As participants in the Frontier Girls Clubs, our home Troop is classified as Pioneers Troop #100. We are part of a plethora of individuals with parent/scouts that are not a part of a formal troop.
The Pioneer program is designed for girls who wish to pursue the Frontier Girls program as an individual. They do not belong to a troop, but instead, work on badges and awards under the supervision of a parent or guardian. Pioneers may band together to work on badges or participate in activities such as campouts and community service projects if they wish, but there is no official leader. The girls and parents will have to work out any arrangements necessary. If there is a troop nearby, a Pioneer may also participate in troop activities if invited. If a Pioneer wishes to have a troop number on her uniform, she can wear troop #100 if she wishes as this is the designation for a Pioneer.
Links of interest: http://blog.frontiergirlsclubs.com/2015/03/12/pioneers-feeling-alone/
This year my girls are both Penguins. As of birthdays this summer, OrangeBlossom will remain a Penguin and AppleBlossom will bridge or graduate to Otter. It is my opinion that she could have become an Otter this last year at five. However, I wanted her to have two full years as a Penguin. So now, as she turns six, she will have two full years or more as an Otter ahead of her.
The Enginerd is an honorary tag-along member/leader/badge writer and Almond is a Quest explorer in training. He may start Quest (the Frontier Girls co-ed brother organization) officially in three years or so. For now, let me enjoy his baby chaos-self.
Program Age Levels
We name our program levels after animals to show the girls that there is something to be learned
from all of God’s creation if only we are willing to look. (Animal stories courtesy of Baudville, Inc.) Working with different ages effectively begins with an understanding of the developmental aspects of each age group.
Something very neat in the Frontier Girls uniform is the Level Animal Pin. As OrangeBlossom is a mere three years old, I’ve opted for her to only at this time have the membership pin and not yet the Level Animal Pin, which of course mamas – use your own discretion on whether or not your young Penguins are ready for pins and tacks. She is ready, but I wouldn’t bombard her with several just yet. That’s just asking for trouble, especially with the Almond-Blossom boy traveling around on knees and other mobile baby positions. So, all of this is to say, for us AppleBlossom will bridge to Otter (and receive the Otter Animal Level Pin) at age six and hand down her Penguin Animal Level Pin to OrangeBlossom at age four. Then, I believe looking forward when she bridges to Dolphin, they will be at the right ranks where the Otter pin may be handed down to her sister and so on. (All this to save dollars for us year after year. Although if I had my way, they’d get every level pin as they got there and be able to keep them for memorabia, but the budget doesn’t agree. So creativity wins.)
Preschool, ages 3-5: Penguin
The flightless fairy penguin of Australia stands less than a foot tall and is clumsy on land, where the fox is its natural enemy. Alone, one penguin wouldn’t survive long. So, after each day in the water, they gather where the surf meets the shore, waiting until the last penguin joins them. Then, shoulder to shoulder, they march up the beach to their burrows.
They support each other. They rely on each other, and everyone, except the fox, wins. We hope that our youngest members learn to be part of a team, to share, and to rely on each other.
Frontier Girl Penguins are just starting out on their journey. Everything is new and will take extra time to learn and master. Penguins have very short attention spans and will need to change activities frequently.
Keep in mind that girls at this age cannot read, have limited motor skills, and may not even be potty trained. They will need assistance with the simplest tasks. While Penguins are welcome in a multi-age troop, make sure you do not turn the older girls into babysitters, but provide enough challenging projects for each age level.
Grades K-2, ages 5-8: Otter
In many animals, the urge to play dies as they grow older, but otters are smart and creative and curious. They remain playful all their lives. Does this interfere with their
survival? Not at all. Otters use all their gifts to excel at whatever they do; playing builds
their knowledge, speed, and dexterity, the skills that make them masterful hunters and swimmers. We hope that our youngest members will never lose the ability to play and look at the lighter
side of life.
Frontier Girl Otters, as their name suggests, are fun and playful with lots of energy. They frequently have a hard time sitting still and have fairly short attention spans. As young as they are, they are still intelligent human beings, capable of much more than many adults give them credit for. They are not babies who need to be cared for, but have ideas and opinions of their own. Otters are still young enough to be outspoken about what they like and dislike, so it is easy to see where you stand with them. This is also the perfect age to begin to teach the concepts of tactfulness and politeness.
Your youngest Otters will just be starting Kindergarten and may not be able to read quite yet. Their hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills are still developing as well, meaning they will need help with many of the projects if you wish to include them with the older girls. Fortunately, most girls in this age range are eager to learn and ready to try just about anything if everyone else is doing it too.
As I mentioned previously [link] we are using Frontier Girls hand-in-hand with our homeschool plans and life events. One of my favorite curriculum materials is the Enrichment Guides from Memoria Press. This year we are making great progress with the First Grade Enrichment Guide and each week I’m attempting it to make a badge earning event. (More information to come in a future post, so stay tuned!) Another incredible curricula I’ve got my digital hands on is Barefoot Ragamuffins Wayfarers Ancients and this also leads to a spark of badge possibilities (hello, Discover Knowledge: Biography: King Tutankhamen, anyone?).
Also, life events… well the Enginerd is naturally nerdy. Um… Enginerd? It’s all in the name. (He’s plotting circuits for summer activites I hear… Yay?!?) He’s always outside and encouraging the girls in forums that are not quite as plain to me as others (Discover the Home: Sewing, Cross stich, Embroidery) as his (Discover the Outdoors: Archery, and our own written Animal Tracking; as well as Discover Science & Technology) topics. Then there is the unusal life events such as our recent trip Georgia which ended with a hiatus in Huntsville, Alabama to the U.S. Space Center & Museum (Discover Science & Technology badges galore!).
So who is curious as to what we’ve been up to?
Additional Links of interest: http://blog.frontiergirlsclubs.com/2015/02/20/what-is-frontier-girls/