Bring on the Bling

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Getting Creative with Bobcat Requirements

When we got our 3 new 7 year old scouts, I learned that we were going to have to go over their Bobcat requirements. I had no idea what that was, but I learned. We had to introduce the boys to the Scout Law, Motto, Sign, Handshake, Salute, and Oath. Seriously? How in the world was I going to do this? It's not that the boys had to have everything memorized 2 weeks into their Scouting, but how was I going to make it fun so that they'll want to come back? Fortunately, I like Pinterest.

Our Bobcat requirements "unit" was split into 2 weeks. I figured if I could introduce everything to the boys on one night, we could play games to review the following week. One thing that I remembered about my mom's time as a scout leader was how creative she was. She could use the simplest, craziest things for an activity. Things that people would normally discard were turned into something wonderfully useful. Example: dryer lint to help start a small campfire. Wha??? I started to look around at what I could use. 
I had a bunch of random cardboard pieces that I brought home from work. They made awesome posters for the 12 parts of the Scout Law. I had the points at the top and had the boys pick which pictures should be added.
We love to play Minute-to-Win-It games with our scouts...mainly because they involve a lot of laughter, are easy to do/create, and it helps break up the not-so-fun parts of the meeting (like trying to learn the scout law/motto/oath etc.). This particular game was a challenge. They boys were each given a long piece of uncooked spaghetti and had to string 5 pieces of uncooked penne pasta onto it, while only using one finger to help. And yes, we added the one finger part because, let's face it, they're only 7-8 years old! Tons of drooling and laughter with this one!

Many raw noodles lost their lives during this activity...
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After the noodle game, we talked about the Scout Motto and Oath. I couldn't think of a fun way to remember these, so we just kept repeating them over and over. Good thing these young boys don't need to have them all memorized...yet.

Our final game of Bobcat Night #1 was a fun one. We provide a lot of M&Ms for meetings at work, so I naturally gravitated that way. The boys were each given 2 trays, one with a handful of M&Ms, and a straw. The game was simple: move all of the M&Ms from one tray to the other, while only using the straw. The boys thought it might be fun to try and move the trays far away from each other. Hilarious!
One of the few quiet moments of the night...
And then of course, they got to eat the M&Ms (well, the ones that didn't fall on the floor).

Bobcat Night #2 was a fun one. We started out with only 2 scouts (later got up to 4), but it was still fun. They were each given a straw and had to sit at opposite ends of a long table. Aurelie and I sat on the opposite ends of the boys. I placed a cotton ball in the middle of the table and told the boys that they had to get it to blow off the other end of the table...kind of like hockey. Oh. My. Goodness! The spit! The giggles! Oh, the belly laughs! It was all I could do to keep it together. I love hearing the boys laugh so hard, they sound like little girls with a high-pitched laugh! I live for these moments!
Action shot!
Once the rest of the brood arrived, I pulled out 2 large dice that I made. One had the 6 different Bobcat requirements on it. The other had a gross motor skill on it: jump up and down, spin in a circle, flap like a bird, etc. The boys each took a turn throwing/kicking the dice and performing whatever came up: demonstrating the Scout Sign while spinning in a circle. HILARIOUS! 

Le Dice...taped down and durable to withstand kicking...

Scout Handshake while hopping on one foot
After everyone got a few turns in with the dice, I taught the boys how to make cootie-catchers. Okay, so they might have looked at me like I was crazy. Apparently they call them fortune-tellers. Whatever. They're cootie-catchers to me. Below each of the folds was a Bobcat they could take it home and play/practice them. It was pretty fun.

I might have made one at work and tested it on my coworkers...
Once we finally finished with our review and were feeling pretty good about the Bobcat requirements, we played our final game of the night. I put the boys back-to-back and gave them a roll of toilet paper (and then was asked if it was clean...seriously? Only boys would ask that...). They had to remain back-to-back while wrapping themselves up. It was a learning experience for them...having to go slowly and give themselves some slack before wrapping.

...we might have helped at this point...

And of COURSE we threw all of the TP at Aurelie after!

Rocket Derby Craziness

During one of the first meetings I had with the other scout leaders for our troop, there was talk about a Rocket Derby. I had no idea what it was, but to avoid looking like a clueless idiot, I just nodded along. Whatever. I didn't have to make a rocket, so I wasn't too worried. And I figured if it was anything like the Pinewood Derby, the dads would take care of it.

Every month, the different dens switch off duties for the flag ceremony and this was our first opportunity. It was so cute watching the little guys carrying the flags. They were super heavy, so their poor arms were shaking a bit. 

As part of their Bear requirements, the boys each participated in a short skit or run-on. Here's the best one I was able to catch on film.

One of the awesome things that happened the night of the Derby was that 3 of my little scouts earned their Bobcats! SO PROUD! I'll post about that madness later. I had a 4th little scout join us the week before Pack Meeting, so I wasn't able to work with him in time to get his Bobcat. We're working on it now so he can earn it by next Pack Meeting. Anyway, I wasn't really familiar with the whole ceremonial thing surround the Bobcat, so it was fun for me to watch. Basically, the parents of the scouts came up and painted their faces, with each color representing something different (I don't really remember). They looked so adorable! 
How can you not love this face??
Holding still was the hardest part!
Awesome moms!
Of course, we all have to check each other out!
They put up with my picture-taking antics and never fail to provide an awesome pose!
Our newest addition to our troop! We'll get him his Bobcat next month!
So PROUD of these boys!
Time for rockets!

Showing me how to wind up the rubber band with the propeller...had to make sure they were wound the right way!
Such a proud moment...holding their rockets like trophies!
Since I'm single and have no kids of my own, I'm still trying to find my place amongst the group. Everyone is super awesome, but I'm still in that "getting to know you" phase. I'm still navigating through the slew of kids that are in every family because, let's face it...nobody is an only child here! While we were getting ready for the races to begin, I looked around the gym to figure out where I could hang out. It was fun to see all of the dads working on the rockets and "track" together, with the moms and little babies on the other side of the gym. I wasn't sure which way I should I plopped down under the track with my camera. It took all of 5 seconds before I realized that I wasn't alone...

My buddies for the night...and future scouts!
Of course I'm going to hang out with the little kids! They're so much fun and so excited to see everything going on. The boys were so excited to watch their rockets and loved seeing how far they could go!

I wanted to get a selfie with my 4 boys (and apparently a little brother in the white shirt)...

And then got a request for little sister to join! These kids make me smile!