Personalized Girl Scout Troop Gifts

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It is that time of year when leaders across the Facebook pages and forums that I read ask each other whether or not to give their troop a gift for the holiday season. This is a personal choice, and there is no right or wrong answer to it. In my ten years as a leader, I have never given my the girls in my troop a holiday gift. I believe that the time and energy that I have devoted to them each and every year since kindergarten is my gift.

Inexpensive personalized gifts leaders can give their Girl Scout troops

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If you do decide to give your girls a present, my only concern is that you give gifts that are inclusive. Not everyone celebrates Christmas, so if you plan on giving your girls a gift, give them something they can use and appreciate.

Before you buy a gift for your troop, discuss with your co-leader what the cost per girl is that you are willing to spend. If the total is $5.00 per girl, that is $2.50 for each of you.

Here are some personalized gift ideas that you can give to your troop this holiday season that are inexpensive and non-denominational. If you sign up at Current Catalog before you shop, you can get a discount code on your purchase.

Personalized Pencils

Personalized pencils with your troop number on it make a fun gift for Girl Scouts

Available at Current Catalog

These #2 pencils can have up to 30 characters. They come in a set of 6 and you specify the color. Blue is perfect for Daisy Scouts and green can be for Brownies and Juniors. Each set can be ordered per girl as your gift with her name and Troop number or you can order just enough with only your Troop number to put in as part of a gift bag.

Personalized Stickers

Kids love stickers, so why not give them personalized ones? Current Catalog has several different kinds. Again, you can write the girl’s name on it and give that as her gift or you can write something like “I Love Girl Scouts” or “Girl Scouts Rock”.

These heart stickers can be personalized with a girl's name or with a saying like "I lLove Girl Scouts".

Available at Current Catalog

Personalized heart stickers make a great gift.

Available at Current Catalog

You can find other stickers and labels here.

Decorate Your Own Snowman

If you are giving a cello bag filled with goodies, this set of 12 Make a Snowman sticker sheets is a fun little item to put in it.

This Decorate a Snowman stikcer sheet is a fun and inexpensive activity for younger Girl Scout troops.

Available at Current Catalog

There are also many other kinds of sticker sheet background scenes on sale that you could give to your troop. You can find them here.

This Peanuts activity sticker sheet is a great little gift topper or stocking stuffer.

Available at Current Catalog

Personalized Note Cards

A personalized note card is special because it can only belong to one person! This is a special gift and a very affordable one as well.

Personalized note cards make a great gift for children.

This design and others available at Current Catalog

Put it All Together

If you are giving a personalized gift to your Girl Scout troop, you can put it all together in a themed cello bag that comes with its own ties. Add some peppermints and chocolates and you have a simple and meaningful gift to give each girl in your troop.

Put everything in a cello bag or themed gift box with some mints or chocolates and you are done! No fancy wrapping necessary!

Make cello bags of small goodies as gifts to others.

This and other cello bags available at Current Catalog

 

Put gifts for your troop in these adorable treat boxes-no wrapping necessary!

Available at Current Catalog

Easy Girl Scout Service Project to Help Sick Children

Your Troop Can be Considerate and Caring

In my opinion, one of the most important aspects of leading a Girl Scout troop is teaching the girls about those who are in need. Service projects do not always have to be enormous undertakings…sometimes something simple will do.

Troops of all ages can participate in the Sending Smiles service project. Started by two sisters and their cousins who wanted to make a difference, it has grown over the years.

asy Girl Scout service project for all levels

Photo from Pixabay

First, find an organization that wants your postcards. There are suggestions on the website that you can find here. You order the postcards you need. The girls can write jokes, draw pictures, place stickers on the postcards…anything you all can agree upon. This is a great opportunity to earn the orange Daisy petal, Considerate and Caring.

Here is how you can get your postcards. If you want your troop to have a fun patch, then¬†hit the “donate” button- in purpose put “patches” They are $2.50 each.

Fun, Easy and Inexpensive Thanksgiving Craft Ideas for Daisy and Brownie Girl Scouts

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It is hard to believe that November is here! Planning your meetings while knee deep in your own personal Thanksgiving preparations and celebrations can be overwhelming if you are not prepared. I always liked to use craft kits for kids when I could, as I started leading a troop long before Pinterest was around. It made these late fall meetings easier to prepare.

Easy Thanksgiving Craft Ideas for Daisy and Brownie leaders

Photo from Pixabay

Here are some inexpensive craft kits to help your troop stay busy and to help them earn Daisy petals (Considerate and Caring or Be a Sister to Every Girl Scout) .

Make a Turkey Sticker Sheets

Available from Current Catalog and on a super sale now, these sticker sheets create a turkey that can be the front of a Thanksgiving card. Take them or mail them to a senior citizen home or a food pantry to put in a bag of food that is given out over the holiday season.

Set of 12 Make a Turkey sticker sheets can be used to make Thanksgiving cards for others.

Available at Current Catalog

Dressing the turkey takes on a new meaning with these cute sticker sheets. Each includes a turkey body and 22 face-part and accessory stickers. The largest sticker is 2-1/2″ x 3-1/4″, and the c ompleted turkey is approximately 4″ tall.

Thanksgiving and fall themed stickers for crafts

Available at Current Catalog

This autumnal set comes with 66 stickers to decorate cards or gift bags for others. It is also on a super sale.

Pumpkin fall stickers for Thanksgiving cards

Available at Current Catalog

Thanksgiving Craft Kits

Here are some other fun Thanksgiving craft kits to make your life easier before Turkey Day!

Available on Amazon

After talking about what the girls are Thankful for, they can make these turkeys, which come in a set of 4.

Available on Amazon

Need a large amount of turkeys? This best selling craft kit has enough materials for 24!

Make a Beaded Craft

Available on Amazon

Make necklaces and bracelets for sister scouts or for family and friends with this fall foam bead assortment that contains 500 beads. 

Where to Find Retired Girl Scout IP Badges

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As the leader of an older troop of girls, I do look for the older Interest Project requirements to see if these are something that my girls might be interested in. The only problem with earning these badges is that they are very hard to find.

Where to Find Retired Girl Scout IP Badges

Photo by Hannah Gold

You can ask in different Facebook groups, like I did when we earned our Cake Decorating Cadette IP (and I will write about that experience!). I only needed four, so it was not too difficult. But if you are fortunate to have a larger troop, then there might be an issue.

While editing some older posts, I checked out links that may or may not be working. One of them led me to the Girl Scouts of the Northerwestern Great Lakes, which a few years ago had a ton of discontinued Junior badges. While a few are still available, there are many older IP’s that leaders can purchase.

The only downside is that they are costly, as there are limited quantities of each. The store knows the treasures that it has and is selling them at a higher price.

Still interested? You can find them here.

Of course, you can find what you need on eBay.

Friday Freebie 4 Free Girl Scout Field Trips

As both a teacher and a Girl Scout leader, I can tell you that children love to go on field trips. It is a way to learn that is a welcome change in the routine. Each of my roles has me filling out paperwork and getting the appropriate number of volunteers, and it is always fulfilling to see how much fun the children have. It is certainly worth the extra effort!

Free Girl Scout Field Trips for troops on a budget

Photo from Pexels

There are major franchises around the country that offer free programs that will enable your troop to earn badges or parts of badges. Here are some that are not only free, but have also been recommended by other leaders on various Facebook groups. Please keep in mind that you will have to search on each site to see if which locations offer these free programs, as not all do.

Another way to find free programs is to do a simple Google search and plug in “Free Girl Scout Programs (insert your state, city, town). Some Girl Scout councils have free local programming on their websites as well.

Auntie Anne’s Pretzel Field Trip

On this tasty field trip, girls will learn how this business originated and the history of pretzels. After this, the troop will be taught how to roll their own pretzel with dough that is provided for them to use. At the end, the girls get a tasty treat of an Auntie Anne’s pretzel and lemonade.

Free Girl Scout field trip to Auntie Anne's

Photo from Pixabay

To find participating locations, visit the Auntie Anne’s website here and fill in your zip code to find the store nearest you that offers these tours.

Microsoft Store

With a lot of emphasis on STEAM, and with technology being a necessity now and not just a tool for keeping children occupied, a field trip to a Microsoft Store is an appropriate field trip for all levels of scouts. Brownies can earn the Computer Expert badge, Juniors can earn the Digital Photography badge and they are able to do a few of the STEM badges like the robotics .

Check out the Microsoft Store website here and see if a location near you is offering the program.

Free Girl Scout field trips to the Microsoft Store or the Apple Store

Photo from Pexels

Apple Retail Store

The Apple Store has trips for educators and youth groups of all ages. Leaders can tailor their trips for their level and the badges they wish to earn. For more information, you can check out the Apple website for a full FAQ section.

REI Workshops

REI is a company that celebrates life in the great outdoors. That ties in perfectly with Girl Scouts! Local stores offer programs specifically for scouts. If you do not see one available, contact your local REI store and see if they can create an event for your girls or your Service Unit.

Free Girl Scout field trips and events from REI

Photo from Pexels

You can find your local REI store here.

If you do not have any of these stores nearby, there are still plenty of free Girl Scout field trips that you can take.

Bank Tours

Discussing financial literacy with girls can seem too much like school work. Instead of earning leaves that way, why not go on a tour of your local bank? Many will have some fun swag to offer your girls at the end (pens, folders, frisbees) and you can ask if they have a fun patch to go with their program (some banks have them available to purchase).

Visit a bank for a free Girl Scout field trip

Photo from Pexels

Visit the Animal Shelter

The girls can do a service project and go on a free field trip, like my troop did when they earned the Bronze Award several years ago. While you do not have to go in depth like we did as we spent months on this project, you can either have the girls bring in donations or you can make pet toys at a meeting prior to your trip. Most kids love animals, and this is an opportunity for a shelter to show the community how much they help the animals in need.

Dance/Karate/Gymnastic Studios

When my girls were Brownies, we went on a free field trip to a karate dojo near our school. A parent had an older child who went there, and the owners were more than happy to have our troop attend a free class. Use your connections-or just pick up the phone-and call and find out if a local business is willing to host a class for free.

What have you done for free with your troop?