We talked about how respect can mean a lot of different things. It can mean to be polite and to honor someone's position. It can also mean to look for or encourage positive, healthy things about a person.
For instance, I can show my co-leader respect by thanking her for being such a kind person. I can show our snack mom respect by listening to her without interrupting, if she needs to talk to me. And everytime I raise my hand for the quiet sign, and the girls all become quiet and raise their hands, they are showing me respect! And I appreciate that very much. :)
I can also show MYSELF respect, by taking care of my body and being healthy. And if I am healthy, I am helping others stay healthy too.
Then we talked about one way to be healthy is to wash our hands with soap, to get rid germs that can make us sick. The girls already knew to wash for at least 20 seconds, but I asked them if there were songs they could sing, and they suggested ABCs or singing Happy Birthday to yourself.
Then (just as importantly!) we talked about when you need to cough or sneeze, don't cough or sneeze into your hand. Do you know why? Because you can be coughing germs out into the air, and right into your hand, and then whatever you touch (a doorknob or a pencil, for instance), you leave the germs behind on it. And the next person comes along and touches it, and then that person has the germs!
I illustrated this -- the girls love it when I'm silly -- by pretending to sneeze into my hand and then picking up a marker, then handing it to a girl, who handed it to a girl, etc.
Then closed with "Always cough into your elbow. Because you can't pick up a marker with your elbow!"
For our first activity, I had mixed some Vaseline and fine green glitter in a small plastic container (Vaseline works well for this, because it will stick more than lotion, but it's messier, and requires a LOT of washing; however, this is a great illustration for needing to wash your hands thoroughly. Be sure to use the fine, small glitter as opposed to the larger-sized glitter, so it won't be rough on their skin).
I had the girls line up in two lines in the hall, and I explained that I had pretend "germs" in the container, and then I opened it up ("EW!") and slathered a very generous amount on my hands. Then I smeared it on the palm of each leader of the two lines. They in turn smeared it on the palm of the girl behind, and so on, until the very end of the line:
By the time they were finished, even the girls at the very end had "germs" on their hands:
Which of course, required LOTS of washing!
We read the Daisy Guide to Scouting purple petal story while they had a snack, and then we talked about another way to show respect, and that is by recognizing good qualities in ourselves and others, and being confident in ourselves and our own abilities.
Everyone is different. And we should always be happy with ourselves just as we are.
I am very good at some things, and not very good at others. That's okay! It makes me feel good when I work really hard on something, even if I'm not good at it. And it always makes me feel good to have someone say “thank you” or “good job!” to me when I've worked really hard on something.
We passed out some pages (see below) and some crayons and told the girls to write or draw whatever they liked. To think of something about themselves that makes them feel good, whether it be helping out at home, or being kind, or a good friend, etc.
Most of the online resources I found for this petal were tied to hygiene (which is great) and appearance (which I'm a bit iffy on). While I'm fine with teaching respect for one's health and body, I think there is far too much emphasis placed upon appearance as a means of defining self-worth. So instead I tried really hard to put the focus on actions and character.
I encouraged the girls to draw or write anything at all they wanted, but all the examples I used were NON-appearance related:
I walked around the room as they worked, asking each one what it was she was drawing/writing, and praising them -- letting them know they could always add more once they got home.
We also had these on hand as backups for anyone who finished the "I am wonderful!" page early (even though these are appearance-related, they are also health-related, so I was fine with it):
And that was it! :)