One of the Girl Scout leaders who got word of my Ready, Set, Go Camping program from the summer e-mailed me asking if I could do a similar program that would fulfill the requirements for our council's Storm Ready Try-It/Badge. The title of the badge makes the idea of the program pretty self-explanatory. The program was indeed about preparing for bad storms, and other weather activities. We did this program in early September, advertising that, even though hurricane season was halfway over, "it is never too late to learn how to be safe from stormy weather in South Florida." Again, although this program was designed around a Girl Scout badge, this program was open to the public and for 6-11 year olds.
Program Put Simply:
~ What you can do to help prepare for storms
~ How to take care of your pets during a storm
~ Where the evacuation shelters are in Palm Beach County
~ The safest place to be during a storm
~ How to make meals that don't require cooking
~ First Aid Kit
We started out playing the "Rainmaker" game (see above). It was very hard to get the children to understand that they should be making the noises one at a time in a rotation, but it still sounded neat. Next we discussed what kids can do to help their family prepare for a hurricane, followed by what kids can do to take care of their pets during a storm. One of the requirements for the badge this program was based on was to find the safest place in their home during a storm, but since we were at the library, I gave them a five minute break from the meeting to go around the library with their parents or troop leaders to find the safest place in the library to be during the storm (we had a few smart ones whose answers were "why would we be in the library during a hurricane?"). They came back with a few locations that even I hadn't thought of. Once they all left the room, I dragged out enough tables and chairs for them to sit at and set out our craft: a first aid kit. I used a suitcase template we had as the container for the first aid items, and found various websites that had first aid items such as waterproof matches, thermometer, bandaids, etc. We went over what each item in the first aid kit would be used for, and I let them glue together the kit however they wanted. While they were making this craft we discussed some meals they could make that didn't require cooking (answers varied from pizza on english muffins to sandwiches to "chips"), and I passed out our local grocery store's hurricane preparedness guide, and a sheet with the locations of all the evacuation centers in Palm Beach County.
A couple leaders suggest other kinds of badge/programs they would like to see at the library - I would definitely recommend making connections with Girl Scouts.