Scouting at Thomas Edison Center!
The Thomas Edison Center at Menlo Park has programs specifically tailored to meet Girl Scout merit badge requirements. These programs offer scouts an exclusive opportunity to engage, experience, and learn. The Thomas Edison Center has the distinct advantage of allowing scouts to fully experience a history and science related program in the setting where that history actually happened. The unique collection of original Edison inventions in the museum, along with our seasoned enthusiastic museum educators, bring history to life in a fun and educational way. All programs include a hands-on component that further allows scouts to not only hear and see, but also touch history!
Nestled within the 36 acre Edison State Park, the Thomas Edison Center offers one-of-a-kind opportunities for scouts to explore the world of nature and learn about the amazing life of Thomas Edison. The park contains some of the oldest trees located in Middlesex County and unique specimens of plants that provide a habitat for an abundance of native animals and birds. Several of our programs highlight the carefully planned and maintained grounds of the Thomas Edison Center and offers scouts a chance to explore, experience and learn about the natural world.
Clover’s Green World
Daisy Elective: Clover’s Story – Use Resources Wisely
Thomas Edison was a strong believer in alternative energy, and said, “I’d put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power! I hope we don’t have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that.” This program educates scouts about Edison’s resourcefulness and discusses how to use resources wisely in their own homes. Scouts will create their own bumble bee craft using recycled resources.
Sunny’s Helpful Heroes
Daisy Elective: Sunny’s Story – Friendly and Helpful
Thomas Edison was friends with many influential figures, including Harvey Firestone, Henry Ford, and Lord Kelvin. In this program, scouts will discuss Edison’s helpfulness and identify ways they can be friendly and helpful at school, at home, and practice sharing in a game.
Cooking Up Science
Brownie Elective: Home Scientist
Chemistry was a subject of interest to Thomas Edison, who conducted experiments in the family cellar and barn. In this program scouts will learn about Edison’s love of chemistry and about the chemistry in our everyday lives. They will also compare their results in numerous experiments, including experiments about static electricity and elephant toothpaste.
Brownie Elective: Home Inventor
One of the greatest innovators of all time, Thomas Edison, worked on inventions that improved the quality of our lives, everyday household tasks, entertainment, etc. In this program, scouts will think about real world problems and discuss possible inventions that could solve these issues. They will work together to perfect their inventions and share them with their peers. Scouts will end the program by creating their own thaumatropes, a toy of the past.
* Weather Dependent
Brownie Elective: Outdoor Adventure
Thomas Edison loved outdoor activities like camping, fishing, botany, and astronomy. This program will teach scouts about Edison’s love for all these activities. Scouts will be guided on how to use a compass and map. We will take a hike along our beautiful nature trail completing a scavenger hunt and will each make an eco-friendly bird feeder.
* Weather Dependent
Feathered Friends and Fluffy Fauna
Junior Elective: Animal Habitats
Menlo Park and New Jersey as a whole are the natural habitats of all kinds of species, from mammals to reptiles and from birds to fish. In this program, scouts will learn about animals found in New Jersey and how they can protect these animals and their habitats. Scouts will end the program by making an animal puppet of a native New Jersey animal and take a walk on the nature trail.
Girlz Greatest Hits
Junior Elective: Musician
Thomas Edison’s favorite invention, the phonograph, provided a way for sound to be recorded and played back for the first time ever! In this program scouts will learn about the origins of music and about Edison’s work on his Phonograph. They will also create their own musical instrument and play it, just as tunes were played on Edison’s famous phonographs.
Designing the Future
Junior Elective: Product Designer
Thomas Edison, one of the greatest innovators of all time, worked on inventions that improved the quality of our lives. In this program, scouts will have the chance to be a young inventor as they discuss the qualities of a good invention. Scouts will identify problems in society a nd then create, share, and improve their inventions to solve these problems.
Binding Bright Ideas
Cadette Elective: Book Artist
Thomas Edison loved reading and writing. He enjoyed Shakespeare, scientific journals, and even learned a little French and German in order to read in other languages. He carried a journal around everywhere with him so that he could record his ideas as soon as he thought of them. Scouts will learn about book binding and will create their own pocket notebooks.
* Weather Dependent
Cadette Elective: Outdoor Art Apprentice
“Seminole Lodge,” Thomas Edison’s winter home in Ft. Myers, Florida, contained gardens full of herbs, trees, and shrubs. In this program, scouts will learn about the roles of various natural resources in industries today. Scouts will also take a hike along the nature trail during which they can take photographs, make bark rubbings, find leaves, etc.
* Weather Dependent
Senior Elective: Outdoor Art Expert
Edison experimented with plants while developing many of his inventions, including the improved electric light and synthetic rubber. In this program, scouts will learn about Edison’s work with and affinity for nature and about the present day uses of natural resources in industries. They will capture the beauty of New Jersey in photographs during a nature hike and also create their own dream catchers from berries, branches, and leaves they find on the nature trail.
Set a Date!
Programs are designed to assist girl scouts in completing the requirements of elective adventures. Programs must be scheduled a minimum of two weeks in advance, when available, and require a minimum of 12 participants. Each program is approximately 90 minutes long. When a troop has fewer than 12 members, scouts may invite non-scout peers to participate in the programs.
Program fee: $12.00 per scout/non-scout.
Scout leaders may attend at no charge, other participating adults will be charged a fee of $6.00. A 50% deposit is required at the time of booking. Balance is due before or the day of the program. Programs are available weekdays, evenings, school holidays and Saturdays, when available.
Please see our attached program guide to choose the category that best suits your troops needs first. Then you can sign up for our other programs as needed.
For more information about scheduling, please call us at 732-549-3299 or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Payment: Cash, Credit Card, Check accepted
(CHECKS SHOULD BE MADE PAYABLE TO: TECMP)