The Girl Scout Law and Promise are the statements of purpose shared by all girl scouts. More than words, they are a philosophy of life that teaches girls to be caring, appreciative and respectful adults. Many activities and lessons related to these values are embedded into the patch and bridging requirements. Even the youngest of scouts, the Daisies who are still in kindergarten and first-grade, are tasked with developing an understanding of honesty and fairness. Use these activities and games to help your young girls get a head start on life.
Making and exchanging handmade tokens, Swaps, is a practice that dates back to the early years of scouting. While it might seem unrelated to the themes of honesty and fairness, Swap meets are all about an even amount of give and take. Other troops trust that your girls put a lot of effort into their tokens, and so they do the same. It isn't fair to give something worthless and expect something great back.
Fairness: Hand Squeeze
The hand squeeze and closing song are an important part of every meeting that help wrap up your time together on a positive note -- as long as you can decide who gets to start the squeeze. Younger girls enjoy the physicality of the hand squeeze and the satisfaction of watching something they began pass around the circle. So you will have squeeze addicts who want to start all the time. Teach these girls about being fair by including everyone in announcing the chosen squeezer in the form of a rhyming or word game. For example, "This week's squeezer is Sarah. Let's all sing the name song for her!" Everyone will enjoy the silly rhymes and your chosen squeezer will feel a little extra special.
Honesty: Honest Helpers
Use this fun activity adapted from "Be Honest and Tell the Truth" to show girls that being honest is good for everyone. Prepare for this game by making one or more treasure troves of special snacks or party favors. Separate one-quarter of the girls from the troop and send them to wait in the hallway with your assistant leader. Tell the girls remaining in the room that they will help the other girls find a lost treasure by answering yes-or-no questions honestly. Hide the treasure troves around the meeting room so that the girls can see. Bring the girls from the hallway inside and tell them that they are going to be looking for a treasure and that everyone will help them by answering yes or no questions. Your assistant leader can get the girls started by asking sample questions like "Is the treasure up high?" When the treasures are all found, everyone gets to share a piece.
Honesty: All Lies
Lies are hard to remember. Show your Daisies that it is always easier to tell the truth with this simple game. Sit with the girls in a circle. Hold a large object in your hands and make up a silly lie about it. For example, if you are holding a stuffed bear you can say "This is a duck." Pass the bear and instruct the next girl to repeat what you said and add a new lie -- e.g., "This is a duck and it is blue." Continue until someone accidentally tells the truth or forgets a lie. For comparison, try the same game but tell the truth.
Honesty and Fairness Scenario Activity
Show girls that they can use honesty and fairness in everyday life to make themselves and others happy by trying out this activity adapted from "Be Honest and Tell the Truth". (See Resource 1) Cut out enough fish-shaped cards so that there is one for each girl. Draw a scenario on the fish that has to do with honesty or fairness. For example, you could draw a picture of a girl in front of a broken lamp with angry parents nearby. Shuffle the cards and let each girl pick one. Go around the circle and talk about the picture on each card. Then ask the girl to think about what she would do and share her answer with the group.
Sylvia Cini has written informative articles for parents and educators since 2009. Her articles appear on various websites. Cini has worked as a mentor, grief counselor, tutor, recreational leader and school volunteer coordinator. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Clark University of Worcester, Massachusetts.