While the older levels of Girl Scouts have specific criteria for earning awards, the Petals are very loose. The intent is to understand the concept and be able to put it into practice. The new leader guide is more specific than the old one, but you still have a lot of freedom in the way you present the program in order to make it work best for your girls. I have a multi-level Troop so do things a little different from if I had only Daisy girls. I hope that what I do helps you this year.
To help you and the girls get to know each other, name tags can help. These are set so the girls can color them. I suggest using only lighter colors so they will still be able to read names. If you think you will need them for several weeks, print on card stock and cover with clear contact paper. DAISY NAME TAGS
First thing every year we learn about Girl scouts. The girls learn about levels, color guard, the quiet sign, Girl Scout sign as well as the Promise and the Law. We do a color guard at the start of every meeting and the girls take turns doing jobs. Our first activity is an INVESTITURE that they help to plan. Not only does this reinforce what they are learning, it teaches their families as well.
As we create a poster board for their investiture ceremony, I reuse it for the year. All the Petals are covered in contact paper and I remove them after the ceremony. As each Petal and Leaf is earned this year, we will add it to the board. You can see where I have drawn the lines so the girls know where to place the Petals. I also added the new Leaf awards on the bottom. If you have a felt board that would work just as well.
Next, they need to understand what it is to make a promise. Use real life situations to help them understand. For example, promise that you will have cookies for them at the end of the meeting. Then when it comes time, say you did not bring them. Once they express their disappointment, pull out the cookies and while they eat, talk about the feelings they had when you did not keep your promise. Another example is about making a promise that you try hard to keep to the best of your ability. Have the girls promise to help clean up, but be sure to include something they cannot do on their own. This shows them that if they try their best that is all you can really ask.
Reinforcement is needed at this age and craft projects as well as songs and games help do that.
The water bottle was donated by a local small business. We used plastic lacing and pony beads to decorate the, using the colors of the Petals. It will be a constant reminder of the Girl Scout Law. I had beads with letters the girls used for initials, but you can also use a Sharpie to write on the beads. You can also use pony beads to make a necklace or bracelet the girls can wear.
A flower they can take home also works. This template does not have all the Petals but they get the idea. Or you can use white out and write the words to the Promise on the Petals. I have found that most Daisy girls have a hard time staying in the lines. So I lay out the crayons and let them color away. Then the adults cut out the Petals which the girls in turn glued onto construction paper. The girls cut those out. A paint stir stick was used as the stem.
Girls can begin working on their coloring books as well.
Songs are a great way to learn the Law as well. SING THE LAW
Finally, if a girl misses activities you can ask her parents to help her understand the concepts at home with a simple letter to the parents.
When you are all done the girls can receive their Center pieces and a certificate.
I keep things from year to year but to stay organized I use a milk crate.
I often hear leaders ask what to do for girls who have already earned most or all of the Petals. Some say they just need to accept they are not going to receive an award like the rest of the girls. I think that is fine once or twice, but we are talking 5 and 6 year olds here and if they go months without receiving anything, they can get very upset and maybe even want to leave the Troop. My solution was beads. I purchased a bag at Wal Mart that had all the colors or the Petals in it. When a girl earns a Petal for the second time I give her a bead she can sew onto the back of her vest. She can sew them into the same of the flower, or anywhere she wants. My girls really like the tradition.