Remember that every council has slightly different rules and regulations, and everything you read online that is general for all of USA should always be double checked with your local council rules and regulations.
Even if you don’t have dates for your meeting, once you know how frequently you are meeting, make a list of how many meetings will be in each month.
Plug in the annual traditions your troop is interested in doing. If your troop hasn’t voted, wait until after they have.
Plug in any annual fun activities you troop wants to do. If they haven’t voted for any, wait until after they have or skip this step until you have fun meetings that become annual troop activities. Note – These might not have an official badge for certain levels but Girl Scouts like them so much you end up doing one every year. Examples are:
- Winter Holiday Party
- Making Friends Tea party
- Troop Campouts
- Usually, the Troop Meeting before the campout is to prep for the campout – either for parents to attend to get information when they are younger or for Girl Scouts to make their plans (what food they want to eat, what activities they want, etc.) and sometimes it is to earn part of a badge they want to finish earning at camp (Trail Adventure, Brownie Hiker, etc.)
Take the remaining open slots and figure out how many badges you can still earn. If you are doing a badge in every 2 meetings, plot out which 2 meetings will be connected. You do not need to add the name of the badge, just earmark the meeting as a badge earning meeting. After the troop has voted for badges, you can add in the badge names in the months you feel fit the best.
Do not show your year plan with parents. So many things can happen during the year, you may flip flop badges to different meetings, suddenly need to do an emergency fun meeting instead of badge work and figure out how to add in some steps in other meetings to make up for the lost meeting, etc. If families have access to your year plan, most get upset at any change.
GSUSA also gives some advice on how to plan out the year.
Some council have a year plan available – like GSNorCal.
There are several yearly planners people have designed for Girl Scout Leaders you can purchase as well – like these available on Etsy.