We know how it is; one week into the summer and you’ve run out of things to keep your kids occupied. Luckily, we have lots of group activities to keep you and your family occupied for the next couple of months. Informed by the issues girls and young women face today, and current academic thinking in youth development, our activities are tailored to the age of participants and designed to develop their confidence, self-esteem, wellbeing and resilience. GFS encourages its volunteers to use these activities when they are running groups with girls and young women in their local area. Sometimes, the girls and young women have enjoyed an activity so much that they’ve taken it up as a regular hobby, outside of weekly GFS sessions.
Below, we share a few of our favourite activities but you can view the whole list of them here. Enjoy!
Make your own T-shirts
Ask your children to think about the future in 10 years’ time:
- What sort of person would they want to be?
- What would be their unique skills and characteristics?
- What things would matter to them?
- What would it mean to be a young/woman then?
Explain what a slogan is, have some examples of slogan t-shirts (images or actual t-shirts) and work with them to design their own slogan.Cover the table with newspaper and take one sheet of newspaper each. Fold the sheets in half and then half again. Place these inside the t-shirt and lay it flat on the table.Using fabric paints or markers (follow the directions carefully) copy the message of hope on to the T-shirts. Leave painted t-shirts to dry.
This activity works well when you draw from previous activities such as Same Difference (where girls and young women recognise their own and others’ unique skills and characteristics) or Being a Girl (which explores what it means to be a girl today and assumptions that can be made about them and how it’s important for them to value who they are above this).
fabric paint or fabric markers
Create a summer book club!
An opportunity to demonstrate the power of a female role model (in characters, authors, themes and more), children will love the opportunity to discuss their chosen books and it is a great way to introduce concepts such as empowerment, struggle and strength in women’s lives.
Ask your family to commit to reading one book per fortnight (where possible checking to see if it’s available in the local library). At a pre-agreed time towards the end of each fortnight, discuss the issues raised in the book as a group – how do we feel afterwards; how does it relate to us and our lives etc.
Possible themes for book ideas can be: feminist authors, British authors, black authors, overseas authors, children’s authors or female biographies. Once a theme is decided the girls should decide on the book.
For those with literacy issues or for children too young to read, picture books may be more appropriate.
Enough books for each participant
An opportunity to learn new skills, follow instructions and build relationships with other team members, rounders is not the most commonly played sport but is a great way to try something new and appreciate the sunny weather! This game works best with at least 12 players so, if possible, try and recruit some more people – family friends, neighbours or even put a notice up in your local newsagents. If you’re engaging girls outside of your family, make sure their parents or guardians are happy about it. A Risk Assessment should be completed prior to this activity.
The pitch features a bowler’s square (2.5m) which is 7.5m from the batter’s square (2m). 1 meter behind the batter’s square the Backstop line should be marked. The four posts are positioned around the bowler’s square. For a decent game, each team should have at least 6 people, so that when fielding, a person can stand next to each post in addition to the bowler and the backstop. Each team has two innings with all people in the team having a go at batting. The innings is over when all the batting players are either out or at a base so that there is no-one left to face the next ball. One, by one, the batters line up to take their turn in the batting square. The bowler throws the ball towards the batter.
The bowler must bowl a ball towards the batter so that:
• it is thrown with a smooth underarm action
• the ball arrives without bouncing and within the batters square
• the ball is above the batter’s knee, below the batter’s head, and not at the batter’s body
• the bowler’s feet are inside the bowler’s square when the ball is bowled
• Otherwise a ‘no-ball’ is called.
A batter can attempt to hit a no-ball and can run on a no-ball whether the ball is hit or not, but cannot return once first post is reached. If two consecutive no-balls are bowled to the same batter, the batter scores a half-rounder.
The batter gets one chance to hit the ball (ignoring no-balls) and must run even if the ball is not struck. If the ball is hit behind the batting square, or not hit at all, the batter may only run to first base. Otherwise, the batter runs around as many of the bases as possible and stops at a post only when the batter thinks there is a danger of the next post being ‘stumped’.
The batter is out if:
• the batter hits the ball and it is caught without first hitting the ground
• the post being run to is ‘stumped’ – a fielder touches it with the ball
• the batter runs inside a post
• the batter loses contact with a post when the bowler has the ball inside the bowler’s square
• The batter overtakes a fellow batter when running around the posts.
• while not running between posts, the batter obstructs a fielder
• the batter’s foot is outside the batter’s square when the ball is bowled
If the batter hits the ball and reaches the first, second or third post without being out, the batter stays at that post (and must keep in contact with it) until the next ball is bowled. As soon as the ball leaves the bowler’s hand, such a batter can run to the next post, if they wish, even if a no-ball is called.
If the batter does not keep contact with the post, the fielding side can stump the next post to get the player out. 2 batters cannot be at the same post so a batter must run on to the next post if the next batter catches up with them. A batter who continues in this way and reaches the fourth post scores a half-rounder. Once the fourth post is reached, the person goes to the back of the batter’s line and awaits their next turn to bat.