Monday, July 23, 2012

Brownie Badge: First Aid

First Aid was a badge the girls were very excited by and they had a million questions. We didn't discount any of their questions and tried to answer them all on their age level, while giving them information about further education for later in life.

I think I prefaced a lot of answers with, "At your age" or "We don't expect you to be able to treat injuries or be the one in charge, but just in case you are ever in a situation where an adult needs your help we want you to have some basic knowledge so you won't be as frightened and can help. This may just be knowing when to go get help and even as an adult there are many times that is the correct response, because medical professionals are trained how to treat the injury. We just need to know what to do before they arrive."

I spoke with the school nurse and had her come talk to the girls. I felt this would be a good choice, because 1. She was a woman and I like using female presenters when I can. 2. They knew her and would be comfortable asking questions. 3. They would be able to see her in the hallway and say "hi" and ask follow up questions. 4. It was convenient!

Brownie First Aid #1: Role-play 911

My co leader put together different scenarios for the girls to talk through. Our first step was to go over what information you needed to know when calling 911 and how to remain on the line until they tell you to hang up. Then, we went over the different scenarios and quizzed them on what to say and do.
Examples: 1. Slightly burned while baking cookies - Call or not? How bad is the burn? How do you treat a minor burn?2. Scraped knee while bike riding - How bad is it? How close are you to home? How do you treat scrapes and cuts?3. An adult is having chest pain - Another adult home? Has it happened before? The age of the adult? Are they conscious? What does conscious mean? Basic signs of a stroke or heart attack.4. Fell while hiking and hurt leg or arm - Do you think it's broken? How to tell? Where to go for help? How to make an arm sling and basic splint.
Brownie First Aid #2: Interview School Nurse
In preparation of this, we sat the girls down and had them ask any and all questions they could think about for the nurse. They ranged from injuries, to lightning strikes, to why she chose nursing and what she likes about it. I emailed those to her in advance, so she knew where their minds were and the types of questions to expect.

Then, the day of the interview, she was FANTASTIC and patient. She listened to each of the girls questions and went through the list. She kept the information on their level and did a great job of making them feel comfortable to ask anything.
Brownie First Aid #3: Make First Aid Kits for backpacks
I gathered band-aids, gauze, tape, ointment, and all kinds of basic first aid kit supplies. We talked about how the kit was designed to treat them. They are not old enough to treat someone else's injury, unless it was a minor scrape. We talked about the importance of being careful not to get someone else's blood on your skin and to always tell an adult if they have used anything out of their kit and show them the injury.
I got pencil pouches for these and put everything in a ziploc baggie. They were designed to be in their backpack, so if they got hurt going home or when out they could use it if needed. They were very excited about this and I think they just felt empowered and trusted to know we felt they were capable of taking care of minor stuff. We still stressed the importance of telling an adult, just in case it needed more attention.

Brownie First Aid #4: How to treat minor injuries (nurse) The nurse went over how to use everything in the kit. We demonstrated the proper way to put on a bandage, how to wrap gauze and tie it off, the reason why you would apply pressure to a cut, when and how to use ointment, etc.

Brownie First Aid #5: Prevent & Treat outdoor injuries (nurse)
For this segment, we talked about poison ivy and basic injuries. The girls wanted to know what to do if struck by lightning or if a tree fell on you. She did answer those questions calmly and on their level, while stressing that those scenarios are less likely to happen than maybe a fall where you scrape your knee or twist your ankle.


  1. Thank you for the great suggestions. I was looking around for ideas.

    1. No problem! I hope some of the ideas helped. :)

  2. Excellent information. Thank you!!!

  3. This is great information, I have been trying to come up with ideas for earning this badge. Thanks so much! Troop 1318 Canton, Texas

  4. Hello from Nova Scotia, Canada!

    Great meeting layout. We will use it for our First Aid segment.

    Yours In Guiding (YIG), Daylene

  5. Thanks so much! Our leader asked me for some help researching for the girls' badge and these are great ideas.

  6. Was she a real school nurse or nurses aide?

    1. She was a real school nurse. :) She actually works for the district and splits her time between three schools.

  7. What a great resource. Thank you very much.

  8. I am a school nurse and I am going to speak to a Brownie troop next Monday. Thank you for showing me what to expect. I know most of the girls in the troop and I am really looking forward to doing this.