*This post contains affiliate links.
In my last blog post, I shared with you six things that leaders need to do in order to get ready for Back to Troop (you can read it here if you missed it).
There is one more item that I want to add to the list-setting troop goals.
When you start a Daisy troop, you probably have only one goal-surviving the year and learning how to be a good leader. As the girls get older, they have to take over more responsibilities, and they need to help set goals. Of course, you have to make sure they are realistic (a field trip to Disney is not an achievable goal, but one to Build-A-Bear is). With my troop entering eighth grade, they have a lot more say in the matter.
When our troop started in 2008, we did not sell cookies and it was not my job to be the camping leader, so we focused on earning badges and lots and lots of community service. I feel that if you teach children when they are young to give, they will continue to do so as they get older, as it is a natural part of their lives. I am proud of what we have accomplished and continue to accomplish.
When I stepped down as the main leader, the girls did sell cookies and went camping, yet we still continue to do service projects as a part of who we are. That is a central part of being in our troop and is always a part of our troop goals and mission.
Some leaders have goals of earning as many badges as possible-to the point where a vest or sash no longer has room for any more. Other focus on the quality of the experience before a fun patch is issued. Which one is your goal? Is a patch necessary for every single experience or should they revolve around what your troop’s main mission is? A Girl Scout vest or sash in many ways, tells a story. How many are service related, camping related, and field trip related?
Of course, there is always goal setting when girls are selling cookies. They want to earn money for a special trip, so they are motivated. But what about the rest of the scouting year?
Asking your girls what they want from Girl Scouts and talking about goals should be a part of your first meeting of the year, as it will shape all of your planning. You can always check back to see if what you are doing is accomplishing you set out to do. Goals can be monitored and adjusted as needed. A clear vision of what your troop is about will help you create a smoother scouting year.
What are your troop goals for this year?