GS Bridging Ceremonies
It is a very important part of a girls transition through scouts. They should be a fun and memorable moment for everyone. The girls celebrate their growth and achievements, and acknowledge they are ready for the new adventures and responsibilities that being a Junior offers.
Make a Wish in the Fairy Well
Brownies form a circle around the wishing well.
“These Brownies wish to tell their wish to the
Fairy in the wishing well.
Turn to the left,
Turn to the right,
Make a wish that is happy and bright
Turn to the east,
Turn to the west,
Make your wish for the one you love best
Now tiptoe up and whisper clear
The wish you want the fairy to hear”
The Brownies step up to the well, one by one; we give each girl a few pennies to throw into the well and make a wish to the fairy. The girls approach one at a time, then step aside while the rest of the girls do the same.
“All listen closely, and I will tell
What she told to me-that fairy in the well!
The fairies gave their crowns of gold,
The woodland elves did as they were told,
And for each little girl in the room today
They fashioned a pin in the Brownie way,
So wear it and guard it, and always endeavor
The words of the Girl Scout Promise to keep forever.”
The Brownies say the Promise together, and the new girls step forward so the leaders can pin each one. The leader does the scout handshake and welcomes them into the troop. The Brownies not being pinned sit around the well while the pinning is going on.
Baking A New Batch of Brownies
We did this at one of our bridging ceremonies, bridging our Daisys to Brownies. One of the leaders takes a large appliance box and turns it into an “oven” with a door big enough for the girls to crawl through. The oven is placed close to a corner so the girls can all hide behind it. First and second year Brownies each take a part in the mixing a batch of brownies. We used mixing bowls, spoons, measuring cups, flour sifter and a timer with bell. Make sure every girl gets a part (ideas: bowl holder, stirrer, ingredient adders, sifters, etc.)
Leader: (talks to Brownies) We sure could use some new brownies to fill the empty spaces in our Brownie ring
Girl 1: Yes, what can we do about it?
Girl 2: I know! Let’s make some new brownies!
Leader: Girls, look in your handbook for the recipe.
Girl 3: Here it is! (Girl gives book to leader)
Leader: To make Brownies we must mix 6 basic ingredients: Promise, Law and the 4 program goals.
Girl holding bowl with spoon stirs as girls add ingredients.
Leader: In a large bowl cream together…
Girl 4: 1 cup of Promise to serve God, my country(girl dumps cup into bowl)
Girl 5: To this mixture, add two cups of honesty
Girl 6: 4 tablespoons of cheerfulness. Mix together until well blended.
Girl 7: Stir in one cup of thoughtfulness. Beat together ½ cup fairness and ½ cup helpfulness, and add to the mixture.
Girl 8: Sprinkle over the mixture 2 tablespoons of sisterhood of scouting, and mix well.
Girl 9: Add one cup of respect for authority, and one cup of respect for others and myself. Stir until well blended.
Girl 10: Sift together ½ cup of wise use of resources and 6 tablespoon of a promise to protect and improve the world. Stir into mixture.
Girl 11: Blend together ½ c of each of the following goals: develop individual potential, relate to others, develop values, and contribute to society.
Girl 12: In a prepared pan. Spread the batter evenly. (Quickly put pan in oven) Bake at a moderate temperature until done. (Ring bell)
Leader: They’re done! (Open door: girls start to crawl out of the oven). Look! A new batch of brownies!
(The amount of girls we had for the ceremony is how we divided the parts.)
Brownie Nest Fly-Up
Make a nest, placing a piece of plastic on ground and covering it with straw to look like a birds nest. Previous to the ceremony, we had each girl decorate a pair of wings made out of heavy paper. At the ceremony we pinned them on their back by attaching them onto their arms with loops of straps. The girls got to paint them in any color they wanted, painting both sides. (Idea: cover each wing with contact paper to make them stronger.)
Brownie Fly Up
This is a skit to act out…
Leader: Long ago, Brownies were called Brown Owls, and moving from one level to the next was called flying up. This is a bridging skit. It is to demonstrate the move from Brownies to Juniors.
All girls get into nest with wings (arms over head)
Leader: Once upon a time there was a nest with(number of bridging brownies) eggs. One day the brownie eggs hatched and out popped brown owlets, one by one until all the eggs had hatched.(girls stand up and wings to the side (have girls bring down wings slowly to look like hatching).
Leader: While the owlets were small, the mama owl taught them and fed them in the nest. (Troop leader pretends to feed the brownies GS cookies.) Then one day, it was time for the owlets to try out their baby wings. The mama owl pushed them out of the nest and the owlets took flight. (The brownies leave the box and pretend to fly by flapping their wings and walking around in circle.
Leader: Finally, when the mama owl was sure they were ready to make it on their own, she called to them. (All the brownies gather around the leader.) “Girls, it is time for you to leave the nest and travel to another land.
(If the leader is also moving up) I will join you there, but you must make the trip by yourself.
At this point the bridging leader(s) walks over the bridge and is welcome by the junior troop (if not a muti-level troop, invite a junior troop to take part, or just bridge leader to juniors prepared to welcome the brownies to juniors.)
Leader: Fly to the river and cross the bridge. On the other side will be the land of Juniors. When you get there, you will find me (or name of new leader) waiting with other brown owls that have made the journey before you. You will make your new home there. You will then receive wings of gold. Keep them to remember your journey.”
(Girls can do a little acting at this time, flying around)
Leader: So the (number of bridging brownies) owls flew off looking for the river and bridge. When they came to it, they stopped and landed without crossing (Brownie side). On the other side of the bridge is the leader (if brownie leader moved up) and other Juniors, .One by one the leader calls the Brownies to cross the bridge and receive their new wings and pin from her (or new leader) and are greeted with the GS handshake from the junior girls.)
In our troop, our Brownies have different grade levels. The Brownies that did not fly up stood by the bridge to wave goodbye to their fellow Brownies. When the bridging Brownies got to the center of the bridge, they turned toward them and waved goodbye. (Its always a very emotional moment)
We also have the Juniors help take off the Brownie Vest and put on the new Junior Vest. Then the leader pins the girl and does the scout handshake. In our troop, we always give one carnation to every bridging girl. The carnation is presented to each girl by a Junior once she has crossed the bridge.
Whatever ceremony you choose, remember to get your girls a bridging fun patch to add to their new vest. You can find fun patches for your celebrations at MakingFriends® .com.
You can also celebrate your troop bridging with a Bridging Troop SWAP pin.