Friday, June 5, 2015

• Girl Scout Troop 447 on the Bronze Award Trail

Wildomar girl scout troop 447, comprised of local 5th graders, was learning about runoff the other day, and my wife and I were invited along by Mayor Pro-Tem Bridgette Moore to watch as they were completing their Bronze Award project at William Collier Elementary School.  The project was to put warning emblems near drains, reminding people Only Rain Down the Storm Drain.

Matt Bennett getting the tiny town ready for impending doom.
Deputy City Engineer Matt Bennett is shown as he illustrates the pollutants that gets into run off and ends up in storm drains. They were using cinnamon and sugar to represent pesticides, fertilizer and dog droppings.

Then the girls used spray bottles to simulate rain and we watched as they brought what must have equated to a cat 3 hurricane to the tiny plastic town. They all seemed to enjoy watching/making the dog poop flow down to the storm drains.

While this was going on, Bennett was teaching them about storm drains and the value keeping trash (and other nasty things... ie dog poop) from getting in the runoff that ends up in the drains. Once the classwork was complete, the troop headed outside to do the fieldwork.

Matt Bennett and Julianna at the first drain.
This was the girls' chance to get some hands on work with some tools that many of them hadn't seen before. Specifically the caulking gun. Watching them try and work in gloves that would have been too big for me was fun too. ☺

Here you see Shelby prepping another warning disk with adhesive.
Rowan is putting the protective gloves on.
In all there are 10 members of troop 447, though only 8 were present for this project. Each of the girls had a chance to wear the oversized gloves and then squeeze out the industrial strength caulking. After which they affixed the emblems by applying pressure and twisting them downward.

I asked troop leader Connie Nader how they came up with this idea for their Bronze Award. 
To earn a Bronze Award the girls have to do what is called a 'journey' first and their journey involves studying the environment. Then they did their animal habitats badge and that involves studying what's happening in the Gulf of Mexico and water pollution. Bridgette Moore was nice enough to let the girls interview her and to pick her brain, and this came up as a possibility. Then the troop voted yes this is definitely what they wanted to do.

What's the next step in the Bronze Award process?
After this they have to write a report of the process and what they did. Then they will have earned their Bronze Award. Which is the highest award that a junior girl scout can earn.

Back row (L-R) Noelani Tupua, Connie Nader, Bridgette Moore, Matt Bennett.
Front row (L-R)  Alyssa C., Morgan, Melokia, Rowan, Shelby, Julianna, Leah and Lindsay.  
Not in this photo include Allyssa L. and Allison.

Way to go troop! It's good to see the future generation of leaders learning to care for our environment from an early age.

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If you want a quality, act as if you already had it. Try the "as if" technique. William James

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