In 2013, our Women Bike PHL program developed a “Girl Scouts on Wheels” patch geared toward Junior-level Girl Scouts in the region. The extremely cute patch, pictured below, was available to area Girl Scouts who completed 5 bike-related activities as laid out in the patch curriculum. Unfortunately, this exact patch is no longer in production — but any commercially available ‘bicycle’ patch will do!
What kinds of activities, you ask? Here’s Step 1 from the curriculum – girls must complete one of the three options in this step.
Step 1 – Know Your Bike
A bicycle is a beautifully simple tool — its basic design hasn’t changed much since it was invented in the 1860s! Before you ride, it’s nice to know what makes your machine work. Use this step to get to know your bike a little better.
- Learn about different types of bicycles. Bicycles come in all shapes and sizes. Some are heavier, and built for commuting. Others are light and fast, for athletes to race. Some have wide tires, for riding in the woods, and others have skinny tires for pavement. What kind of bicycle do you have?
- Discover the parts of a bicycle. Did you know that a bicycle has at least fifteen parts? Learn and label the parts of your bike — and then quiz yourself!
- Try filling your tires with air. After lots of riding, your tires will need some extra air. This is the easiest and most common piece of bike maintenance you will need to do. Borrow a bike pump from a parent, friend, or bike shop, and learn how to pump up those tires!
For more FUN: Learn how to fix a flat tire on your bicycle. Put together your own Fix-a-Flat Toolkit to bring with you on longer rides.
How to bring the patch to your troop
Any Girl Scout leaders interested in having their troops earn the Girl Scouts on Wheels patch should do the following:
- Download the curriculum.
- Work with your girls to complete one option in each of the 5 categories (Know Your Bike, Safety Skills, Map It Out, Get Rolling, A World of Biking). The Safe Routes Philly website is a great place to start!
- Once your girls have completed the requirements, award them with a patch — although the ‘Girls Bike PHL’ patch we originally used is no longer available, you can use any commercially available patch!
Let’s help overcome the huge dropoff in biking among girls in their teenage years. Let’s get more young women on bikes!
Thank you. I look forward to sharing.
I will definitely be doing this with my brownies once we start back up! You’ve inspired me to pull out the bikes for my own kids today- definitely need to be using them more. When I was little my bike ment freedom- these days kids aren’t able to experience it the same way we shelter them so much.
Is this open to girls nationwide? I’m in Florida. Thanks!
Hello!! My name is Maria Furlong and I am the Troop leader of 9313 in Southeast WI. I would love to participate in this with my girls! There are 15 of us and I would love to incorporate this with our outdoor journey award. We are planting a butterfly garden in April of 2015. Would you be able to send us the patches before that journey??? I am so excited to have this great patch to encourage girls to go back outside and stop being use to playing video games or watching tv. The children nowadays do not play outside anymore. This is very sad to me! Please contact me and let me know. THANK YOU FOR DOING THIS PATCH PROGRAM!!!!
Cant wait to start this with my troop. Thank you
Great program! Is this patch available to Girl Scouts outside the immediate areas? We are Girl Scouts of Central and Southern NJ. If not, and I can interest an older girl in creating a similar local program for a Gold Award may she use your curriculum as a start (with proper credit of course,)
Hello awesome Troop Leaders!
Here’s the deal — this isn’t a national-level program (yet), so the patches do have the Philly skyline on them. If your troop is not from the Southeast PA area and completes the requirements, you have 2 options:
1) If you want OUR patch, please email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we can sell them to you for $1/patch to cover shipping etc.
2) If you don’t want the Philly skyline on your patch, you can also find generic bike patches like this one online and purchase those instead: https://www.advantageemblem.com/Product_Details/ProductID/75/s0002-biking-biker-at-sunrise-fun-patch.aspx
3) Regardless of what you choose, I’d love a quick email to let me know that your troop earned it — I’m trying to keep track of our total numbers because I really think that Girl Scouts should reinstate a national-level biking badge if this many folks are interested!
Note: This patch is free to local troops who send me a description of how they earned it and an address to send them to.
Thanks for all your support — I am thrilled to see so much interest. And thank you for being leaders — my troop leaders when I was younger had a HUGE positive impact on me — you are doing amazing work with your girls. Congratulations, and thank you!!!
And Laurel — email me! I would love to have someone take this on as a Gold Award, and she’s welcome to start with my curriculum if she credits me! Thanks!