The last year has been completely crazy here at my house and this blog was one of the things I’ve been neglecting. But my end of year Bridging and Awards Ceremony is Tuesday and my second semester of college ended in May, so I have the entire summer off! I’ll be using that time to post a lot of my meeting plans from throughout the year and hopefully get this thing up to date.
I decided to start with our first meeting back from the Christmas holidays. In December, our community hosted an event called a ‘Cookie Clinic’ where they had stations and activities throughout the day centered around cookie selling skills and tips. The girls would earn the 2017 Cookie Sale Activity Pin and parts of one of the Cookie Business badges for their level. We REALLY wanted to go, but it was $12 a girl and with our troop being as large as it is, there was no way we could afford to bring our girls. So we decided to plan our own.
Each girl got a small card with check boxes on it. The numbers in the boxes were the numbers of the stations they had to visit in order to earn their awards for the meeting. I made the tables on Word, printed and cut them out, and matted them on different colored paper for each level. The girls wrote their names in the top box with their level name. This is what they ended up looking like:
Each level earned the Cookie Pin and a Cookie Business badge. The Daisies earned three of the leaves. This may sound like a lot, but soooo much of the content for them was so repetitive , especially with the Cookie Pin activities. I understand preferring not to double dip your activities, but I also don’t believe in beating a dead horse. As long as the girls get the memo, I’m good. Most of it is also things that we will be constantly reviewing throughout cookie sales. Anyways, this is what everyone earned:
Everyone: 2017 Cookie Sale Activity Pin
Daisies: Money Counts leaf, Talk It Up leaf, Count It Up leaf
Brownies: Meet My Customers badge
Juniors: Cookie CEO badge
Cadettes: Marketing badge
Seniors: Customer Loyalty badge
Ambassadors: P&L badge
Fun fact: P&L stands for profit and loss – I had been wondering for AGES what that stood for and could not figure it out. Mystery solved!!
Below I’m going to describe my stations. For each one, I’ll add what levels had to stop there and what badge requirements it covered.
Station 1: Cost of Fun – pick an activity and figure out how much it would cost to go with the whole troop. Our troop makes 60 cents for each box we sell. How many boxes would the troop have to sell to go? The older girls chose a destination and looked up the price, while the Juniors and below chose from a list that I put together of some local places, such as the Houston Aquarium or Houston Zoo. The equation for this station was as follows: (Ticket price x Number of girls) divided by 0.60 = boxes of cookies we would have to sell. Divide that number by the number of girls and that gives you the boxes per girl. The supplies for this station were the list of field trips and their ticket prices, several cheap calculators, and a small paper for them to fill out with the information to make it easier to follow. All of the girls did this station and it counted for this: Cookie Pin – Money Management badge, Money Counts leaf, and Cookie CEO badge. The paper has two on a page and we cut them in half and will be included below.
Station 2: Goal Setting – set personal learning goals. We had two posters taped to the wall and a box of markers next to them. One said ‘What do you want to learn this year?’ and the other said ‘What do you want to do better?’ The girls just wrote down their answers. All of the girls came to this station and it counted for the Goal Setting part of the Cookie Pin.
Station 3: Sales Goal – each girl set her sales goal for the year. For the girls that sold last year, we took sticky notes and wrote their name on the front and how many boxes they sold last year on the back. They were stuck on the wall so each girl could decide if she wanted to match her sales from last year or try to aim higher. All of the girls visited here and it counted for the Goal Setting part of the Cookie Pin and the Count It Up leaf.
Station 4: Business Plan – girls will discuss the best and most innovative ways to sell cookies. We had a large poster taped to the wall and the girls wrote ideas on it. Some of the prompts we had were ‘Think of new places to set up cookie booths’, ‘How could social media help us sell more cookies’, etc. The Daisies, Brownies, and Juniors only had to do the first one but were allowed to add other ideas if they had them. All of the girls came here and the requirements it fulfilled were the Decision Making part of the Cookie Pin and the Marketing badge.
Station 5: Brand Identity – the girls just had to fill out a small paper with several questions on it. These were:
- What do you think of when you hear ‘Girl Scout cookies’?
- People view Girl Scout cookies positively – why?
- Name 3 brands that you view negatively
- Name 3 brands that you view negatively
The Cadettes were the only group that had to come here and it counted for a part of their Marketing badge.
Station 6: Competition – check out the cookie competition! Look at and compare Girl Scout cookies to other types of cookies. I had packs of Oreos and Chips Ahoy labelled with their prices. The girls just had to fill out a paper that asked ‘Which one is cheapest?’ and ‘Do you like either of them better than Girl Scout cookies?’ and ‘Which box of cookies do you think is the best value?’ This was also an only Cadettes station and part of the Marketing badge.
Station 7: Business Ethics I – find 3 examples of companies that are under fire for unethical practices. We just had the girls use their phones to research and write them down. This station was only Ambassadors and was part of their P&L badge.
Station 8: Business Ethics II – how the Girl Scout Law applies to how we sell cookies as businesswomen. This station had a large poster with the lines of the Girl Scout Law on it. They were spread out with space under each one. The girls wrote their name under the line they think is the most important in selling cookies. Everyone came to this station and it was Business Ethics part of the Cookie Pin and a part of the P&L badge.
Station 9: List your customers – The girls listed everyone they could think of that they should ask to buy Girl Scout cookies. Our Ambassadors prepared their lists beforehand, but left them more vague, such as listing teachers, aunts and uncles, neighbors, etc. Then we used them as prompts to help the younger girls make their lists. Everyone stopped at this station and it counted for the People Skills part of the Cookie Pin, P&L badge, Meet My Customers badge, and Customer Loyalty badge.
Station 10: Practice – practice selling Girl Scout cookies and how to handle customers. I had a friend of mine come and work this station just so the girls would be “selling” to an unfamiliar face instead of a mom. They had to walk up and try their hardest to sell her cookies. I told her to mix it up – be nice sometimes and rude other times, say no, ask them what they did with the money, why we sell cookies, if they had cookies with caramel or peanut butter, etc. Basically, anything they may have to answer at a cookie booth. They received their cookie order forms at the beginning of the meeting and we allowed the Daisies, Brownies, and Juniors use them for reference if they needed to. All of the girls had to go through this station and it counted for the People Skills and Money Management parts of the Cookie Pin, Cookie CEO badge, and Meet My Customers badge.
Station 11: Money, money, money – This is where the girls practiced the money part of selling cookies. We quizzed them on how much cookies cost and what the different coins are worth. They practiced making easy change and figuring out the price for multiple boxes of cookies. I found the cutest thing from ABC Bakeries called a Change Tree Cup and it helped my Daisies out a lot. You wrap the part with the owls around a Solo cup and fold the numbered leaves on the ends of Popsicle sticks. On the bottom of the sticks, write the price of that many cookies. It was easy to make and really came in handy at cookie booths. Only the Daisies, Brownies, and Juniors came through this station and it counted for parts of the Meet My Customers badge, Cookie CEO badge, Count It Up leaf, and Talk It Up leaf.
Station 12: Cookie Crafts – Each of the badges had some requirement that we could fill by doing a craft, so everyone at this station was doing something different.
- Daisies – made posters (on half poster boards) to hold at the cookie booths
- Brownies – wrote thank you cards on note cards to hand out to customers and deliver with their orders. They just grabbed a stack of colorful note cards and wrote ‘Thank You, Troop —-” on them
- Cadettes – made half posters to hold at cookie booths that included their marketing message for cookie sales
- Seniors – also wrote some thank you cards and then made half posters about how cookie money helps girls
- Ambassadors – each girl came up with a ‘Cookie Promise’ and wrote it on a note card that she decorated. We taped them to the inside lid of our money box as reminders
Everyone had to come to this station but the Juniors, but most of mine found their way there anyways and made posters or thank you notes. It counted for the P&L badge, Marketing badge, Meet My Customers badge, Customer Loyalty badge, and Talk It Up leaf.
Station 13: Jobs at a Cookie Booth – make a list of everything that needs to be done at a cookie booth. Help them conclude that we need someone to do money, keep tally of boxes sold, keep the table stocked, hold signs, attract customers, and whatever else you need at your booths. This station was Juniors only and a part of their Cookie CEO badge.
Station 14: Philanthropic Angle – find a company that makes its customers ‘feel good.’ Most of our girls named companies that donate something for every item you purchase, such as Toms. We let the girls use their phones to look up ideas. This station was Cadettes only and was a part of their Marketing badge.
At each station, we had a pack of stickers. When the girls were done at that station, the adult working it put the sticker on the box with the station number. At the end of the meeting, the girls had to turn in their cards to get credit for the pin and badge. Most of our stations had an adult working them, but some of the smaller ones had one parent working two of them. And all of the stations that were just for the Cadettes, Seniors, and Ambassadors were unmanned and just had a nearby parent watching from another station.
It was definitely one of our more chaotic meetings because everyone was walking and moving around, but I think it was a success. We had nearly all of our girls show up that day and a lot of parents came to help. I think we want to use the same idea next year and just switch out some of the badges for our levels that not everyone bridged. Hopefully, next year the setup will be smoother and easier to follow now that we know what did and didn’t work.