Four Badges or Other Earned Awards

Earning four badges in a year is a great goal for most troops. A Girl Scout year is more about the quality of experiences – and having fun together – than the quantity of earned badges or other awards. Some badges can be earned quickly but others may take a few meetings to complete. Consider earning a Journey award! Journey recognition includes 1 – 4 awards, depending on the grade level and the topic.

What’s a Journey? It’s a themed collection of activities and leadership exploration completed over several troop meetings. It ends with a Take Action project and the experience of creating a small change to make the world a better place. Journey Take Action projects are important practice for Highest Awards. So important, in fact, that earning one Journey is a prerequisite to earning Bronze, Silver, and Gold!

Journey awards are earned as a set, unlike badges which are earned individually. Some Journey topics are designed for 10-13 troop meetings. The STEM Journeys can be completed in about 4-8 meetings. The Outdoor Journey is unique – it is a collection of three existing outdoor skills badges that can take about 6-8 meetings to earn. Use the Journey curriculum books from the Girl Scout Shop or the year plans in the Volunteer Toolkit to help you plan ahead. Some troops successfully complete the bulk of their Journey in a day-long Saturday session or a weekend trip away.

Available Journeys Find available Journeys in each grade level. A brief description of each Journey is included in the Award & Badge Explorer.

Multi-level Troops

Journeys are great for multi-level troops! Journey topics have a progression of skills for each grade level – except the Outdoor Journey, which is unique at each grade level. The common topic makes it easier to plan large group events, outings and activities for different ages of girls.

Troop leaders can read up in the Volunteer Toolkit for activity ideas appropriate to each grade level and then choose the one most appropriate to most girls. Or, offer two activity options: one for younger girls and one for older girls. Remember, it’s ok to adapt and modify the material for your unique troop composition. We call it “honoring the spirit of the badge.” It’s ok to creatively adjust the contents to help girls achieve the larger goal of the badge!

Journey Jumpstart

Many troops begin and end their Journey completely on their own schedule, using their own connections and resources. Other troops get started by enrolling in onsite or virtual Journey Jumpstarts hosted by GSNWGL and partner agencies. Girls begin the Journey by meeting with experts in the field and complete some of the Journey requirements in the large group activities led by the host. Then, troops complete the rest of the Journey and the Take Action project in troop meetings. Just look at the amazing opportunities hosted over the past year! Watch the Activities Calendar for coming events.