Keeping Kids Safe
As Scouting moves to virtual and online platforms, we offer the following reminders to help keep kids safe. The below guidance applies to all online Scouting activities and meetings. Click button to view.
Note: Some states may have legal requirements that differ from, and even go beyond, what is provided here. It is your responsibility to check and abide by your state laws and consult your local council when reviewing and applying the following guidance, which is not comprehensive.
Feeling a bit of cabin fever? Fighting boredom? Tired of the virtual classroom? Missing out on all the usual Scouting fun?
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Today’s Scouts are spending more time than ever using digital media for education, research, socializing, and fun. To help families and volunteers keep youth safe while online, the Boy Scouts of America introduced the Cyber Chip. Cyber Chip is a great resource as we are all online more than ever in this age of social distancing. Learn more here.
30-Day Cub Scout Challenges!
Help your Cub Scouts keep their skills sharp by taking on our 30-day challenge with activities to help with Adventure and elective requirements! Download the Challenges: Lion, Tiger, Wolf, Bear, Webelos
Q: May parents sign off on Webelos and Arrow of Light requirements?
A: Yes, Through July 31, 2020, parents and other adults in the Cub Scout’s family, may sign off on Webelos and Arrow of Light requirements.
Q: If my den is behind in advancement due to COVID-19, can my Cub Scout continue to work on advancement through the summer?
A: Yes. Cub Scouts can continue to work on their current den’s advancement through July 31, 2020.
30-Day Scouts BSA Challenge!
Help your Scouts keep their skills sharp by doing merit badge requirements that can be worked on at home. Check with your Scoutmaster for approval before starting a new merit badge. Download the challenge
58 Merit Badges Scouts Can Complete at Home
In times of crisis, Scouts find a way to adapt. We’re hearing from Scouts and leaders across the country who have found creative ways to keep on Scouting even while practicing social distancing (staying home and remaining at least 6 feet from others if you must go out). (Continue reading at Bryan on Scouting). More info on a few of the at-home merit badges on this blog by Walter Underwood of our council.
Good Turns during the coronavirus: Acts of Scouting service you can do from home
With schools closed and many Scouting events on pause, how do you continue to “Do a Good Turn Daily”? By remembering that acts of Scouting service don’t have to stop because you’re at home practicing social distancing. “We don’t stop being Scouts just because our meetings are physically on hold,” says Leah Nehls, a volunteer from Ypsilanti, Mich. “We have plenty of opportunities to do good and be a positive impact in our communities during times when people are feeling scared or trapped in their houses.”
Here are some ideas for following the Scout Slogan in the time of the coronavirus.
Virtual Field Trips
There are many interesting web resources available for easy access including museums, the National Parks, and more. We found a great collection conveniently located all at one site: click here!
4 Fun Kits from the Scout Shop
ScoutShop.org website remains open and can ship products to your home. For information about advancement and award items, contact customer service at firstname.lastname@example.org. See the four kits here. (Periscope Wood Kit, Scout Spirit 6 Rocket Kit, Slime Time Science Kit, Tin Can Robot Kit)
31-day Cub Scout Lego Challenge!
Lego pulled some of our favorite things from Cub Scouts (like campfires, pinewood derby cars, and popcorn) and put them into a LEGO Challenge Calendar. It’s 31 awesome ideas for Cub Scout-themed LEGO creativity! After you print the Calendar, challenge your kids to be as creative as they can be with the Cub Scout LEGO prompts.!
Fun Projects for Kids You Can Do from Home
As public places, including many parks and campgrounds, are closing to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, you might be left scratching your head on what you and your kids can do. Plenty! (Continue reading at Bryan on Scouting)
For parents & leaders:
Use Scoutbook to Stay Connected and Keep AdvancingParents and unit leaders can enter and track Scouts’ progress on Scoutbook anytime, even from quarantine. If you are taking part in the 30-day challenge, brushing up on skills using Program Features, or working remotely as a troop on a common goal, be sure to enter progress in ScoutBook. ScoutBook is also a great tool for communicating with youth and parents and keeping everyone up to date with the latest news.
Online Troop Meetings
Thanks to online meeting apps like Zoom, Webex, and Google Hangouts, troops are still meeting together from their separate homes. Bryan on Scouting shares how Troop 98 in Pennsylvania has moved their meetings online and worked on the Public Health merit badge—a fitting choice.
Use Program Features Guide to Learn and Practice Skills
BSA’s Program Features guide include 48 topics to help plan troop activities, from camping and kayaking to first aid and fitness. Though you probably won’t be doing much sailing in your living room, you can always brush up on your sailing knots! Or, find a program feature that works in your circumstances and check out the videos and information here.
3 Tips for Commissioners During the Pandemic
In the last couple of days, our National office has offered a few suggestions on how to keep Scouting alive and well during this pandemic. But it’s not just the youth who need to keep on Scouting. As commissioners, we can do a lot to help adult Scouters hang in there if we just put our minds to it. We can help leaders think about ways to stay connected with their Scouts through online meetings. Find the three tips here.
BSA National Council resources
In the coming days, this web link will be updated with some of our favorite Scouting activities for each age group that can be done at home. Please check back regularly, and let your friends know that theses activities are a great option for at-home fun and learning for Scouting families and non-Scouting families alike. Click here!
Sheltered in Place and trying to pass the time? Now is a great opportunity to renew your YPT!
Hazardous Weather Training
Hazardous Weather training is also required for any direct-contact leader to be considered trained. It only has to be taken one time, although it’s not a bad idea to review it before any high adventure outings. It can also be taken at my.scouting.org or Hazardous Weather Training.
If you haven’t already taken the required courses for your Scouting Position, log on and get trained.
There are several required training opportunities available on-line.
1. Log onto: my.scouting.org
2. Click on “Menu”
3. Click on “My Training”
4. Select “YPT” if you need to update your Youth Protection Training (every 2 years)
5. For all other classes, go to “Training Center” and select the courses needed by program.
This way, you will be ready to hit the ground running when Shelter-at-Home restrictions are lifted.
A. Den Leader Training, -or-
B. Cub Master/Assn’t Cub Master Training, -or-
C. Pack Committee Training (Committee Chairman & Pack Committee)
Scoutmaster/Asst. Scoutmaster Position Specific
Hazardous Weather Training
Courses are available for Venturing and Sea Scout Programs as well as Expanded Learning Courses.
Let us share your Scouting on Social Media!
We know the shelter-in-place order is temporarily taking the “outing out of Scouting,” but some units are getting creative! Social Distancing just means physical separation. There are still ways to connect socially virtually! Some units holding meetings online via Zoom, while others are challenging Scouts with scavenger hunts using Goosechase. Don’t despair, there are options out there!
If your unit has found another clever way to keep the fun and learning going, please let us know. We will share on Facebook, Twitter, and our weekly Scouting News You Can Use. Keeping the Scouts engaged and feeling the normalcy of unit activities is helpful, so keep those ideas coming!
More Free Resources for Youth
Especially good for math and computing for all ages but other subjects at Secondary level. Note this uses the U.S. grade system, but it’s mostly common material.
Free to access 100s of courses, only pay to upgrade if you need a certificate in your name (accounts require users to be at least 14, but younger learners can use with a parent).
Free taster courses aimed at those considering Open University, but everyone can access it. Developed primarily for adults, but some courses, e.g., nature and environment, could well be of interest to young people.
Learn computer programming skills – fun and free.
Creative computer programming
All sorts of engaging educational videos
National Geographic Kids
Activities and quizzes for younger kids
Learn languages for free
Free science lessons
The Kids Should See This
Wide range of cool educational videos
YouTube videos on many subjects
Crash Course Kids
As above for a younger audience
Science awards you can complete from home
All kinds of making
Good for elementary school ages
Big History Project
Aimed at Secondary age, multi-disciplinary activities
The Artful Parent
Good, free art activities linked to from this Facebook page
Red Ted Art
Easy arts and crafts for little ones
The Imagination Tree
Creative art and craft activities for the very youngest
Educational online games