Tag Archives: bees

Girl Scout Gold Award project: Meg Bleyle, Highlands Ranch, “Bee a hero: Save the bees!”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

The issue addressed by this project was the declining population of bees worldwide.  I hoped to educate people about the importance bees have in our lives and that we need and depend on them. If the bee population was to increase, then farmers would not have to pollinate crops by hand, saving both time and money, which would be passed on to consumers.  The kids, who will be taught using my curriculum, will also grow up understanding the importance of bees as a result of this project.

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?

I saw an increase of activity on my website after distributing brochures about my project.  All of my educational materials can be found on my website.  This includes my curriculum and activity packets.

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?

I created a curriculum containing several different topics that educators can reference as many times as they need.  The curriculum is available on my website, all materials are downloadable, and the materials are being given to Boys and Girls Clubs, after school care clubs, and religious schools with the intention that the educators will use them to educate kids for years to come.  I have also created a brochure which was distributed at the Highlands Ranch farmers market.  The brochure was available at the table where local honey is sold.  In addition to facts contained in the brochure, I have also included a QR code to my website.  The AP environmental science teacher at Highlands Ranch High School will take over the control of my website and future curriculum updates.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

My activity packets and curriculum will be sent to the Education Specialist at the Library of Congress in Washington D.C.  Part of my activity packets and curriculum include small projects that kids can do with an adult to help the bees.

I am working with a Jewish educator to develop a curriculum specific to Rosh Hashanah.  This curriculum will be used nationwide, as she presents teaching workshops at national conferences.

What did you learn about yourself?

As a leader I learned how to take action in a meaningful way.  Most people would like to help other causes, but don’t know how.  This project taught me how to help and how to get others to help from a leadership perspective.  I learned how to communicate with others in a professional setting.  This form of communication is new to me and I struggled with it a little.  However, it is a very necessary skill to have.  I also learned how to be flexible.  When one thing didn’t go my way, I needed to figure out something else to do in its place.  Flexibility is a necessary skill to have as a leader because it is necessary to adapt when something doesn’t go the way you want it to for reasons beyond your power.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

This project gave me an opportunity to experience leading the kind of species conservation project I would see in environmental studies (my current degree program in college is toward a BS in Environmental Science).  When faced with a team project, I will have the skills necessary to communicate to my team and delegate responsibility.  I will also have the ability to collaborate with many different people.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

The Gold Award is the pinnacle of Girl Scouting.  Through achieving this award, I have gained the courage to communicate with others in a professional setting, the confidence to change the world using the resources I have been given, and the character of perseverance when life doesn’t go as planned.  I connected with some people from the elementary school in order to set up a beehive.  (Of course this did not actually happen because of circumstances outside of our control).  I discovered that I had to choose another way to help the bees.  I took action by creating a curriculum and activity packets that I gave to several different sources.  A leader develops the materials and distributes them to people.  I instructed my team how to approach childcare centers of their choosing in which to give my packets.  I connected with a honey vendor at a local farmers market to distribute some brochures which contain the QR code for my website.  I took action by leading my troop through the Save-A-Bee patch and then asked them to help me improve the curriculum.  I discovered that being a leader is more than telling people what to do: it is actively making sure that things get done and how to improve the things that did not work as well.  I also connected with a Jewish educator who is interested in promoting this issue because consuming honey during Rosh Hashanah is a tradition, and she believes it is important to educate the congregation about bees.

How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, leader)? 

In working on this project, I learned how to be flexible in attaining my goal.  When one idea did not work, I had to find another way to accomplish my goal.  This helped me become a go-getter.  I learned how to communicate with people from a leadership role and how to delegate tasks so that my team could help me with my project.  I learned that I can handle getting a group of people together and lead them in the right direction.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication, and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org

Girl Scout Gold Award project: Rose Goodman, Boulder, “Protecting the bees”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

Being from Boulder, I am someone who is very environmentally friendly, and a tree hugger at heart. Therefore, for my Gold Award project, I wanted to address an environmental issue. I decided to go with the problem of the bee population declining. For my Gold Award project, I created a lesson plan to fit the common core curriculum of second grade. This was important because I made my lesson plan accessible to teachers via the internet, and because it fits the common core standards, it is easier for teachers to use.  I then presented my own PowerPoint presentation, that was based off of my lesson plan, to a few groups in the community to get my message across. My overall goal was to educate people about the importance of bees and how we can help them.

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?

I measured my impact by asking the kids I presented to, at the end of my presentation, what they had learned from my presentation.  The kids responded with several answers such as “bees are not the same as wasps”, “the bee population is going down,” “we need to help save the bees,” “pesticides kill bees,” “planting plants helps bees.”  I also realized the impact I was making when one of the kids came up to me full of emotion, in tears, and said she was very sad about the bees and really wanted to help them.

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?

I have made sure that my project is sustainable.  First, Sammie Reynolds, a teacher at Mt. Saint Vincent in Denver, has promised to continue this lesson plan and committed to use it in the future.  Additionally, I made my lesson plan accessible online to teachers, by sharing my lesson plan and presentation with Kristin Reynolds who is putting it on the Earth Guardian website.  Hopefully, people other than Ms. Reynolds will access my lesson plan and use it in their classrooms.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

Bees are not just a species that roam around in my town of Boulder. Bees are all over the world, and globally, bees are the number one pollinator. This problem affects the whole world.  My project starts in this little corner of the world in Boulder, but will longterm affect the whole world.  Also, by sharing my lesson plan with Ms. Reynolds, I am making my lesson plan accessible for teachers all over the nation.

What did you learn about yourself?

From my project, I have learned so much more about bees. I started with only basic knowledge about bees, and then began my research. I also learned how to work with people, and how to pick the correct people for my team.  I learned that sometimes certain people are a little more of procrastinators than I am, and they can be hard to work with. Additionally, I learned an extremely valuable skill: how to speak well in front of people.  All these skills will help me in my future in going to college, and then, hopefully, medical school.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

This project not only opens up doors because it shows how dedicated I can be and  thus, people will hopefully be more likely to hire or accept me into a position, but this project also opens the door to presenting more often. It shows me that if I can accomplish my Gold Award,  then I can do any presentation.  It encourages me to feel more and more comfortable when collaborating with others and talking to a big group.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

I have been a Girl Scout since I was a little Daisy. Throughout my Girl Scout career, I had been doing fun activities that involved learning and helping the community.  Each of these activities, however, were fabulous, I didn’t feel as though I, myself was making a difference.  I would work with a group of roughly 10-15 girls in completing an activity that my great troop leader had come up with for us do.  Yes, we earned badges and I felt accomplished with every badge, none of them made me feel as good as I felt when I completed my Gold Award.  I had not only felt that I had made a difference, but I had measured and proved that I actually had made a difference.  On my own, I came up with an idea, executed it, and made an impact.

How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, leader)? 

My project made me a go-getter because although it took me over a year to complete my project, I kept with it and pushed until I succeeded.  I knew some girls that started their project, but never finished it.  I also had some times of self doubt, but I decided that I wanted to get my Gold Award, make a difference, and continue on.  I proved to myself that I had true dedication, along with leadership.  I learned how to be a leader and inspire others to take action.  Every kid I presented to showed great excitement in wanting to help the bees.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org

Silver Award event: Bees

Submitted by Ariella Wells

Northern & Northeastern CO

Fort Collins

Some of the girls from Troop 70720 would like to invite you to their final Silver Award event on May 18, 2017. They will be presenting the movie “Vanishing of the Bees” and also having a class about what you can do in your own backyard to help bees.

3:30 – 6:00 p.m.

Gardens on Spring Creek

Can’t make it to the event? You could still sign their bee protection pledge:

Level 1 is you agree to not use Roundup

Level 2 is you agree to not use Roundup and harmful pesticides

Level 3 is you agree to not use Roundup and harmful pesticides and plant bee friendly flowers and plants

Sign up or take the pledge at www.safe4bees.wordpress.com

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments too.

Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Angela Smith, Colorado Springs, “Growing Bees!”

Angela Smith

What did you do for your Gold Award project? 

I implemented an educational program about bees at a local environmental center, The Catamount Institute. I wanted to address the problems facing bee populations, so I built a beehive and planted a garden to provide a good habitat for one hive of bees. I also wanted to use it to get others to care about bees as well, so I had children get involved in the painting of the beehive and planting the garden. I then created a six part curriculum to be used in conjunction with the beehive and gardens that will be carried out by the Catamount institute on field trips and summer camps.

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?

After running the curriculum, one child had gone from thinking bees were really scary to really liking them. The Catamount Institute will continue running this curriculum, and the impact can be measured by how many children go through this program.

How  is your project sustainable? How  will  your  project  continue to impact after your  involvement? 

The Catamount Institute gives regular field trips as well as camps over the summer. They have been given a full guide to the curriculum and plan to use it moving forward for their field trips. Additionally, for everything I have done for the project, I typed up a manual- how to build the beehive, how to plant a bee-friendly wildflower garden, how to winterize the beehive, and details on the curriculum. This manual was provided to the Catamount Institute and sent to other wildlife centers to encourage them to set up a similar program.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

I reached out to other environmental centers with my curriculum. The three wildlife centers I chose were the Cooper Center, Long Branch Environmental Education Center, and Stillman Nature Center. The information I sent to these nature centers will also be available online, for anybody who is looking for beehive curriculum related things to find and use. Additionally, I have contacted a local, some state, and a national gardening club and provided them with my bee-friendly garden coloring sheet and flyer and asked them to help distribute them throughout their members.

What did you learn about yourself?

While I have always considered myself a natural leader, I do believe that this project has pushed those skills even further as I have now had the experience of training adults to carry out a project of my design, as opposed to working with peers or simply working with adults as opposed to training them. While I have always been a confident person, in this project I was initially shy about asking people to do things for me, but as I carried out events or stages of my project I became more comfortable as a leader.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

Before doing this project, I could never have imagined that I could achieve something this big and actually make it matter. Now, I will go into life more confident in my ability to effect change. Additionally, I think that this was a really amazing opportunity to show potential employers that I am a capable leader who can be creative and come up with unique solutions to problems.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

I was not very involved in Girl Scouts for a lot of high school, but after I realized that I wanted to do a project related to bees, I realized how great a resource being a Girl Scout could be if you wanted to make a change. In all of my career as a Girl Scout, I don’t think I have ever been more proud or happy to be a Girl Scout, and I think that is because no other aspect of Girl Scouting had required as much involvement as this did.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org

 

Gold Award project: The Children’s Bee Exhibit at Catamount

Submitted by Angela S.

Colorado Springs

Pikes Peak

Going for the highest award in Girl Scouting is a huge undertaking, and that can be made even harder if you are a Juliette, with no troop to go through the experience with. However, if you step away from the hugeness that the Gold Award project seems to be, it can be an amazing experience. For me, Girl Scouts has lead me to a path where I am almost always working on some kind of service project; big or small, for the environment or for people. Scouting has made it a natural part of my life, and I believe that this is true for a lot of people. Now that I have been working on the project for several months, I see that it is a way to make something I already care about bigger and better, and to push something that was just one person into a movement.

My Gold Award Project is to educate people about bees and the danger the species is in right now. I am creating a program with the Catamount Institute that can hopefully be used for years to come and touch hundreds of children. The big kickoff of this is coming up really soon, on October 1, 2016, and the best part of this is that children are going to do a lot in terms of getting the whole thing set up.

I believe that no one person can make big change alone, but if you get the community involved in something, then anything is possible. With issues, such as bees, that aren’t as cute as puppies,  it takes a little bit more work to get kids to care about them. This is why it’s so important that kids contribute to the environment of the bees themselves. Anyone who wants to help get this program up and running is more than welcome to come to the Catamount Institute on October 1, 2016 from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Girl Scout Gold Award Project: Belle Bashaw, Parker, “What’s the buzzz about bees?”

Belle Bashaw

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

I set out to increase knowledge of the native bee species present in Colorado by educating elementary aged students and to permanently fix a successful lesson about bees into their curriculum.  My project focused on educating elementary school students on the importance of bees in the environment, what kind of bees they might see buzzing around outside, and how they can make a difference.  When I started this project, just like when this issue had been illuminated to me, I wanted to ensure to those students that they weren’t left in the dark.  It’s very important to me that everyone knows what’s happening in the world, because we’re the ones that live here and unfortunately, we’re also causing part of the problem.  At each school, I would give my presentation and lead discussions on the bees.

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?

My visits with the schools began with a seven-question quiz that I would give to the classrooms that I visited.  I was even surprised at how excited the students were at taking a pop quiz on bees, and after I told them that it wasn’t for a grade and they were not expected to know all the answers to the quiz, they became very passionate about learning all that they could.  The most successful group of students was 6th Grade; when they took the quiz before I gave my speech, they scored an average of 40% on the quiz.  After I taught them, the score increased 58% to result in an average score of 98%.

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?

The coordinator at one school has promised to continue implementing the curriculum I’ve developed for years to come.  The school’s environment-based education program is an ideal setting for my project, and they’ve already been practicing a program called “Habitat” for a few years.  A few bee houses that I’ve built for my project will also stay outside helping the bees for years to come in another elementary school’s community garden.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

I was also approached by a contact from Kirk Properties Inc. after one of my educational speeches and they are interested in doing a field study with my bee houses.  As long as I supply them with a working model of one of my bee houses and instructions on how to make more, they will install approximately 60 houses on the Texas Panhandle in order to see if their native species will also accept the bee houses as alternative habitats.  They have provided a letter of commitment as well. This project has grown through four schools into another state.

What did you learn about yourself?

Although I don’t want to be a teacher when I am older, I’ve realized that I definitely have an affinity for working with children and for public speaking.  I have experience teaching kids as a Camp Committee Program Aide and as a Girl Scouts Kayaking Instructor, but I’ve never interacted with as many young children at once and for the same topic.  I think that most of the kids could tell I was confident and that helped them trust me to be a good guest speaker for them.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

Because I feel confident with myself when speaking to strangers or addressing a crowd, I know that this will only grow in the future to where I’m even more confident.  Even if I didn’t know it before, I am certain that I wouldn’t have gotten very far in my project without being able to sell my ideas to strangers in interviews or being comfortable around kids, because I’m pretty sure that elementary school students can smell fear.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

This project has been so valuable to me and so successful that I can’t imagine anything being different.  For every mistake I thought I had made and for every missed opportunity, at least ten more sprung up to replace it.  I learned from all of it.  Girl Scouts itself has been such a prominent part of my life that even without the Gold Award, I can look back on all of my time fondly.  However, with the Gold Award my eyes have really been opened to what I can do, and what girls everywhere can do.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org