On Saturday I stepped a little out of my comfort zone. I attended a Rainbow science event.
(For those not in the UK, Rainbows are the section of Girlguiding aged 5-7.)
I normally avoid Rainbows. They are small, and needy, and don’t speak in proper English. And can’t discuss philosophy.
But one of the Rainbow leaders was going to a wedding, so I went along to help balance the numbers.
It got off to a fun start, with the other leader (who not only does Rainbows each week, but also has a Rainbow-aged daughter, so understands them much better!) getting stuck in traffic and so being late.
Fortunately, all the girls who were coming have older sisters in Brownies, and the Brownie sisters had come as Rainbow Helpers. So I wasn’t alone, and did actually recognise all of the parents I had to interact with!
The event was being run by our Division (so, potentially, 8 Rainbow units). I think there were around 80-90 children there in all. There were five or six stations set up around the room, and we all took turns doing all of the experiments.
There were liquid Rainbows, elephant toothpaste, and sort-of-chromatography:
Not to mention blowing bubbles, and some fizzy artwork done with baking soda and citric acid:
I think it surprised me actually, how few of the Rainbows asked why something worked. I’m used to the Brownies and their incessant questioning, whereas the Rainbows just seemed to accept it all.
It was, generally, a fun couple of hours. I got to do some interesting science experiments, some of which I hadn’t come across before. And it wasn’t as bad as I was expecting from a small-child perspective. The girls who came were slightly more independent than I was expecting, and not nearly as needy.
All in all, not the worst way to spend an afternoon. I would do it again if the Rainbows needed me.
I still prefer Brownies, though.