From the 1994 Indian Nations
"The Greatest Show on Earth"
to have fun! The playing of games is an extremely easy and fulfilling
way to have fun.
Cub Scouting is fun. It
is one endless game where the Cub Scout learns new skills, enlarges on
known skills, and can see more clearly his place in the world around him.
Games can accomplish a large scale of activities and convey more than
skill improvement. They can encourage thought, promote team spirit, build
citizenship, develop one's own mind and body, and be an outlet for excess
- Lessons without teachers
- Body builders
- Mind stretchers
- Friend makers
- Building blocks
- Most of all games are
- Learns new skills
- Develops new interests
- Learns to follow the
- Learns fair play
- Learns to wait his turn
- Is taught respect for
the rights of others
Cubs like games in which
there is a sizeable element of luck. They do not require prizes, nor do
they seem to worry if the game is not finished. They like games which
restart almost automatically, so that everyone is given a new chance.
Cubs like games whereby they gain the reassurance that comes with repetition.
Remember, the success of
a game period depends greatly upon leadership. A leader can challenge
and persuade the shy Cub Scout and channel the energy of the "showoff",
making Den and Pack meetings fun for all.
- Know and understand the
- Be prepared to teach
- Take into consideration:
Abilities of the participants
* KISMIF - Keep it simple
make it fun. Give it full attention; practice to make it work; then evaluate
to make sure it is right.
- Know the game well and
the area needed before teaching it. Have all the necessary equipment
- Remove all possible hazards
from the game area.
- Have the full attention
of the group before trying to explain the rules of the game.
- To introduce the game,
name it, demonstrate it, ask for questions, then start it.
- Always insist on fair
- If a game is going badly,
stop it, explain it again, then try the game once more.
- Play, but don't overplay
a game. A successful game will be more in demand if it is stopped while
it is still being enjoyed.
- Be alert to overexertion.
The games picked for a
pack meeting should be fun to play and fun to watch. They should promote
good sportsmanship, and hopefully tie into the monthly theme.
A multi-station relay can
easily accomplish all of these. For instance, if the theme were space,
the stations could be... spin around Saturn... drink Tang from a big dipper...
eat a cracker and whistle "When You Wish Upon A Star"... shoot the moon,
etc. In between stations, the participants could walk as if weightless.
This type of relay can easily be adapted to any theme. Ride a broom horse
between cowboy and Indian stations, or walk like Frankenstein between
Games that are fun to play
and fun for the pack to watch can be designed with just a little bit of
innovation. Everyone should be able to participate. Don't just pick one
or two boys from each den. Be sure to get parents involved. The Cubs will
love watching their parents playing a game.
One of the most important
aspects of keeping a pack healthy is to make the new families feel welcome.
This is true in all packs, but it is especially true in large active packs.
Often it is intimidating for new people to come into a group where everyone
knows each other. There are many ways to make new families feel welcome
and playing an icebreaker game is an especially good way. Icebreaker games
are fun and a good way to get people to meet each other. Icebreakers can
be found in "Group Meeting Sparklers" and the " How To Book"
available at the Scout Shop; however, designing an icebreaker for a theme
is easy. For example, if the theme were patriotic, choose four patriotic
songs. Have a slip of paper with the name of one of the written on it
for each person attending the pack meeting. Hand these slips of paper
to each person as they walk in the door and have them find the others
that have their matching song. As an opening, each group could sing their
song. One person from each group could also introduce a person they didn't
Den games are designed
with a small group of boys in mind. Quiet games are helpful when weather
prohibits outdoor activities. Den games can be relays or can be played
by individual boys.
An active den game is a
helpful start at den meeting to "get the kinks out". This is especially
true for Den meetings that are held immediately after school. The boys
have been cooped up for several hours and starting with an active den
game can provide an outlet for letting off steam and may make the group
easier to handle for the quieter activities later in the meeting.
Choosing up sides among
the boys is not always easy. If there is a problem boy who is not well
liked by all members, drawing straws, going in alphabetical order, or
selecting two captains to chose alternately may be fair ways to select
Remember...games can be
used to teach fair play, promote good sportsmanship and build character...,
but most of all, they should be fun.
There are many types of
games. Games can be quiet or they can be active. They can depend on chance
or they can take skill, speed or strength. There are games for one or
two persons, and games for groups of any size. Some games provide for
relaxation and amusement and some stimulation through physical or mental
Play is unrestricted but
games have rules. In each game there is a contest.
Here are several types
of games with examples of each:
Materials: Basketball, volleyball
or sport ball
Something to mark bases
You can have a den ball
game even if the meeting place is a small backyard or a tiny area of a
park. Hand baseball can be played in an area as small as 50' x 75'. Play
it like baseball except that:
Bases are about 35' apart
Pitching distance is about
A basketball, volleyball
or sport ball is used, and the batter hits it with fist or open hand
The pitcher pitches underhand
A base runner may be put
out by hitting him with the ball
Divide the boys into two teams
and give each team 10 sticks about 10 inches long. The sticks are placed
about 10 inches apart like the rungs of a ladder. On signal the first boy
in each team hops on one foot over all 10 sticks. He then reaches down and
picks up the 10th stick and hops back over the other 9 to his team. The
second boy then begins, hopping over the 9 sticks, picking up the 9th nd
returning. Continue until all have raced. The last boy in line hops over
all remaining sticks and then picks up all of them as he hops back to the
finish line. If a player steps on any stick, he must start over from the
starting line. First team through wins.
Everyone stands in a circle.
The first player begins by saying "Pioneer went to sleep." The rest of the
group answers "How did Pioneer got to sleep?" The leader then says "Pioneer
went to sleep like this, like this," repeating a small gesture such as nodding
the head or twisting the wrist. The rest of the group mimics the gesture
and answers "like this, like this." The entire group continues to repeat
the gesture as the next boy in line says "Pioneer went to sleep," and others
respond as before. The second boy adds another gesture to the first, so
that now there are two movements to keep going. The game continues around
the circle, each player adding a gesture. By the end of the game, the entire
group should be a foot-wiggling, eye-blinking, head-shaking, nose-twitching
mess. Try to add as many gestures as possible before the game totally falls
apart. Since it is difficult to do more than ten gestures at once, you may
not get everyone in the group, but the challenge is to see how far you do
get. Start off slowly with small things, such as toes and fingers, and work
up to the bigger things, such as arms and legs.
Materials: Cardboard letters
This game is played with
cardboard letters printed on one side. Boxes containing such letters can
be bought, but it is easy to print them, and cut them out. There should
be cards for each letter of the alphabet, about six for the letters most
commonly used, like A, B, C, D, E, M, P, R, S and T, and only one for
such letters as J, X, Y and Z.
These cards are placed,
letters down, on the table. Each boy draws one. The one who draws the
letter nearest to A plays first. Putting all the letters back, the first
player draws a letter and lays it down, face up, on the table. The player
to his left does the same. As soon as any player can make a word out of
one of his own letters, and the letters laid down by the others, he picks
up all these cards and places them on the table before him. For example,
the first player lays down the letter O, and the second player draws the
letter S, the second makes the word "so". Any word may be taken from any
player by another player who draws a letter which will make a longer word
out of it. If the third player draws the letter B, he can make "sob" out
of "so",and should take these letters to make this word. The one who can
make ten words first, wins.
The prize goes to the quietest
team in this game. Set up two chairs about seven feet apart. These are the
sentry posts and two blindfolded players are seated in them, facing each
other. The other players divide into two teams. At signal from the leader,
the first player in each line sneaks forward on tiptoe and tries to pass
between the two sentries without a sound. If either sentry hears anything,
he calls out and points in the direction from which the sound came. If he's
right, the player is "captured" and out of the game. If he points in the
wrong direction, the player sneaks ahead. Each team goes through just once.
The winner is the team that gets the most players past the sentries.
Each player receives paper
and pencil. One die is used. Players in turn throw the die. Each side of
the die represents one part of the bug. Players draw parts of the body as
they roll die.
Directions for play:
1 One makes the body. Player
must throw a 1 before he can make other parts of his "bug."
2 Two is the head.
3 Feelers are 3's. Bug
4 Legs are 4's. Bug has
5 Eyes and mouth are 5's.
Bug has 2 eyes, 1 mouth.
6 Tail is 6.
Winner is player who finishes
Materials: 3 pans of different
6 ping pong balls
Find three pans of different
sizes which will fit one inside the other and still allow some space between
the rims. Label each pan some value from 5 to 25.
Bounce the ping pong balls
so they will hop into the pans. Score according to points allotted to
Drop three clothespins into
a bottle from an erect kneeling position on a chair seat. Pin must be held
at eye level. Score one point for each pin dropped in the bottle.
Toss bottle tops onto a large
numbered calendar page, laid flat 5 feet from the player. Score by adding
the dates on which the bottle tops come to rest.
All players stand on one line
except one player who is it. "It" stands with his back to the other players
on a goal line about 30 to 35 feet from the starting line. "It" counts to
ten as fast and as clearly as he can. While he is counting, the other players
advance as fast as they can by putting one foot directly in front of the
other (heel, toe, heel, toe). At the count of ten, "It" turns around. Everyone
freezes. If someone moves he starts all over again. The first player across
the goal line wins and becomes the next "it".
The boys stand in a circle
with the "Wolf" in the center. Boys call "Wolf, Wolf, are you ready?" Wolf
answers "No, I'm putting on my shoe" and pantomimes putting on his shoes.
The other imitate him. Again they ask "Wolf, Wolf, are you ready" and he
replies that he is putting on his coat, tie, hat, etc. each time pantomiming
putting on the item, while all follow suit. Whenever he wishes, the Wolf
answers with "Yes, I'm ready, and here I come". The players rush to a goal
line and the Wolf tries to tag them. If any player is tagged, he becomes
All players but one stand behind
a line. "IT" stands midway between the line and a goal line thirty feet
away. He shouts "Fish in the ocean, fish in the sea; don't get the notion
you'll get by me." The fish leave their line and try to cross the goal line
without being tagged. Players who are tagged join "IT" and help catch others.
Materials: 2 jars with screw
2 pair large mittens
Each team has a pair of
large mittens. At a goal line is a jar, one for each team, containing
five toothpicks. On signal, the first person from each team races to the
goal line, puts on the gloves, removes the lid, empties the jar, picks
up the toothpicks and puts them back in the jar and screws on the lid.
He takes off the mittens and races back to hand them to the next player,
who repeats the action.
The object of this game is
to carry a lit candle through an obstacle course. Make sure the base of
the candle has a holder so the hot wax won't drip on the boys' hands. The
candle must be passed from boy to boy through the course. Each boy will
have a section of the course to covsimilar ball. Play regular basketball