Boy Scouts get all the outdoors attention, but Girl Scouts also camp, and do it well. The lessons for the boys are about survival in the wilderness, the lessons for girls are often a lot closer to home.
Girls can do any of the basic Scout camp activities that boys can do, and they often do them when at camp. But girls should be taught something else, and that’s a lesson about teamwork and friendship.
Because girls are often active in Girl Scouts during their critical formative years, they are also often dealing with a host of social problems and it’s the mission of Girl Scouts to help girls through these problems, and camp is an ideal time to do it.
The best camp activities for Girl Scouts involves teambuilding exercises and those that require them to work together to achieve a goal.
One easy game that can be ideal for the start of camp is an arm puzzle. Have the girls stand in a tight circle with their hands in the middle. Have them grab each other’s hands at random and once everyone is tangled, challenged them to get out of the tangle, or puzzle, without letting go of anyone’s hand. This requires the girls to talk to each other to try and figure out a way to get out of the puzzle.
Any game like a scavenger hunt should be completed in teams, with a rule that the teams must stay together, literally during the duration of the hunt. You can require that they stay together with their arms around each other, or simply that they hold hands. This requires that the girls talk to each other and work together to complete the task.
Meal planning can be done by the girls and should be encouraged. Before camp have the girls work in teams to develop breakfast, lunch, and dinner menus. Challenge them to divide their group among jobs and oversee the meal prep to make sure they hold to their original jobs agreement and that they are working together.
It might seem trite, but put girls on teams who are not friends. Keep best friends separate, not only to encourage their mingling with other girls, but also to ensure that they don’t work together to the exclusion of the other girls. Instead, put girls together who don’t normally play or work together. All the better if they don’t know each other well. There’s no better way to get to know each other than to work together to achieve a goal.
Create some physical challenge activities during camp. This might be as simple as s swimming challenge, or an obstacle-course type challenge that requires the girls to rely on each other to complete the course successfully.
In the outdoors, you can create many traditional Scout activities for girls, but it’s also important that teambuilding and trust activities be included.