Adventures in Science

Webelos_AoL Adventures in ScienceAdventures in Science,
a Webelos/Arrow of Light Elective Adventure

The Webelos and Arrow of Light Cub Scout Den Leader Guide says, “Taking part in this Webelos/Arrow of Light elective adventure will help Webelos understand and apply the role of fair investigations in science.  They will acquire and evaluate information using processes associated with science, such as experiments, observation, and note taking.”

Read on for this adventure’s requirements and links to posts that will help your Webelos complete Adventures in Science.

Requirements:

Complete Requirements 1-3.

  1. An experiment is a “fair test” to compare possible explanations. Draw a picture of a fair test that shows what you need to do to test a fertilizer’s effects on plant growth.
  2. Visit a museum, a college, a laboratory, an observatory, a zoo, an aquarium, or other facility that employs scientists. Prepare three questions ahead of time, and talk to a scientist about his or her work.
  3. Complete any four of the following:
  4. Carry out the experiment you designed for Requirement 1.
  5. If you completed 3a, carry out the experiment again but change the independent variable. Report what you learned about how changing the variable affected plant growth.
  6. Build a model solar system. Chart the distances between the planets so that the model is to scale. Use what you learned from this requirement to explain the value of making a model in science.
  7. With adult supervision, build and launch a model rocket. Use the rocket to design a fair test to answer a question about force or motion.
  8. Create two circuits of three light bulbs and a battery. Construct one as a series circuit and the other as a parallel circuit.
  9. Study the night sky. Sketch the appearance of the North Star (Polaris) and the Big Dipper (part of the Ursa Major constellation) over at least six hours (which may be spread over several nights). Describe what you observed, and explain the meaning of your observations.
  10. With adult assistance, explore safe chemical reactions with household materials. Using two substances, observe what happens when the amounts of the reactants are increased.
  11. Explore properties of motion on a playground. How does the weight of a person affect how fast they slide down a slide or how fast a swing moves? Design a fair test to answer one of those questions.
  12. Read a biography of a scientist. Tell your den leader or the other members of your den what the scientist is famous for and why his or her work is important.

How to Help Cub Scouts with the Genius of Play

genius-of-playThis post was sponsored by the Genius of Play.  As always, the opinions are my own.

Tell a boy that Cub Scouts will prepare him to “make ethical and moral choices”, and you’ll probably get a blank stare.  In his mind, Cub Scouting is a fun activity where he gets to play.

As adults, we sometimes forget that play has an important part in our child’s development. Many of the skills we want them to learn are easily taught through play.

Exactly how does playing help our kids?  The folks at the Genius of Play explain it and give us some cool activity ideas. Continue reading

17 Ideas for Planning Webelos and Arrow of Light Projects

In the pre-2015 Cub Scout program, the Webelos Craftsman activity badge was my favorite of all the activity badges.  The boys had opportunities to make very fun projects, and they learned valuable new skills in the process.

So, I was a little bummed when I realized that there wasn’t an equivalent adventure in the new Cub Scout program.  As I read through the requirements, I discovered that there are several Webelos/AoL elective adventures that have the boys building or creating something.

These Webelos/AoL projects take time to complete–especially if you pick a project that is a little more advanced.  However, don’t let that deter you from doing the fun projects that the boys really want to do.  Yes, a craft stick picture frame is much easier to make than a cool Pinewood Derby car display, but which one will the boys still have 6 months from now?  Which one will help him learn skills he doesn’t already have? Continue reading

Rocket Academy: Cub Scout Recruiting Event

rocket academyHosting a fun community event is a great way to introduce Cub Scouting to new families. It’s a way for kids to have fun while parents get information in a more relaxed environment than a traditional round up.  Last year, my pack hosted a geocaching event.

This year, we decided to do a Rocket Academy.  BSA has a great outline for a Rocket Academy, but I had something else in mind.  I envisioned having different stations with rocket-related activities.  Here’s how we planned and executed our Rocket Academy. Continue reading

How to Make Air Rockets

air rocketRecently, I told you about the awesome air rocket launcher I built.  Here are the instructions for the actual rocket that you’ll launch with your rocket launcher!  🙂

When the rocket lands, it may crumple a bit, but you can smooth it out and use it again.  We were able to shoot off a rocket about 10 or so times before the paper tore, and it had to be discarded.

If you don’t want to purchase rocket kits for the Webelos and Arrow of Light adventure, Adventures in Science, you can substitute these air rockets.  Your fair test can be to compare how high the rocket goes when you stomp really hard on the launcher to when you step on it gently.

Continue reading

How to Make an Air Rocket Launcher

air rocket launcher10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1…BLASTOFF! 

I was shocked at how high a simple paper rocket would go when propelled by a stomp on a soft drink bottle that is attached to PVC pipe!  As we were trying it out, the neighborhood kids (and a few adults) came over for their turn to launch a rocket.

Our pack is hosting a community “Rocket Academy” event as our round-up.  We’ll have several rocket activities that kids can do, and this will be one of them.

Building an air rocket launcher would make a great den activity.  Have all the supplies ready, and the boys can assemble it.  Discuss with them how the launcher works.  And make sure you leave time for them to launch a few rockets!  🙂 Continue reading