We had about half our Guides over for a Girl Greatness themed sleepover at the Church where we meet. Through games, videos, discussion and fun we covered topics like self-esteem, bullying and friendship.
We had access to the church basement where we usually meet for our activities and slept in a small parlour room upstairs. As girls arrived, we had them set down their bags and join us in a circle. I collected health cards as one of our other leaders passed out cards from a deck of imagination conversation starters that we had. On each card was a “what if…” question and they helped to spark discussion as we waited for everyone.
Once everyone was there, we moved on to a few ice breaker games. We started with one of my favourites from a program called Play it Fair (a set of games designed to teach kids human rights, non-discrimination and peaceful conflict resolution). The game, called Exclusion by Numbers is a bit like musical chairs. You yell out an animal (fish in the case below) and the girls all have to move around acting like that animal. Once you get bored of watching them :p you call out a number and they have to make groups of that number of girls. Anyone not in a group is eliminated and can help you choose the next animal and number. We enjoy using the game to discuss how the girls who get left out from groups feel as well as to give the girls an opportunity to move around.
Our next game, I had played as a get-to-know-you/team-building game many times before. We gave the girls a characteristic (height, birthday, etc) and had them line up without talking. We also tried favourite food and pet and had them find other girls with the same answer.
Our last game for the night was a bit more serious. We sat the girls down in a circle and had them all close their eyes. We read out some statements and asked the girls to raise their hands if the statement applied to them. We kept everything anonymous, but told the girls how many people had raised their hand in each case. As hoped, this lead to some great discussions that continued throughout the sleepover.
– I like popcorn
– I sometimes feel alone
– I am a good friend
– I sometimes feel ugly
– I spend a lot of time thinking about what I wear
– I have been mean to someone before
– I never do anything wrong
– I judge people based on what they wear
After the games, we had chicken soup and goldfish crackers for snack and then had a lovely campfire where we learned some new songs and sang some old favourites. We looked through our cupboard and found a fun fake campfire made with logs and a lightbulb that I remember from my days as a Guide. It was a great trip down memory lane!
– Come, Come
– Black Socks
– Banana Split
– Le Bonhomme
– Old Lady Leary
– If I were not a Girl Guide
– An old Austrian
– Short Necked Buzzard
– Um plucky Plucky
– Zulu Warrior
– On my honour
– Wippor Will
After the campfire, it was time for bed. We all squished into the parlour and set out our sleeping bags for the night!