Making Virtual Girls’ Circles Special

How do we foster community when we can’t really be together? How do we motivate girls to spend more time in adult-led online togetherness when they already spend so much time logged in for academic? Muses and clinicians work hard to ensure that the girls in virtual circles feel cared for, and that goes beyond what they say when they’re all talking together.

One technique is to create a literal virtual space in which everyone can imagine that they are gathering together, like this virtual room designed for 5th graders from Howe Elementary

Prior to one meeting. each girl received a “kit” with  construction paper, markers, colored pencils, and glue in a plastic container along with a couple of bags labeled “DO NOT OPEN UNTIL WEDNESDAY”. . . these contained a chocolate cupcake to celebrate National Chocolate Cake Day as well as supplies for a decorative tin craft. They all admitted this was very challenging to not be able to open the bag (one girl said, “I was so nervous I was going to open the bag, I had to keep it in my mom’s room”). Muse Laura LaFontaine & clinicians Rachel Curtis & Kissair Savage led a discussion that included choosing character traits that would follow “I am…”

Valentine’s treats, little snacks, and craft and activity supplies helps us to show girls that we care, and it helps them feel more connected with us and with each other.