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Cub Scout Bobcat Cootie Catcher

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Step-by-step instructions on how to make a cootie catcher (aka fortune teller)! Personalized for Cub Scouts, this is a fun gathering activity.


Do you remember cootie catchers? Some of you may know them as fortune tellers. I used to love those things! I remember playing with my oldest friend, Susan, when we attended Brandon Elementary School. So fun!

What is a Cootie Catcher?

It has many names–Fortune Teller, Chatterbox, Salt Cellar, and Whirlybird for example–though they all generally refer to the same thing: an origami-like object made from folding a piece of paper that's used in kids' games.

After the paper is folded, kids label parts with numbers or colors. They also write messages inside the flaps.

One of the children would manipulate the cootie catcher based on the player's choices until one of the messages is revealed.

completed fortune teller

If you were telling fortunes, the message would supposedly tell your fortune.

Here are some of the types of messages you might find.

  • You will make an A on the test.
  • You will be rich when you grow up.
  • You will kiss Troy.
  • You will be invited to a party soon.

If the player must do an activity, you might see these options.

  • Do a silly dance.
  • Talk with your tongue sticking out.
  • Do 10 pushups.
  • Tell a joke.

Cootie catchers have been around for years and years. This article on Mental Floss has a fascinating history of fortune tellers.

Back in the day (and I'm not going to say how long ago that day was! HA!), we used these for fun. Now, cootie catchers are being used as learning tools. If you search for “cootie catchers” on Pinterest, you'll find them for math, reading comprehension, an author's purpose, the Bill of Rights, the scientific method, writing prompts and more.

You can even find a few Cub Scout Bobcat cootie catchers on Pinterest. Unfortunately, most of the websites that had them have been shut down. The one or two that I found were based on the old Cub Scout program, so they had options like the Cub Scout Promise and the Law of the Pack.

So, I decided to create a new version to share with you! This Cub Scout Bobcat Cootie Catcher includes the current requirements for the Bobcat rank. Here are the “tasks” that the Scouts will do to help them earn their Bobcat rank.

  • Say any part of the Scout Oath that you remember
  • Say two points of the Scout Law
  • Say the Cub Scout Motto
  • Show the Cub Scout Sign
  • Show the Cub Scout Salute
  • Show the Cub Scout Handshake
  • Say your pack number
  • Say your den number

At first, I couldn't quite figure out what tasks I should include regarding the Oath and Law because Cub Scouts don't have to memorize them until they're working on their Arrow of Light. I decided on “say any part of the Scout Oath that you remember” and “Say two points of the Scout Law.” If you have another suggestion for these, please leave me a comment below.

Even after the Scouts earn their Bobcat badge, they can still use the fortune teller to practice their Cub Scout knowledge–especially the Scout Oath and Law. When they cross over to Scouts BSA, they'll be saying the Oath and Law a lot!

completed cootie catcher

After I originally published this post, several of you asked for a version that you could personalize, so I modified the original one to make a Cub Scout cootie catcher template.

The images of the badges and the numbers are still on the Cub Scout cootie catcher template.  All you need to do is write in the questions you want to include.  There are 8 spots.  If you don't have 8 things, include some silly questions like these:

  1. Plants or zombies?
  2. Best superhero power
  3. Hans Solo or Darth Vader?
  4. Best Pokemon
  5. Coolest thing you've ever made from Lego pieces

You can download the version of the fortune tellers that I created by entering your email below.

Cootie Catcher Instructions

  1. Download and print the Bobcat Cootie Catcher. Cut out the catcher.
  2. Start with the printed side of the paper facing down.
  3. Fold it in half to form a triangle.
  4. Unfold the paper, and fold it in a triangle again, matching the opposite corners this time.
  5. Unfold the paper so that you see a X made from the fold lines.
  6. Fold each corner into the center. You should see the rank badges.
  7. Flip the paper over, and fold the corners into the center again.
  8. Flip the paper over again. The rank badge images should be facing up.
  9. Fold the paper in half so that it becomes a rectangle.
  10. Unfold the paper, and fold it in half again along the opposite center line.
  11. Slip your fingers into the flaps, and you're ready to play!

How to Play Bobcat Cootie Catcher

  1. Scout 1 picks a rank.
  2. Scout 2 opens the catcher up and down and sideto side as they spells that rank.
  3. Scout 2 shows the inside of the catcher to Scout 1who selects one of the numbers.
  4. Scout 2 opens the catcher that number of times.
  5. Scout 1 selects a number from those shown.
  6. Scout 2 opens the flap and reads the instruction to Scout 1.

The instructions on how to fold the cootie catcher and how to play cootie catcher on the printables. The packet you can download below includes the Bobcat version, a Cub Scout version that you can personalize, and a folding instruction sheet.

Get your Cub Scout Cootie Catcher Printables

Enter your email to get your Get your Cub Scout Cootie Catcher Printables

If you don't get an email within 10 minutes, check your spam folder. If it isn't there, let me know at [email protected].

By entering your email, you'll also get lots of other Cub Scout tips and tricks in my weekly email.

Scouts can make the Cub Scout Bobcat fortune tellers together as a den activity or individually as a gathering activity. They can take them home and play with a parent or sibling to practice their Bobcat knowledge.

Make several of these to keep in your den bucket as a backup activity. It's always good to have a backup in case your den plans take less time than you expected.

What do you think?  Will the Cub Scout Bobcat Cootie Catcher be helpful for your Cub Scouts?

Yield: 1 Cootie Catcher

How to Make a Cub Scout Bobcat Cootie Catcher

Cootie Catcher

How to Make a Cub Scout Bobcat Cootie Catcher

Prep Time 5 minutes
Active Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Difficulty Easy
Estimated Cost .50

Materials

  • Paper

Tools

  • Scissors

Instructions

    1. Download and print the Bobcat Cootie Catcher. Cut out the catcher. fortune teller folding step 1
    2. Start with the printed side of the paper facing down. folding cootie catchers step 2
    3. Fold it in half to form a triangle. fortune teller step 3
    4. Unfold the paper, and fold it in a triangle again, matching the opposite corners this time. cootie catcher step 5
    5. Unfold the paper so that you see a X made from the fold lines. step 4 of folding fortune tellers
    6. Fold each corner into the center. You should see the rank badges. cootie catcher step 6
      folding cootie catchers step 7
      folding fortune tellers step 8
      fortune tellers step 9
    7. Flip the paper over, and fold the corners into the center again. folding fortune tellers step 11
      cootie catcher directions step 12
      step 13 cootie catcher folding
      fortune teller folding step 14
    8. Flip the paper over again. The rank badge images should be facing up.fortune tellers step 9
    9. Fold the paper in half so that it becomes a rectangle. cootie catcher instructions step 16
    10. Unfold the paper, and fold it in half again along the opposite center line. how to fold a cootie catcher step 18
    11. Slip your fingers into the flaps, and you're ready to play! completed cootie catcher

Yours in Scouting,
Sherry

P.S.  If you looking for more activities that will help Cub Scouts learn the Bobcat requirements, you'll find them by clicking here.

how to make a cub scout cootie catcher
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