It’s been less than a year since Anna joined Girl Scouts, and yet she is the most experienced Brownie in our troop. This wasn’t the plan. When she joined last April we hoped to find an active Brownie troop with at least some girls who had started as daisies. We figured that their experience would help guide Anna, since she (and we too) were new to Girl Scouts.
For many reasons that I won’t go into, it did not work out that way. Instead, Anna is by far the most experienced Brownie in her troop, and that’s okay.
She has stepped up to the challenge.
It took three tries to find the right troop. But when we joined in October there was one small problem. Anna was the only Brownie. So in November, she help us lead a Brownie information night where she showed off her badges and patches, and taught everyone to make jewelry with multicolored rubber bands and a plastic fork. Four brownie joined after the info night and we now have a good Brownie group.
Since everyone but Anna was new to Brownies, we started the Brownie Quest journey in December. Anna has been a great girl leader through the whole process, helping the other girls learn the Girl Scout Law (above), participating in all the activities, and finishing all her “homework” on time.
In January, we took a field trip to an orthodontists office. Anna was able to overcome her own shyness about her braces and share her own experience with the other girls in the troop (Cadettes, Juniors, and Brownies). She even showed off her “mouth jewelry” to everyone.
And in February, Anna learned the samba as part of our World Thinking Day activity, and made both a Brazilian flag and a poster of Brazil facts for our booth at our service unit’s World Thinking Day event. Anna shared her knowledge of Brazil, danced some, and took a turn playing the maracas.
As I watch her engaged in all these activities, her vest covered in badges and patches, it’s easy to forget that she’s been a Girl Scout for only ten months. She’s taken to it, and she’s already learning to lead.
And that reminds me how quickly we all can go from student to teacher, and from learner to leader. It also reminds me that we are always doing a bit of each in life—leading and following, teaching and learning—and we’ll continue to do so as long as we want to keep growing.