A Note From the Founder – Prayers and Patience
Well, yet again, my life taken an unexpected turn. For those of you who have been members for many years, you have supported me through caring for my mother with Alzheimer’s, through multiple wildfire evacuations and and the destruction of a portion of my city as well as my daughter’s city, through moving our offices multiple times, and so much more. Once again, I want to thank all of you for your wonderful prayers and patience.
In July I was diagnosed with endometrial cancer. Good news is that it seems to have been caught very early and should be curable. Bad news is it means I am prescheduling this newsletter as I will be having surgery at the end of September. I will have a lot of doctor appointments in the next month or two and since the closest oncologist is 3 hours away that means a lot of time away from the office.
I have already turned over the all badge making and order fulfillment to Emma Brooks, one of the original founding Frontier Girls. She has been filling all orders since the beginning of July and has been a huge blessing to me. Thanks to her all orders will process in a timely manner regardless of my health.
Where you may see some delays is in communication. Usually I am very good about answering all emails within 24 hours. Unfortunately I have no idea what my schedule will be for the forseeable future and it may take me longer than usual to reply or to provide requested resources. So I apologize in advance if a few things fall between the cracks in the near future. Do not hesitate to follow up if I seem to ignore or forget about an email. It is actually appreciated.
For those who have been part of the program for many years, I have a request. Please monitor the forums for me. Many of you know this program better than I do myself. You helped me build it. Help answer questions for our newbies and show them all the wonderful opportunities that await them. Get active. Post about what you and your troop/club/kids are up to. Inspire others.
Many thanks to everyone for your support and your prayers. Love you all. ❤️
New Badges Posted
Creating Meaninful Investiture Ceremonies
An investiture ceremony is a significant and symbolic event that marks a new member’s official acceptance into the troop/club and commitment to its values, principles, and ideals. These ceremonies are an important part of the scouting experience, helping participants feel a sense of belonging and connection to the group. This ceremony is frequently combined with a rededication ceremony where existing members rededicate themselves to the troop/club. Investiture ceremonies can be held any time of year, but are most often held in October. This allows new members enough time at the beginning of the school year to make sure they enjoy the group before making a full year long commitment.
There is no right or wrong way to hold a ceremony of this kind. What is important is making it meaningful to your members. If your group uses a promise or creed like we do for Frontier Girls, this usually plays an important role in the ceremony. If not, concentrate on what makes your group unique. What do you stand for and what type of behavior do you want your kids to emulate?
One of my favorite ways to design an investiture ceremony is to create one around a badge you are earning. For example, if you are earning the Ice Cream badge, you may wish to design a ceremony similar to the one below:
- Setting: A table set up to resemble an ice cream sundae bar.
- Opening: [The troop leader stands at the front of the room with a large ice cream bowl.]
- Leader: (Addressing the group) Welcome, everyone, to this special investiture ceremony! Just like an ice cream sundae, our troop is a delightful combination of unique and wonderful individuals. Today, we’re going to celebrate the richness that each one of you brings to our troop, just like the toppings on a sundae.
- Leader: Our troop is like this plain bowl of ice cream – a foundation for something extraordinary. But what makes a sundae truly special? It’s the toppings, of course!
- [One by one, new members and existing members come forward, representing different toppings. They share their thoughts or commitments as they are added to the “sundae.”]
- Scout 1: Just as these colorful sprinkles add joy to an ice cream sundae, I promise to bring enthusiasm and positivity to our troop. I pledge to live by the troop creed and contribute to making our troop a better place. [Scout 1 sprinkles a few sprinkles into the bowl.]
- Scout 2: Whipped cream is soft and smooth, just like the way we cooperate and work together in our troop. I promise to support my fellow Scouts and leaders, making our troop even stronger. [Scout 2 adds a swirl of whipped cream.]
- Scout 3: The cherry on top symbolizes leadership. I pledge to be a responsible leader, guiding and helping others in our troop, just as this cherry tops off our sundae. [Scout 3 places the cherry on the sundae.]
- Scout 4: Just as chocolate sauce makes every bite delicious, I promise to be a good friend to all in our troop. I’ll support and stand by my fellow Scouts, making our troop sweeter together. [Scout 4 drizzles chocolate sauce over the sundae.]
- Leader: Our troop is like this beautiful ice cream sundae, rich and flavorful because of each of you. Together, we create something wonderful and unique, just as this sundae is a treat to savor.
- [The troop joins together in reciting the group’s promise, law, creed or oath, as appropriate.]
- Leader: As we recite our promise, let it be a reminder that, like these sundae toppings, we are all essential ingredients in making our troop the best it can be. [The ceremony ends with a group celebration, which may include enjoying actual ice cream sundaes as a treat.]
The key to a creative ceremony is to think outside the box. Whether you choose to use candle, puzzles, flowers, or even camping equipment for your symbolism, choose items that are important and meaningful your own group.
As the leaves fall and the air turns crisp, Halloween is just around the corner. I’ve compiled six engaging and educational activities to ensure your children have a spooktacular and learning-filled Halloween.
Activity 1: Pumpkin Science Discover the world of pumpkins with hands-on exploration. Delve into botany by dissecting a pumpkin and examining its seeds. Discuss plant life cycles, conduct a pumpkin density experiment, create math problems with a pumpkin theme or even bake a pumpkin pie! If you are looking for some great pumpkin ideas, check out Lessons for Little Ones (great for soem older kids too!)
Activity 2: Spooky Storytelling Encourage your children to exercise their writing and storytelling skills by crafting their own spooky tales. Incorporate classic Halloween elements like witches, ghosts, and haunted houses, and share these stories by candlelight for added ambiance.
Activity 3: Halloween Art Extravaganza Foster your children’s creativity with Halloween-themed art projects. Paint eerie landscapes, construct haunted house dioramas, or design spooky masks. Display their artwork throughout your home to celebrate their artistic achievements. I especially like the skeleton figure drawing lesson from Art Teacher in LA.
Activity 4: Kitchen Witchery Transform your kitchen into a laboratory and brew some enchanting potions. Explore chemistry with safe experiments like “fizzy witches’ brew” by combining baking soda and vinegar (don’t drink it!) or “color-changing potions” by utilizing red cabbage juice as an indicator. Science Sparks as detailed instructions for making your own cabbage indicator.
Activity 5: Historical Halloween Immerse yourselves in history by researching the origins of Halloween and its various traditions. Learn about ancient festivals such as Samhain and Dia de los Muertos, and compare them to modern celebrations. Encourage your kids to create a timeline or a presentation about the evolution of Halloween.
Activity 6: Ghostly Scavenger Hunt Create an exciting scavenger hunt within your home or yard. Compile a list of spooky items to find, such as a plastic spider, a black cat figurine, or a broomstick. Provide clues and riddles that lead to the next hidden treasure. This activity fosters problem-solving skills while offering loads of fun.
Have a Happy and Educational Halloween!
Troop Highlight – Troop #377
Frontier Girls Troop #377 began their journey way back in 2016 and they are still going strong. Their fabulous leaders, George Evans, Dani Higgs and Stephanie Hedrick have done a fabulous job of implementing every aspect of the Frontier Girls program with their girls. Below are just a few of the many activities they have done with their troop which will hopefully provide some inspiration for troops just getting started.
- Provided and installed first aid kits at their church which they check and replenishe yearly
- Adopted a street in their community and pick up trash there four times a year.
- Visited a National Park
- Went fishing
- Had a cookout
- Nature hike
- Costume contest and indoor Penny Carnival for Halloween
- Participated in a Christmas parade
- Made cars and raced them in a Pinewood Derby
- Various guest speakers from first responders to engineers
- Planned mulitiple ceremonies such as flag ceremonie and award ceremonies
Many thanks to the leaders and voluntters of Troop #377. Your passion for guiding girls on their Frontier Girls journey is truly commendable. It’s leaders like you who inspire our young members to dream big, explore new horizons, and become confident, capable individuals. Your dedication does not go unnoticed, and we are fortunate to have you as Frontier Girls leaders.
Trekking the World
(No I have not received any compensation for this review – I just love the game.)
I am always on the lookout for educational resources that make learning engaging and enjoyable. Trekking the World is one of my family’s favorite board games and is a great addition to your homeschool collection. Both fun and educational, this game teaches geography, history, route planning and strategy. It even incorporates some basic math. The premise of the game is traveling around the world visiting desinations on each continent. The destination cards have descriptions of the location on the back as if you were a tourist visiting, giving historical or scientfic details such as when a stucture was built or how tall a mountain is.
The game is suggested for ages 10+, but you could probably go down to 8 years old be fine if you child reads well and is used to board games. Players race around the world collecting souvenirs (little cubes) and taking tours of various destinations. The game ends when a player successfully clears their 5th continent of souvenirs or they collect 5 different destination cards.
If your family loves board games you may also wish to try out the other Trekking games in the series. I have not yet played them, but they are on my list of games to get.