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There are so many fun things that girls get to participate in through troop activities, between exploring their hobbies, going to camp, exploring nature, and being empowered through STEM programs. Sometimes it can be easy for things like first aid to be overlooked compared to other badges girls might be more eager to pursue.
However, as a leader, you know how important and empowering preparing for those badges can be. I want to invite you to think outside the box and consider some practices that could make first aid more exciting for your girls. Here are some of my top tips:
It’s important for your troop members to not only learn the details about first aid, but to practice. While first aid can be a serious topic, it is possible to make it fun while still getting the facts down. You can encourage your girls to roleplay different scenarios where first aid may be necessary, and you could even play a part like a 911 operator.
To make this exercise fun, you can take the stress off of girls who are more shy by having multiple groups role playing with each other at a time. Remember that you set the tone of this activity. You can make it as serious or light-hearted as you want as long as everyone’s getting the practice they need. Sometimes, especially with younger scouts, making sure you’re smiling, being encouraging, and maybe integrating rewards can take away any scary or sensitive feelings they might be having around first aid. This will help them enjoy the process more and feel empowered.
If you have access to technology, Kahoot can be a really fun option! If you haven’t heard of Kahoot, it’s a fun game software online that allows your girls to play in an interactive online quiz on their phones or computers that projects the questions and scores to one main screen. There’s a free version that you can use as long as you have enough devices available, and it is often used in schools.
This would mainly help with learning facts and presenting examples of situations your girls need to know about. If not every girl has her own device, you could have your girls compete in groups. This will encourage teamwork and make sure you have enough resources to play! I would recommend this software for older scouts, because it could be confusing for young kids.
After you play the game, you can spend some time debriefing. This will help the girls gauge where they’re at, and it will also help you know if there’s anything you may need to review as a group.
If your girls are interested in art, I would recommend letting them make posters that represent the different concepts they’re learning. This is especially good for younger scouts who are learning the very basics and could use a visual representation.
This could either act as a follow-up exercise to check for understanding, or you could instruct them before the lesson on what you want the posters to look like so they can create them and then interact in your teaching by showing their poster when you get to the point their poster represents. An example would be having a girl draw a phone, and when you get to the step of calling 911, she holds up her phone poster as a visual representation of calling 911.
If you’re a Girl Scout leader, you’ll remember juniors have to talk to first responders. This could potentially be anxiety-provoking for your girls, but it doesn’t have to be! One way to make this more fun can be to bring in some approachable female first responders. It’s important for your girls to see that they could become first responders when they grow up, and positive interactions can really help first aid seem less intimidating.
If you want to make first aid more fun for your girls, but you don’t have the time, resources, or connections to make everything yourself, one way to make it a lot easier for yourself is to purchase a premade first aid activity booklet. These resources are created by people who are informed about your troop’s needs, and they have fun, age-appropriate exercises for your troop to learn everything they need to know about first aid. If you’d like to try this yourself, you can purchase mine right here!
I hope these tips help your troop and make you feel more excited to teach first aid. Let me know what the most helpful resource was for you!
Enjoy every minute being a leader and continue to inspire your girls!
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