What Is Cub Scouting?
Cub Scouting is fun! No matter what grade you are in, first through fifth, it can be a blast. Do you like to learn by doing? This is just the place. You can learn to tie knots, set up a tent, or build a rocket. Have you ever cooked a meal on a campfire? Sent a secret code to a friend? Built a birdhouse? Hiked? Earn rewards for doing these things in Cub Scouts.
Cub Scouting is run and provided by volunteers who are committed to youth, mainly the parents of the children involved in the program, supported by a professional staff.
Cub Scouts Belong to Packs and Dens
As a Cub Scout, you will be part of your Pack. Each Pack has a number to identify it.
The pack is divided into smaller groups called Dens. Each Den has about six to eight boys. All of the Cub Scouts in your Den are in the same grade and may even go to the same school.
- Kindergarten: Lion Den
- 1st Grade: Tiger Den
- 2nd Grade: Wolf Den
- 3rd Grade: Bear Den
- 4th Grade: Webelos Den
- 5th Grade: Webelos Den, Transition to a Scouts BSA Troop
The Cub Scout Pack belongs to a church, a school, or some other group of people in your community or neighborhood. This group makes sure your Pack has good adult leaders, a place to meet, and exciting things to do. The group gets help from the Boy Scouts of America, which is part of Scouting around the world.
Cub Scouts Do Things and Go Places
Have you been to the local police station and talked to the policemen on duty? Or visited the fire station and sat in the driver’s seat of the pumper truck? Or visited the local TV station and sat in the news anchor’s chair? These are some of the places you might go with your den or pack.
You might also build a pinewood derby car and race it on the track, build a sailboat or trimaran and race it in the raingutter regatta, or build a spaceship and race it to the stars in the pack space derby.
Cub Scouts Earn Awards
Each time you complete an accomplishment or learn a new skill, you will be rewarded. Sometimes the reward is a loop for your belt, a pin, or a patch. Sometimes it is a smile on your parents’ faces to see you grow and learn.
Purposes and Methods of Cub Scouting
The Cub Scouting program has 10 purposes related to the overall mission of the Boy Scouts of America – to build character, learn citizenship, and develop personal fitness:
Every Cub Scouting activity should help fulfill one of these purposes. When considering a new activity, ask which purpose or purposes it supports. Not everything in Cub Scouting has to be serious – far from it! Silly songs, energetic games, and yummy snacks all have their place in the program.
The Methods of Cub Scouting
To accomplish its purposes and achieve the overall goals of building character, learning citizenship, and developing personal fitness, Cub Scouting uses seven methods:
1. Living the Ideals
Cub Scouting’s values are embedded in the Cub Scout Promise, the Law of the Pack, the Cub Scout motto, and the Cub Scout sign, handshake, and salute. These practices help establish and reinforce the program’s values in boys and the leaders who guide them.
2. Belonging to a Den
The den—a group of six to eight Scouts who are about the same age—is the place where Cub Scouting starts. In the den, Cub Scouts develop new skills and interests, they practice sportsmanship and good citizenship, and they learn to do their best, not just for themselves but for the den as well.
3. Using Advancement
Recognition is important to Scouting. The advancement plan provides fun for the Scouts, gives them a sense of personal achievement as they earn badges, and strengthens family understanding as adult family members and their den leader work with Scouts on advancement projects.
4. Involving Family and Home
Whether a Cub Scout lives with two parents or one, a foster family, or other relatives, their family is an important part of Cub Scouting. Parents and adult family members provide leadership and support for Cub Scouting and help ensure that youth have a good experience in the program.
5. Participating in Activities
Cub Scouts participate in a huge array of activities, including games, projects, skits, stunts, songs, outdoor activities, trips, and service projects. Besides being fun, these activities offer opportunities for growth, achievement, and family involvement.
6. Serving Home and Neighborhood
Cub Scouting focuses on the home and neighborhood. It helps boys strengthen connections to their local communities, which in turn supports growth and development.
7. Wearing the Uniform
Cub Scout uniforms serve a dual purpose, demonstrating membership in the group (everyone is dressed alike) and individual achievement (Scouts wear the badges they’ve earned). Wearing the uniform to meetings and activities also encourages a neat appearance, a sense of belonging, and good behavior.
8. Making Character Connections
Throughout the program, leaders learn to identify and use character lessons in activities so Scouts can learn to know, commit, and practice the 12 core values of Cub Scouting. Character Connections are included in all the methods of Cub Scouting and are the program themes for monthly pack meetings.