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Inventor Badge

Page history last edited by Darby Schmidt 9 years, 3 months ago

Ideas for Inventor Badge

Requirements for earning badge:

Purpose: When I've earned this badge, I'll know how to think like an inventor.


1. Warm up your inventor's mind.

2. Find several ways to solve the same problem.

3. Make a needs list.

4. Solve a problem.

5. Share your invention.




Activity Descriptions



At home

  • Choose a tool or appliance in your home and explore how it's used and how it works.
  • If you have an appliance beyond repair, have your Girl Scout join you in taking it apart to see what' sinside.
  • Watch a scene of a favorite movie or TV show together with the sound off. Write your own dialogue.
  • As you run into problems throughout your daily life, brainstorm with your daughter about ways or inventions that would solve the problem
 From: Girl Scouts River Valleys 




Snack Discussion

While enjoying snack, here are some things for girls to talk about.

What is unique about your snack?

What does it remind you of?

If you could start over, what would you change?

What else could be an option that we didn't use?

Share stories of women inventors

From: Girl Scouts River Valleys

women inventors sheet

women inventors.pdf



Circle Uses

Come up with fun and different things you can make from

circles. Use the circle template on the next page. Take five

minutes to draw as many as you can.

FOR MORE FUN: Use markers to decorate your circles!

From: Girl Scouts USA

circle uses handout

Circle Uses.pdf

coloring utensils or pencils

Inventor 1

Game (10 min)

Ministry of Silly Walks

1. Have girls line up along one side of the room. Tell them that on the count of three, everyone is going to walk across the room together, walking normally.

2. After a few steps, stop the group to try something more interesting. Can there be more than one way to walk across the room? Start with the girl next to you and ask how she would change what her feet

are doing. If she gets stuck, offer a few choices, and then have the group pick a new way to walk (e.g. maybe everyone points their toes as they bring their feet up, turns to their left and shuffles sideways

or walks just on tiptoes).

3. Move on to the next girl and have her add something to the way their knees move. Then ask if both legs have to do the same thing, and have the next person choose something new for the right leg only.

4. Add movements for arms, shoulders and head.

5. If you have a large group and want to give everyone a chance, start over partway through with plain walking and build a new silly walk from scratch. Or, divide into teams of 8–10 and talk each group

through adding one variant at a time.

From: Girl Scouts River Valleys


Inventor 1


Strike a pose

Inventor Badge Step 1: Warm up your inventor’s mind

Just like dancers and athletes warm up their muscles before they perform, inventors warm up their bodies and their minds so they can come up with great ideas. Try this exercise:

1. Gather your group in a circle.

2. The first girl jumps into the middle of the circle and strikes a pose.

3. The second girl jumps into the circle and copies the first girl's pose. Then she makes one change to the pose-like raising an arm or bending a leg.

4. The first girl goes back to join the rest of the girls in the circle.

5. The third girl jumps in the middle. She copies the new pose, and makes her own change. Now the pose might look totally different from the way it started.

6. The second girl goes back to join the rest of the girls in the circle.

7. Repeat this until every girl has had a turn. The pose keeps growing and changing, so you can keep playing if you're having too much fun to stop!

From: Girl Scouts USA

Note: Girls had trouble figuring it out.  Next time I would have the leaders demonstrate a few rounds


  Inventor 1

Make up five new uses for a box.

You could use a box to store your toys, build a playhouse, make a hat, or create a bed for your pet. Don't be afraid to think of something wacky and unusual. Sometimes the crazy ideas are the best ones!

Variation:  Try it with other items. 

It could be a ball, a headband, a toothbrush, or an old sock.

From: Girl Scouts USA

boxes Inventor 1

Craft (15 min)

Creative Chef's Veggie Dip

Wash and cut assorted fruits and veggies.

1. Give each girl a 3 oz. cup and have her choose one spoonful of a base ingredient to start her special recipe dip. She will keep the spoon to mix other ingredients in. Use other spoons to scoop out or

measure the flavor ingredients. Make sure girls’ personal mixing (and tasting) spoon does NOT go into any of the other containers.

2. Go over the flavor options available and tell each girl to pick one or two items to flavor her dressing (to make vinaigrette, a girl should choose both oil and vinegar to start and then add one or two flavor

ingredients). Ask Badge Buddies and Food Friends to make sure spoons stay with their ingredients, spices are added in small amounts and ask them to assist with spills.

3. After stirring up her recipe, each girl can taste a little from her spoon and decide if she needs more of one of the ingredients.

4. Choose some fruits or veggies to try with your dip and enjoy!

From: Girl Scouts River Valleys

Assorted, washed and cut fresh fruits and/or vegetables

Paper plates and napkins

3 oz. paper cups

Spoons—ordinary/teaspoons for each girl, small (1/4 and 1/8 teaspoon) for flavor items

Sink and soap to wash hands or hand sanitizer

Dip bases: Choose from mayonnaise, oil, sour cream or plain yogurt

Dip flavors: Choose from vinegar, mustard, salsa, ranch dressing mix, paprika, cinnamon sugar, honey,

salt, pepper, spices, herbs and sauces. Note: You may want to limit choices to only fruits or veggies,

and only sweet or savory dip options.


Inventor 2


Making music.

You could whistle, tap chopsticks on the table, or bang pots and pans together. What other creative ways could you make music?

From: Girl Scouts USA

  Inventor 2

Brainstorm multiple ways to do a task

Inventor Badge Step 2: Find lots of ways to solve the same problem

Split the girls into groups.

Give the groups a collection of items and ask them to think of ways they can use them to:

  1. Carry a lunch

  2. Make music

  3. Water plants

  4. Make lunch

assortment of items Inventor 2

Game (10 min)

Look What I Have!

1. Remind the girls of the brainstorming they did on daily tasks and problems there were with those tasks. Sometimes, something simple we already have around the house can make a perfect solution.

2. Have everyone gather in a circle. Hand the paper to the girl on your left and the ball to the girl on your right (or use whatever props you brought).

3. Tell them that they should think about how this item could be used in a new way. In the case of the paper and ball, it should be something other than writing or playing a game. It might not be easy or

practical, and it might only remind you of the tool you really need.

4. When a girl is ready to share, she can start with "Look what I have!" and then name and/or act out her object and its purpose. For example:

"Look what I have! I can make this paper into a drinking straw."

"Look what I have! I can make a fun painting with the ball by dipping it in paint and rolling it around the paper."

Girls can fold, bend or squeeze the object, and they can describe damaging it by cutting, tearing or pulling apart, but they can't actually do anything that would ruin it for the next person. They'll just have

to pretend.

5. When someone else has something to suggest, they can raise their hand and ask for the object. Then, they should walk over and say, "Look what I have!" as they take the object back to their spot and pass it to the next girl

From: Girl Scouts River Valleys

Simple props: a sheet of paper, tennis or Nerf ball or come up with your own props

Inventor 2

Game (15 min)

All This Needs Is a Little...

1. Ask the girls to close their eyes and think about what they've done today, even the ordinary things. Start with getting up in the morning.

What happens in your home each morning?

Was there anything different about today?

What did you do to get ready? Get dressed, eat breakfast, etc?

Did you go to school today? How did you get there?

Continue throughout the day, up to and including the Girl Scout meeting right now.

2. Ask girls to share some examples of what they did and take notes on scratch paper as you collect ideas.

Be ready with some prompts if girls get stuck, such as: dressing for school, taking care of someone else

(younger siblings, a neighbor, pets), connecting with a friend, cleaning your room and preparing for a meal.

3. Collect examples until you have at least five tasks that are common enough for everyone to understand, and general enough that they could be done in different ways. If you have a large group, make sure you have at least one task for every three girls.

4. Have volunteers write out the actions on large sheets of paper, one per sheet, in big letters. Tape them up around the room.

5. Divide the girls equally between the action papers and have them think of anything about this task that could be an issue.

If the task is “setting the table for supper,” issues could include arguments about whose turn it is, not being able to reach items on a top shelf, carring items that are easy to drop or a younger

sibling who gets in the way.

For “brushing your teeth,” issues could include getting all the toothpaste out of the tube, dental floss that won’t tear or that gets stuck, getting to the upper back teeth or any of the mess left behind.

For now, girls don't have to worry about any solutions. Before we can fix something, we have to know the problem! Give girls three minutes to discuss, brainstorm, and draw or write their “issue” ideas.

6. Now let the girls move to any paper that interests them. Have them look at some of the issues and see if they inspire any additional issues or solutions. They can add their ideas right to the paper. 

From: Girl Scouts River Valleys

Large sheets of big paper



Scrap paper


Inventor 3

At Home

Make a needs list


Watch a brother, sister, or a parent get ready for school or work. Do they wake up on time? Is their alarm clock

loud enough? Is there enoughtime to eat breakfast?

Lunch at school.

Watch how lunch happens in the

cafeteria at school. Are the lines long? Are the

chairs too high? Are the sandwiches soggy?

Brownie meetings.

They're always fun-now imagine what could make them even better! Does every girl feel included? Can everyone hear each other? Do meetings feel special?

From: Girl Scouts USA

sheets for them to record their observations Inventor 3
At home

Inventor's notebook

Send the girls home with an inventor’s notebook.

They will watch how their friends and family do activities and find problems.  Is something slow?

Is something difficult?  Is something messy?

Write down the problem in your inventor's notebook

inventor's notebook

Inventors notebook.pptx Inventors notebook pdf.pdf

Inventor 3
Activity (20 min)


Inventor Badge: Steps 4 and 5: Solve a problem and share your invention

  1. Have the girls pick one of the problems from your "needs list" and think of ways to solve it.

  2. Have them use a mind map to solve your problem. Explain that the problem goes in the center and the ideas about how to solve it go around the outside.

  3. Now have them pair up and work together to come up with an invention that solve each of their problems.

  4. Then have each girl share their problem and solutions with the group.


mind map handouts

mind map.pdf



Animal Antics

Give each girl a name of an animal or insect from the following list (create your own list): Donkey, Kangaroo, Elephant, Butterfly and Grasshopper. In a group of 20 there would be four of each animal assigned. Have them act out their animal’s sound and motions.

Each girl is to find all others in the group who are the same animal.

From: Girl Scouts USA


Inventor 4



Pick one of the problems from your "needs list" and think of ways to solve it. Use a mind map to solve your problem.

Inventors use mind maps to see how different ideas fit together.

From: Girl Scouts USA

mind map printouts

mind map.pdf

Inventor 4

Group brainstorm

Pick one of the problems from your "needs list" and think of ways to solve it.  Buddy up and brainstorm lots of ideas! With partners or your Brownie group, write down everyone's ideas on a big sheet of paper. Then record your five favorites in your notebook.

From: Girl Scouts USA

butcher paper


Inventor 4
Game or Craft

Share your invention

  • Draw it! Use a big sheet of paper, and label the parts of your invention. Show it to friends and family.
  • Act it out! Create a skit that shows when someone might need your invention and how they'd use it. Then perform it!
  • Build it! Use cardboard, paper, glue, Play-Doh, or even dried pasta to build a model of your invention. Then show it off!

From: Girl Scouts USA 

  Inventor 5


Outings and Visitors

Field Trip Ideas:

o Attend a regional engineering competition, such as FIRST Robotics or FIRST Lego League, or invite a local high school team to visit with your troop or service unit. Teams must do outreach

in order to participate, so you would be helping them as well.

o Visit a hardware or home repair store and look at the tools. Find tools you haven't seen before

and make some guesses before asking about their actual use.

Speaker Ideas:

o Invite a someone with a background in marketing or advertising to discuss how to promote a

new product.

o Invite an engineer that works in product development to talk about their experiences.


Sample Meeting 1




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