Girl Scouts Persevere and Triumph at LEGO Robotics Competitions!

Lego Queens jump for joy!

Powered by Exelon, and supported by BNY Mellon and Motorola Solutions Foundation

Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana sponsors LEGO Robotics teams to compete in competitions. We have offered a LEGO Robotics program since 2008, and we now support 27 teams each year, impacting 100+ girls annually.  

In the 2018 season, GCNWI had 25 teams, including five rookie teams! Five of our veteran teams advanced to state championship tournaments.

Veteran Teams Advance to State! 

The Indiana GCNWI team, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Robot, competed in one of the many robotics competitions that took place in November and qualified for the state championship. At state, they were awarded the first-place award for Robot Strategy & Innovation as well as received a trophy for excellence in Robot programming.

Now that the season has ended, our girls are working on their Silver Award and have decided to sponsor a toothbrush drive for less fortunate members of our community. Their experience at the state competition, also led them to create a long-term strategy to pass the team on to younger girls.

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Robot holding their trophy at the state competition.

The Super Bots competed at the state qualifiers for the fourth year in a row and swept away the competition, earning 212 points on their first table run. They earned the Tournament Champion award and qualified them to also compete at state level in January. They received the award for “Excellence in Robot Design.” These girls were one of the teams invited to tournaments in Turkey and Australia, which is a wonderful recognition!

Congratulations to the Super Bots!

Team Radioactive is small but mighty! They managed to capture the Championship trophy and advance to the state finals at the Vernon Hills qualifier in December.  At the state championship in January, these ladies took home the “Gracious Professionalism” award, which was well deserved.    

The Cybourg T.U.R.T.L.E.S. are fascinated by space exploration. Their initiative impressed the judges when they presented a 50+ question personality survey about Mars readiness, and this earned them the Project Award. They also advanced to state, where they made their best table runs of the season.  

These Cybourg T.U.R.T.L.E.S are ready for space exploration!

Rookie Teams Also Earned Recognition

Funding from BNY Mellon helped make it possible to add five new teams to our robotics programs!  

Holmes Hawks loved their first year as robotics team members!

Rookie team Holmes Hawks competed at their first qualifier in December. The team worked collaboratively to complete the competition’s course, and while they did not place, it never diminished their enthusiasm. The demonstrated exceptional problem-solving skills, collaborating and hypothesizing on how to run their mission. Their persistence and optimism earned them the “Rookie Award” for the competition, and they are excited to compete again next year. They plan to complete five missions!  

Another rookie team, the Slimemaniacsqualified for state on their first attempt! They also earned the award for Core Values. At the state championship tournament the girls won the “Rookie Award”!    

All our LEGO Robotics Teams together.

Learn More about Robotics! 

Girl Scouts offers programs and badges designed to learn more about robotics! You can attend a Design Your Own Robot Badge workshop to learn about what robots do and how they help people, then design your own! 

Get involved in LEGO Robotics

The Girl Scouts GCNWI LEGO program is in partnership with FIRST Robotics. You can be a part of the excitement! Applications open annually in May to participate in the following season.

We are looking for teams of Girl Scouts, who have between 2 – 10 participants, two team leaders, and are willing to dedicate 1 – 2 hours per week on LEGO Robotics from September through December. Girl Scouts participating do not necessarily need to be from the same troop.

As a part of a FIRST LEGO Robotics team within Girl Scouts GCNWI, teams will:

  • Design, build, test, and program robots using LEGO MINDSTORMS ® technology;
  • Apply real-world math and science concepts;
  • Research challenges facing today’s scientists;
  • Learn critical thinking, team-building, and presentation skills;
  • Participate in team meetings, tournaments, and celebrations.

Sign-up to be notified with the 2019-2020 applications are open!

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Global Action Volunteer Team: Who We Are Part 1

The Global Action Volunteer Team (GAVT) is a group of volunteers who LOVE all things global and travel. They’ve traveled extensively locally, nationally and internationally with Girl Scouts and on their own. The team is here to serve the members of GSGCNWI to make global, cultural and travel experiences fun and accessible to our entire Girl Scout community. These adults are here to help you every step of the way, ensuring you are ready for your next adventure.

We interviewed each of the volunteers and asked them for their tips and tricks when it comes to local, national and international travel!

Maureen in Tanzania.

Get To Know GAVT

When were you first bitten by the travel bug?

Maureen: The travel bug bit me when I was in 7th grade, and I applied for my first Destinations (called Wider Opportunity when I was a girl), a trip to Wyoming (National Center West) for horseback riding. I loved traveling by myself, meeting girls from across the country, having my own horse for two weeks, and learning how much more traveling I could do. I ended up going on five Destinations! and I never stopped traveling!

Fawna: When I was in second grade my grandparents took me to California and I was blown away by the ocean and how different it looked from where I lived in Michigan. After that I was really interested in exploring other places and seeing as much as I could.

Shari: Growing up, my cousins lived in different states and we spent every Winter and Spring Break driving to see them. I loved exploring different parts of the Unites Stated and it inspired me to continue to travel as an adult.

What Inspired You to Continue Your Involvement with Girl Scouts?

Madison: I am currently involved as a volunteer on the Global Action Volunteer Team to help advocate for travel for girls from a young age. I want girls to know they can truly run the world (and seeing the world is the first part of that!).

Maureen: I was a Girl Scout for 12 years, then immediately became a Lifetime Member, volunteering first as a Campus Girl Scout and in various ways over the past 26 years. I still volunteer because I believe that Girl Scouts gave me the courage and confidence to dream big, give back, and engage in the community. I want to help more girls learn about different cultures and to see the world! 

Alex: I believe that all girls should be given the opportunity and the resources to experience the world. 

Karen: I joined Girl Scouts in 1977 and have been involved at all levels since then.  I have helped with or run many troops, been a national delegate 4 times, earned my Girl Scout Gold Award and everything in-between.

Camille in Machu Picchu, Peru.

What (So Far) Has Been Your Greatest Adventure?

Camille: The most adventurous thing I have done is take a boat trip down the Amazon.  My traveling partner and I had to take a ponga (smaller speed boat) to reach the larger cargo boat to travel from Iquitos, Peru to Manaus, Brazil.  We slept under the stars in net-hammocks that we tied up on the ship.

Clarissa: Recently, I traveled to Colombia, and I trekked for four days in the jungle during the rainy season to visit the Ciudad Perdida (“the Lost City”), which is a city built in approximately 800 AD by the Teyuna indigenous people.  Through this adventure, I met people from multiple countries, slept in hammocks, hiked barefoot after blisters prevented me from wearing shoes, crossed roaring rivers by only holding onto a line, and learned about indigenous Colombian peoples. It was amazing!

Rosy: I swam in a spring at the top of a mountain, on a cliff, overlooking a petrified waterfall in Oaxaca, Mexico. It was terrifying but the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. 

Karen: The most adventurous things I’ve done are night diving the coral reefs off an island close to Cuba, hiking my first 14er (a mountain over 14,000 ft high!) in a snow storm and taking my Girl Scout troop to Europe for 3 weeks!

Madison: I have a 3-way tie: riding a camel in Chefchaouen, Morocco; canyoning in Interlaken, Switzerland; and climbing Huayna Picchu in Peru!

Alex: Taking the Trans-Siberian rail all the way across Russia!

Rosy in Italy.

Interested in taking your own adventure?

Learn more about traveling with Girl Scouts GCNWI

Plan your trip with Girl Scouts Destinations!

Are you an adult interested in becoming a GAVT Member? APPLY NOW!

Girls can ALSO join GAVT! Email Ashley at achristensen@girlscoutsgcnwi.org for more information.

Girl Scout Cookies Available Until March 25!

You have a 2019 cookie goal, right? With so many ways to sell cookies, earning rewards has never been easier! Rewards are cumulative, and there’s still time to aim higher. Who wouldn’t love one of these experiences?

  • Party cruise on Lake Michigan | 500+ packages
  • Breakfast and adventure at Brookfield Zoo | 1500+ packages
  • Trip for two to Disney World for a four-night stay | 5000+ packages

Go for BOLD! These rewards are possible through the Girl Scout Cookie program which runs through March 25. 

SEE REWARDS

Reach Your Cookie Goal!

The Goal Getter Program lets girls use Cookie Order Cards to sell cookies and fulfill orders to the package. It’s easy as 1-2-3!

  1. Download the Goal Getter Order Card! 
    • Ask (and re-ask) customers to buy cookies! 
    • Fulfill orders at a Cookie Cupboard location.
  2. Your troop earns its proceeds and girls continue to earn towards patches and rewards.
  3. Girls get special Goal Getter rewards!
    • Goal Getter orders with at least 15 packages in one transaction will earn a Goal Getter patch.
    • Goal Getter orders with at least 50 packages in one transaction will earn a ticket into the drawing.

Cookie Cupboards are open through March 25! Download the schedule »

DOWNLOAD GOAL GETTER ORDER CARD

Sign up for Girl Scout Cookie booth locations while spots are still available! 

  1. Sign up for a booth site today in eBudde! Check back to see new sites.
  2. Stock up on all the cookies you need for your booths.
    • Cookie Cupboards are open through March 25.
  3. See Cookie Booth Tips and Tricks »

SIGN UP FOR COOKIE BOOTH SITES*

* Only volunteers with access to eBudde can sign up for cookie booth sites. New booth sites are being added daily.

New this year, girls can go digital to sell cookies! Create a cookie site, send emails, and reach friends and family near and far! Cookies are shipped directly to customers. 

SELL COOKIES ONLINE!

Girl Scouts GCNWI Career Day Recap: STEM Takes the Lead!

On President’s Day 2019, Girl Scouts from Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana explored careers in science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) with presenting sponsors DeloitteMolex, and Intren, and at other programs hosted by Groupon and NiSource.

Read on for highlights from each Career Day event which helped inspire and lead girls on greater paths within STEAM.

Girl Scouts Learn Business Chemistry at Deloitte

Deloitte hosted Girl Scouts for an Introduction to Business Chemistry and Women in the Workplace! Girls that participated in the day discussed resiliency, networking and self-promotion and learned about how their own personality types interact best with others through Deloitte’s Business Chemistry program.

Girl Scouts Networked with Women in Electronics STEM Fields

The Connect with STEAM was a Career Day style event coordinated by both our local Girl Scouts organization and the Molex WBC.  Molex welcomed a record 40+ girls, 10 parents/troop leaders, and 20 Molex volunteers! The Girl Scouts were split into three groups and rotated through three activities:

  1. An engineering focused build a circuit activity;
  2. A team building/manufacturing focused activity where the girls built and tested paper airplanes;
  3. A coding focused activity where the girls learned the basic concepts of writing and reading code.

They finished the day with a question and answer panel featuring five ladies from Molex with STEM related careers in Accounting, Engineering, IT, Pricing, etc.

One Girl Scout facilitator noted, “The girls were fired up by the keynote speaker, and enjoyed the squishy circuits, the airplane assembly lines, the robot activity, and the inspiring career panel at the end. It was a great opportunity for girls to engage with hands-on activities and many inspiring women.”

Girl Scouts Explore Energy at Intren

Intren’s Girl Scouts Career Day, “Explore Energy with Intren,” inspired Girl Scouts interested in joining the fast-growing energy industry which is currently male-dominated.

Girls built an electrical circuit, got up close and personal with the hefty machinery used to build utilities groundwork, and met and networked with women in the STEM field. The girls had a great time engaging with women in the industry and loved having their eyes open to new possibilities!

Girl Scouts Explore Engineering at Groupon

Groupon hosted “Scout Out Engineering at Groupon.” The girls worked with circuit boards and participated in coding activities, as well as exploring the offices with a scavenger hunt.   

One Girl Scout parent told us, “The girls loved the program and loved meeting so many volunteers and [Girl] Scouts from other troops! It was a really special program and we hope that such a program continues to flourish.

“In speaking with the girls on the way home after the event, the girls talked endlessly about being at Groupon, and building circuits (both the frustration of building, the thrill of perseverance and in successfully seeing the light illuminate).  They also commented on how great it was the circuit boards like that don’t need to be built anymore and how great new technology is (and clearly why circuit boards like the one they were building aren’t used anymore because of the fickle nature of the connections and board).”

Girl Scouts Introduced to Engineering at NiSource

NiSource hosted another one of their recurring and successful “NIPSCO Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day!” Girl Scouts has an insightful safety demonstration, participated in a Q&A panel with women, and competed in an engineering challenge! 

The Girl Scouts were able to learn about the potential for careers in engineering while having fun experiencing new and exciting things about STEM!

Learn more about STEM

Girl Scouts GCNWI hosts a multitude of STEM Career Day Exploration programs on school “off” days (such as President’s Day, Columbus Day, and MLK Day). Keep your eyes peeled for our 2019-2020 programs which will be announced this fall!

STEMapalooza Registration Open Now!

Learn more about STEM in a hands-on way, and meet women in the field at STEMapalooza, the only Science expo made just for girls! Get tickets before they’re gone!

Fund Your Travels: Financial Assistance and Scholarships for Girl Scouts to Travel

A blog series to help girls, parents, and leaders learn ways to fund your Girl Scout travels!

Girl Scouts exploring the beautiful Door Co.

Are you ready to travel the globe and see what the world has to offer? Maybe you’re interested in joining a Girl Scouts Destinations trip or a Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana (GSGCNWI) council-sponsored trip such as our upcoming You-and-Me Trips to urban/hip St. Louis, MO, or Door County, WI for the outdoor adventurer!

Whatever your future Girl Scout travels may be, you’re going to need some money, and now is the perfect time to start planning and earning!

Financial Assistance

Financial Assistance for travel is available through our council and GSUSA.

  • Juliette Low World Friendship Fund: If you apply for a Girl Scouts Destination to one of the WAGGGS World Centres, you will automatically receive $500 toward the cost of your trip;

Use these money saving tips towards upcoming You & Me trips! There is still availability on the beautiful Door County, WI trip!

Door County Trip Includes:

  1. A boat tour on Ride the Fireboat: Originally designed as a City of Chicago Fireboat, the “Fred A. Busse” was built in Bay City, Michigan in 1937 as a way to combat city fires from the Chicago River and Lake Michigan! Girls on last summer’s trip even got to try using the water hose! 
  2. Next up was a stop at The Farm where Girl Scouts can feed baby goats, cuddle with kittens, milk cows and see what life would be like working on a real farm.  
  3. A guided tour of The Ridges Sanctuary – state park that preserves the natural area with ridges and swells along the coastline.  
  4. A meal at Al Johnson’s where you can pet goats that live on the roof!
  5. Spending time with family members exploring Sister Bay and Egg Harbor
  6. A swim party! This was a favorite of many of the girls.

Explore the outdoors with your fellow Girl Scouts on You & Me Door County.

Celebrate National Girl Scout Cookie Weekend! Some Tips for YOU…

Now is the perfect time to join the Girl Scout Cookie fun! This time of year, there are more ways than ever to participate and reach your goals! Plus, don’t forget that rewards are cumulative, so keep your eye on the prize!

Is your troop hosting cookie booths? Are you selling online with Digital Cookie? Did you know you can still take orders through the Goal Getter Program?

Girl Scout Cookies are in demand! Hosting a cookie booth is an excellent way for girls to achieve their goals, while bonding with sister Girl Scouts!

Troop leaders sign up for booth sites and can order cases of cookies to stock booths through eBudde. Sign up now!

Check out the 2019 Cookie Cupboard Schedule »

Use these 5 tips to make sure customers can easily find and buy cookies from you!

1. Be Visible! Share the online Cookie Finder, so customers can see where booths are happening. Bling your booth to stand out even more! Create a theme and special signs or get a Booth in a Bag Kit. You can even dress up in a cookie costume; check with a Gathering Place location for availability!

2. Go Digital! Accept credit card payments using the Digital Cookie Order Card app! Download the app today: App Store | Google Play

Note: Friends and family who want cookies shipped directly to them can order from your Digital Cookie site!

Reference the Troop Cookie Managers Cookie Season Guide for more digital sales tips!

3. Time It Right! Host a booth on National Girl Scout Cookie Weekend, Feb. 22-24.

4. Show Off Cookie Varieties! An attractive display will attract customers. Offer free, bite-sized samples and consider themed bundles, grouping a few boxes together with ribbon and a bow. 

5. Don’t Give Up! For customers not interested in buying cookies for themselves, you can always ask if they would be willing to donate cookies through the Gift of Caring program.

6. Look to Your Fellow Girl Scouts for Inspiration! Step out of your comfort zone and find innovative ways to share the Cookie Program with new customers. Check out Maddie’s cookie presentation to her dad’s coworkers at iHeartMedia!

Ask your parents/guardians, family, and friends if you can make a sales presentation of your own at their place of work. 

Or make a “pitch” video of your own and be creative! Take an example from viral sensation and Greater Los Angeles Girl Scout Kayla:

Save the Date: National Girl Scout Cookie Weekend

Only Girl Scouts can sell Girl Scout Cookies, and customers are eagerly awaiting! While friends and family are a great place to start, get creative with selling techniques. You’ll exceed your goals and power even more awesome Girl Scout activities.

How to Celebrate Girl Scout Week Like a G.I.R.L.

Girl Scout Week is a time to celebrate Girl Scouts as ground-breakers, big thinkers, and role models.

This guide offers many ideas for girls to choose their own way to be a G.I.R.L. (Go-Getter, Innovator, Risk-Taker, Leader)™.

Saturday, March 9: Celebrate Girl Scout Week Early!

Girl Scout Daisies and Brownies, you are cordially invited to a Victorian style high tea, just like Juliette Gordon Low held for her friends that very first Girl Scout meeting. Join us at the Vernon Hills Gathering Place, 650 N. Lakeview Parkway, from 12:45-3 p.m.

Wear your party clothes and learn about the manners of the Victorian era while enjoying some delicious afternoon treats. You will take home souvenirs and a patch. This is a girl-only event for Daisies and Brownies.

Join us at the Girl Scout Birthday Tea Party!


Sunday, March 10: Girl Scout Sunday

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 your cookie sale goals are, 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.

Make new friends. Talk to someone from a different culture, religion, town, school, or neighborhood.


Monday, Mar. 11: Unleash Your Inner Go-Getter

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.

Set a goal to achieve a big objective. Is it a Journey Summit Award, straight As, 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.

Fill a box to donate. Collect items that you, your family, or your friends no longer need and donate to a local charity.


Tuesday, Mar. 12: Celebrate the Girl Scout Birthday

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.

Help more girls get access to the Girl Scout experience! Make a gift of $10 in honor of our founding year, and receive the Family Partnership fun patch (pictured above)! Family Partnership donations go toward helping girls who are facing hardships become Girl Scouts; supporting our awesome volunteers; and keeping our camps fun and pristine.

Donate to Family Partnership »

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.

Write a Girl Scout letter of thanks. Thank someone who has supported you or your troop. Use our Thank You template.

Tuesday’s Deal: In celebration of the Girl Scout Birthday, everything is 12% off  March 12 and 13 at all Gathering Place Shops (in store only)!


Wednesday, March 13: Innovate!

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.

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 looks like something that no one has ever seen before.

Thinking of you. Make and deliver cards to a senior center or hospital.

Wednesday’s Deal: In celebration of Girl Scout Birthday, everything is 12% off  March 12 and 13 at all Gathering Place Shops (in store only)!


Thursday, March 14: Be a Brave and Bold Risk-Taker!

Courageous and strong, a Risk-Taker is 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.

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.

Be brave. Commit to raising your hand in class when you know the answer, have something to share, or have a question.


Friday, March 15: Show the World You Are a Leader!

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!

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.

Selfie moment. Post a Girl Scout memory, photo, or experience on social media. Be sure to tag us at @girlscoutsgcnwi and use the hashtag #girlscoutweek


Saturday, March 16: G.I.R.L. Agenda and Girl Scout Sabbath Day

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.

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.

Rest and Reflect. Take this Sabbath Day to reflect on all your work with Girl Scouts. Let those moments inspire you to create new and innovative ways to share with the world what it means to be a G.I.R.L.

Saturday’s Deal: Visit our Gathering Place Shops 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. for surprise deals and treats.

Visit our online shop all of Girl Scout week (March 10-16) for awesome deals!

Plus enjoy FREE SHIPPING on orders of $75 or more!


Share Your Girl Scout Week Celebrations!

Share your pictures, videos, and stories for a chance to
be featured on our social media or in a Girl Scouts GCNWI publication!

Share your story through our form, post on our Facebook Page, tag us on Twitter and Instagram at @girlscoutsgcnwi.