Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Junior Troop: Consider Earning the Bicycling Badge - offered by Girl Scouts of Central and Western Massachusetts Council

Developed by Girl Scout Junior Troop 464 of Hardwick, the Girl Scouts of Central and Western Massachusetts Council is offering a special Bicycling Badge For Junior Girl Scouts.
Junior Scouts from all Councils may work on earning this badge, exclusive to this Massachusetts Council. The requirements are below.
Once earned, the badges may be purchased at a Girl Scout store in the Central & Western Massachusetts Council. For additional information, e-mail info@gscwm.org
Purpose: This badge was created to promote bicycle safety and physical fitness.
Girls must complete six of the following 10 requirements including the two which are starred to earn the Bicycling Badge.
1. *Bicycling Safety: Find out what the Safety Wise standards are for bicycling with your troop.
2. *Rules of the Road: Following the rules, laws and etiquette on the roads are important to safe bicycle riding. Learn and practice the rules of the road for each of the following situations:
a. Which side of the road do you travel on when riding a bicycle?
b. What do you do at an intersection?
c. What do you do at a traffic light or stop sign?
d. What is the proper procedure when on a sidewalk or crosswalk?
e. Learn the hand signals for making RIGHT / LEFT turns and stopping
3. A Safe Bicycle: Learn what a safe bicycle should have, such as hand brakes and/or coaster brakes, handle grips, reflectors/lights, chain guard, pedals, horn/bell, etc. Learn how to tell if a bicycle is the right size for you.
4. Bicycle Inspection: Prepare an inspection checklist for your bicycle and be sure everything is in good working order. If anything is broken, missing, loose, etc., arrange to have it repaired or replaced.
5. Parts of the Bicycle: Learn the parts of the bicycle, how they work and general maintenance such as how to inflate a tire, change a tire, oil or tighten your chain, etc.
6. Helmets: Find out the laws in your state regarding bicycle helmets. Learn why it is important to wear a helmet and find out how to be sure it is the right fit for you. What other personal safety equipment can be used while bicycling?
7. Bicycle Safety Course: Design and set up a bicycle safety course and test at least 3 other people on your course. Have games to see who can ride around the course the safest. You can use orange cones, flags or other markers and set up in a safe parking lot. Post rules for your course and be sure everyone understands them before they begin. Don’t forget to teach hand signals!
8. Talk to the Expert: Invite an avid cyclist to your troop meeting, visit a bicycle shop or meet with a local cycling club to find out about the health benefits of cycling and ways cyclists prepare themselves physically for long and short rides. Find out what kinds of events cyclists can participate in.
9. Prepare a Kit: Find out what items you may want to take with you when bicycling like a water bottle, tire pump, air gauge, first aid kit, lock or a tire patch kit. Prepare a kit to carry with you while cycling, or for the leader to carry if you are cycling in a group.
10. Adventure Out! Plan and go for a ride on your nearest bicycle path, local park or somewhere away from traffic. Do not forget to wear a helmet and enclosed comfortable shoes!
Bicycle specialty shops
Local Bike Clubs (bike shops can help with this)
Mass Highway Dept and www.mass.gov: for information on Massachusetts bicycle laws.
Local Police Department: Some municipalities have bike ordinances of which you should be aware.

Street Smarts by John Allen
Effective Cycling by John Forester
Web sites:
FROM: Girls Scouts of Central and Western Massachusetts Council
Link: http://www.gscwm.org/pdfs/bicycling_junior_badge.pdf
Developed by: Junior Troop 464, Hardwick,
Paula St.Pierre, Leader

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