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Adult - Sow What
| 2013-08-28 00:00:10
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    HOW TO PARTNER WITH GIRL SCOUT SENIORS ON SOW WHAT? IT’S YOUR PLANET — LOVE IT! A LEADERSHIP JOURNEY

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    Toward the Harvest Award TOWARD THE HARVEST AWARD YOU CAN DO IT! The steps to the Harvest Award may seem challenging now, but all the advice you need to coach girls as they progress toward the award is built right into the journey’s Sample Session designs that begin on page 34. Girls will have a great opportunity to gain confidence in just how much they can accomplish. During the Sow What? journey, girls have an opportunity to earn the prestigious Girl Scout Senior Harvest Award. The Harvest Award is an important step on the Girl Scout leadership ladder; it signifies that girls understand who they are and what they stand for, and that they care about others, too. It also signifies that they can grasp an issue by the roots and organize a team to work together to sow the seeds of sustainable change. To earn the Harvest Award, Seniors will complete three steps, which they can accomplish—as a team or on their own. Here are the steps, which are also detailed on pages 86–89 of the girls’ book: Get your leader print going! Here’s the path: Identify, and dig into, a food or land issue, tapping some community experts as you go. Maybe you’ve met growers, gardeners, nutritionists or others in your region and have ideas about challenges they face. Maybe you’ve improved your food print and want to inspire others. Want your school to host a farmers’ market? Got a seed of an idea from this book? Want to team up with other Seniors? Just choose an issue that allows you to use your unique talents and learn something new, too! Capture your vision for change in a Harvest Plan that includes: Your very own “So What?”—your goal, why it matters, how it will benefit both the planet and people. Say it in a way that gets others interested and involved! Show how even simple actions and decisions impact the larger food network. Remember: There’s no need to go it alone. Who can you turn to for input and support? What specific impact do you hope to have? Name it! And when you have executed your plan, check back. Have you achieved it? Maybe you will have achieved other results, too, especially if you find yourself needing to adjust your plans along the way. 8

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    Your project can be big or small, depending on your time and interest. Either way, strive for a sustainable impact. You may push for a new policy or for a change in an existing one. You don’t need to start something from scratch. Now, create change—execute your plan by advocating to influence a food policy or land-use effort (yes, you can!), or by educating and inspiring others to act on a solution you identify. As the girls move through the steps toward the Harvest Award, encourage them to take time to stop, think, and reflect along the way. You might say: • Do you need to adjust anything based on new information you’re learning? Are any new challenges arising? • Be sure to ask adults in your network for success tips! Incorporate the best methods and styles into your own work. • What are you doing that surprises you? Are you speaking up more? Solving a problem you thought you couldn’t? Take pride in how you are growing! • Think about your team, too. Are you happy with the way everyone is working together? Is there anything you need to talk about? Courageous conversation, anyone? • Who have you educated and inspired to take action along with you? That matters because getting more people in the know means your impact can have a wide reach! A GOOD HARVEST PROJECT PLAN . . . ” • gives the girls the opportunity to expand their network. • is realistic based on the girls’ time and interest. • uses the Seniors’ unique skills and talents. • helps the girls learn something they can apply to their lives. • contributes to sustainable change. • gives them an opportunity to advocate, and to educate and inspire. TOWARD THE HARVEST AWARD CRITICAL THINKING MORE IMPORTANT THAN PROJECT “SIZE” The amount of time girls spend on their Harvest project is less important than their having a meaningful opportunity to identify, plan, and do the project. If the girls have already enjoyed the GIRLtopia leadership journey, revisit the coaching steps spelled out in its Take Action Planning Chart. The learning that takes place along the way is what will benefit girls now and all their lives. The girls might also revisit the simpler version of that chart on page 80 of their GIRLtopia book. 9

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    Snapshot of the Journey SNAPSHOT OF THE JOURNEY SESSION 1 So What About Sow What? SESSION 2 Foraging for Food! The Seniors become aware of their place in the global food network as they start to think about where food really comes from and how their choices about food impact Planet Earth. They begin to customize their Sow What? journey in order to make a real difference in the food network. The girls also: • make plans to conduct a community Food Forage The Seniors explore the food network in their communities and gather ideas, information, and contacts they can use as they think about how to improve their involvement in the food network. The girls: • conduct field work to scope out how their community grows, buys, and uses food; what is available to whom; and the costs and convenience • reflect on lessons about diversity that they draw from their field work • meet/find anyone who might become part of their Harvest network SESSION 3 What Makes a Meal Really Happy? The Seniors explore the pleasures of the “local harvest” as they consider all the “ingredients” that go into experiencing a truly happy meal. They then compare this experience to some of their day-to-day encounters with food and the food network. The girls also: • think about what makes relationships nourishing, too SESSION 4 Dig Deeper The Seniors investigate local agricultural practices and find out what some of the challenges are for people who produce food in their region and for the larger food network. The girls also: • compare soil samples • consider a range of options, from learning about food connections in their families to the waste-saving benefits of composting 10

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    SESSION 5 Sow What?: Global Outlook SESSION 6 Planning to Harvest The Seniors focus their attention on the global issue of hunger, considering how their own decisions and actions impact the food network around the world. The girls also: • consider the values represented by the various women featured in their books, and how they and these women are connected • share their gratitude for the food and nurturing they have in their lives The Seniors identify their project for the Harvest Award. The girls: • check in on their commitments, and their teamwork and healthy relations • consider the importance of advocacy in their project SNAPSHOT OF THE JOURNEY SESSION 7 & 8 Harvest Time! The Seniors team up and carry out their efforts to have a positive impact on the food network, en route to earning their Harvest Awards. The girls: • consider career opportunities highlighted by the journey • consider the pros and cons of life’s “monocultures” • assess healthy relationships • create a food ceremony or festival SESSION 9 & 10 Reap What You Sow! The Seniors conclude their Sow What? journey, assessing what they have learned, connecting with all those who have assisted them, and celebrating their Harvest. The girls also: • share their Harvest projects with others and see if any ideas emerge about keeping the effort going • consider a range of celebratory options, including stories of growing, sowing, and sewing 11

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    SAMPLE SESSION 4 SAMPLE SESSION 4 Dig Deeper DIG DEEPER AT A GLANCE Goal: Girls investigate local agricultural practices and find out what some of the challenges are for people who produce food in their region for the larger food network. • Dig Deeper, Get Curious! MATERIALS • Dig Deeper: Whatever materials the girls need for their investigations and chosen options PREPARE AHEAD Based on interest, time, and resources, talk with the girls and adult helpers to finalize logistics for this gathering on digging into the agricultural and scientific side of food. Depending on where you are going and whom you are talking to, encourage the girls to bring a soil sample (see page 29 of their book). Dig Deeper, Get Curious! As the girls are out and about talking to people involved in growing food in their region, use the handout of questions on the following page to get them thinking. 60

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    Dig Deeper, Get Curious! As you’re out and about talking to people involved in growing food in their region, keep the conversation going with these questions: What do you grow/produce? Why? Who are your customers? (Or who uses what you grow/produce?) What challenges do you face? What can be done to ease them? How do you produce your product? Do you use artificial fertilizers? Other techniques? What technology do you use? Has new technology enabled you to do anything differently? (Has it changed? Does it yield improvements? Do you shun technology?) Who and what do you learn from? What did you need to learn to do this work? What did you study? Any learning by doing? Where does the stuff you produce start from? Where does it end up? Where are you in the food network? 61

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    So, What About You? Now that you have guided girls to sow—and harvest— some seeds of leadership, take a quiet moment to enjoy all you have cultivated along the way. You’ve coached girls to dig into their food print and their leader print challenges. You’re surely left a print or two on Earth, too! Congratulations! Now, what will you sow next? Think about that as you ask yourself, so what have I learned about the keys to leadership and me? This journey led me to DISCOVER that I By guiding girls to CONNECT with others, I Coaching girls to TAKE ACTION taught me

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