Useful help for girls 11-17 and their advisors:
This page contains links of use to girl members and advisors of Girl Scouts: 11 - 17 or (as one troop decided to call itself) "Girl Scouts of the age level formerly known as Cadettes and Seniors". Information on this page is related to earning the Silver and Gold Awards, Focus Books, and Interest Projects. Since use of any of these materials may be dependent upon "local rules", I've given the source as well.
Straight from the horse's mouth -- the following links take you to the GSUSA web site
The Girl Scout Gold Award
Girl Scout Gold Award FAQs (.pdf file)
Girl Scout Gold Award Project Proposal (.doc file)
Benefits of Earning the Girl Scout Gold Award (.pdf file)
From Good to Great: Successful Girl Scout Gold Award Projects (.pdf file -- explains what sets a Gold Award Project apart from a servce project)
Money and Your Leadership Project (.pdf file)
Ways Parents and Guardians can Support Girls Working on Girl Scout Gold Awards (.pdf file)
Girl Scout Gold Award Final Report Form (.doc file)
The Girl Scout Silver Award
Note: the Requirements for the Silver Award in the first printing of the Girl Scout Silver Award: Go for It! supplement are incorrect. On page 31, the FAQs section, when asked about doing a group project, the supplement says that each girl must make sure she puts in a minimum of 50 hours, when the correct number is 40 hours. On the same page, when asked in effect when a girl had to stop work, the correct answer is either before she turns 15 or before October 1st in the calendar year when she completes 9th grade. (The correct answers are on the GSUSA website.)
Girl Scout Silver Award FAQs (.pdf file)
Benefits of Earning the Girl Scout Silver Award (.pdf file)
From Good to Great: Successful Girl Scout Silver Award Projects (.pdf file -- explains what sets a Silver Award Project apart from a servce project)
Money and Your Leadership Project (.pdf file)
Ways Parents and Guardians can Support Girls Working on Girl Scout Silver Awards (.pdf file)
Girl Scout Silver Award Final Report Form (.doc file)
Interest Project Awards (not in IPA book -- on-line only)
American Patriotism IPA
Computers in Everyday Life IPA
Cookies and Dough IPA
Exploring the Net IPP
New Interest Project Awards - on-line only, and earned differently (directions are available on-line -- these are earned in a different manner than the other IPAs!)
Home is Where the Heart Is dealing with homelessness
B Xtreme! involving unusual individual or extreme sports (as permitted by Safety-Wise, of course!)
Global Girls for the good of women all over the world
On Your Own - real-life skills
G.O. Girl! - get organized!
In the Pink - breast cancer awareness
Uncovering the Evidence - forensic science
Couch Potato - TV watching
Sew Glam - learning and using sewing and knitting skills
Hi-Tech Hide and Seek - geocaching and letterboxing
A Council's Own Interest Project Award You May Enjoy:
Girl Scout Western Washington Interest Projects
Discover California Interest Project from Girl Scouts of San Diego-Imperial Council
Girl Scout Challenge 3 Focus Book and other Helps
Safety Award for Girl Scouts 11 to 17
Placement on the Uniform shows where to place each item on a uniform
aMAZE: The Twists and Turns of Getting Along
Life is a maze of relationships, and this journey has Girl Scout Cadettes maneuvering through all its twists and turns to find true friendships, plenty of confidence, and even peace. The adult guide offers tips for talking about relationship issues with girls, and pointers for understanding Girl Scout Cadettes' development and creating a safe, welcoming space.
GIRLtopia: Toward an Ideal World for Girls
Girl Scout Seniors know the world is not ideal. This journey is their chance to imagine a perfect world—for girls. They're invited to create their vision as an art project—in any medium of their choice. Then they'll take action to make their vision a reality. Leaders, after all, are visionaries!
Your Voice, Your World: The Power of Advocacy
How often have you seen something that really needed to be changed and wondered, "Why isn't someone doing something about that?" This journey gives Girl Scout Ambassadors a way to be that someone—an advocate with the power to start the first flutter of real and lasting change. While creating their own "butterfly effect," they'll gain an array of skills—such as networking, planning, and learning to speak up for what they believe—that will benefit them as they prepare for life beyond high school.
Some notices from GSUSA:
Girl Scout Gold Award Reminders Pins and Charms: Yes! Girls can choose the Leadership and Career pins instead of or in addition to the charms. Don't forget they can also use the STUDIO 2B charm holder if they choose the charm and want to pin it to the uniform.
Girl Scout Gold Award: Yes! It is available as a pin or a pendant.
Second printing of the GS Gold Award Go for It! booklet: Shops were asked to ship booklets back because the printer used a wrong version of the manuscript, which asked girls to use the Take Charge! Focus book. The Focus Book requirement is the girl.s choice.
Council Guide: The Girl Scout Gold Award Council Guide has been updated to reflect recent changes.
The Girl Scout Silver Award Go For It! booklet: Two printing errors have been corrected for the second edition. The total Silver Award Project hours are 40 and the completion age is 14 or going into the 10th grade.
2008 National Girl Scout Leadership Institute October 29-30, 2008
The 2008 Girl Scout Leadership Institute (GSLI) (formerly Girl Congress) is part of the leadership development program for girls in grades 6 -12, designed to develop and hone their leadership skills, provide an opportunity to discuss key health issues relevant to them, and engage in a fun and interactive learning environment with peers and adults. Sponsored by Girl Scouts of the USA and Girl Scouts of Central Indiana, the GSLI will be held on October 29-30, 2008, in Indianapolis, Indiana, prior to the National Council Session.
Over 2,000 girls from across the country will have the opportunity to participate in this unique and exciting event. The 2008 GSLI will serve as a model for future national, regional and local GSLIs to be implemented throughout Girl Scouting. As part of this leadership experience, girls will have the opportunity to engage in a myriad of workshops in an environment that fosters inclusion and pluralism. Workshop topics range from understanding the democratic process in a way that prepares girls to better participate in the business of the National Convention to learning and discussing key issues of health relevant to and identified by girls, such as self-esteem, bullying and stress.
With experts in these fields leading group sessions, girls will be provided a safe space to discuss ideas and issues that are important to them. Through participation in these workshops girls will identify ways the information is personally relevant, as well as strategies to take action back in their communities.
There are many helps available on the internet created by different Councils to assist you in earning the Silver and Gold Awards. While the Silver Award -- at least in our council -- is completed when your leader says it is, the requirements and procedures for the Gold Award are what the council says they are. Note: all of these helps are based on the "old" requirements.
Do not attempt to use materials from another council -- or for that matter, from GSUSA -- without checking with your council first!
From Girl Scout Council of Greater Long Beach:
Gold Award Packet (MS Word document)
Silver Award Packet (MS Word document)
From Rolling Hills Council:
Download an IP checklist in MS-Word format Download an IP checklist in Adobe Acrobat format
Prepared for Wagon Wheel Council by a volunteer
Silver Award Helps, including:
From Dreams to Reality On-Line Workshop (before attempting to use this to earn most of the patch, please check with your leader to see if this work is acceptable)
Girl's Guide to the Silver Award, a booklet in MS-Word and Adobe Acrobat format
Leader's Guide to the Silver Award, in MS-Word and Adobe Acrobat format
Powerpoint presentation for a training on the Silver Award Speaker's notes for the training
Other Helps by Troops and Individuals:
Senior Troop 2099's (Mid-Continent) list of Links to IPA Sites on the internet. Includes a number of Council's Own IPAs.
Some more IPA helps from Apalachee Bend's Troop 446
List of Silver Award projects from Muir Trail's Troop 434
List of Gold Award Projects from Muir Trail's Troop 434
Useful Links for Cadette & Senior Girl Scout Interest Projects Silver Award Projects -- an extensive list of projects which have been done in the past
Silver Award Projects and
Gold Award Projects which have been done by others.
Path to the Gold!
Destinations (formerly known as Wider Opportunity) Info
Current Destinations list Tips for Girl Scouts attending a Wider Opportunity
Gold Award College Scholarship Information from GSUSA
An extensive list of links for Cadettes, Seniors, and Girl Scouts 11 to 17 is available at The Scouting Web -- if what you want isn't mentioned on this page, give 'em a try!
Many useful files are available in the files section of the Cadette/Senior leaders e-mail group at Yahoo. Once you subscribe (by giving them your e-mail address and a password), you can join the Cadette/Senior leaders group ("cad-senleaders"). Some of the files listed on this page are available in the group's "Files" section, as well as many additional checklists and helps leaders have created. Definitely worthwhile!
P.R.A.Y. is the home for the religious awards for most Protestant denominations, and has links to most others (except Wiccan)
The following appeared on the On-Line Council Network for staff employees at Girl Scout councils, but seemed too useful to let it languish there!
Bridging and Celebrations for Girls 11 and Up
Making It Meaningful
Up to now, bridging has been laid out in a formula for transition at each age level, with activities clearly spelled out. The ceremony itself is not the point, it's making a journey from the familiar to something new and different that inspires girls. The journey develops more twists and turns as girls move into the tweens and teens, and offers more opportunities for creativity and girl planning.
We have been marking the transitions of girls from Junior Girl Scouts to Cadette Girl Scouts, and from Cadette into Senior Girl Scouts. These two passages are still an option and the available insignia are:
Bridging to Cadettes
Bridging to Seniors
Bridging to Adults
10 Year Pin
Membership discs and stars
Remember however, that the current bridging practices really don't synchronize with girl development patterns. We know from girls that their physical, emotional, and social development changes as they progress through three stages of adolescence: 11-13; 13-15 and 15-17. By marking these stages with celebrations and rites of passage, we can better meet the needs of girls.
GSUSA is encouraging Girl Scouts 11-17 and adults to think more broadly and creatively about marking the passage of girls throughout adolescence and the transition into adulthood. Some examples about building new transitional celebrations for girls are listed below.
Ages and Stages:
Cause for Celebration
Girls 11 and 12: 'Tweens
Girls 13-15: Teens at Last!
Girls 16-17: Focus on the Future
Girls 18 and above: Becoming an Adult.
Moving to "By Girls, For Girls" in Bridging Ceremonies for Girls 11-17
GSUSA is encouraging girls 11-17 in partnership with their advisors to create their own criteria for earning the current bridging insignia (listed below). Girls and advisors may:
Follow the specific bridging activities that are outlined in the current handbooks
Create new bridging activities to focus on concerns and transitions encountered as girls transition from 11-13, to 13-15 and 15-17...
Mix and match existing bridging activities with new activities and celebrations.
GSUSA is even exploring the possibility of creating new insignia, as well as honoring outstanding examples of creativity and meaningful program activities related to transitional activities for girls 11-13, 13-15 and 15-17. You are invited to send your ideas and successful bridging activities to Jennifer Goddard at Girl Scouts of the USA at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Suggestions for Ages and Stages, 11-18
Transitioning into Ages 11 and 12: 'Tweens
The end of Junior Girl Scouts and the first stage of adolescence can be marked by transitioning to the STUDIO 2B approach--which makes Girl Scouts "bigger" for girls! Options may be overwhelming at first. Girls may be staying with the same group of girls, or going into different groups as they move to different schools. They need to build a firm network for transition and support. Bridging activities at this point should still be focusing on preparation for the transition. We suggest components that include:
Reviewing resources available to girls 11-12, including:
STUDIO 2B Collection 11-13
Cadette Girl Scout Handbook
STUDIO 2B Basics
STUDIO 2B Focus books
Interest Projects for Girl Scouts 11-17
Girl Scout Silver Award insert
The Girl Scout Bronze Award (must earn by grade 7 or age 12)
Bridge to Cadette Girl Scout patch
Understanding the concept of "by girls, for girls" and the 4B's Meeting with girls who have already made the transition
Doing activities from materials at the next age level
Doing activities with girls who are older than they are
Planning a bridging ceremony that recognizes the transition into a new level
Reflecting on their accomplishments as Junior Girl Scouts
Transitioning into Ages 13-15: Teens at Last!
Becoming an "official" teen is both an exciting and confusing time for most girls. This is often the most angst driven and "me" focused period of being a teen-girls are entering or well into puberty, and change and relationships govern actions. Girl Scouting offers a haven to "be a girl" and explore issues encountered in the teen years with advisors and sister Girl Scouts, as well as find a voice in the teen community. Consider celebrating and acknowledge changes- in bodies, relationships, self-esteem..
Resources available to girls 13-15, include all of the resources listed above and:
STUDIO 2B Collection
13-15 Girl Scout Gold Award Go for It! insert
Bridge to Senior Girl Scout award
The Girl Scout Silver Award (Must earn by grade 9 or age 14)
The Girl Scout Gold Award (Must be 14 to start; 15 and above to do project)
Transitioning into Ages 16-17: Focus on the Future
The last two years of high school find a girl focusing on success in school, becoming her own person, and looking at careers and college. Often serious relationships develop, yet girl friends are needed as a support system. Adult mentors and networks are important. Life seems more focused and serious. Girls are given more responsibility and have more to stress out about. Time management is essential for busy calendars. Consider celebrating this stage by affirming friendships, networks and mentors, and accomplishments.
Resources available to girls 16-17, include all of the resources listed above and:
STUDIO 2B Collection
15-17 Bridge to Senior Girl Scout award
The Girl Scout Gold Award (Must complete by age 18 or end of last girl membership year)
Links on Girl Scout Central:
Campus Girl Scouts
Bridging to Adult Girl Scouting If girls choose to bridge to adult Girl Scouting, they may want to volunteer their time at their council, or directly to girls, as a leader of a troop/group. Completing the activities below will enable girls to earn the Bridge to Adult Girl Scout pin-or, exploring what it means to be an adult Girl Scout in your own way.
Bridge to Adults Requirements:
Find out how Girl Scouting is organized in your community. Find out about the volunteer positions that are open to adults. Interview professional Girl Scout staff and find out what kinds of education and experience are needed for key positions. Find out about training available for adults and, if possible, participate in an adult training event. Take on a leadership role in Girl Scouting working with adults. This might be as a Program aide, a Leader-in-Training, a Troop Assistant, an Apprentice Trainer, or a member of an event task group or board committee. Find out about campus Girl Scouting. Plan or help plan a bridging ceremony, in which you receive your Bridge to Adult Girl Scouts pin.
Once bridged, a girl may register as an adult and wear the adult uniform.
Resources Leader magazine Bridge to adult pin.