Challenges and activities
Try new things with our challenges
Stay inspired and try new things with our challenges.
Our challenges are for girls to explore and investigate however they want.
You don't have to do them in your unit meetings, but you might want to talk about how you are all getting on.
These challenges are not part of the Guide programme, but they are inspired by our interest badges and we hope they inspire girls to try new things.
The sun is shining (hopefully), the weathers great and you’ve got some free time on your hands. What could make this even better? Taking advantage of this and spending some time outdoors.
But what is your outdoors? Outdoors can be anything, it can be your local park, your garden, a balcony or even a massive window that lets you look outside. Everyone’s outdoor space is different.
Think about what your favourite things to do outside are. Maybe it’s laying and listening to your favourite music, spending time with friends or playing a sport.
We want to challenge you to try something new outside. Whatever your favourite outdoor activity is, think about what the opposite of it might be. If you enjoy doing something active, why not try a relaxing outdoor activity? Or if you like chilling in your space, how about going on an adventure?
At Girlguiding we love the outdoors and we’ve put together some ideas of things you could do in your outdoor space. Check it out and pick one (or more) to try!
- Normally eat your breakfast inside? Why not have a breakfast picnic with your family. Plan out what you want to serve. Will it be your breakfast classics like cereal and toast or will you try something new? What other meals could you turn into a picnic instead?
- Challenge yourself to do a Guide interest badge outdoors. It might be easy to do your Backwoods cooking badge outdoors. So why not pick one you would normally do indoors, like your Mixology badge? Turn your mocktail review party into an outdoor bash.
- Want to be creative outdoors? Try out our The fabric of nature activity sheet to create some amazing outdoor photography art. If you can’t print it off, grab a blank piece of paper, draw anything you want to use and cut it out. Show off your creations using #AdventuresAtHome.
- Don’t have much outdoor space? That’s fine, think about how you could bring the outdoors indoors instead. Could you create an indoor garden – real or fake? You could plant some seeds and watch them grow or create a paper flower garden in your room.
- Want to try some outside games or activities with your Guide friends? Ask your leader to check out the Get outside unit meeting activities found in unit meeting pack 9.
- Ready to take on a new adventure? Want to get outside, challenge yourself and improve your future? Then the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award could be for you! You can start the Bronze award once you are in the school year you turn 14. Talk to your leader to find out more.
- Girlguiding is taking part in Generation Green to help young people connect with nature. Take a look to see how you can take part.
- Can’t get outdoors? Find a virtual nature walk or use a maps app to visit famous outdoor places like the Grand Canyon or Big Ben. Where will the outdoors take you? Create an outdoor sightseeing tour for your family.
- Think you could be the next tennis superstar? We’ve just launched Grand slam unit meeting activities in partnership with our friends at Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) - a brand-new activity to teach you some tennis skills. Ask your leader to include it in your term plan.
- Does your unit love adventure? Why not check out our new Adventure for girls pages. This will help you and your leader see everything that’s on offer for you. It’s got everything from axe throwing to zorbing!
- Are you a Guide camping legend? Ready to take the responsibility and plan your own camping trip for your fellow Guides? Learn lots of new skills and gain your Guide camp permit. This will let you lead a camping trip with up to seven other Guides. Talk to your leader to take on this challenge.
- Ready for a summer adventure with your family? Want to get away for a fun filled break? Join us for a great escape at our Girlguiding Activity Centres - Blackland Farm (Sussex), Foxlease (New Forest,) Waddow Hall (Lancashire) - and experience a great selection of adventurous activities while you’re there. Check out what’s on offer here.
You’ve told us how hard the last year’s been. We want to make sure you feel supported to look after yourself, even when times are hard. Happiness is unique to everyone, there isn’t one single thing that makes everyone happy. It’s time to discover what your happiness looks like.
What could you and others do to look after yourself when times get tough? It can be really hard to think about these things when you’re feeling down, so creating a happiness plan can really help as something to reflect on when you need it.
Try out some of our ideas below to see if any of them are right for you:
- Doodling, colouring and drawing can let your mind focus on your wonderful creations. Check out our doodling sheet to have a go yourself! You could print it off, copy the doodles onto a piece of paper or use a drawing app on your computer or tablet.
- Watch our How To Video: Checking in. Meditation can help you feel grounded and relaxed.
- Create a playlist of all your favourite get-up-and-dance songs or ask someone else for theirs! Put it on and get lost in the music.
- Ask someone what makes them happy and try it out yourself.
- Spend your day trying to make yourself or someone else laugh. It’s contagious!
- Discover a new healthy treat. It could be something to eat or drink – see if others like it too!
- Have a blind date with a book or movie. Randomly pick one out and see where the adventure takes you.
Now grab a notepad or something to write or doodle on. Jot down or draw everything that brings you joy, no matter how small. It could be something you tried out from our list above, or something as simple as seeing the sun shining outside. You could do this as a mind map, putting the word happiness in the middle and drawing arms off it with each idea.
Once you have your happiness mind map, look at the questions below. These will help you make your happiness plan. Take your time and think about each answer. You might want to put it down and come back to it at a later date.
- What makes me happy is…
- I really enjoy doing…
- I can tell I’m not feeling great because/when I…
- I think [name] would cheer me up the best.
- If I want to make myself feel better I can…
Now you’ve got your happiness plan, think about if you’d like to keep this secret to you or share it with others. You could share it with friends, family or your leader to let them know how they can support you when you might need it.
It’s okay to feel sad or down, its an emotion we all feel sometimes. But if you’re worried or something doesn’t seem right, speak to a trusted adult like your family, leader or teacher for support.
Note to leader
This last year has been challenging for everyone. Girls tell us that they’re feeling more lonely and worried. But they’re also doing the things that they can do take care of themselves and keep well. For example, keeping in touch with friends and family, playing games and enjoying the outdoors. This challenge is designed to help them understand what they can do to look after their wellbeing.
If you receive any disclosures or have a concern for welfare, follow the A Safe Space guidance. If there is an immediate risk of harm, call the police and out-of-hours Safeguarding team on 07508 032997.
Bright sky at night
Are you a day dreamer who likes to find the animal shapes in the clouds during the day, or a stargazer, who switches off from everything by looking at the stars in the night sky?
Have you ever looked up into the night sky and saw something amazing, but when you’ve tried to take a photo of it, it doesn’t look the same?
We challenge you to improve your astrophotography skills and discover all the incredible things that are happening in our night sky. Astrophotography is the practise of taking photos of astronomical objects like planets or star clusters, celestial events like solar eclipses or meteor showers, and areas of the night sky.
Choose a viewing spot for the month. Try to pick somewhere you could go to safely every day like your bedroom window, or just outside your front door. Then, when you’re ready, just look up. What do you see? How many stars can you see? A constellation is a group of stars that makes a recognisable pattern. Can you spot any constellations that you know of?
Try to take a photo every day from that spot. Use our activity sheet, or check out our video find out all the best top tips for improving your astrophotography skills.
Spend the month trying out different techniques to see what improves your photos. Perhaps you’ll find your own amazing top tip which you could share with your Guide friends.
Try it this way
If you don’t have a camera, that’s no problem – jot down or draw what you see to create your own star diary and notice how they change day by day. Why do you think this is?
At the end of the month, look at all your photos or drawings. It’s up to you how you want to showcase your month of stars. You could print and stick them into a scrapbook, create a digital display or create a star diary of the month, detailing a journey through the stars.
Inspired to find out more about the night sky and space? We created this fun challenge with our friends at the Royal Astronomical Society. You can find lots of great things about stargazing with our extra information sheet, or about space and the night sky on their website.
We’re joining with our friends at Children in Need to support the amazing work they do, and we’re excited to have you all come along on the journey with us.
This year’s focus is ‘Act your age’, which means it’s really easy to get involved - simply choose an age and do something good with it.
You might decide to use your age, the total ages of everyone in your home, unit or even the age of something that’s really important you – like Girlguiding, we’re 110 years old this year!
Your age could be the distance you cover, the time you do something for, the number of things you do or your sponsorship target. We’re sure you’ll have lots of amazing ideas of things you could do. But to help, we’ve come up with some ideas to get you started below. Your challenge can be as big or small as you want, as long as it’s a challenge to you. Whatever it is, you’ll be helping to change the lives of young people across the UK.
- Active challenge: Could you do a sponsored dance or aerobics-a-thon? If your target is 11, could you keep this going for 11 hours throughout the month? What about travelling a set distance every day, or challenging yourself to try out that many sports in the month?
- Habit challenge: Could you try out and commit to doing new habits every day for your age? For example, you could try reading before bed, helping with the washing up or smiling at yourself every time you see a mirror. Inspire others to try new habits for their wellbeing.
- Music challenge: Humming, tapping or rapping. Could you learn that many new songs to sing or play on an instrument? What about a sing-a-thon, or perhaps you could make instruments out of household objects and put on a performance for your neighbours?
- Tongue twister challenge: Can you say a tongue twister your target amount of times without messing up? How about saying them to that many people, or teaching others to do them too? How fast can you say them without a mistake?
- Poetry challenge: Could you write a poem for every day of the month, with something that inspires you? What about writing poems for people that sponsor you – it could be about them, or things that they love?
Planned your idea? Got yourself ready? It’s time to spread the message far and wide.
We’ve made a fundraising totaliser to help you keep count of all the money you raise throughout your challenge. You can fill it in anyway that you like.
The money Girlguiding members fundraise will make a huge difference. Together, we can raise money to make amazing things happen. Check out more information about our partnership with Children in Need here, which explains where and how to send your fundraised money to.
If you want more information about raising money in your local area, ask and adult to check out our Fundraising policy.
Lots of things might be different this year, but one thing’s always the same – many of us will be returning back with our guiding families this month to celebrate a new term of guiding fun!
It doesn’t matter if you’re back with your Guide friends in person, seeing their faces virtually or sending them love from afar; you’re all a part of a big guiding family and we want everyone to celebrate our amazing community together this month.
Our Promise is something that connects every member of Girlguiding across the world, no matter their language, culture or beliefs. It brings us all together, and is what makes guiding so special.
Let’s explore what our Promise means to us this month. You can then either choose to make your Promise for the first time or remake it in a new, challenging way!
Our Guide Promise is: I promise that I will do my best, to be true to myself and develop my beliefs, to serve the Queen and my community, to help other people and to keep the Guide Law.
As a member of Girlguiding, you are also a member of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS). This is a world organisation, where there are Guides like you all over the world, in around 150 countries with over 10 million members worldwide.
All countries accept the basic principles and values of guiding as expressed in the Promise and Law, which vary from country to country and all members of the global guiding community can wear the World badge, that means you too!
Use our activity sheet to help remember your Promise. Colour in the words as you explore them. Use the second page to break down what the Promise means to you, and actions you could take to live the Girlguiding values.
What does this mean to you? Think about what you say in the Promise and how you could do things this month to live your Promise.
For example, with 'serve the Queen and my community, or help other people' - what could you do this month to be kind and helpful to your friends, family or people in your community? Our friends at Amey do lots to help people, like building roads and making sure we have electricity in our homes. Check out what they’ve been doing during the COVID lockdown period to help and support people.
Whether it’s your first time, or making your Promise for the new year, it could be together as a unit virtually, sharing the experience with your family and friends at home or making the plans for when you’re back meeting face to face.
Already made your Promise? Why not challenge yourself to make your Promise in a different way – perhaps using Makaton, in a different language or whilst doing something that pushes you out of your comfort zone.
Ask an adult to share with us what you’ve been up to this month using #AdventuresAtHome to show the world how big and amazing our community is!
Summer is a time for lots of outside fun at camps, festivals or jamborees! You might have been planning on going to Wellies and Wristbands with your Guide unit. We’re all having to do things a little differently this year, but that doesn’t mean we can’t keep the adventurous spirit alive at home!
Try out some of these fun outdoor (or indoor!) activities and have some amazing adventures:
Get out and about
- Set off on an adventure in your local area. Look at a map before heading out and make a route, or put on your shoes and just see where they take you! Make sure to take an adult with you. We’ve created an activity sheet to help you make your local adventure map. Download the adventure map activity (PDF)
Try it this way
Unable to go outside? Why not have an adventure in your home, garden or even virtually! Choose a place you’d love to visit, and ask an adult to show you using online maps.
Get yourself tied up in knots
- Learn a new skill and discover how to do a carrick bend knot with the help of this video from our partner the British Army. Why not experiment making these knots with different materials. Shoelaces, ribbons, spaghetti pasta or tights? Ask and adult to share your knot inventions with us on social media using #AdventuresAtHome.
- Get the Wellies and Wristbands vibe and transform your home or local area into your own festival! Perhaps you’ll stream some live performances of your favourite bands, make tie dye t-shirts or eat some tasty festival foods. Keep your eyes peeled as we’ll be sharing lots of Wellies related fun! Let us know what you’ve been up to with #WelliesAndWristbands.
- Set up camp in your garden and you could safely make a campfire, toast some marshmallows, tell campfire stories and singsongs. Check out our Girlguiding campfire songs to keep the festival going into the evening.
- Be inspired by all the amazing artistic things you could create in, with or for nature! Ask and adult to share your masterpieces on social media using the #AdventuresAtHome for all to see!
Take the time to explore what’s important to you and the people around you. This might be something that you experience personally, or a difficulty or inequality your friends or family experience that you’d like to support.
There are lots of local and global movements that you could support. You might have heard recently of the Black Lives Matter movement, which is campaigning for Black people to be treated fairly. At Girlguiding we want to include everyone and want all communities to know we stand together. Use this challenge to raise your own voice, or look to a community that could use your support.
Being an ally means supporting and standing up for people who are treated unfairly to help create a more equal society for all. It might be about their race, sexuality, religion or disability. The important thing about being a good ally is knowing that the story you want to share is not yours, and it’s not about you. It’s about how you use your voice to help raise the voices of people experiencing inequality.
Challenge yourself to listen, learn, reflect and question things that are affecting people in the world.
Here are some ideas:
- Check in on your friends and family (including your guiding family) to make sure everyone knows that you’re there for them.
- Explore issues that are affecting you or the people you care about. For example, we have lots of activities here about Black Lives Matter for you to explore.
- Fundraise to support charities and organisations that are supporting the movement.
- Write to your local MP about why an issue or movement is important to you and what they could do to show their support. We’ve made some top tips to help you.
- Have a go at our Reflect skills builder activity Pick a card which explores how to understand things from someone else’s point of view.
We’d love to hear what you’ve been up to this month, you can ask an adult to share on our socials using #AdventuresAtHome.
Why not try?
Our monthly activities are available to download and try at home.
This month we explore making your voice heard by writing to your MP.