Blog / June 12th, 2020
Show and tell – Facebook Interactive
On the morning of Saturday 6 June, Girlguiding Anglia held a live Facebook interactive session about sharing ideas for remote, virtual and interactive virtual guiding. The session started and ended with live videos from our Chief Commissioner and Lead Volunteer for Learning and Development, with conversation starters and resources shared throughout the morning. With so many inspiring ideas and resources shared during the session we decided to compile them altogether in this blog to allow members to access the information.
Working virtually is new for most of us and we are all learning together every day. Those of you who joined us live will have seen we had trouble with Facebook’s live streaming functionality right at the start, putting our programme back a little but the first thing to remember when going virtual is that we are all learning together and everyone is very understanding when you hit these technical difficulties. Don’t be afraid to give it a go!
The theme for this Facebook interactive morning came from a previous session held in April where members asked us for ideas on adapting activities for use in virtual meetings. With the lock-down continuing much longer than we all originally thought, remote and virtual guiding has become more and more popular, so we had lots of ideas from leaders to share.
Our aims for the interactive session were to:
- Give each other confidence with remote guiding.
- Share and support each other with adapting programme ideas to help us get back to a 60:40 split with just for fun activities.
- Start conversations and build our support networks; we’re not in this alone, let’s share our successes!
We started the morning by sharing a wellbeing technique from our Peer Educator, Bethany. This is an activity that can be shared through a virtual meeting video or sent out as a YouTube link in newsletters. Watch the video on the Girlguiding Anglia YouTube page.
Following a suggestion during the conversation, we are now looking to recruit a group to put together more of these resources, also providing an excellent Queens Guide opportunity. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and make sure you sign up to our monthly newsletter to find out how to join in on upcoming region projects.
Programme adaptations for interactive virtual guiding
At the end of the Facebook session in April, members requested our top 5 Girlguiding programme activities to do online. Because different activities work better for different girls, leaders, sections and online platforms, we’ve couldn’t choose just five. Therefore, our leaders sent in their tried and tested adaptations and we created a list of programme activities for virtual guiding split by section and theme.
We see this as an ongoing project and would love for you to share which activities are working for your unit and how you have adapted them, the same as many leaders did during the interactive session on Facebook. You never know we may add your adaptation to be shared with other members.
Leader, Rudy Boddington, then shared with us an adaptation of the Happy Thoughts Skills Builder, as these can be adapted as well as Unit Meeting Activities. Some leaders also shared that they had been providing one skills builder a week via newsletters so that girls could achieve a badge towards their theme award.
This generated some comments and conversation on the use of biodegradable glitter and natural food dyes. It’s always great to see leaders instilling a care of our environment within their meetings.
Programme adaptations for pre-recorded virtual guiding
Jo Dixon from Girlguiding Suffolk shared how she uses virtual guiding by recording weekly Facebook videos. These videos are then shared on the Girlguiding Suffolk YouTube channel for any leader to use, a great example of how we can help each other across units.
There are so many guiding games that we all love and many leaders have been busy adapting these as well for use in the virtual meeting place. We shared all that we had received so far with many more still being submitted. We’ve begun collating these in the resources section of our website so that all leaders can share.
We also shared pre-recorded Zentangle and Cat Origami activities. These are available on our Girlguiding Anglia YouTube channel. Feel free to play these during meetings or share the links on newsletters and remember to keep checking back as we add more over the next few months.
Remote guiding newsletters and waiting lists
Some leaders prefer or only have the time to do remote guiding (newsletters etc). Remember your wellbeing is top priority and you should do what is right for you at this time including taking a break.
We asked our members how they had been keeping girls involved in guiding throughout lockdown. This was our post with the most conversation and positive sharing of ideas. Comments included how newsletters had also been sent to girls on waiting lists keeping them engaged to join in the future and how one leader with time can engage the girls in another unit where the leader needs to take a break.
With this in mind, we have been releasing a series of newsletters for leaders to use, either as they are or by tailoring them to their own unit. Feel free to download and use these newsletters, we’ll keep providing them as long as leaders need them.
Ready-made family activities to share
If you are looking for a remote guiding activity that sits somewhere between programme and fun for the whole family, geocaching is a great way to have an adventure. If you haven’t got much time to prepare things for your members but they are looking to explore their local area and go on a bit of a treasure hunt, this is for them.
Point them directly to geocaching.com/guide and this video from Cassie Newbery, Leader at 3rd Dereham Guides and geocache enthusiast, for her top tips.
We hope girls learn navigation skills, explore outside, have fun and Guides could even do enough for their Geocaching Guide interest badge.
Hot off the press we were able to share with our members Girlguiding’s soon to be released training series for online meetings!
- Rainbows – Beyond scavenger hunts! Saturday 13 June at 10am
- Brownies – Beyond scavenger hunts! Saturday 13 June at 12noon
- Guides – Beyond scavenger hunts! Saturday 20 June at 10am
- Rangers – Beyond scavenger hunts! Saturday 20 June at 12noon
Sessions give a chance to see a panel of leaders and hear the activities they have been successfully delivering in their virtual unit meetings across the country. Including the opportunity to hear about their sessions first hand, and ask questions via the Q and A chat window.
Even after these dates remember that webinars on virtual guiding are available through the learning opportunities window of your GO account.
Our final video of the day was from Maxine Jones, Lead Volunteer for Marketing, Retail and Communications. Maxine has lots of experience with campaigning through her work with UK Parliament Week and this was a reminder that national and regional events are still happening for units to get involved in as units or individuals.
In the video, Maxine shares her tips for campaigning which could be used by girls to support them with completing some of the Take Action themed badges. The video would also be a great asset to those taking on the UK Parliament Week challenge pack this year.
Maxine references another support video by her son, Sam, that was put together to support girls who undertook the ‘Action for Change’ project, both videos can be found on our YouTube channel.
Keep checking back to the resources section on our website and our YouTube channel for more resources as we upload them. We’ll also be back for another Facebook interactive session, Leader’s Toolbox, on Saturday 5 September. Follow our Facebook page or subscribe to our newsletters for an opportunity to have your say on what resources and support you would like to add to your leader’s toolbox.