Sundae Funday

Today we had the other of our June pack activities (the first being Twilight Camp last week).  Taking from one of last summer’s monthly themes (“Hoop-de-do”), we decided to do another games day and add the ice cream element.  Planning it for a Sunday made the title too easy :)

The summer weather keeping with the same pattern as the spring has continued to be wet.  If it’s not been wet, it has been hot them stormy.  So since yesterday was a beautiful day (temps in the upper 70s and no humidity), this morning the storms and rain moved in.  Fortunately, the rains moved out by the time church ended.  So despite the clouds and a bit of a strong breeze we had a dry time for our event.

In keeping the outing in Scouting, we planned the events for outside (but had a “plan B” just in case).  We started out with a friendly game of wiffle ball.  This was a good fit since most of our boys play organized baseball.  We had 14 boys show up so it was 7-on-7.  In order to keep things moving (since we had other activities) we agreed to play for three outs or roster bat,  That way there was a definite end to each inning.  The game stayed pretty close and was tied 11-11 going in to the bottom of the last inning.  The home team ended up winning in walk off fashion 12-11.

Then it was on to the craft.  We had purchased some craft kits for our spring camp out in case it rained during the weekend.  Since we had great weather then, we decided to use the crafts as “calm activity” after wiffle ball in case the weather was hot.  The boys and siblings enjoyed putting them together.

Next was everyone’s favorite — the water balloon toss.  At first we did two rounds of the actual toss game.  Then with the leftover balloons, we let the boys have a water balloon war.  After everyone was sufficiently wet and we cleaned up all the balloon pieces (Leave No Trace), it was on to the highlight of the afternoon and the day’s namesake…SUNDAES!!!!  Nothing out of the ordinary here, just your typical vanilla ice cream and the variety of toppings.

So the activities for the first month for the National Pack Summertime Award are now successfully behind us, now our sights turn to July and the fun it will hold.

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Webelos Scientists

Image:ScientistActivityBadge.jpgOur boys decided that they wanted to take on the Scientist activity badge over the summer this year.  As busy as the boys have been this past year, they have five activity badges left to earn.  I suggested to them that the summer would be a great chance to work on Family Member at home and Scientist at our summer meetings.  I figured with the number of experiments using water and some working better outside, summer time would work well.  In addition, in an effort to let the boys, “choose their own adventure” I asked them to decide on what elective requirements they would like to do.  Based on that here is what they’ll be doing this summer to earn this activity badge:

  • #1 Read Bernoulli’s principle. Show how it works.
  • #2 Read Pascal’s Law. Tell about some inventions that use Pascal’s law.
  • #3 Read Newton’s first law of motion. Show in three different ways how inertia works.
  • #6 Show the effects of air pressure.
  • #7 Show the effects of water pressure. This may be combined with atmospheric pressure or with air pressure.
  • #8 With adult supervision, build and launch a model rocket. Describe how Newton’s third law of motion explains how the rocket is propelled into the sky.
  • #9 Explain what causes fog. Show how this works.
  • #10 Explain how crystals are formed. Make some.
  • #12 Show in three different ways how your eyes work together and show what is meant by an optical illusion.

We’ve already had one meeting to begin working through these activities.  In that meeting we worked on requirements 12, 2 & 3.  For the “eyes” requirement we did three activities from the handbook showing how our eyes work together.  Then we discussed how optical illusions work.  Then the boys showed or performed an optical illusion.  For Pascal’s Law, we discussed the various inventions that utilize the principle and looked at a hydraulic lift at our meeting today.  Completing that one was a bit tough but I think seeing the lift helped the boys understand what is at play.  For Newton’s first law, the boys each did the “stack of pennies”, “coin in a cup” and “water in a bucket” activities.

Today was our second meeting to work on the badge.  We covered air pressure, water pressure and crystals (5, 6 & 10).  The air and water pressure experiments were taken right from the handbook.  For the crystals, we used this activity and got started with making the sugar solution and setting up the “rigs” for the crystals to form.  We’ll see how they turn out at our next meeting in two weeks.

With all the activities, we have broken up the work over four meetings.  So two more to go.  The last meeting actually will be focused solely on the rocket launch.  The boys are really looking forward to that.  More to come as we plow through a Scientific summer.

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Twilight Camp Pics – Days 2 & 3

Didn’t get to upload and post the pictures from Tuesday’s night at camp.  So today everyone gets twice the fun of camp with two day’s worth of pictures.  Enjoy.  The boys certainly are.

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Twilight Camp Pics – Day 1

As I posted yesterday, our district’s Twilight Camp got under way.  While things were a little slow kicking off (as is always the case on camp Mondays), the boys seemed to enjoy themselves.  While all of the boys were tired by the end of the night, everyone was looking forward to the rest of the week.

Here are a few pictures from the evening’s activities. 

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Lights, Camera…Off to Camp

Well, today is the first day of Twilight camp for our district.  This will be the fourth (and last) time around for our oldest (the now second year Webelos scout) and the first time for our youngest (the Tiger Cub).  The youngest has been wanting to attend camp as an official Cub Scout for the better part of two years now.  It will be the first one for me not being on main camp staff (I had been the Woodworking director and Camp director in the three previous years).  I am still participating though as the den leader/guide for our youngest’s Tiger den.  After spending three years as a director of some sort, I am looking forward to going around to all the stations with the boys and watch them take part in the activities and have fun.

This year’s theme is “Scouts, Camera, Action!”  The boys will be having a blast doing Archery, shooting BB guns fishing, playing sports, doing crafts and hiking.  All the typical Cub Camp stuff with a movie theme twist.  Monday through Wednesday the boys go through the various activity stations doing things and learning scout craft stuff.  Thursday is our hike night where each rank has its own trail with various stations geared toward nature study and hiking fundamentals.  Friday night is family night where the boys can take their parents around to some of the stations and show what they did during the week.  The evening then wraps up with a campfire program and flag retirement ceremony.

We have 15 boys (out of 20) from the pack going.  We usually have a good turn out from our as we emphasize the fun the boys have and how much of a jump-start they can get on their next year’s rank advancement along with earning a few belt loops along the way.

As they say, the highlight of the year for many Cub Scouts is camp.  Summer camp has always been a highlight for me as well (both as a youth and now as a leader).  This year our pack has two opportunities (Twilight and Resident camp) to deliver on that promise.

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Summer Activities

The other day, @MNScoutmaster asked in a post if your scout unit meets during the summer or not as compared to Cub Scout Packs.  The consensus on Twitter was that units of those providing a reply do meet year round.  Some Boy Scout units continue with their regular schedule, some cut back to 1-2 times a month.  Most do take a break around the time they attend summer camp.  I did not see many responses from Cub Scout Packs.  It could be that I follow more Boy Scout leaders than Cub Scout leaders. 

It may seem Like Cub Scouts only meet during the school year as the program is based on grade levels and the school year.  That may have been the case years ago.  It is not now.  It is highly encouraged for packs to meet throughout the whole year.  There is a National Summertime Award that can be earned by units that hold a least one activity in the summer months (June, July & August).  Any boys who attends anyone event in each month also can earn a pin.  A den that has at least 50% attendance at all three earn a ribbon.

Ever since I joined the pack, we have planned a year round program.  The first summer (the oldest was a new Wolf) we planned just one activity in each month.  Only a couple of boys earned the rank’s pin.  The last two summers we had 1-2 in some of the months but not all three.  This summer our pack has planned 2 activities in each month.  We have Twilight Camp and a “Sundae-Funday” in June, a baseball game/overnighter and Resident Camp in July and a pool party then a cookout in August.  In addition to these our district and council also have summer activities that the boys can participate in.  In addition to the summer pack activities, our Webelos dens continue to meet for regular den meetings to work on activity badges that are better suited for being outside while our lower ranks meet once or twice as dens over the whole summer.  This keeps all the families engaged and gives a kick-start on programming when the fall rolls around. 

If you are in a Cub Scout pack, what activities do you do during the summer?  If you are in a Boy Scout Troop, how are your troop meetings modified (if at all) for more “summer-like” activities?

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