So you just had two amazing years with your girls as a Brownie Girl Scout leader. Now what? Are you ready for the next level, Junior Girl Scouts? Today I just want to help you understand a little more about bridging from Brownies to Juniors.
As you know bridging is a special ceremony for the girls who are already Girl Scouts, where they will officially move from one level to another. And of course you can have your bridging ceremony whenever you want but many Girl Scout troops prefer to bridge toward the end of the Girl Scout’s year. This could be on a special day set aside, or included in the final meeting of the year.
One question I have been asked is why do we say Brownies fly up to Juniors and all other levels just call it bridging. This was from the early days of Girl Scouts. Only Brownies fly up because, in the early days of Girl Scouting, Brownie leaders were called “Brown Owl,” after the Wise Owl in The Brownie Story. When it came time for girls to leave Brownies, Brown Owl would give them one of her feathers so they could “fly” into the next level. Brownie Wings were first used as a symbol of bridging in 1927 and continue to the present day. Checkout the whole story here
Have a Girl Scout Own Ceremony when bridging to Junior Girl Scouts
A great way to start down the path of being a Junior Girl Scout leader is to allow your girls be the leader. When planning your ceremony a great idea is to let it be a girl-led event. You can guide them, maybe prompt the girls with an overall outline of what a typical bridging ceremony will look like.
These can include:
- Opening – This is often a flag ceremony along with a reciting of the Girl Scout Law and Promise. As a Girl Scout Leader you can direct your girls on what you believe could be the best way to welcome parents and friends.
- Performance/Presentation – This ceremony is an ideal opportunity for girls to express everything they learned as a Brownie Girl Scout, a favorite Girl Scout memory, or maybe have them select a line of the Girl Scout law and tell everyone what it means to them. It could be through dance or song, or reciting a poem.
- Flying Up From Brownie to Juniors – This is the part of the ceremony where the girls bridge and fly up to Junior Girl Scouts. Girls usually take a walk over a bridge, under an archway, or have girls come up with another way to move from one level to the next. Once the girls cross the bridge the Girl Scout leaders need to greet all the girls with the Girl Scout Handshake.
- Closing – Think about how your girls end your meetings on a regular basis? They might choose to do a friendship circle or a song.
- Refreshments – What inspiring snack suggestions do the girls have? Can they offer a treat that comes with the colors of the two levels (Brownie and Juniors?
Don’t be afraid as you transition from being a Brownie Girl Scout Leader to a Junior Girl Scout Leader. As your girls interest and skills change and grow you will build your program around what the girls want. When possible let your girls run the meeting and take on leadership roles. Have fun your adventures are just beginning!
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