The Girl Scouts (GS) of America do not currently have any nationally recognized badge for nuclear science and technology. As a result, the American Nuclear Society has established the Get to Know Nuclear patch with the Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana council that can be distributed to all of ANS. local/student sections. The Girl Scout patch requirements are similar to the Boy Scout Nuclear Science Badge, except with a focus on girls and teamwork . The requirements are suitable for Juniors, Cadettes, Seniors, and Ambassadors, however variations can be made to meet educational level of Brownies, and Daisies as well.
ANS has established requirements for the Get to Know Nuclear Patch for the following Girl Scout memberships:
The workshop is about 4 hours long for a group of 20 girls. More time will be needed to accommodate larger groups. You must complete at least 5 of the 7 stations to receive the patch.
Daises/Brownies (grades K-3) – Basic concepts: 1 hour (at a scheduled meeting) Certificate only.
Get to Know Nuclear Certificate Template
The Daises/Brownies workshop should include the following basic concepts:
ANS encourages each section to contact their local GS Council to organize a Get to Know Nuclear patch workshop in their area. Going through a council is also an important first step is ensuring that you have attendees for your event. You should plan on attending a council meeting to introduce the program and explain what the patch is all about or request that the GS Council representative do this for ANS. Word of mouth begins here, since those in attendance will take the information back to their troops. Note: Council.s publication schedules vary from state to state. The sooner you get to know your council the more likely you are to have your workshop mentioned in their publications (print, web, email).
Create a paragraph for GS publications. Create a flyer to distribute to local troops at their regularly scheduled meetings, via email, or via letter. Note: If you create a mailing piece, and provide postage and blank labels many troops will send a mailing on your behalf (they do not rent lists).
Select several dates, confirm final date with local GS Council and facility where workshop will be held.
Establish a budget, obtaining necessary funding, and determine the cost of workshop. Even if your workshop is sponsored by a facility/corporation it is a general good practice to charge a minimal fee ($5-$15) to cover the cost of the patches and other administrative costs. Also, charging something ensures that scouts actually attend the workshop. Note: Some councils add an additional fee to promote your workshop and manage registration. Take into consideration their fee, when establishing yours.
Assign volunteer(s) for publicity and begin to publicize the workshop.
It is a good idea to build in some flexibility in case your facilities or resources change in the future.
The Cadette, Senior and Ambassador Girl Scouts must meet the same homework requirements as the Boy Scout Nuclear Science merit badge. The Junior Girl Scouts do not require homework.
To insure every Girl Scout is on the same level when arriving for the workshop, it is recommended that a prerequisite worksheet and presentation are made that can be completed beforehand and which covers the basics of nuclear science (What is an atom?; what is an electron?, etc.). Samples are provided below in the "Nuclear Science Basics" presentation and the "Nuclear Science Basics Worksheet". This will enable your workshop to be shorter and provide a new experience for all Scouts, regardless of past instruction level.
Set a registration time 30 minutes before your workshop begins. This will give you time to collect registration fees (if applicable), and allow everyone to get settled before the workshop begins. If you have a small number (<15) of scouts registered, you can run this program straight through. However, if you have more scouts, you will need to break them into multiple groups. If you know the troop number for each registrant, it is helpful to pre–assign the groups (by troop/by age) ahead of time and tell everyone which group they are in during registration. Doing this ahead of time ensures you can control group size and that each troop can stay together. However, troops do not always register together and it may create some chaos at the registration when leaders are asking to change the grouping. Ensure that each group has at least 2 adult Girl Scout leaders as part of the group. Assign ANS volunteers to act as an escort for each group.
All scouts should be together for the introduction and closing/tour sessions. At the opening session, discuss safety and security rules of the facility. The Scouts and their leaders will rotate through five (5) stations with in their assigned groups. ANS has provided several options. You must complete at least 5 of the 7 stations to receive the patch.
Each station should take about 15–30 min. Each station should have at least one ANS lead volunteer and helpers, as needed. The ANS escorts will serve to keep the groups on-schedule and will lead the groups from one station to the next.
The closing session should bring all the groups together and feature a presentation about what they have learned, and a questions/answers session.
Welcome scouts. Open with the Pledge of Allegiance and introduce them to lay of the land. Begin by introducing the volunteers and their line of work, give a safety message, explain facility safety (fire alarm) and any security rules, and give an outline of the day.
At the end of the introduction session tell each group which station they go to next and have the ANS escort guide them there.
Discuss how you use fission to make electricity. Discuss the how fusion is different. This can be done with a power point.
Discuss at least 5 careers: job descriptions, required education and training. This can be guided with a power point. Bring in nuclear professionals to discuss: what they do, why they chose their career path, how they prepared for it. Share any stories about interesting opportunities due to their involvement in nuclear. Professionals can also participate in a Q&A session with the girls.
Discuss basic information about radiation
Discuss basic atomic structure
ANS members conducting GS workshops are encouraged to coordinate a tour whenever possible, since this is often difficult for troops to do on their own. If you are working with a facility for a tour, they may have restrictions on when the girls can tour. This session can be moved to accommodate the facility. If a tour is not possible, Cadettes/Seniors/Ambassadors can be assigned option #4 as a prerequisite (homework), or the workshop could feature an additional lecture (at the closing of the workshop).
During this time get everyone back in the same room, thank them for coming. Distribute evaluation forms/survey to the scouts, and leaders & parents. As the girls turn in their evaluation form, hand out Get to Know Nuclear patches. Use the feedback to improve your next workshop.
Last updated August 13, 2014, 4:23pm CDT