Every leader knows that no matter how well you have planned for a meeting there will be a time when you find yourself without an activity or maybe the girls are just a little wound up. This has happened to me so many times.
I’ll have a craft or activity that I’m convinced will take 20-30 min and the girls are done in less than ten minutes!
So what do you do?
I found that I can work in the different steps of this badge throughout the year when I need a filler. It keeps the girls focused, gets their wiggles out – and on the plus side, you can earn another badge without a lot of extra effort.
All but one of these games below does not require any set up so just keep them in your back pocket and use when necessary. As with all retired try-its, you only need to complete four of the games below to earn this badge although I have listed all five.
Also please make sure you can find the required number of badges that you will need as they are retired.
Ready? Here we go!
1. Jan-Ken-Pon – Japan’s answer to Rock/Paper/Scissors
Almost everyone knows how to play this simple game and absolutely no preparation is required on your part.
Simply divide the girls into pairs and remind them of the basic rules. Girls will place their hands behind them and yell Jan-Ken-Pon! On Pon, the girls bring one hand out in either the rock (closed fist), paper (open hand) or scissors figure.
Rock beats scissors, scissors beat paper and paper beats rock. The first girl to get to 7 wins.
Still have more time? Consider pitting the winners against each other until you have the ultimate victor!
2. Sheep and Hyena – A fun game from Sudan
You will need a little space to play this game and it works best with at least 10 girls.
Start by designating two girls to be either the sheep or the hyena. The remaining girls join hands and make a circle around the sheep.
The hyena is kept outside and her goal is to try and break through the circle and capture the sheep. Once the hyena is successful that round ends and two other girls are designated as hyena and sheep.
3. Red Light, Green Light – An American classic
Again, this is a game that the vast majority of the girls in your troop will know how to play. One girl is designated as IT or the STOPLIGHT while the other girls line up in a straight line some distance away from her.
The STOPLIGHT will turn around so that her back is to the other girls. As she does this she yells “GREEN LIGHT”. The other girls will start to advance towards the STOPLIGHT.
At some point, the STOPLIGHT will turn around quickly and yell “RED LIGHT!” If the STOPLIGHT catches anyone moving that girl is sent back to the starting line.
The game ends when a girl is able to reach the STOPLIGHT and tag her before she turns around.
4. Hawk and Hens – A fast-paced game from Zimbabwe
This game requires the most space and will have the girls running so be sure you have adequate space.
Before the game, identify at least 2-3 “safe” zones. All of the girls are hens with the exception of one who is the hawk.
Divide the girls up into the different safe zones. The hawk will try to capture the hens as they move from safe zone to safe zone.
If a girl is tagged she is out for the remainder of the game. The last hen to be capture becomes the next hawk.
5. Kim’s game – A Girl Scout tradition
This is the only activity that requires any preparation beforehand.
When I played this with my troop, I divided the girls up into teams of no more than 3-4 girls along with a parent helper.
Each team is given a set of 10 small objects and a covering of some kind. The leader or parent helper lays out the 10 items but keeps them underneath the cover.
The adult then removes the cover and allows the girls one minute to view the objects before recovering them. The girls try to remember and guess the 10 objects.
After each group was done, they rotated to the next station so that we were able to get three rounds completed fairly quickly.
My Brownies loved playing these games. Let me know which one was your favorite!