Guest Author - Denese Tyler
Some troop leaders award badges every three or four months. Some leaders award them at the end of the year. Other leaders award badges at every meeting for the young girls, but award them once per month for older girls. One way to determine when to award badges would be to consider the troop budget and available funds and let the girls decide how often they receive earned awards. Once leaders or girls determine how often to be awarded badges, here are several creative ways to award badges and patches:
•Decorate a zip lock bag with GS "stuff" and fill with earned badges
•Label a zip lock bag with girl’s name and simply add the earned badges.
•Cut out a cardstock vest the color of the girl vest. Scan the council ID & troop numbers then print onto cardstock so it looks like the Girl Scout vest. Glue on badges.
•Label cardstock with girl’s name and glue on badges.
•Glue badges to a cardstock badge, try-it, patch, or IP cutout.
•Glue badges to a cardstock sash cutout.
•Have the girls pick a theme for the ceremony. This helps with picking the presentation.
•Have a Hawaiian theme ceremony and glue badges to the leis.
•Glue badges with glue dots to a green ribbon. Glue a silk daisy to one end and then wrap the other end around a pencil.
•Use make-your-own mugs. Print a group picture to place inside the mug and then glue-dot the badges to pop-sickle sticks and stick them in foam inside the mugs. This makes a great keepsake.
•Attach the badges to a 3" wide ribbon and place the sashes on them "beauty pageant" style.
•Print out an index card with what girls did to earn a patch. Include a picture of the patch to put into a brag book/photo album. Stick the patch to the back of that.
•Staple all badges to a piece of colored card board. Make the cards big enough so they are hard to lose. Include the girl’s name on it, "Congratulations," what the badges are for, and where it goes on the uniform.
•Cut strips of green paper, staple the badges down the length of the paper, and cut a little inverted “V” at the bottom so it looks like an award ribbon. Write the girl's name at the top. If they need more than one length, just staple multiples of these together into a fan shape so that it looks like an award.
•Make half-sheet certificates on card stock with the girl's name, a picture of the badge, what the badge was for, and leader signature. Staple or glue-dot the badge to it so they can put the patch on their vest, then keep their certificate in their GS scrapbook.
•Use a Sharpie pen to write names on the back of badges. Not only will it help leaders know who receives theirs, but when someone loses their badges, it helps reunite the owner with the badge.
When Girl Scouts receive their badges, have them do the Girl Scout handshake and then say something about, or reflect, on what they just earned.