Thursday, July 21, 2016

Week 6: Wolf Counsil Fire Adventure

I'm Cubmaster/den leader for a combined den of Wolf, Bear and Webelos.  This month I only have one lone wolf so this activity meets the requirements for Wolf: Council Fire #3a, 3b, and 4a.  Luckily #1 and 5 were completed at summer day camp.

Gathering Activity: We filled a disposable dish with rice and gave the boys 5 marbles each (Note to self.. Get new rice without sand mixed in it!)  Have the boys stand in a line about 5 feet away and take turns trying to throw a marble into the dish.  (I used rice to pad the landing and indoor carpet was helpful too) After all were done throwing, we collected the marbles and then each boy took a step back and we did it again!!! Simple!  Stop after 15 mins.  (This activity was adapted from a washer game in the Wolf Den Leader guide which I highly recommend you own if you are a den leader!  It was a hit!)

Opening: Use den duty chart for: attendance, prayer, pledge of allegiance, Scout oath and law

Talk time:  I had pictures spread on a table of buildings and locations in our town that I was able to find and print off Google images.  The boys were directed to go take a look.  I kept quiet and told them to just take a look.  It didn't take too long before they started recognizing local places.  I was able to show them pictures of the original hospital, theater and school in our town followed by the current ones.  This led to a discussion how communities change.  Lead the conversation into how changes affect the area:  Examples:  Lots of building affects plant and animal life, water sources have to be developed, pasture land disappears, Larger population can lead to more crime, litter,  hunger or homelessness and as cub scouts we want to grown up to be leaders and help solve these problems.

Lead the conversation into ways that the cub scouts could help solve these problems.  I told them we are going to do a community service project but they need to vote on one and we are going to present it to our pack committee leaders at the end of our meeting for approval.   I printed more pictures of ideas they could choose from if they couldn't think of any ideas themselves (ex: scouts cleaning, local food pantry...)
Here is a possible list (see also Wolf Handbook)
1. make gift baskets for elderly people with no families
2. Clean or beautify a cemetery, community center, campground, park, river, school, parking lot...
3. Stock food at a local food pantry (call your local pantry first to find out if its an option)
4. plant a tree  native to your area
5. plant flowers native to your area in a public place
6.  visit a senior center
7.  perform yard work for an elderly person
Discuss how and who will present service project idea to committee.

Activity 1: time changes collage.  Give scout paper or poster board and glue.  Let him pick community pictures from Activity 1 to make a collage.
(Council Fire #3a, 3b)

Activity 2: I arranged ahead of time so we could present our idea to the committee during our meeting. (Council Fire #4a)

Activity 3: Balloon Hot Potato - We used the game from this link. I put question or tasks in each balloon based on our previous meeting.  (like: who won the obstacle course, say the scout oath...) The scouts had a hard time popping the balloons, so my husband used a tack and popped them while they were trying to sit on them.  This game was a huge hit!

Record completion of requirements for Wolf: Council Fire #3a, 3b, and 4a.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Week 5: Cub Scout Obstacle Course

We have a small combined wolf, bear and webelos den, but due to boys moving away and summer vacations we only have 1 wolf this month and he has a lot to finish by his birthday.  I combed thru the requirements to make sure we hit as many as possible in this obstacle course as well as adding some obstacles just for fun. (Those not included, were done at cub scout day camp) It was awesome!. After going thru the course (about 2 1/2 mins long) the boys were breathing hard and wanting to rest!

You may wonder how I can pull this off with just one lone wolf.   Easy...we have two 11 year old scouts that regularly come and we, the leaders, have other children.   It can be very helpful to have our numbers padded for certain activities.

Here are the Wolf requirements this activity will meet:  Counsil Fire #2 & 6b, Paws on the Path #8, Running with the Pack #1, 2, 3 & 4

First,  I mapped it out on paper. (Sorry about the poor lighting in this picture... best I could do with a baby sleeping on my lap!)  This map came in handy as I guided the boys thru the course!

Gathering Activity: Play catch with a partner 10 feet apart.  Give instruction as outlined in the Wolf Handbook.  Once they are proficient have everyone move back a step. (Running with the Pack #1)
Next we made a  Den Duty Chart by letting the boys choose the duty they wanted to perform each week. I prepped ahead of time by printing out the duties on a chart and laminating it. As the boys chose a duty,  I wrote their name on the chart with a white board marker.  My chart included: Take Attendance, Prayer, Pledge of Allegiance, Scout Oath and Law and Meeting Helper (Council Fire #1 Mark complete after 1 month)

Opening: Prayer, Pledge of Allegiance, Scout Oath and Scout Law

Obstacle Course:  We discussed good sportsmanship before starting our game as outlined in the Wolf Handbook ( Running with the Pack #4) I actually had to take some more pictures the next day to show you each station.  It was too fast paced at our activity to get all the pictures I wanted.

Here goes...

1. Monster Stomp - Stomp on one soda can and add to a recycle pile.
Note: be sure to transport smashed cans to a recycling bin. (Council Fire 6b). 

2. Front Roll - (Running with the Pack #3)

3. Walk 5 steps backwards (Running with the Pack #2)

4. Frog Stand (Running with the Pack #3)

5. Back Roll (Running with the Pack #3)

6. Running thru the ropes (for sideways balance Running with the Pack #2) - made out of PVC stakes and parachute cord.

7. Hurdles - make with swim noodles and
ground stakes ( we made PVC stakes but wooden dowel rods work too). We had 4 hurdles spaced about 15 feet apart.  Another option is alternate going over one, then under the next...

8.  Mini Trampoline - 10 jumps

9. Balance Beam (Running with the Pack #2)

9. Ring Toss and Drive the Green Machine around the cones - Make rings by taping the ends of a pool noodle closed with packing tape.  Line 4 cones in a line about 15 feet apart and place rings a few feet from the cones.  Boy runs down the line throwing loop over cones.  At the last cone, he hops on the green machine and drives around each cone in an alternating manner (figure 8 style)  to the finish line.

 We had a drink station set up to refresh them after the course. This is how my husband cut the PVC pipe to make stakes.

Map activity - When the boys finished the course we moved to a table set up with map making supplies.  The boys drew a map of the obstacle course and we used a compass app to label North on the map (Paws on the Path #8)

At the end we served light refreshments. Everyone really enjoyed this activity!  Cub Scouts is fun!

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Week 4 Bear: Fur, Feathers and Ferns for Combined Dens

We just finished Twilight Camp (some areas have Day Camp) and families are heading off for summer vacation. Camp is such an asset to small dens in meeting requirements for multiple ages.  Because I'm in a small combined den of wolf, bear and webelos, I have to send homework home regularly.    I only have one Bear and he is going out of town for a month so I decided to have one activity for the Bear's Fur, Feathers and Ferns Adventure and pick out the activities that parents just may wish the den would take care of so they don't have to worry about it at home.  So here goes...

Gathering Activity:  Knots - We did this for 10 minutes.  This is a target activity aimed at those scouts who may not have met all the requirements for knot tying.  For example,  the Bears and Webelos have to teach a younger scout how to tie certain knots. The other boys can practice knots they know while you target the scouts who need to pass off a requirement.(Wolf, Call of the Wild #2, Bear, Bear Necessities #8, Arrow of Light, Camper #5)

Activity 1: Composting- I really did not want to send the boys home with their own little gross cup of compost  (especially since 2 of the boys are my own ) so we discussed the purpose of composting and made a composting bucket.  My husband (and den leader)  drilled the holes in the bucket beforehand.  I used the tutorial I found online here. We did not add Bokashi and I added water after we brought it back home.  Here is what we used in our compost bucket:  bag of used coffee grounds donated from Starbucks, a few kitchen scraps (avocado skin, egg shells, veggie scraps), dead leaves from a limb pruned from our tree, grass clippings from a freshly mowed lawn and a little leftover potting soil we used in the next activity.  The boys had an impressive knowledge of composting and they enjoyed adding layers to the bucket.  I promised to roll the bucket everyday and bring the finished product back in a few weeks.  I'll add a picture of our finished compost. (Bear: Fur, Feathers and Ferns #6)

Update:  Here is a picture of our beautiful compost after a few weeks. Truth be told I wasn't very consistent at rolling the bucket everyday, but look how awesome it turned out!  I can't believe how easy that was!  I really want to plant something now!

Activity 2: The requirement is to plant a vegetable or herb garden.  I had an aloe vera plant that seems to stay alive without much effort on my part.  I don't have a green thumb and it's my only plant that hasn't died!  I did some research on YouTube university on how to propagate the aloe vera pups. With my Bear scout going out of town, I thought this would be the best bet for his garden.  My local grocer (HEB) had used containers they sold me for 50 cents and I had so many pups that each boy transplanted 2-3 in his pot.  What fun!  (Bear: Fur, Feathers and Ferns #7)

Opening:  Since we had moved back into the building to wash hands and cool off, we stopped here to have our prayer, pledge, scout oath and Scout law.

Activity 3: Vegetable Olympics - This was by far the fun part of our meeting!  Find the game here. We played the Bean Planting Relay.  Since we don't have a big group we just timed each boy and called out winners.  Next we had a Potato Piercing tournament. Yes... you can catch a potato on a fork if you throw it up and catch it.  We just so happened to have the exact same amount of girls in the building as cubscouts so we invited them to play the Rabbit Feed relay.  Boys against girls...What a Blast!!  Since the girls were having so much fun, we included them on our last game of  Vegetable Alphabet.  We didn't have time to do the game as listed here so I showed them an alphabet card with a letter on it and whichever team called out a food starting with that letter first, got the point.

This turned out to be a fun activity.  We closed with a prayer and had ice cream sandwiches for dessert.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Week 3: Call of the Wild, Camper & Bear Necessities Adventues for combined Cub Scout Dens

Please Note: This activity is for small combined dens to complete Call of the Wild (Wolf), Bear Necessities (Bear) and Camper Adventures (Arrow of Light) in approximately one months time.  I suggest that LDS packs plan this activity the same month as the Father & Son camp out or cub scout day camp.

Each activity has to flow quickly into the next in order to do it all in 1 hour. We did the gathering activity on the sidewalk.  While the hot dogs were cooking I called boys over individually and showed them how to read a thermometer.  When most of the boys were done with cooking, we started building the barometers right there on the sidewalk. We had a quick safety class and our Geocache was less than a mile away at a Dairy Queen.  We were able to lead the boys quickly thru the clues to find it since we knew ahead of time where the geocache was hidden.   And finally we passed out free Blizzard coupons to the boys that we had asked  the manager for ahead of time.  We got back to our meetinghouse with only 2 minutes to spare!  

1. Gathering Activity:  Have boys wash hands using a large bowl with water and soap (Wolf, Call of the Wild #5c) Using a Bunsen burner and a  no. 10 can with a vent cut in it,  have the scout cook a hot dog on a kabob skewers. (Bear Necessities #6) Show them how to read a thermometer while they are waiting for it to cook. (Bear Essentials #7 part)

2Make a Barometer: Show the scouts this video on YouTube from if convenient (I used my cell phone) to instruct them how to make barometer.  Having the card stock paper already folded and taped ahead of time will be faster.  Scouts should place barometer indoors next to a window.  Bear scouts record temp and hi/lo from barometer everyday for a week. (Bear: part Bear Essentials #7)

3. Opening: Prayer, Pledge (make sure you have a flag outdoors) Scout Oath and Scout Law

4.  Class:  What to do if a stranger approaches. (see Wolf Handbook Call of the Wild 5a)  Have the scouts act out the situations so they will be able to remember the lessons better.

5.  Geocaching - Make sure 10 year olds are involved in the process of how geocaching works.  I used this website and app for our activity.  Make sure to have permission slips signed ahead of time. (Arrow of Light, Camper #6)

  • Bear - Record the temperature and barometer reading at the same time each day for a week.(Bear: to finish Bear Essentials #7)
  • leaders- plan an opportunity for scouts to put on a campfire skits/song and include an impressive opening, Cubmaster's minute and inspirational closing...father/son camp out, cub scout day camp, the next pack meeting (Wolf: Call of the Wild #6, Bear: Bear Necessities #2, Arrow of Light: Camper #4)
  • Record any homework assignments completed and stay in communication with parents to make sure they are accomplished
  • Once the camp out or day camp is over, Weeks 1-3 completed along with all homework assignments, then the pack is ready to award the belt loops for Wolf: Call of the Wild, Bear: Bear Necessities, and Arrow of Light: Camper 

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Week 2: Call of the Wild, Camper & Bear Necessities Adventues for combined Cub Scout Dens

Please Note: This activity is for small combined dens to complete Call of the Wild (Wolf), Bear Necessities (Bear) and Camper Adventures (Arrow of Light) in approximately one months time.  I suggest that LDS packs plan this activity the same month as the Father & Son camp out or cub scout day camp.

1. Gathering Activity: Discuss what makes a good tent site and set up a small tent with leader.  Take down and have boys set up themselves.  (If using a larger tent or if it's going slow have boys set up themselves the first time with verbal instructions from leader if needed because of time restraints.  Make sure 9 and 10 year-olds participate if they are unable to go on camp out). (Arrow of Light, Camper #2) (Bear, Bear Necessities #7)

2. Opening: Prayer, Pledge, Scout Oath & Scout Law

3.  Talk Time/Announcements

4.  Let's pretend you are on a camp out and there is bad weather.  It's so bad you may have to evacuate.  Discuss this PowerPoint Presentation or use Webelos Handbook pg. 157 to lead discussion.  (Arrow of Light, Camper 3a,b,c) (Wolf, Call of the Wild 4, 5b)

5. Teach knots

  • Overhand knot - used for the start of tying a shoe, the keep the end of a rope from unraveling, to keep a rope from going all the way thru a hole or pulley (Wolf, Call of the Wild #2)
  • Square knot - used to tie two ropes together, to tie packages, the end of bandages or to rig sails (Wolf, Call of the Wild #2)
  • Two half hitches -  used to tie items to a post or tree trunk (Bear, Bear Necessities #8)
  • Bowline knot - It's useful because it makes a fixed loop in a rope that won't slip (Arrow of Light, Camper #5 part - complete by teaching to a younger scout)
Record Requirements & pass out homework:
  • Any boy who missed will need to learn knots at home
  • Webelos - Practice Bowline knot (Camper #5) and teach to another scout
  • Bear - Learn Two half hitches knot and teach to another scout (Bear Necessities #8) 
  • Remind boys about the camp out and that they should help pick a campsite and help set up the tent

Week 2 Severe Weather PowerPoint for Cub Scouts

Severe weather on campout from Deanna Welch

This presentation goes with the week 2 activity you can find here.  This presentation meets the requirements for:
Arrow of Light: Camper 3 a,b,c
Wolf: Call of the Wild 4, 5 b

Week 1: Call of the Wild, Camper & Bear Necessities Adventues for combined Cub Scout Dens

Please Note: This activity is for small combined dens to complete Call of the Wild (Wolf), Bear Necessities (Bear) and Camper Adventures (Arrow of Light) in approximately one months time.  I suggest that LDS packs plan this activity the same month as the Father & Son camp out or cub scout day camp.

1. Gathering Activity (15 minutes) - Frisbee & Cones - Set up small cones (like these) in a line spread apart over the area being used.  If the scout throws past the first cone they get 1 point, past the second is 2 points...ect.  If they hit the frisbee with a cone it's 5 points.  I went around to each boy and asked them their favorite camping activity and wrote it on strips of paper which I prepared for a later activity.  I also signed in each scout on this form.

2. Opening which includes Prayer, Pledge, Scout Oat and Scout Law

3. Talk Time:  Introduce this month's adventures.  We will learn how to identify animals, knot tying, camping skills, geocaching and about the weather...  Make sure to talk up the father son camp out with the boys  (Also inform parents that this will help their child meet requirements for their adventure belt loop)
4. Animal Identification Part 1.  I created a simple PowerPoint picture presentation identifying animals, snakes, birds and insects from our area of Texas that you can find here.  I downloaded a recording app on my phone called Smart Voice Recorder and recorded sounds clips of each bird or animal which I found on You Tube or the internet. The boys really liked hearing the sounds and recognized many of them,

Part 2 The second part of this activity was a game identifying animal tracks by giving each boy a copy of this guide. Tape larger images of the tracks on the wall with a number by it.   Then make a small sheet for each boy listing an animal and a blank line to fill in the number of the track they think correlates.  I did it this so that we weren't wasting time by having the boys write the names of the animals.We did 10 tracks but that may have been too many.  Make sure the tracks don't look too similar because it's harder for the youngest boys. This activity could go faster if you just show them a track and have the boys call out their guess till they get it right.

5. Outdoor Code:  Have a poster prepared and recite the Outdoor Code. A detailed description can be found here.  (Call of the Wild #7a)

The Outdoor Code:

As an American, I will do my best to

Be clean in my outdoor manners

Be careful with fire

Be considerate in the outdoors

Be conservation-minded

6. Next, Have a poster prepared and recite the Leave no Trace Principles for Kids (Found in Wolf Handbook).  Talk briefly how these principles support the outdoor code (Call of the Wild #7b)

7. Show boys the 6 essential items for camp outs:  first aid kit, water bottle, flashlight, trail food, sunscreen, whistle. Have Bears write items in their Handbook   (Bear Necessities #3)  What other items the group should take along on the camp out? Have Bears write in Handbook (Bear Necessities #4)

6.Optional if time permits - Camping charades Game - use strips of paper with camping activities gathered during the Gathering Activity.  We only had time for each boy to go once. (Wolf: Howling at the Moon #1 partial )

Closing Prayer & homework assignments

  • Wolf Homework:  Call of the Wild Requirement 3 in the Wolf Handbook and write the name of each animal and how they identify it.  Do at home or at Father son camp out.
  • Bear Homework:  complete their camping list for Bear Necessities #3-4 if not finished. Plan a cooked lunch or dinner, make a shopping list and help shop for food.  Help cook the meal at the Father son campout or other outdoor event/home if not going on camp out. (Bear Necessities #5)
  • Webelos/Arrow of Light - Handout copy of outdoor code and Leave no Trace Behind Principles for Kids - Have them practice and recite from memory to the best of their ability to Akela (parent) or den leader (Call of the Wild #7b)
Text or email parents with assignments.

Record Completion of Requirements