Girls learn about different animals, how caring for animals links with caring for themselves, make a lot of crafts inspired by nature but showing diversity among individuals, and do a take-action project that educates the community about an animal related issue.
Speaking purely for my girls, I found that i have to change an awful lot of the Journeys to make them something my girls enjoy doing. Add in that we are a multilevel Troop and I have to tweak them even more. I find that doing activities the other levels can use for badges make sit even out pretty smoothly. If you too have a more than 1 level, at the bottom I will make notes of the badges that go well with this Journey.
I condensed the entire idea of the Journey into a 3 step process. LEARN-SEE-DO The first step is to learn about animals. The second step is to see what is going on with animals in your local area. The final step is to do something for or with animals in your area. This is your take Action project.
LEARN – Birdbath Award – Daisies learn to care for animals and for themselves
Movies can be a fun family night and still be working towards your Journey awards. For example, Black Beauty can deal with animal treatment, while Dreamer connects people to animals. Madagascar 3 can lead into a discussion of zoos versus a circus and wildlife preserves.
Animal masks are a great way to play out a story or things the girls have learned about animals. If the girls create or find a skit they enjoy, let them play it for their parents at the next award ceremony. You can use paper plates and simply offer a bunch of items such as yarn, paper and glue and let the girls go crazy. or if your girls prefer an organized craft there are a few sites that offer some great ideas. A dancing bee mask ANIMAL MASKS
Maybe the girls would prefer to make puppets. You can do the classic style of putting images on a paper bag, using an old sock or even coloring a picture and glue it to a paint stir stick.
The AUDUBON SOCIETYy might have a local chapter that could come speak to the Troop.
Nothing beats visiting with real animals. There are lots of places to see them no matter where you live, you just have to plan ahead. Farms, shelters, circus, preserves and vet clinics are all obvious choices. But do you have an animal that passes through your area at a certain time of year? For example, the Monarch Butterfly has an established migrating route, as do whales and eagles. Visiting the local fair the girls can learn a lot from the 4H and FFA kids who are showing their animals. If it is too late for that, contact your local FFA or 4H office and see if a local member will invite them to their farm. Speaking of farms, don’t get bogged down with the idea of a simple dairy farm. Ask about cattle ranchers, sheep ranches and even a llama farm. The local aquarium can not only office a lot of information, many offer overnight programs where the girls sleep with the fish. Find out if someone who trains or uses a service animal will come to a meeting.
SEE – Red Robin Award – Daisies use their new knowledge and creativity to teach others how to care for animals
Some of your girls probably already have pets of their own. Do a show and tell and have them describe their animal and what they do to take care of it. If your meeting place allows, bring the actual pet. If not, photographs can suffice.
After visiting the local dairy, try your hand at making butter or homemade ice cream.
What kind of injuries might you get from these animals and how would you treat them? How would you treat an injured animal?
How do we take care of ourselves in the same ways we take care of animals? horses need shoes, hair needs to be brushed, skin needs to be washed and doctors must be visited. The Crocodile and the Dentist deals with the fears the girls may have of visiting a dentist themselves. What would happen if the girls don’t take care of their teeth? What happens when they don’t take care of their pet’s basic needs?
Bees are absolutely needed for us to survive, are there any local bee keepers they can talk with? What about a local honey plant? Make a snack using honey.Use the opportunity to talk about first aid for bee stings and bug bites. Make a bee from a mustard bottle and coat hanger.
What kind of wild animals might you see in your area, on a hike or camping? How should you react to them? How would you treat an injury from one? Teach the girls how to identify various animal tracks.
DO – Tula Award – Daisies gain courage and confidence in teaching others about animal care
At this age it is hard for girls to see what service they can do for animals in their area. As you go through the first 2 steps, be talking to the girls about things they see wrong, would like to change or simply to help with. Then when you are ready to discuss a project, they have something familiar to discuss rather than it suddenly being thrust upon them.
Volunteer at the local animals shelter. Or collect donations of food for them. Hold a pet adoption fair. Arrange for a local 4H dog club to hold a training lesson for the Service Unit. February is dental month for pets, create posters to place around town reminding them to take care of their cat or dog. Volunteer to walk dogs for local senior citizens. Bring in an approved service animal to the local nursing home and plan a day for the residents. Put on a petting zoo at the nearest animal store like PetCo. What kind of seeds can they plant to attract butterflies?
If you have done ay great TAPs for this Journey, please share and inspire others.
Keep in mind that many of your activities can be centered around animals and games are no exception. For example, play freeze tag but you must freeze as an animal. Charades are fun, again making the girls act out an animal. the classic game of memory has an animal version. or play BINGO using animal pictures.
Create a bird feeder. or make an edible nest. Save the netted apple bags and stuff them with items birds can use to build a nest in the string and hang them for a tree in your backyard. Participate in THE GREAT BACKYARD BIRD COUNT.
POSSIBLE BADGE OPPORTUNITIES – Depending on activities you do and how.
Friendly & Helpful Petal
Responsible for What I say and Do Petal
Respect Myself and Others Petal
Use Resources Wisely Petal
Make the World a Better Place Petal
Voice for Animals