Our first den meeting for this geography badge was Pirate Day.
Gathering. I had a few maps of our town and neighborhood and they had to find their house. The neighborhood one was the most useful because with only 100 houses, they could all find their houses easily. The city map blew them away it was so big although some of the boys had a good time looking at it and finding large things like the high school and fair grounds. Then they started their pirate map. I had made a den map example with my house and each boy's house marked. Their assignment was to make a map showing how to get to den meeting.
Cub Scout maps often don't look much like maps. To make it funner we did pirate maps.
I provided brown crinkly paper: brown water color wash, crumble (this makes it hard to write on perhaps skip this unless you are willing to iron the paper flat again) , burn edges.
I provided a stencil of our neighborhood to help because last time we did maps the boys struggled so much. The blocks of houses looked like islands on our pirate maps. The boys liked the map stencils a lot, it made this so much easier for them. One creative scout colored the streets blue to look like rivers. He marked each scout's home with an initial. To finish I encouraged them to draw a compass rose and legend, although not all of them did. We did find them on real maps and discussed them.
Last we played with an iPad compass and learned how to use it to locate our very own pirate treasure!
Den Meeting #2
Snack Day (snacks are an optional requirement, but of course do this one if you have time!)
For our second den meeting we had a snack potluck party.
For the gathering we figured out where each snack had come from and located it on Google earth. We talked about which ones were from far away and which ones were close to home.
Activity #1 we played Compass Eye Spy. One scout would leave the room and the others would choose an object. Then when the other scout came back we told him what direction to face to look for it using the compass directions.
Activity #2 we played a "Life Size Map" game. This is an old family birthday party favorite that I added to the den meeting to get the boys playing together and hungry for their snacks. I give the boys a starting and ending point for their map pathway and they have to build it using objects from my garage. However they are not allowed to touch the grass. They must stay on their path hopping from object to object at all times as they go back and forth from the garage to the end of their path! I have two teams building a path at a time to see who can make the most creative path the quickest. Below you see the path they had to build and pictures of things in my garage. I watch in the garage to make sure they get appropriate items and the other leader watches the paths to make sure they stay on their path and don't walk on the grass to add new stepping stones! Sometimes I add things to my garage in advance to help get them started.
|starting at my driveway ending at the playhouse in the back yard.|
|about one third of the way there.|
|jackets, sports bag, toy boxes, and pails|
here are some stepping stones the boys could have located in my garage.
|a bike on its side could be used this would be hard, but a long stepping stone|
|a camping chair could be a stepping stone or the life jackets underneath it|
|they could use the cooler for a stepping stone if they sat on it to get across it.|
|the red blanket is a super easy stepping stone|
|lots of cardboard and plywood work well too.|