The scouting program has always been a big deal in my family. Both of my boys are in it. My grandpa was a very active member in the scouting program and I was even a den mother for a couple of years. I always love how my boys can learn some of the most basic, yet important life skills in a fun way, through the scouting program.
This conversation was started on behalf of the Boy Scouts of America. All opinions are my own.
When I was a den mother with the Boy Scouts of America, I got to teach my little Wolves and Bears all sorts of fun things. Some of the things we learned about were the proper way to handle pocket knives, then they got to whittle bars of soap. We also learned about different types of weather and then made weather vanes. We talked about budgets and grocery shopping, swimming, sports, marbles, first aid and even video games. There are tons of merit badges and belt loops that they can earn while learning skills that are important and interesting to them. Our troop even participates every summer in day camp, which the boys absolutely love.
One of the most exciting events in cub scouts is the Pinewood derby. The boys love participating in the Pinewood derby. The derby car comes as a block of wood, 4 wheels and 4 nails in a box. What it transforms into is all a product of imagination, work and a little science. There are always very informative videos on tips and tricks to how you can create the fastest car. This year, we watched a video on Youtube from a NASA engineer who talked all about the science behind how to make the fastest car.
Since the Pinewood derby is sending a car down a track using gravity, you need to be able to find creative ways to make the car the fastest. His tips were all about how to reduce friction and increase the cars speed. Things like using 3 wheels instead of 4. Bending the nails that hold the wheels on and using graphite as a lubricant. I would recommend searching YouTube for fun tips and get the boys involved.
The boys always get really excited to show off their cars and see everyone else’s. We had a car show once before the race where the boys displayed their cars for everyone to look at and comment on who they thought will be the fastest. At the end of the race, we had first, second and third place winners that each got a certificate for the fastest cars. Being able to comment on other’s cars, participate and cheer on the other racers always encourages good sportsmanship.
For my oldest son’s first Pinewood Derby, he decided that he wanted his car to look like a Batmobile. With a lot of time and innovation, my husband and son were able to create the coolest looking Batmobile. It may not have been the fastest, but it was sure the coolest looking Pinewood Derby car there that year. Even though it did not win, whenever we talk about past Pinewood Derbys, the children always talk about the year dad and Rennon made the cool Bat Mobile.
The Scouting program extends to older boys as they grow to teach them life skills that they need to know. The older boys learn about cooking, fire starting, camping, fishing and many other skills. The scouts often do service projects around their neighborhoods to learn to be service oriented. I love the skills, comradeship, lessons and hard work that the Scouting program teaches my boys. I love that they encourage the parents to be involved too. That is why I’m a Scouting mom.