Brownies are a division of Girl Scouts for girls ranging from seven to 10 years old. Brownies are in many countries including the U.S., Australia, Canada, United Kingdom and throughout Southeast Asia. The focus of Girl Scouts at this level is mainly on fundraising, crafting and group projects. Because of the range of ages and abilities in a troop, leaders should prepare simple crafting activities that everyone can participate in.
The girls can begin this easy craft by painting an empty toilet paper or paper towel roll brown (like their uniforms) or covering in brown construction paper. This will be the body of the paper doll Brownie. Once the tube is dry, attach arms, head and feet. Leaders may opt to make a template for the girls to trace or cut out these pieces for them beforehand. Each girl can decorate a circle shape as themselves, drawing on the eyes, nose and mouth for a face. Create hair by using construction paper and curling the ends with a pencil (or even better, using yarn), and gluing to the top of the tube. When all the decorations are dry, attach the Brownie sash across the front of the tube, and add the beanie on top of the hair. Printable templates are widely available in the Girl Scout pattern, or leaders may allow the troop to be creative and make all the pieces themselves.
Wreaths are a quick and easy craft for Brownies of all ages. For a simple holiday wreath, have the Brownies trace their hands in red and green construction paper, cut out, and glue to a paper plate ring (a paper plate with the middle cut out). For something more advanced, start with a Styrofoam ring (available at most craft stores, and in many sizes) and some floral wire or pipe cleaners. The girls may either thread beads on the pipe cleaners and wrap them around the ring, or use seasonal accessories to decorate their ring, like plastic flowers or plants. With both options, make sure the Styrofoam is completely covered and no white is showing through. Younger girls might also need assistance wrapping the decorations with floral wire, so leaders should consider attaching the wire in advance.
Girl Scouts are often focused on nature preservation and education. During a nature walk or a hike with your troop, collect pine cones for crafting. Larger pine cones are excellent for crafting into bird feeders. Before starting this activity, attach a string or a wire to your pine cones (for hanging). This is a simple two-step activity and only requires peanut butter and bird seed. The girls start by rolling the pine cone, or spreading with a spoon or blunt knife, in peanut butter. Once covered, roll the pine cone in the bird seed. When the pine cone is finished, attach it to a tree branch.
Patricia K. Maggio is a freelance writer originally from Chicago, Ill. She has been living, studying or working in Europe since 2007, when she graduated with a B.A. in English from DePaul University. Most recently, her screenwriting work has appeared on BBC America and STYLE Network.