This information has been sponsored by the Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas. All opinions are 100% our own!
I have never been accused of being outdoorsy. Camping holds no appeal for me and access to indoor plumbing is high on my priority list. Based on this, it might surprise you to learn that my twin daughters will be Girl Scouts next year.
Honestly, it surprised me too. My kids will be going to Solar Preparatory School for Girls for Kindergarten. It is an all-girls STEAM(Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math)-based DISD choice school. I am beyond thrilled with the school so far and am sure I will write a whole post about it at some point. But what applies here is that every girl at the school is automatically a Girl Scout. They make Girl Scouts a class during the day so that all students are part of the program.
When I heard about this aspect of the school, I thought, “Nice! They will do some outdoorsy stuff that is probably good for them without me having to be out there in dirt and heat and bugs, and I will have a good excuse for my Thin Mint hoarding.” But then I started wondering what it was about the Girl Scouts that made Solar add it to the curriculum?
Personally, I never had any experience with Girl Scouts other than going on a cookie bender once a year. I held the outdated view that it was pretty much cookies, camping, and crafts. Three things that I think are fine, but not particularly compelling for me to make a priority for my kids.
Then I started to research the Girl Scouts and got to hear Sylvia Acevedo, National CEO from Girl Scouts of the USA speak. Sylvia is not only a former Girl Scout herself but also a rocket scientist. Seriously, she worked for NASA in the jet propulsion lab! Did you know that 90% of female US Astronauts were Girl Scouts? Or that 75% of the current female senators also count themselves as Girl Scouts alums? Or that there are college scholarships specifically for Girl Scouts, particularly those who earn their Girl Scout Gold Award? I didn’t.
Girl Scouts focuses on sparking intellectual curiosity, building confidence, and teaching the kids to be leaders. They introduce girls to STEM skills at an early age to help get them interested in these high-paying career paths that have very low numbers of female professionals.
There is even a Girl Scouts STEM Center of Excellence in Dallas for girls from Kindergarten through 12th grade. This year their theme is “Actually I Can!” and they’re finding ways to show girls they CAN do amazing things if they just give it a try.
STEM Center hosts summer day camps and weekend programming, with weekend troop camping and school based field trips starting this fall. STEM Center of Excellence and camps are reasonably priced (about $125 a week). At these day camps, girls can learn everything from how to up-cycle discarded items to digital movie making. They even have a camp for older kids called “Speak Up, Speak Out,” which teaches girls to find their voice and build the skills and confidence to be an advocate and activist in their communities and the world.
This summer, my daughters and I will be participating in Girl Sprouts. This series of activities helps you work with your kids to prepare them for the first day of Kindergarten in a fun and engaging way- and even earn their first patch after completing our activity book!
Without the push that came from my kids getting into Solar, I most likely would not have added Girl Scouts to our already busy activity schedule. And that would have been a shame because being a Girl Scout comes with some incredible life-long benefits.
Spending time in the wilderness will probably never be my thing, but I now understand that Girl Scouts has a lot more to it. When they start Kindergarten as Daisies next year, they won’t just be getting an adorable new uniform. I am excited to see what kind of adventures my girls get to experience because of and with Girl Scouts. I am also pretty excited about the cookies.
If you’re interested in enrolling your child into Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas, make sure to visit their website. Summer member enrollment is only $15 and gives you access to a full summer of activities, camps and events your daughter can participate in before joining a troop. The annual membership fee in Girl Scouts is $25 for the full 2017-2018 school year. Sign-up online at gsnetx.org/join or contact Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas.
Thanks to Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas, one lucky Dallas Moms Blog reader will be selected to receive half-off a Summer Adventure Camp session and a free camp pack ($39 value) when you enroll as a member by June 15. To enter, use the form below and a winner will be selected on June 16th!