From an article by Lynda Munro published in the September issue of Guiding magazine
Decision making is one of the Five Essentials of guiding and a girl of Rainbow age can make simple choices and decisions for herself. She is also beginning to discover that she may not always get her own way and has to learn to accept decisions made by others.
The Rainbow Jigsaw strengthens and encourages the girls' decision-making skills and retains Rainbow Chat, the time set aside in meetings when the unit can discuss issues, as an essential feature.
A Rainbow Roundabout is an exciting new unit resource that Rainbow Leaders can use to promote unit decision-making. It contains activity ideas which support the Rainbow Jigsaw and complement other Rainbow activities.
The resource is based around a large plastic mat that is placed on the floor so that all the Rainbows and Leaders can sit around the edge and see it. The mat is divided into the four Jigsaw areas - Look, Learn, Laugh and Love - and contains activity ideas based on a theme. The Rainbows decide as part of Rainbow Chat which activities they want to do as a unit, voting on suggestions as necessary. The leaders need to ensure that a balance of activities are chosen from each Jigsaw area but the choice should be made by the girls.
When a unit has chosen the activities they want to do, the Leader will incorporate them into the term's planning. They may be done as a block over a couple of weeks or spread throughout the term.
Rainbows are rewarded by gaining a badge when they have participated in four Roundabout activities - one from each Jigsaw area. Roundabout badges are not individual achievement badges and all Rainbows should be given the badge at the same time. It is not compulsory for every Rainbow to have completed every part of the of the four Roundabout activities to be given a badge. If Rainbows participate in more than four activities on a Roundabout they do not gain another badge. Roundabout badges are worn around the bottom of the polo shirt or hooded top or on the pocket of the tabard.
The Roundabout badge incorporates the symbols for the four Jigsaw areas and is available with a choice of three different border colours - red, blue and yellow. When the Rainbows choose which activities they want to do as a unit, they should also vote on which colour border they are going to have for their badge.
The Guider's sticker pack include stickers which show the four Jigsaw symbols and these can be used as instant rewards.
To help the Rainbows evaluate the four activities at the end of their Roundabout they should be given a chance to write or draw what they did on the unit recording poster. This A2, sheet can be displayed in the meeting place during the meeting to remind girls what they have done and then kept safe for them to look back on during their Pot of Gold challenge when they reflect on their time in Rainbows.