Tag Archives: #gsoutdoors

Outdoor field trips at Bluff Lake Nature Center

Visit Bluff Lake Nature Center, a beautiful wildlife refuge and outdoor classroom in northeast Denver and for a unique and memorable experience! Environmental educators will guide Girl Scouts through exploration hikes and interactive activities specifically designed to fulfill requirements for a nature-related badge.

Daisies can earn their “EcoLearner” badge as they get first-hand practice protecting nature, or their “Outdoor Art Maker” badge as they create nature-inspired art.

Brownies can earn their “Outdoor Adventurer” badge as they explore the outdoors in a new way, or their “Bugs” badge as they experience the world of insects and spiders.

Juniors can earn their “Animal Habitats” badge as they learn about the places animals call home, or their “Flowers” badge as they enjoy the science and beauty of our native flora.

If you have something else in mind, ask us about customizing a program for your troop!

Field trips are 1-2 hours long, and visitors are welcome to stay and enjoy the site for the rest of the day following the program. Trips are $10 per Girl Scout (unless otherwise noted). There is a minimum of 8 Girl Scouts to schedule a trip. Adult-to-girl ratios for events must be met. There is no charge for adult chaperones or non-participating siblings. A variety of times are available, including afternoons and weekends. Visit www.blufflake.org for more information, or contact Bluff Lake Education Manager Heidi Pfeiffer at heidi@blufflake.org to schedule your trip!

Girl Scouts have fun in the snow

Submitted by Ariella Wells

Northern & Northeastern CO

Fort Collins

Troop 70720 went for a weekend stay at Meadow Mountain Ranch. We borrowed snowshoes from GSCO, packed our sleds and winter gear, and went away for some fun! For most of the girls, this was their first time snowshoeing. Everyone had a great time!

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

Gold Award Girl Scout: Emily Clark, Colorado Springs, “The Art of Being a Naturalist”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

I developed a years worth of art lesson plans for fourth graders at School in the Woods. These lesson plans meet the Colorado Department of Education standards for Art for fourth graders, but are unique in that they are tailored towards outdoor education.

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

I used feedback from School in the Woods and their students as my lesson plans were used to measure the impact of my Gold Award. My lesson plans are now a part of their ongoing classroom curriculum.

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

My project is sustainable because the lesson plans include instructions on how to teach each lesson, so they can be used by anyone. I designed them specifically to be implemented by parents, or adults who have no prior art education. This means they can be used by parents homeschooling their children in addition to parents assisting in the classroom.

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

I sent .pdf files of the lesson plans to the national parks service, homeschooling groups, and some local art programs. These lesson plans have been shared across the United States, and I know they have been used in California, Colorado, and Ireland.

What did you learn about yourself?

Through my project I learned teaching really isn’t my thing, but I learned a lot about art through teaching art and creating art lesson plans. While I don’t intend to be a teacher, I do plan on pursuing a career in art.

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

The lessons I learned through my Gold Award Project will stay with me for the rest of my life. I can use what I learned on future applications for jobs or scholarships. Skills I learned and utilized include time management, leadership, teamwork, collaboration, and how to research and revise my work.

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

The Gold Award teaches girls how to organize a project and set goals through a subject they enjoy and are passionate about. I feel I used the skills I learned in teamwork during Reach for the Peak, goal setting I learned through cookie sales, and skills from other Girl Scout events, projects, and workshops all came together to help me achieve success in earning my Girl Scout Gold Award.

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

Earning my Gold Award helped me become a G.I.R.L. because it challenged me to take risks. It helped me become a risk-taker because I had to try new things and reach out to people in order for my project to be successful. I couldn’t just rely on the skills I had, but had to ask others for their assistance to make my project successful.

**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

Second Service Unit 747 hike

Submitted by Ariella Wells

Northern & Northeastern CO

Fort Collins

A few Girl Scouts from Service Unit 747 went out in the chilly Sunday weather to hike at Hewlett Gulch. Since it ended up being all older girls, they decided to do the entire trail. They hiked eight miles altogether! The next service unit hike is not until April, but be on look out for it! We hope to have more girls join in next time.

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

Yoga at McIntosh Lake

Submitted by Sharon Manning

Northern & Northeastern CO

Longmont

The tenth grade girls of Troop 73392 are currently working on the “Senior Cross Training” badge. The girls identified fitness goals such as eating healthier, reducing junk food, and being more consistent in exercising on a regular basis.

After identifying goals, the girls kicked off the cardiovascular part of their badge with kayaking/paddleboarding across McIntosh Lake.

The girls also wanted to work on flexibility and stretching. They returned to McIntosh Lake to practice yoga with Left Hand Yoga. Left Hand Yoga offers a free community class on Sunday morning at 11. During the summer/early fall months, the class is held at McIntosh Lake with a beautiful view of the mountains.

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

Get your troop outdoors and earn badges for FREE

Girl Scouts of the USA is looking for troops at each Girl Scout level to participate in a research study on the use of outdoor badges, made possible by the Elliott Wildlife Values Project.

What’s Involved

Selected troops will:

  • Be assigned to complete one, two, or three outdoor badges between November 16, 2018 and June 1, 2019. You choose the dates, we choose the number of badges. Troops will be able to choose from a menu of four badges, including camping, environmental stewardship, art in nature, and naturalist badges.
  • Complete and submit to GSUSA a pre- and a post-program survey, or a one-time post-only survey (girls only) after the completion of badge(s). Surveys can be taken on paper or online; survey type will be assigned by GSUSA.
  • Complete an online volunteer survey (leaders only) after the completion of badge(s).

Who Can Participate

  • We are looking for troops at all Girl Scout levels (multi-level welcome).
  • Troops with any level of outdoor experience welcome. No outdoor experience required.
  • Troops that participated in the 2018 outdoor survey pilot study are not eligible.

Benefit to Troops

Participating troops will have the opportunity to help Girl Scouts of the USA understand how our programs benefit girls. Participating troops will also receive all earned badges free of charge!

How to Apply

Interested troops can apply here. A troop leader must complete the entire application by October 31 to be considered.

Service Unit 747’s first group hike

Submitted by Ariella Wells

Northern & Northeastern CO

Fort Collins

Service Unit 747 held their first group hike at Devil’s Backbone in Loveland. Four Girls Scouts, two leaders, one parent, and five dogs joined the fun! It was a great day with great weather for a hike!

Our next group hike is October 7, 2018 at 9 a.m. at Hewlett Gulch. Please RSVP to ariellanetanya@gmail.com if you, your troop, or families would like to participate!

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

Gold Award Girl Scout: Bailey Stokes, Buena Vista, “Teaching in the Outdoors”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

In order to earn my Gold Award and make a difference in my community, I decided to make outdoor-based lesson plans for the use of teachers in schools across the state. I achieved this by making boxes that had lesson plans for eight to ten outdoor lessons, along with all the materials a teacher would need to complete them. The boxes also included a small tri-fold presentation board on the subject for student reference. I made two sets of three boxes covering three different subjects: investigations, habitat, and adaptations. The boxes are designed to meet the education standards for fourth grade science, but they can be adapted to be used with any age group. The goal of my project was to provide teachers with an easy and convenient way to bring outdoor education into their classrooms, because outdoor education provides students with many physical and mental benefits.

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

The first step of my project was to go spend a day at my local elementary school teaching a couple of my lessons to a fourth grade class in order to determine what worked with students and what did not. In the day that I spent at the elementary school, I impacted 70 students. When the school year starts, I expect to impact around 500 students a year through the constant use of my project.

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

My project will be sustained by Colorado Parks and Wildlife. There are two sets of my boxes and they are being kept at the Colorado Parks and Wildlife offices in Pueblo and Salida. The people at the offices will help ensure that my boxes are staying in good condition throughout their use. They will also help ensure that the boxes are going out into classrooms year after year.

Another way that my project will continue to impact the community after my involvement is through the help of the teachers that use my boxes. They will hopefully continue to use my boxes year after year, and they will also help spread the word about my project through the teaching community. I have also had teachers tell me that they want to recreate my boxes for their own communities.

What is your projects global and/or national connection?

Instead of finding a way to make it so that teachers across the country could use my boxes, I decided to focus on encouraging other people to take action like I did. I wrote an informational paper about the importance of outdoor education and why it should be incorporated into schools. I did this in hopes that I would inspire other people to take action. There are also two sets of my boxes that are being stored in two separate locations so that they can be accessible for more teachers across the state.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned that I can accomplish anything that I put my mind to, and I learned that I am capable of making a difference. I also learned that I have what it takes to be a teacher one day, and I grew an even bigger passion for education. During this project, I also gained a lot of confidence in myself and my abilities.

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

My Gold Award gave me hands-on experience in the field that I am wanting to enter. I am currently studying to be a teacher at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, and this project gave me valuable classroom experience. What I learned through this project will help me as I continue to pursue my dream of becoming a teacher.

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 in the first grade. In that time, I have been actively involved in many different Girl Scout activities, however, earning my Gold Award was the most valuable part of my Girl Scout experience. Not only did I have the opportunity to make a difference in my community, I also gained a lot of confidence and career experience. Earning my Gold Award was a life changing experience that showed me that I am able to accomplish anything I put my mind to. It was a lot of work, but in the end it was definitely a valuable part of my Girl Scout experience and I am extremely glad that I did it.

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

During this project, my leadership skills greatly improved. I stepped out of my comfort zone by leading people who weren’t my peers. My project may have impacted the community, but it also helped me become a stronger leader which is a trait I will need for the rest of my life. This project also helped me become a go-getter. I took action and I accomplished an amazing achievement that I am extremely proud of.

**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

Troop 70720 summits a 14er

Submitted by Ariella Wells

Northern & Northeastern CO

Fort Collins

Three Girl Scouts from Troop 70720 hiked Mt. Bierstadt last month. This trail is 6.9 miles round trip and has an altitude gain of 2,729-feet. This is a Class Two 14er.

It was a chilly day with a lot of cold and strong wind gusts. Everyone was prepared with lots of warm gear, water, electrolytes, and food.

This is a difficult hike. The girls were amazing troopers! Two of the girls summited and one girl was so close being only .5 miles from the top, mostly missing the rock scrambling.

We have plans to try another 14er next summer!

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

Sister troops go backpacking

Submitted by Elizabeth Moore

Metro Denver

Conifer

The Cadettes of sister troops 2064 and 8242 went backpacking in the Mt. Evans Wilderness Area the weekend before Memorial Day. Seven girls and two leaders went on this challenging six-mile loop.

The girls were greeted with a massive thunderstorm five-minutes from the campsite, leaving them to take shelter in the forest until the lightning subsided. Once at the campsite, the girls took turns holding a large tarp over each others’ tents until they could be fully pitched with the rainfly on, preventing the inside from becoming soaked. Then, they worked together to gather and dry wood for a campfire. These Cadettes showed amazing teamwork in a tough situation.

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