Rainy - Day Ideas

If disaster strikes and it pours with rain and you have access to some form of wet-weather shelter, here are some ideas to try besides your craft activities:

Story Bag : Each Patrol is given a bag with five or six assorted items in it and has to go away - to their patrol tent, own corner of the wet-weather shelter or somewhere else they can work together undisturbed - and prepare a short play incorporating all of the items in their bag. Give a time-limit for preparation - say half-an-hour - and then all patrols have to perform their play for the rest of the assembled camp.

Beauty Salon : Popular with Guides of all ages : an opportunity to do each other's hair - expert hair braiding is much in demand - and indulge in facials, either home made herbal preparations (oatmeal and egg-white face-mask, cucumber or used teabag eye pads) or commercial preparations (e.g. Body Shop – usually very generous with free samples). Lots of tissues, wipes etc. should be on hand for cleaning off!

Board Games : A selection of popular board games is useful : stick to well-known ones to avoid problems with rules, e.g. Snakes and Ladders, Ludo, Draughts and Chess, but introduce a few new ones with supervision until the rules are learnt. We have learnt to avoid Monopoly (they call it Monotony in my unit) – there are too many bits to lose.

Beetle Drive : Take plenty of blank "Beetle" forms, spare dice and plenty of pens and pencils; give prizes for highest and lowest overall scores.

Skipping : (also a fine - weather activity!) - Many of the girls will not have had much experience of "Long Rope" skipping so Guiders must be prepared to demonstrate. After practice in running under, jumping over, and "keeping the pot boiling," try skipping a set number of jumps, coming in to join the skipping at a signal - "birthdays," "initials," - and simple rhymes. After the girl's have exhausted the Guiders' childhood repertoires, they might be able to add some of their own.

Indoor Sports Day :

  • 1) Weetabix Race : each girl has to eat one dry Weetabix and then whistle a well-known tune : the winner is the first to succeed!
  • 2) Sock Wrestling : (long trousers recommended) two girls kneel facing each other, preferably on a large mat, with shoes removed. Make a great show of "psyching out" opponent, before commencing, at a given signal, to attempt to remove one of the opponent's socks. WARNING - this can get very boisterous so make sure pairs of girls are reasonably evenly matched, supervise closely and be prepared to intervene if necessary, and ask for volunteers - "Challengers" - rather than nominating. Some girls may enjoy watching and encouraging rather than actually taking part.
  • 3) Blow Football : An old favourite - two girls kneel at opposite sides of a small table and try to score goals by blowing through a straw to put a ball - either a ping-pong ball if available, or a ball of crumpled foil - through a goal (or off the table). Keep bouts short or the girls will get out of breath; a messier variation is to have a shallow tray of water as the "pitch" - much splashing will ensue! If everyone wants a go, organise a knock-out tournament, with a prize for the overall champions.
  • 4) Broomstick Walking : this is deceptively difficult : hold a broomstick or similar with hands apart, step over between hands and without letting go with either hand, bring the broomstick up over the head and eventually return the broomstick to its original position. If anyone actually manages this feat, time with a stopwatch to find a champion!
  • 5) Sumo : a pair of protagonists faces each other, adopting the "Sumo Wrestlers'" stance and each, without touching, tries to make the other girl laugh. The winner is the one who keeps a straight face longest (difficult when all the spectators are helpless!)
  • 6) Bum Race (even funnier to watch than take part) : equipment : five or six stones and a saucepan, (or dixie or similar) per racer. The object is to race to the other end of the room / shelter, carrying a stone between your bum cheeks, then turn round and drop it into the pan. (NO HANDS ALLOWED!) When this has been done successfully with one stone, it then goes up to 2, then 3, and so on. (Dropping a stone en route means automatic disqualification and elimination from the contest.) It is amazing how many stones the serious contenders can carry! When the girls have got used to judging when they have successfully hit the pan by the clang, the sneaky Guider will try to catch one of the girls’ stones as they fall; when she doesn’t hear them hit the pan, the antics are amazing. Of course, the other girls, in on the joke, fall apart at this point and the races usually end!
  • 7) Penny race : they say the simple ones are the best. (Only suitable if you have a flat floor.) Use 2p or similar-sized coins : each girl takes it in turn to roll a coin, either across a line or (better) into a target circle. Nearest wins a small prize – could be the coins if it’s a small camp and you haven’t got 100s of Guides!