Gingerbread Houses

At their last meeting, the 2nd Sparks and 47th Brownies had a blast decorating gingerbread houses. It was a great way to get the holiday season kickstarted with some Guiding friends.

The large cookie pieces were tricky to maneuver, so the delicious treats actually needed a surprising amount of engineering skill! Frosting is a sticky glue, to be sure, and while the girls did make a pretty spectacular mess, they all ended up pretty proud of their creations.

Stay tuned this month as we’re likely to see updates from other units getting up to some holiday fun with awesome outings and special meetings.

Sparks and Brownies and Fish (oh my)

The 54th Brownies and 27th Guiding (Sparks & Brownies) units recently had a fun-filled, fish-filled sleepover in the local Steveston and Richmond communities. The visited the Gulf of Georgia Cannery, ate fish and chips at a local restaurant, and then returned to Richmond Guide House for a fun sleepover with fish-themed crafts and activities.

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Did you know the Gulf of Georgia Cannery offers tours specifically catered to Girl Guide programming? The excellent staff at the cannery have developed a program for girls to explore their local cultural and natural heritage through stories, activities, and a guided tour. The cannery was built in 1894 and it is fascinating to learn about the history of the fishing industry, the people who worked there, and the ways that this effected the local communities.

The group then took a lovely stroll through historic Steveston, ending up at the Sockeye City Grill for a delicious meal of fish and chips. The staff was impressed by how well mannered this large group of Sparks and Brownies was, and the girls and leaders all thoroughly enjoyed their meals.

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After supper the group enjoyed a ride on local public transit, riding the bus to Richmond Guide House, one of our favourite local spots for Guiding sleepovers. There the group did a variety of fun activities including a bright colourful fish-themed craft before finally getting some sleep.

It was a fish-tastic time. And a great oppor-tuna-ty to learn all about fish and the local community.

 

Physics & Astronomy Sleepover

The 2nd Sparks and 47th Brownies recently had an awesome science-themed sleepover with activities facilitated by volunteers from the UBC Department of Physics and Astronomy.

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They learned about light and electricity and fulfilled a part of the Experiment and Create program area!

One highlight was the experiment using special spectrum glasses. The foil in the spectrum glasses breaks the light into its different visible electromagnetic waves creating a continuous rainbow of colours when they look at their flashlight or any light source around them.

The girls got to talk about what electricity is and then each Spark and Brownie built a flash light using a breadboard, a switch, an LED light, wires, and a battery. Each girl got to take home their LED flashlight at spectrum glasses.

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The girls really enjoyed the activity and had a great time with the UBC volunteers. After the volunteers left, girls watched a movies and got some sleep. It was a great night!

 

Sparks & Brownies 4Cats Unicorn Outing

Earlier this year the 2nd Sparks and 47th Brownies (our two Saturday units!) teamed up for a fun day of art at the local 4Cats Studio. Appealing to their joy in all things magical, the girls got the chance to design and create their very own unicorn mug!

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The 4Cats staff was fantastic at helping the girls through the process. This involved drawing their own unicorns, working with clay, and painting their creations.

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Step-by-step instructions helped the group figure out what to do. Though these girls are young, they are great listeners. They worked hard on their mugs.

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Finally, after creating the mug and painting it with the special glaze paint for clay, the mugs got left behind at the studio for them to be baked and glazed. A couple of weeks later, girls got their finished products. They were pretty proud of what they created.

4Cats is fun for girls of all ages. A few weeks ago we posted about the 10th Pathfinders visiting a 4Cats studio. Since then, we received this great photo of their final product — how adorable are these?!?

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Whether it’s a unicorn mug or a panda planter, 4Cats is always a good time.

Sparks Fairy Camp

Last month the 1st and 2nd Sparks in Burnaby Mountain District went to camp together at beautiful Camp Olave on the sunshine coast. Their two-night camp used the theme “Fairies and Friends” and the girls had a magical, friendly time!

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Some of the best parts of camp were taking advantage of the wonderful camp facilities at Olave. The girls loved the teamwork exercises at the low ropes course. They challenged themselves to swing, balance, and more with the support of their friends. There was much laughter and fun.

The blind trail is also a favourite for the Sparks. They take turns guiding a partner through the tail. The partner can choose to close their eyes or find another creative way to become blind — some girls even put on their jackets backwards and hid their faces behind their hoods!

Fairy activities included some awesome crafts. These girls love to make things! The Sparks made little fairy houses to put into the enchanted forest. They also made fairy lamps. They all looked great.

They really lucked out with decent weather on a weekend that was not forecast in their favour. Even though it was too early in the season to swim in the ocean, it was still great to take a walk on the beach. It was a very fun weekend.

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The girls are really excited to come back to camp next year.

Spark-Pathfinder Buddy Sleepover

Burnaby Mountain District’s two smallest units, the 2nd Sparks and 10th Pathfinders, recently teamed up for a fun Guiding sleepover at Richmond Guide House. The Pathfinders got to work on their event planning and leadership skills by doing all the preparations and leading the event for the younger girls.

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The Pathfinders decided on an “Under the Sea” theme which involved eating seashell pasta with blue Hawaiian punch for supper, making a cool underwater craft, and watching a Little Mermaid movie together.

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The Sparks loved having the older girls around and doing activities with them. The craft was a really big hit — an under the sea tambourine that looks like a ship’s porthole!

All the Guiders were impressed by the Pathfinder’s dedication and helpfulness. When the leaders tried to jump in and help, the Pathfinders assured them that they were happy to take care of it. It left the Guiders lots of time to relax, hang out with the girls, and take advantage of the cozy comforts of the Richmond Guide House property. Guiders spent some downtime doing this cool retro GGC puzzle that they found on one of the shelves — it had all its pieces!

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The buddy sleepover worked really well. It was a great way for Pathfinders to take the lead and a wonderful way for Sparks to be with some dedicated role models. It was a great sleepover — THANK YOU, PATHFINDERS!

District Spark/Brownie Sleepover

This past weekend, girls from all five Spark and Brownie units in Burnaby Mountain District gathered at Camp Capilano in North Vancouver for a really fun sleepover.

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One highlight of the sleepover was the special guests for the Vancouver Aquarium. Staff from their mobile outreach program turned Camp Capilano into an AquaZone, including live inter-tidal animals and other interactive display items.

The aquarium staff were super engaging and the girls learned a lot about marine life. They also chatted with the girls about the importance of protecting our oceans and some things we can all do to help keep our waters safe and clean for aquatic life.

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The mobile outreach program was a great way to let our girls learn about the ocean in a program specifically designed to work well for them. Older girls in the district can look forward to having their own way to connect with the Vancouver Aquarium later this year — stay tuned!

Sparks and Brownies also got the chance to tap into their artistic side by decorating masks. The leaders were really impressed by their efforts! Girls did such a great job using the paints, jewels, feathers, and other decorations to create awesome masks. They turned out so well.

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Masks are fun at all time of year, but especially with Halloween coming up it seemed like a great time to embrace pretend play.

A sleepover is a great way to start introducing camp skills, and these girls loved the chance to have a real campfire (with s’mores!) outside. Camp food was also a big hit.

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Also very impressive is how well all of the girls did at this sleepover. There were no tears, and no problems getting to bed or packing up in the morning. You’d never have guessed that this was the very first sleepover for many of these girls. Great job!

Thank you to all the adults who made this happen, especially the amazing Vancouver Aquarium staff!

Saturday Sparks

Did you know Burnaby Mountain District offers Sparks and Brownie units on Saturdays? Most units in the lower mainland meet only on weeknights, but to meet the needs of busy families we have Saturday options available. It’s also a popular option for girls who prefer quieter evenings and/or very early bedtimes through the week. The Saturday groups meet during the day.

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This year, enrollment is currently very low in the Saturday Sparks unit and we’re actively recruiting more girls. Sparks is for girls in kindergarten and grade one. If this Saturday morning unit would be a good fit for you or someone you know, please send them to http://www.girlguides.ca to register online.

Burnaby Mountain District still has spaces available in all branches, so use the Find a Unit tool on the national website to find a spot for your girl.

Sparks tour an ambulance

At the most recent meeting for the 2nd Burnaby Mountain Sparks, the leaders warned the parents not to be alarmed when the picked up their girls and saw an ambulance in the parking lot — it wasn’t an emergency, it was just some awesome hands-on learning with a friendly neighborhood paramedic!

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The girls had a great time learning about emergency response procedures in their community while chatting with a friendly paramedic who was very happy to show the girls the workings of his ambulance. They learned all about what is and is not an emergency and when it’s time to call 911. And should any of them ever experience an emergency involving an ambulance, maybe it will be just a little bit less scary now that they know what they look like up close.

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They even got to take home a cool craft that allowed them to build their own 3D model of an ambulance. It was an awesome day!

Enrollment Season

Late fall is always a busy time for enrollments as Girl Guides around the country learn to tie their ties, make friends with their new groups, and make their Guiding promise. Enrollments take many themes, often cooked up by our very creative girls. In this post we feature two groups who had fun making enrollment their own.

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Firstly, the 2nd Burnaby Mountain Sparks had a lovely rainbow themed enrollment where girls crossed through a rainbow arch before making their promise.

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The leaders got an awesome butterfly cupcake-cake to celebrate the occasion as well! They finished the event with a family sing-a-long, practicing the tunes that the girls would be singing for local seniors in a couple of weeks.

IMG_2516And secondly, the 22nd Burnaby Mountain Guides had their enrollment with girls making their promises and then entertaining their parents with an elaborate Nutcracker puppet show that the girls had been working on for weeks ahead of time.

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They made the puppets themselves and enjoyed studying the story as it is preparing them for an outing to see the Nutcracker performed by the Goh Ballet coming up in December.

Welcome to all of the new girls who joined Guiding in Burnaby Mountain this year! It’s still not too late if your daughter is interested in joining the fun. We accept new members all year round. More girls are still joining every week and there is still room in most of our units.