried to update Take Action - Make change skills builder stage 1
when on GO.
There are 5 activities the girls have to complete. Each skills builder card is named.
Usually what is on the card reads the same on GO -
Well there is a mistake - the card reads Charity Challenges but on Go it reads;
- there are lots of ways to help charities.
Just wondered if anyone else noticed this for any of the other skills builders.
 

dragnilk

Regular (50+ posts)
I noticed an error on the trash fashion UMA for Brownies on GO - its only a minor error but it irritates me that there a simple mistakes cropping up: on the card it says "Give it a go" for the challenge indicator but on GO it says "Jump straight in".
 

Trinny

Veteran (100+ posts)
Hi Trinny, can I ask where this information is from?
...
she could then start this level again at Guides, and complete it (I have no source for this bit, so this is what I would like to check)
Good question. I don't have an official source but was told at a training that if a Skills Builder was started in one section, it can't be counted for a theme award in another. Perhaps the way to check is to see if you can abandon then restart a Skills Builder in Go? If so, that might suggest it can be counted if every clause is done afresh.
 

Tregi

Veteran (100+ posts)
Good question. I don't have an official source but was told at a training that if a Skills Builder was started in one section, it can't be counted for a theme award in another. Perhaps the way to check is to see if you can abandon then restart a Skills Builder in Go? If so, that might suggest it can be counted if every clause is done afresh.
I think what they meant was that if you got a SB level 3 in brownies, and did the UMA's/interest badge in guides, it doesn't count for a guide theme award. If they turned up with 4 bits completed, I would say they need to do either the opposite or 4. If they had done 1, 2 or 3, then I would say they needed to do those again in Guides, and complete it there. I believe that an incomplete skills builder won't pass on the areas they have done, so either way, unless they have their book with it up to date, I won't know they have done any of it.
 
Good question. I don't have an official source but was told at a training that if a Skills Builder was started in one section, it can't be counted for a theme award in another. Perhaps the way to check is to see if you can abandon then restart a Skills Builder in Go? If so, that might suggest it can be counted if every clause is done afresh.
And at our training, after what seemed like conflicting answers to similar questions, I asked that specific questions, and the trainer said outright that Interest Badges and UMAs do not progress to the next section, but progress on Skills Builders do.

What I don't know is if she understood the question, or was answering a completely different perspective to what I asked.
 

Spittal Belle

Beginner (10+ posts)
I understood that one of the reasons for changing to the new programme is that some units were repeating things done in previous sections or years and that offering 6 levels of skill builders was to ensure this did not happen.