By Sara O.
In celebration of Earth Day I wanted to share my Brownie unit’s recent experience in finishing up the 2012 Thinking Day challenge.
Since the week of Thinking Day, in between other fun weekly meeting stuff, the 2nd Lachute Brownies have been working on the World Thinking Day 2012 Challenge which has “we can save our planet” as a theme. The girls were thrilled because not only is it a topic they care about but they knew that a lot of what we did for the challenge also helps earn their Key to the Living World, 2 in 1 – bonus!
Here’s what we did to earn the WAGGGS badge:
Section 1- Reduce… the use of fossil fuels when getting around
-We chose #3: Food Passport and #7: Muscle Power as our activities
The Brownies were fascinated to hear that a lot of the food we eat doesn’t even come from Canada, let alone our own community. We discussed how it is we think food can last so long if say, you buy tomatoes that come from Mexico when you go grocery shopping. Or do we think blueberries taste as good if they weren’t grown in your very own backyard? After MUCH discussion about this (Brownies love to talk right!) we got to designing and decorating piggy-banks made from various containers I had grabbed from my recycling bin to fulfill the 2nd activity for this section. I pre-cut coin slots into the different empties I’d saved such as: nut containers, bigger yogurt containers and a coffee can. Each girl cut, glued, colored and designed her own bank. While the girls got their craft on we talked about what the banks were for- to collect for the CWFF (Canadian World Friendship Fund) of course! They came up with a list of chores they could do and what they thought each chore was “worth”. Off they went that night with a Food Passport to record four different foods they bought or saw when they went grocery shopping with their family and where it came from and a piggy-bank to fill. And off I went to warn the parents as they all left that the girls were in charge and they had decided the value of the chores! 😉
Of note: $30.15 was raised for CWFF by the 10 Brownies in our unit!
Section 2- Save…resources in and around your home
-We chose #1: Get off the Grid! and #4 Plant for the Planet as our activities
With a little bit of friendly competition as incentive the girls were divided into their Circles and went to work creating posters. They brainstormed to come up with as many easy things that they could do on a daily basis at home, school or in the community to help save the planet. The Brownies learned about and were all invited to participate in Earth Hour on March 31. While one group was working on their poster the other group was getting their hands dirty. We planted lettuce, carrot, parsley, green onion and pansy seeds in egg cartons. The cartons have been kept at our meeting place and it’s been fun to check in on them every week! Whose has grown the most? Why are they all leaning towards that window?? And so on.. Once they’re ready the girls will take them home to plant in their gardens or in large pots.
Section 3- Switch…to sustainable energy solutions
-We chose #3: Catch the Wind and #4: How green is your packaging?
To better understand what’s out there in terms of sustainable energy we learned about the wind and we made our very own weather tool, a windsock. And because Easter was nearing they were bunny windsocks of course! For part 2, the Brownies’ eyes were opened to the idea of packaging and had a crash course in consumerism. Consumer-whaa? I brought in a product (it happened to be a hair-care product) a small bottle that was inside some plastic that was inside a box- you know the kind. We all see it every day. The girls were flat out disgusted. After all, plastic that’s not recyclable (this stuff wasn’t) takes “FOREVER to break down” if it does at all! And does it even break down, and if it does “where does it go??” AND “couldn’t that product just stand alone on the shelf? Why does it need to be in all that plastic?” VERY eye-opening indeed.
Section 4- Speak out…to make a difference
And here we are! We decided that an excellent way to speak out is to share our experience with you. Here are some quotes from the girls about their recent Brownie meetings “Brownies is extremely awesome”, “super fun” and “I learned what I can do to help save the planet”. Well there you have it. Remember those posters from Section 2? We combined them to make a top 10 list of things “I” and therefore WE all can do every day- “we can save our planet”.
Top 10 Things we can do to save the planet:
1. Pick up garbage and recycling around home, outside, parks and at school.
2. Unplug electrical appliances when not in use.
3. Only buy things when you need them.
4. Choose products with less packaging.
5. Use less water!
6. Use re-usable shopping bags.
7. Carpool, walk, skateboard, bicycle to where we need to go.
8. Turn lights off when not using them/don’t need them. (Use candles like we do during Earth Hour)
9. Plant seeds, plants, trees and flowers.
10. SPREAD THE WORD!
I would’ve been satisfied with awesome and fun as adjectives to describe our challenge completion but “extremely” and “super” will do too 😉 We’re anxiously awaiting the badges in the mail!
Reference: What is she talking about?? Here’s the link for the activity pack!
About our Guest Blogger: Sarah O. is the Secteur Argenteuil District Commissioner and a Brownie Guider. To submit your blog idea, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org!