To Junior Girl Scouts who are anywhere between 9-11 years old, the past is a concept that they are still developing. A teenager, who is only a few years older, seem “grown-up” to them! A fun way to revisit your youth, whether your childhood was in the 1960’s, 1970’s or 1980’s, is to do the Junior Playing the Past badge.
Unless the girl is doing this badge on her own, for practicality’s sake and your sanity, you will have to select the decade so you can plan and prepare your meeting accordingly. If you are lucky enough to have a museum nearby, check and see if they have a program that will help you earn this badge. There are many that do this…and if a local museum does not, why not work with them and help them design a field trip just for your girls!
Photo from Pixabay
Step 1 Decide Who You Are
Tell the girls about the decade you have chosen. Bring in a picture or pictures of yourself from that time and let the girls see that once upon a time you were young like they are! Talk about what you liked to do as a little girl and then share that they will get to experience it as well.
Step 2 Create a Costume
The costume does not have to be elaborate. For example, the hippie look was in style during the 60’s and 70’s, so you can do a tie dye shirt or bandana.
Jeans (or dungarees as we called them back in the day) were also a wardrobe staple. Since this era was the beginning of the recycling movement, why not recycle an old pair of jeans and make a no-sew denim purse? A online tutorial complete with pictures is available here at the Desert Willow Lane blog.
Another easy project for your girls to make is a leather cord headband. Here is what you need (all from Amazon):
Here is a tutorial on how to make a hippie inspired headband. If you do not have a clipboard for each girl, try a large office clip to keep the cord secure.
Step 3 Experience Daily Life
Since you cannot go back in time, you can share with the girls what a typical day was like without electronics. Print out pictures of things you used to have, for example, a clock radio with numbers that flipped, a phone with a rotary dial, what your box of breakfast cereal looked like. Walk them through what your life was like when you were their age.
For fun, teach them some of the slang you used as a child. Have they heard of some of the popular TV catchphrases like "Sit on it!", "Goodnight John-Boy!", "The answer is..." and "I can't believe I ate the whole thing!"
Then have the girls create your favorite after-school snack or one from that time period. Here are some no-bake ideas:
Green Goddess Salad Dressing (bring veggies for dipping)
Step 4 Have Some Old Fashioned Fun
Growing up in the concrete jungle of Queens, New York, we had a large asphalt playground between our building where we could play. Scully and Hopscotch were games we played with boards made from chalk. We jumped rope and sang all kinds of rhymes. Hand clap games were popular as well. Sock ball was played with a Spaulding ball inside a sock and a rhyme was said. Mimsy was another ball game that tested our quickness and agility. We also played Chinese jump rope as well.
Photo from Pixabay
Who Sir? Me Sir! No Sir! Not I Sir! was another game that required nothing other than a few kids who had good listening skills.
Hula Hoops were also a staple of my childhood.
Teach the girls some of the games that you played as a child.
Step 5 Become Your Character
By doing all of the previous steps, you have already, in my opinion, completed the last step. Prepare a sheet to go home with the games you played and the recipe you used. You can go a step further and print out some phrases that you used. The girls can wear their new accessory.