When girls all across the country share a core national leadership experience, they enjoy being part of something bigger than themselves, they have fun, and their voices get louder and their influence gets stronger. They can see for themselves what the world looks like when girls get together to make the world a better place and what it feels like when they make a difference in the world.
In Girl Scouting, Discover + Connect + Take Action = Leadership
All Girl Scout experiences are intentionally designed to tie to one or more of the 15 national leadership outcomes, or benefits, categorized under the three keys to leadership:
- Girls develop a strong sense of self
- Girls develop positive values
- Girls gain practical skills
- Girls seek challenges in the world
- Girls develop critical thinking
- Girls develop healthy relationships
- Girls promote cooperation and team building
- Girls can resolve conflicts
- Girls advance diversity in a multicultural world
- Girls feel connected to their communities, locally and globally
- Take Action: Girls act to make the world a better place.
- Girls can identify community needs
- Girls are resourceful problem solvers
- Girls advocate for themselves and others, locally and globally
- Girls educate and inspire others to act
- Girls feel empowered to make a difference in the world
In Girl Scouting, it's not just "what" girls do (activities), but "how" (processes) they do them. When used together, these processes - Girl Led, Cooperative Learning, and Learning by Doing - ensure the quality and promote the fun and friendship so integral to Girl Scouting.
Here's how Girl Scouts defines these processes:
- Girl-led: Girls lead the planning and decision-making as much as possible. This will ensure that the girls are engaged in their learning and experience leadership opportunities as they prepare to become active participants in their local and global communities.
- Learning by Doing: (also known as experiential learning) A hands-on learning process that engages girls in continuous cycles of action and reflection that result in deeper understanding of concepts and mastery of practical skills. As they participate in meaningful activities and then reflect on them, girls get to explore their own questions, discover answers, gain new skills, and share ideas and observations with others. This helps them apply what they have learned to their future experiences.
- Cooperative Learning: Girls work together toward shared goals in an atmosphere of respect and collaboration that encourages the sharing of skills, knowledge, and learning. It' not just about sharing the glue when completing a project at a troop meeting! Working together in all-girl environments also encourages girls to feel powerful and emotionally and physically safe, and it allows them to experience a sense of belonging even in the most diverse groups.
To learn more about the Girl Scout Leadership Experience, please visit girlscouts.org/gsle/.