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  • Bobcat Badge Before Tiger

    I just wanted to ask what others thought of having the Tigers earn thier Bobcat before they can start earning Tiger Beads. Up? Down? What are your thoughts. Full disclosure: This type of memorization is very hard for my younger son, though I do see the value.

  • #2
    I am just starting the Wolf year, so I know what you mean about teaching the Tigers the Bobcat requirements. In general I think that it is good, because I think even the youngest need to know the same specifics. I think that the requirement should be that they earn Bobcat BEFORE Tiger (or any other rank), but I do think that they should be able to earn their Tiger paw and progress beads concurrently with earning their Bobcat. I think that the two things (Bobcat and rank progress) are very different from each other, and have no bearing on each other.
    On a side note, what I did with my Tigers was repetition, repetition, repetition. I found that the promise came realatively easy, maybe because it kind of has a rhythm to it. I found the Law of the Pack a little more difficult. How I did it with my boys was this:
    I showed by boys how your four fingers look different with the middle one being longer than the others. I started the law on the pinky finger, working towards the pointer finger. On the pinky is the line "the Cub Scout follows Akela", the ring finger is "The Cub Scout helps the pack go". The middle finger is the only line that does not start with 'the cub scout' that is why it is different. The middle finger is "The pack helps the cub scout grow", also we drew out the word "Grow" to differentiate it from "go". The the last line is the pointer finger with "the cub scout gives goodwill".
    Having the fingers to look at when saying the law gave them some where to start, and tended to remind them.
    It is tough, but they'll get it!
    Good luck!


    • #3
      I can see where you are coming from with this. IMO they do not have to have it memorized. For the most part they will be able to memorize most of the things.

      When we did this last year, we had the boys say the Promise and Law of the pack together. We also did one thing where each boy would have one line from the Promise and they would all have a part to say. This is also a good team building excersize.

      Hope that helps. If you do that you should have them ready to recieve their BobCat at the First Pack Meeting. Try making games of it and have fun. Don't forget to include anyother boys that are new Cubs. Bobcat is required for all ranks when they join scouting.

      Remember KISMIF



      • #4
        I think we shortsell them a bit. I know it is not typical, but it can be very easily done. My son learned them on the 15 minute drive to our first meeting.


        • #5
          It's a very appropriate first "award" done immdediately for every scout that joins.
          We made games out of it. The ADL brought the lines as cutouts printed very large. Everyone repeated together then we gave each boy a piece and lined them up and they each said their part. Then we mixed them up and they put them back together. This also helps with reading- you can read the lines they have if they can't read that well yet.
          there are also oodles of papers that make a game out of it so they get in other ways. Don't underestimate the boys. In 1st grade my son had to have learned- hail mary, our father, glory be and other prayers. you say them every night and everyone learns together.
          I also made little "wallet" sized cards with the Promise on one side and law of the pack on the other and laminated them. They had a quick reference.
          You open and close your meetings with these basics and it's one meeting with maybe another review beginning of the next. This is the basis to everything they'll learn. Teach them right away to come to attention when the sign is shown and they'll follow along.


          • #6
            Tigers DO have to earn their Bobcat FIRST, before they can be AWARDED their Tiger RANK AWARD BADGE. However, a Tiger (or any other brand new Cub Scout) CAN work on Rank badge requirements BEFORE he has earned his Bobcat. He can also be awarded his Instant Recognition Beads before earning Bobcat. The requirements only state he can not receive his RANK AWARD BADGE.

            He can not be awarded his Rank badge until AFTER he has been awarded his Bobcat badge. Similarly, he can work on Elective activities, but he can not be awarded his Elective beads (arrow points) until AFTER he has been awarded his Rank badge.

            Actually, the very first thing a Tiger can earn, and be awarded at his very first Pack meeting, is his Tiger Totem. To earn his Tiger Totem he must complete 3 Bobcat requirements - the Cub Scout Motto, Sign, and Salute. They can finish those in their very first Tiger den meeting!

            Earning the Bobcat is really not that hard, even for a beginning Tiger. They do NOT have to memorize everything. That is not how the requirements are written, and we are NOT to add to the requirements in any way.

            The only Bobcat requirement that could involve memorizing is in #1 - LEARN and say the Cub Scout Promise. The rest of the requirements specifically state SAY, SHOW, or GIVE, and then go on to state TELL what it means. For SAY, the boys can simply repeat it after Akela.

            Start your first Tiger den meeting with the Cub Scout Salute and repeating the Law of the Pack. Go on to the Cub Scout Sign and what it means. You will be using that one a LOT! Discuss what the various Bobcat requirements are, and what they mean to the Tigers. End your meeting with the Cub Scout Sign, a Living Circle, and the Cub Scout Motto and you are well on your way to Bobcat.

            I give each Tiger, and each Tiger Partner, an index card with the Promise and the Law on it. I laminate them with clear packing tape so they can stand up to use. This way they can practice them at home and they will also be handy to use in the den. Games help too. You can cut up two copies of the CS Promise and then have a relay race between two teams (Tigers vs Partners is fun) to see who can put it together correctly first. As others have said, repetition is the best thing. Incorporate parts in every opening and closing den ceremony. Every now and then ask them if they remember what something means. Use the Handshake every time you give them an award. There is no reason why (besides parents being slow to sign off on YP) that all new Scouts can not have earned Bobcat by the Oct Pack meeting. By the end of their first year, they should be old hands at all of it!


            • #7
              I'm glad others have had such success with the Bobcat badge at such a young age. I remember when this requirement came in and a lot of Cub Scouters I personally knew were very wary.


              • #8
                ScoutNut, thats what I always thought, but now I am not sure. My son's Wolf and Bear books say Bobcat must be earned before "any award or rank". I can't find my son's Tiger book to check. Sounds like another conflict of BSA information since the website only says rank. You do have a point about what it says when to award the Totem though.


                • #9
                  Pack 212,

                  The Bobcat before any rank requirement was instituted this past year. It wouldn't be in an older addition Tiger Cub book.


                  • #10
                    I think the Tiger becomming an actual rank was this past year. Prior to that, it was a badge that could be worn but not an official rank. The Tiger Cub program was brought into Cub Scouts as a seperate item from the "Pack" back in the late 80's if I recall correctly. They were associated with the Pack and the Pack provided a Tiger Cub Coach to assist the Tiger Cub group partners.

                    I think the BSA is trying to force the move of the Webelos from the diamond to the the oval patch by placing a spot for the Tiger. Like when they weeded out the Lion Scout badge from cubbing.

                    Just my opinion.

                    Rick(This message has been edited by ghermanno)


                    • #11
                      Actually, it was at least two years ago I think. My son was probably in the first year of the ranked Tiger program, 2006.(This message has been edited by pack212scouter)


                      • #12
                        The Tiger Cub rank (yes, an actual rank, not just a badge for show) started in 2001.

                        Earning Bobcat before Tiger became effective June 1, 2006.


                        • #13
                          As z Tiger leader last year, the biggest stumbling block to getting the boys through Bobcat was having the parents go over the child protection stuff. The kids all got their part down fine.

                          There's nothing that says the boys have to memorize anything. The closest it gets to that is that they have to "learn" the promise. As already pointed out, there is no requirement to withhold the Tiger Totem or beads, just the actual rank badge.


                          • #14
                            It's been said here already - you have to earn the Bobcat before you can earn any other rank badges. That said, remember that the standard is to do their best - not perfection. If you have a Cub who has a learning problem and has made progress and genuine effort then I see no problem with awarding them the Bobcat Badge based on the criteria that we are supposed to apply to Tigers and younger Cubs.