New Leader Hints


The following contains answers to many questions asked by a new Girl Scout Leader when getting started with a new troop.

Girl Scout Promise Girl Scout Law Program Emphases Planning a Parents' Meeting
Girl Scout Terms Troop Record Keeping Troop Meeting Planner Troop Government


The Girl Scout Promise:

On my honor, I will try:
To serve God, and my country.
To help people at all times,
And to live by the Girl Scout Law.


Girl Scout Law:

I will do my best to be:

Honest and fair,
friendly and helpful,
considerate and caring,
courageous and strong,
And responsible for what I say and do,

and to

respect myself and others,
respect authority,
use resources wisely,
make the world a better place,
And be a sister to every Girl Scout.


The Four Program Emphases

The four program emphases are the areas in which we hope the girls will grow during their Girl Scouting experience. It is the end result to make each girl the best that she can be. To accomplish this, we try to have the girls:

Develop Self-Potential

By exposing the girls to new and different experiences, we are helping them build a unique sense of self-worth. By challenging them to do their best we encourage each girl's personal growth.

Relate to Others

By including all girls we encourage girls to develop sensitivity to others and respect for each girl's needs. We hope to foster an understanding and appreciation among the girls of individual, cultural, religious and racial differences. By working together in a team we promote her ability to build friendships and working relationships.

Develop Values

In using the decision making process with the girls, we help the girls become aware of their own values and beliefs and set the basis for sound future decision making. As the girls grow and change, they are encouraged to re-examine those ideals.

Contribute to Society

Inherent in the Promise and Law is the idea of contributing to society. Girls are asked to be "friendly and helpful" and "make the world a better place" and service to the community is just one of the ways to accomplish this. By developing a concern for her own community, she will see how the quality of community life is affected by the individual.


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Planning a Parents Meeting

Since most (although not all) new leaders are below the Cadette/Senior level, this outline has been tailored for Daisy, Brownie, and Junior troops. In order to make the new leader's task more manageable, it is important to develop a good rapport with the parents in the troop. The girls will benefit more from the program if the parents are involved and interested in the troop. To this end, try to schedule a Parents' Meeting prior to your first meeting with the girls. This is a good time to get registration taken care of as well as recruit parents for your "Troop Committee". Having had New Leader Training before this meeting is helpful even though it may not be required by your Council before you begin your troop. Below is a sample meeting outline for such a Parents' Meeting.

  1. Introduce yourself
  2. Explain philosophy and purpose of the Girl Scout movement
  3. Financing the Troop
  4. Equipment & Uniforms
  5. Meetings
  6. Transportation policy
  7. Safety-Wise
  8. Parents' responsibility to the troop
  9. Attendance
  10. Membership & Registration
  11. Troop committee Members Needed
  12. Questions??

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Girl Scout Terms

Age Level: There are 5 age levels in Girl Scouting: Daisy, Brownie, Junior, Cadette, and Senior

Baden-Powell: Lord Baden-Powell was the founder of the Boy Scout movement, Agnes Baden-Powell, B-P's sister, was the founder of the Girl Guide movement.

Bridging: The process of moving from one age level of Girl Scouting to another

Brownie Ring: Form of Government commonly used in a Brownie Troop. (See Troop Government)

Buddy System: A safety system where two girls stay together and watch out for each other.

Court of Awards: A ceremony to present earned recognitions at any level.

Court of Honor : part of the Patrol System of Government. (See Troop Government)

Daisy Circle: Form of Government commonly used by a Daisy Troop (See Troop Government)

Founder's Day: October 31, the birthday of Juliette Low

Girl Scout Birthday: March 12th, the date of the first Girl Scout meeting in the USA in 1912

Girl Scout Handshake: Execute the Girl Scout Sign with the right hand and shake hands with the left

Girl Scout Motto: Be Prepared

Girl Scout Sign: Three middle fingers of right hand raised shoulder high with thumb over little finger, given when saying the Promise or when doing a Girl Scout Handshake.

Girl Scout Slogan: Do a good turn daily.

Girl Scouts' Own: An inspirational ceremony with a theme planned by and for Girl Scouts.

Girl Scout Week: the week containing Girl Scout Birthday

Gold Award: The highest award a Girl Scout may earn (this is done as a Senior)

GSUSA: Girl Scouts of the United States of America

Fly-Up: The ceremony in which a Brownie becomes a Junior Girl Scout.

Investiture: A special ceremony to welcome a girl Scout where she receives her pin and officially makes her Promise for the first time.

JLWFF: Juliette Low world Friendship Fund, a voluntary fund that benefits guiding throughout the world.

Juliette "Daisy" Low: Founder of Girl Scouting in the U.S.A.

Kaper Chart: A chart showing all jobs available and who is responsible for each job generally on a rotating basis.

Patrol System: A form of troop government used in Junior, Cadette, or Senior troops (See Troop Government)

Quiet Sign: Right hand raised above head - it means stop talking

Rededication: A ceremony when Girl Scouts reaffirm their belief in the Promise and Law.

Safety-Wise: The publication put out by GSUSA detailing safety practices that should be adhered to.

Silver Award : The highest award that a Cadette Girl Scout may earn

Sit Upon: A cushion to sit on outside generally made by Girl Scouts.

Thinking Day: February 22; the birthday of Lord and Lady Baden-Powell, designed as a day to think about scouts and guides worldwide.

Trefoil: The international symbol of Girl Scouting. Our pins are in the shape of a trefoil.

Troop Committee: Adults who assist the troop in some way either at the meetings or by taking on jobs such as Telephone Chair, etc.

WAGGGS : World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, the worldwide organization to which Girl Scouts belong.

Wider Opportunity: Any opportunity outside the regular meeting place, although Wider Ops generally refer to opportunities advertised through GSUSA

World Trefoil Pin A pin worn by members of WAGGGS

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