At last summer’s Cub Scout day camp, the boys each made a marble maze. Now when you have almost 200 boys attending day camp, there are two important things to remember when you’re thinking about crafts.
1. Any crafts that you make must be inexpensive
2. Avoid glue, if at all possible.
It can be HARD to find the kind of craft you want that doesn’t use glue! But we just don’t have the space to store 200 projects while the glue dries!
My friend, Beth, figured out a way to make these marble mazes inexpensively and without glue.
Making a marble maze is one of the requirements for the Bear elective adventure, Marble Madness. Requirement 4D is “make a marble maze.”
Marble Maze Supplies
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- Styrofoam containers
- Smoothie Straws (cut into various lengths that will fit in the bottom of the container)
- Chenille Stems (aka pipe cleaners)
- Pencil or pen
Marble Maze Construction
This really is a simple project, but you’ll want to make a sample maze prior to the meeting. Show the boys how the maze works.
Cut the containers apart. We’ll only use the lids for this project. Hang on to the other half for another craft coming soon!
You may want to have the boys lay out the straws to form their maze on the table before they begin. They can decide where the openings between the straws will be for each row.
Put the straw pieces for the first row in the container. Make sure your opening is big enough for the marble to roll through.
Use a pencil or pen to punch a small hole at each end of the straw pieces. The whole pencil doesn’t need to go through–just the point.
Thread a pipe cleaner through the straw so that the straw is in the middle of the pipe cleaner. You should have a length of pipe cleaner poking out from each end of the straw.
Note: Smoothie straws work better because they aren’t flexible and they are larger in diameter which makes it easier to thread the pipe cleaner through.
Push the pipe cleaner through the holes in the styrofoam. Twist the ends together in the back to secure the straw. If you’re working on a short piece of straw, you’ll probably have to trim off some of the pipe cleaner so that you don’t have to twist so many times.
Repeat this process with each row. Make sure you leave enough room between the rows for the marble to move. I put two of my rows too close together, and the marble wouldn’t roll correctly.
When all of your rows are complete, grab a marble and start playing!
Constellation Marble Maze
Our day camp theme was “Cub Wars,” a play on Star Wars, so everything was space related. Our marble mazes were no exception.
We turned them into constellation marble mazes by adding black cardstock and star stickers! Our marbles became spaceships exploring the galaxy.
If there are Tigers in your group, they can complete two requirements of the Sky is the Limit elective adventure by making a constellation marble maze. Those requirements are:
5. Draw and name your own constellation. Share your constellation with your den.
6. Create a homemade model of a constellation.
Simply have the Tigers draw out their constellation on the cardstock (pencil will show up) and put the star stickers along the outline. Put the cardstock in the bottom of the tray, and continue making your marble maze.
What other marble maze designs have your kids made?
Yours in Scouting,