North, south, east, west

Includes: Outdoors, Adventurous activities, Nature and the great outdoors

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Fun with the compass

Help girls remember the points of the compass and introduce the skill of orienteering.


  1. Using a compass, show the girls how to find north from a central point. Then ask them to choose an object that is directly north (for example, a tree, a doorstep, or a post).
  2. Divide girls into three groups and ask one to find south, one to find east and one to find west.
  3. Each group then decides on an object that lies directly south, directly east and directly west.
  4.  Ask everyone to gather in the centre of the playing area so groups can share their object.
  5.  Then call out ‘north’, ‘south, ‘east’ or ‘west’ – and everyone must run to touch the object that lies in that direction.
  6. Play a few rounds of the game, and then get girls to find the intercardinal points (north-east, north-west, south-east, south-west) and choose objects for these.
  7. Play the game again using all eight points of the compass.

Planning checklist

Section Number of girls per adult
Rainbows 5
Brownies 8
Guides 12

How many adults are needed?

Use this calculator to find out the ratio of girls to adults that is required for this activity

2 adults needed