10 Tips to make Back-to-School a breeze

Labor Day Weekend has come and gone, meaning it’s time for many students in Western New York to head back to school. Instead of letting all the changes disrupt everything, try these 10 tips that can help make going back to school a breeze!

1. Determine your routine

Before you can iron out the rest of the details, you need to determine what your routine is going to look like. Start with what you know – your schedule and your kids schedules – and work from that. Once you have a basic idea, you can add other pieces in and figure out the the planner/schedule that works for you.

2. Establish a family calendar

Using a family calendar is a great way to keep track of what everyone is doing through the week and/or month, depending on the style you choose. Don’t just write the events – schedule a meeting each week to go over them with everyone.

3. Set up screen time rules

This might be something you keep all year long, but if you’ve been less strict over the summer, now is the time to bring back restrictions. Set boundaries with your children about how often they can be on their devices and make sure you take them out of their rooms at night to remove temptation.

4. Keep to a bedtime and wake up schedule

Sleep routines are easily maintained with consistent times when you go to bed and wake up. Set a schedule for both weekdays and weekends so your children develop a rhythm that will promote more restful sleep habits.

5. Don’t overschedule

With everything new going on, it’s easy to say yes to everything and lose out on valuable family time. Refer to your calendar and routine to make sure something is feasible before agreeing – periods of rest are important for family members of all ages.

6. Get ready the night before

Another great habit to get your kids into is preparing for school the night before. Teach them how to pick out their clothes and pack their bag and lunch. This will make the morning go smoothly and help them learn organization and planning skills.

7. Talk to your kids about going back to school

Get a read on how your kids feel about going back to school. Some may be forthright in their worries and excitement, but others might need some encouragement. Learn about their anxieties and help quell them where possible.

8. Take care of yourself

In the hustle and bustle of managing the lives of your children, it might get easier to forget about yourself. Self-care is one of the best ways to keep you high-functioning because it allows you time to pause and think about your own needs as well instead of getting overwhelmed and burnt out.

9. Choose afterschool activities

While you don’t want to add too many activities in, finding at least one or two can be invaluable for your children. From the skills they learn to the fun they’ll have, it’s a nice way to keep them involved.

Of course, our number one recommendation for girls is Girl Scouts 🙂

10. Find more resources from Girl Scouts

As the school year progresses, you might want more resources about dealing with particular issues. Whether you want more back-to-school tips or help raising awesome girls, they have an amazing library of articles to help you!

Extended year memberships are still available!

It’s almost time for school to be over and for summer to officially start and we cannot wait! Not only do our summer camps open in the beginning of July, we have other fun activities for our Girl Scouts to do.

If you aren’t a Girl Scout yet, we have an amazing promotion. Right now you can join Girl Scouts for just $35 and it covers the rest of this membership year AS WELL AS the next! Registering now means you’re getting more fun for less money!

Even though many troops meet less frequently throughout the summer, it doesn’t mean a Girl Scout can’t have her own fun. We have Community Events where girls can go to baseball games, water parks, and other events for reduced costs. There’s the STEMtastic Summer Challenge that encourages girls to keep learning in fun and interesting ways. Of course, we still have space in our camps for girls.

This deal is even sweeter for pre-k girls who can’t wait to be Daisies! Even if they aren’t five or in kindergarten yet, they qualify for extended year and can start their Girl Scout experience now.

One great way to begin her journey as a Daisy is to attend our Daisy for a Day event June 29. We’re having six parties around council the last weekend in June to get our future Daisies excited about being Girl Scouts.

Girl Scouting is a year-round experience and you can get started today with Extended Year Membership!

Register Today

You’re invited to be a Daisy for a Day!

This summer, we’re kicking off the Girl Scout experience for our new Daisies in a major way. It all begins with our Daisy for a Day party happening all over council Saturday, June 29.

You’re invited to bring your kindergarten and first grade girls (as of fall 2019) to this exciting event where girls and adults get their first taste of what it means to be a Daisy Girl Scout. Our FREE Daisy for a Day events is for girls and their families to discover what it means to be a Girl Scout, enjoy STEM and other fun activities, and learn about the ways they can get involved with Girl Scouts.

This event runs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will be held at the following locations:

Niagara County
Niagara County Community College Banquet Hall G209
3111 Saunders Settlement Rd. Sanborn, NY 14132

Monroe County
Al Sigl Center Gymnasium, 1000 Elmwood Ave., Rochester, NY 14620

Genesee County
Dibble Family Center, 4120 W Main St., Batavia, NY 14020

Erie County
Daemen College, Wick Center Social Room, 4380 Main St., Amherst, NY 14226

Cattaraugus County
Ellicottville Memorial Library, 6499 Maples Rd., Ellicottville, NY 14731

Chautauqua County
Lakeside Park Pavilion, 78 Water St. Route 394, Mayville, NY 14757
*The Chautauqua County event will take place on Sunday, June 30, 11:00-1:00pm

Your pre-k and kindergarten girls can join RIGHT NOW using extended year membership, which means you get the fun of Girl Scouting this summer and you’re all set for the fall. Plus, our new Daisies will receive exclusive activity packets in the mail in June, July, and August.

All our Daisy fun wraps in August when we’re holding our FIRST EVER Daisy Launch Party. Our new Daisies (and their friends who want to join!) are welcome to join us for more fun and their first patch!

If you have any questions, please reach out to MeKenzie Lund at mekenzie.lund@gswny.org or 1-888-837-6410.

Spring Renewal is now open!

April 1 marks the first day of Spring Renewal for Girl Scouts of Western New York! This is your chance to renew you and your girl’s membership for the 2019-2020 membership year and win big in the process.

We have a number of incentives, including ear buds, patches, and some Target gift cards ranging from $100 to $300! Those you have a chance to win, but everyone who renews between April 1 and May 31 receives SAGE Tuition Rewards points, aka scholarships for college.

Every girl who renews during Spring Renewal will receive 2,500 points, which turns into $2,500, valid at 300 schools around the country. Co-leaders who renew receive 3,500 points, or $3,500, that are transferable to anyone under the age of 18.

It might be April Fools Day, but we aren’t kidding around! These incentives are the real deal and yours for the taking now through May 31.

Christine Kirwan, our director of Volunteer Experience, explains Spring Renewal in some more details below!

Renew Your Membership Today

March 12 – Tuesday Theme: Girl Scout Birthday and the Importance of Volunteering #GirlScoutWeek

Girl Scout Week Activity

  • Wear your Girl Scout uniform to school to celebrate your Girl Scout sisterhood. Today, over 3.2 million girls and adults are active Girl Scout members, and over 50 million women are Girl Scout alumnae. In honor of the Girl Scout Birthday, take a moment to recognize and celebrate all that Girl Scouts of the USA has done for local communities across the country!
  • Learn more about Juliette Gordon Low. Visit the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace website. Every year many troops visit the birthplace as an extended trip. Interested in learning more? Check out our Traveling with Girl Scouts packet.
  • Throw a birthday party for Girl Scouts! Celebrate with birthday cake, party games, and more. Invite your sister Girl Scouts and friends who are not yet Girl Scouts. Ask all of your guests to bring a birthday gift to donate to a local charity.

Girl Scouting Year-Round – Virtual Join Event

  • Tune-in to a Facebook Live throughout the day or evening and check-in for exciting giveaways around how Girl Scouts offer year-round experiences for girls in the areas of exciting programs and travel.   
    • Facebook Live – Member of Volunteer Experience will speak to the breadth of Girl Scouts’ volunteer opportunities and how they impact girls year-round.
    • Daily Incentives: Engagement and Membership on Facebook and Instagram.

Celebrate Girl Scout Week and The Girl Scouting Year-Round Virtual Join Event!

Girl Scout Week – Sunday, March 10 to Saturday, March 16 – is a time to celebrate Girl Scouts as groundbreakers, big thinkers, and role models. This year in conjunction with Girl Scout Week, we’re holding The Girl Scouting Year-Round – Virtual Join Event from Monday, March, 11 to Friday, March 15. Join us as we celebrate for your chance to win daily and one-time incentives during the week – view a listing of the incentives below.

This guide offers many ideas for girls to choose their own way to be aG.I.R.L. (Go-Getter, Innovator, Risk-Taker, Leader)™ during Girl Scout Week. #GirlScoutingYearRound

Daily Incentives

  • Engagement Incentive: WIN 2 PACKAGES OF GIRL SCOUT COOKIES via Facebook or Instagram! Winners will be selected randomly the day after the question has been posted to social media. Winners will receive a DM or private message asking which 2 flavors they would like and which GSWNY service center location they would like to pick up their prize. (Gluten-free cookies are not available as prizes.) Winners must be currently registered adult or girl members of Girl Scouts of Western New York. New members may participate same day as completing their GSWNY registration. 3/11/19-3/15/19
  • Join Incentives: Existing Volunteers, register a new girl or volunteer, add a new girl to your troop, and be entered for a chance to win two daily gift cards of $25 to Target or Walmart when you email your full name and the full name of the person you registered to communications@gswny.org 3/11/19-3/15/19. Register more people and increase your chances to win. Winners will be emailed with the notification of when and where to pick up their gift card.

One-time Incentives:

  • All new girls who register are entered into a drawing for a Girl Scout starter kit 3/11/19-3/15/19. Winners will be emailed with the notification of when and where to pick up their gift card.
  • Everyone who registers as a new member or registers a new member will be entered for a chance to win a free week at camp valued at $195 to be used at GSWNY Day, Resident or Troop Camp. Existing Volunteers who register a new girl or volunteer, or add a new girl to your troop must also email your full name and the full name of the person you registered to communications@gswny.org 3/11/19-3/15/19.

Overview:

  • March 10 – Sunday: Girl Scout Sunday
  • March 11 – Monday: (Go-Getter) Girl Scouting Year-Round – Virtual Join Event Kick-off
  • March 12 – Tuesday: Girl Scout Birthday and the Importance of Volunteering
  • March 13 – Wednesday: (Innovator) Cookie Power
  • March 14 – Thursday: (Risk-Taker) Girl Scout High Awards and Community Service
  • March 15 – Friday: (Leader) Camp and Outdoor
  • March 16 – Saturday: G.I.R.L. Agenda and Girl Scout Sabbath

March 10 – Sunday Theme: Girl Scout Sunday

Girl Scout Week Activity

  • Wear your Girl Scout uniform to worship. Talk with your Girl Scout sisters and family to connect with a local place of worship and learn about how Girl Scouts can be represented on Girl Scout Sunday.
  • Host a Girl Scout Cookies and milk party after worship. Bring Girl Scout cookies (and possibly sell some too), share what goals you achieved with your cookie sale, and talk about the skills you have learned from the Girl Scout Cookie program.
  • Earn your My Promise, My Faith Award. Work with your family and faith leaders to earn the pin to celebrate the connection between the Girl Scout Promise and Law and your faith.

March 11 – Monday Theme: (Go-Getter) Girl Scouting Year-Round – Virtual Join Event Kick-off

A Go-Getter is bold, honest, and determined to succeed. Goal-oriented and ambitious, she’s also a life-long learner who believes no challenge is too difficult.

Girl Scout Week Activity

  • Set a goal to achieve a big objective. Is it a Journey Summit Award, straight A’s, mastering a new routine, or scoring a goal? Create a plan to work hard to make it happen.
  • Learn a new skill. Celebrate your love of learning. Practice a skill that will help you explore something you’ve always wanted to try.
  • Create a motivational mantra. Go-Getters get back up and try again when they fall down. Create a mantra or saying to encourage yourself and others to be determined to succeed.

Girl Scouting Year-Round – Virtual Join Event

  • Tune-in to a Facebook Live throughout the day or evening and check-in for exciting giveaways around how Girl Scouts offer a year-round experience for girls from Camping and Outdoors, STEM, to Life Skills, and Entrepreneurship.
    • Facebook Live – Members of Recruitment will speak to the breadth of Girl Scouts’ programs and services for girls year-round.
    • Daily Incentives: Engagement and Membership  on Facebook and Instagram

March 12 – Tuesday Theme: Girl Scout Birthday and the Importance of Volunteering

March 12 is the Girl Scout Birthday! On this day in 1912, Juliette “Daisy” Gordon Low assembled a group of eighteen girls from Savannah, Georgia for the first ever Girl Scout meeting.

Girl Scout Week Activity

  • Wear your Girl Scout uniform to school to celebrate your Girl Scout sisterhood. Today, over 3.2 million girls and adults are active Girl Scout members, and over 50 million women are Girl Scout alumnae. In honor of the Girl Scout Birthday, take a moment to recognize and celebrate all that Girl Scouts of the USA has done for local communities across the country!
  • Learn more about Juliette Gordon Low. Visit the Juliette Gordon Low Birthplace website. Every year many troops visit the birthplace as an extended trip. Interested in learning more? Check out our Traveling with Girl Scouts packet.
  • Throw a birthday party for Girl Scouts! Celebrate with birthday cake, party games, and more. Invite your sister Girl Scouts and friends who are not yet Girl Scouts. Ask all of your guests to bring a birthday gift to donate to a local charity.

Girl Scouting Year-Round – Virtual Join Event

  • Tune-in to a Facebook Live throughout the day or evening and check-in for exciting giveaways around how Girl Scouts offer year-round experiences for girls in the areas of exciting programs and travel.   
    • Facebook Live – Member of Volunteer Experience will speak to the breadth of Girl Scouts’ volunteer opportunities and how they impact girls year-round.
    • Daily Incentives: Engagement and Membership on Facebook and Instagram.

March 13 – Wednesday Theme: (Innovator) Cookie Power

Thinking outside the box is an Innovator’s specialty, so she’s always looking for a creative way to take action. She definitely knows how to get things done.

Girl Scout Week Activity

  • Solve a problem in a creative way. Whether it is a broken shoelace or a polluted beach, Girl Scouts innovate to find unique solutions. Find an imaginative solution to an everyday or community problem.
  • Invent something new. Think outside the box and find a new way to do something. Share your idea with other Girl Scout sisters or your family.
  • Create a work of art. Choose your favorite type of art and make a masterpiece that’s cookie-related that looks like something that no one has ever seen before.

Girl Scouting Year-Round – Virtual Join Event

  • Tune-in to a Facebook Live throughout the day or evening and check-in for exciting giveaways around how Girl Scouts offer year-round experiences for girls in the area of Entrepreneurship with the largest girl-run business in the world – the Girl Scout cookie program and learn what the Digital Cookie Drawing and Cookie Drive-thru is all about. GSWNY Thunderclap Social Media posting where everyone in GSWNY posts the same message to social media on the same day.
    • Facebook Live – Member of Product Program and a girl will speak to the breadth of Girl Scouts’ Cookie Program and how it impacts girls year-round.
    • Daily Incentives: Engagement and Membership  on Facebook and Instagram

March 14 – Thursday Theme: (Risk-Taker) Programs – Girl Scout High Awards and Community Service

Courageous and strong, a Risk-Taker’s keen to try new things and to embrace the unfamiliar. She’s ready to step up and break the mold if that’s what it takes.

Girl Scout Week Activity

  • Do something new. Girl Scouts explore the world around them. Do something that you’ve never done before.
  • Eliminate “can’t” from your vocabulary. Think about the times you’ve said “I can’t (do something).” Try something that you thought you couldn’t do.
  • Break the mold. Be the first person you know to try something. Share with your friends and family about your experience.

Girl Scouting Year-Round – Virtual Join Event

  • Tune-in to a Facebook Live throughout the day or evening and check-in for exciting giveaways around how Girl Scouts offer year-round experiences for girls in the areas of the Girl Scout High Awards – Gold, Silver, and Bronze and Community Service.
    • Facebook Live – Member of Girl Experience will speak to the breadth of Girl Scouts’ Programs and how they impact girls year-round and a Girl Scout Gold Awardee and Alum will speak about her experience.
    • Daily Incentives: Engagement and Membership  on Facebook and Instagram

March 15 – Friday Theme: (Leader) Camp and Outdoor

A Leader is confident, responsible, and committed to changing the world for the better—and she’s happiest when others join her in taking the lead!

Girl Scout Week Activity

  • Be a role model. Lead younger girls in celebrating Girl Scout Week activities and being G.I.R.L.s!
  • Lead a Take Action project. Make the world a better place when you Take Action to solve issues in your community in a sustainable way.
  • Invite the community. Welcome your community to your Girl Scout Week celebrations or Take Action projects.

Girl Scouting Year-Round – Virtual Join Event

  • Tune-in to a Facebook Live throughout the day or evening and check-in for exciting giveaways around how Girl Scouts offer year-round experiences for girls in the areas of Camp and Outdoor.
    • Facebook Live – Member of Camp/Outdoor Program will speak to the breadth of Girl Scouts’ Camp/Outdoor Program and how it impacts girls year-round.
    • Daily Incentives: Engagement and Membership  on Facebook and Instagram
    • One-time Incentive: Starter Kit and 1 Week of Camp

March 16 – Saturday Theme: G.I.R.L. Agenda and Girl Scout Sabbath

Be a catalyst for change in your community—and the world. Champion your views, influence leadership, and advance the G.I.R.L. Agenda to make the world a better place. Every girl has a voice. Every girl’s voice is important.

  • Girl Scout Week Activity
  • Get inspired. Find a problem big or small in your community. Think of a way you and others can solve it and let your voice be heard.
  • Get prepared. Take a stand and be an advocate for an issue that is important to you. Share with others why you are so passionate about this cause.
  • Get mobilized. Unleash your inner leader and make the world a better place.

Special Alert:

  • Stop in our GSWNY Shops and celebrate Girl Scout Week with us and have a cupcake! By participating in our Balloon Pop Challenge each customer has a chance to save 10%-40% off on their purchase. The challenge runs March 11-15. Come visit us in the shop and POP a balloon to receive a discount on a same day purchase. Each shop is open their normal hours of business for the week. Cannot be combined with any other coupon or discount.
  • GSWNY Thunderclap Social Media Postings March 13, March 20, and March 27
  • Girl Scout Cookie Drive-Thru March 16 and 17
  • Girl Scout Cookie Walk-About Weekend March 23 & 24

GSWNY Staff will Celebrate Girl Scout Week by Discovering, Connecting, & Take Action with the following:

  • To Discover, a Girl Scout Birthday sign will be emailed on Monday that says “Happy Birthday Girl Scouts! My birthday wish for you is . . .” Staff can print, complete a sign, take their photo and send to Communications, who will share via interoffice email and via social media. 
  • To Connect, on Wednesday, staff will share a brief overview of the 5 World Centers via email and interoffice email. Using SurveyMonkey, staff will be able to vote on which center they would most like to visit, and results will be shared at the end of the week.
  • To Take Action, staff are encouraged to donate birthday party items, such as cake mix, frosting, candles, balloons, etc., to be donated to local food pantries.  These items are often scarce and welcomed by families.  They will be collected all week.

Let’s celebrate Girl Scout Week together!

It’s Snow Much Fun to be a Girl Scout: 2019 Recruitment Contest

Welcome to the second year of this exciting recruitment campaign! We’re so excited to do it again, especially with our fun new changes for 2019. There are two pieces to this contest: a Service Unit challenge and prize and a challenge to start 10 new troops.

Criteria for the Service Unit Challenge

  • Hold at least one new member recruitment event between January 7 and March 3, 2019.
  • For each recruitment event you host you earn one entry to win. The more events you hold, the more chances you have of winning! You must fill out one Wufoo form to be entered. The form can be found here: https://gswny.wufoo.com/forms/su-recruitment-contest-2019
  • We will choose one winner of our prize which is a Glow Dance Party Kit for you to use as a Service Unit event. Glow dances are increasingly popular, and with the kit it will be very easy to host an amazing event for your girls. The kit includes black lights, glow in the dark body paint, glow sticks, and everything else you would need! You can host the party as a standalone event, as part of a SUCO, or as a yearend celebration.
  • Please reach out to your SU’s CES for any support you will need including flyers or promotional materials.

Criteria for the New Troop Challenge

  • The goal of this challenge is to form 10 new troops across GSWNY between January 7 and March 3, 2019.
  • The first ten troops to form with at least five girls and two registered, trained, and approved co-leaders will receive a $50 gift certificate to the GSWNY shop or a retail store of their choosing.
  • Please promote this challenge at any recruitments you host during the Snow Much Fun period so new troops in your SU can be eligible. New troops will be added to the Opportunity Catalog prior to January 7 and they will be clearly marked for this promotion. We can give you the eligible troop numbers prior to any event you host if you’d like. Please reach out to your CES with questions.

Thank you for your help in adding new girls and adult members to Girl Scouts! Good luck!