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  • Cub Scout Lions

    I have seen cub scout lions for 5 year olds on this site a few times. Is this a BSA program or is it just being tested in a few places? My youngest son is only five but he wants to start cub scouts now after watching his older brothers get to do everything.

  • #2
    I asked this same question the other day. This is what I found on MeritBadgeDotOrg: http://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Lion_Cub_Scouts

    Wikipedia says "Lion Cub Scout, a kindergarten-age level in the Cub Scouting program of the Boy Scouts of America to be introduced in the 2014–2015 program year."

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    • #3
      I had always wondered about the Lion program. In our pack we always welcome younger siblings to come to den meetings and participate. There's been a few issues with siblings distracting the scouts or leader but in general it has worked out well.

      I have found that even in first grade some of our tigers are a little young for scouting but it's been a blast watching them grow up. I hadn't heard of a pilot pack and what their experiences were but I wondered how well it would work. It must have gone pretty well or they wouldn't have approved it. Too bad my son will be in Boy Scouts by the time it comes around. I'd like to see what the pack does.

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      • #4
        My youngest will turn 5 in 2014 but won't be in Kindergarten until 2015 (late birthday.) I haven't heard anything about our pack implementing this but it would definitely be interesting to see and I'd gladly sign him up as he also tags along to some den/pack meetings and loves them. I wish I could find more online on how it went for those who have already started it. Time to go nose around

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        • #5
          Our council (Northern Star) moved from the pilot phase of this program to full implementation last year. More than 75% of our packs have a Lion Cub Den. The program is very much like the old Tiger Cub program. There is one den meeting and one "Grand Adventure" (field trip) each month. At this time, Northern Star is the only council officially offering this program. I do not know if there are plans for a national implementation.

          More info: http://www.northernstarbsa.org/Youth.../LionCubs.aspx

          http://www.northernstarbsa.org/Forms...202012Info.pdf

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          • #6
            Originally posted by MichScouter View Post
            I have seen cub scout lions for 5 year olds on this site a few times. Is this a BSA program or is it just being tested in a few places? My youngest son is only five but he wants to start cub scouts now after watching his older brothers get to do everything.
            IMHO, this is a horrible idea. Just too young.

            Comment


            • Khaliela
              Khaliela commented
              Editing a comment
              It's not for the boys; it's for the parents. Far to many of them get sucked into the activity trap.

          • #7
            Originally posted by perdidochas View Post
            Originally posted by MichScouter View Post
            I have seen cub scout lions for 5 year olds on this site a few times. Is this a BSA program or is it just being tested in a few places? My youngest son is only five but he wants to start cub scouts now after watching his older brothers get to do everything.
            IMHO, this is a horrible idea. Just too young.
            Guess it all depends on the children too. For me it would be wonderful as it would give my younger son something to do since he's was introduced to scouting at 2 via his brother. On the other hand, I know some 5 year olds who would not be able to participate in something like this (without going into specifics, you just know they are too young.) But then again the same can be said about some Tiger cubs (I have a few that are very attached to their parents, wondering how it'll go this year as Wolves when most of the parents won't stick around.)

            Comment


            • jc2008
              jc2008 commented
              Editing a comment
              It all depends on the program. The Tiger program is different from the Wolf/Bear program which is different to the Webelos program which is different to the Boy Scout program. If the program is geared for kids those ages then I do not see the problem with it.

              According to meritbadge.org they are having 2 "den" meetings a month, one den meeting + one grand adventure (think go-see-it). They don't attend all pack meetings, just special ones and they aren't camping. Its basically the program taken down the levels it needs to be for kindergarten.

            • Faith
              Faith commented
              Editing a comment
              Agreed. I look forward to seeing if we'll take part in this in the coming years. I think it would be a big help in recruiting earlier on as someone else stated. We shall see!

          • #8
            Originally posted by infoscouter View Post
            Our council (Northern Star) moved from the pilot phase of this program to full implementation last year. More than 75% of our packs have a Lion Cub Den. The program is very much like the old Tiger Cub program. There is one den meeting and one "Grand Adventure" (field trip) each month. At this time, Northern Star is the only council officially offering this program. I do not know if there are plans for a national implementation.

            More info: http://www.northernstarbsa.org/Youth.../LionCubs.aspx

            http://www.northernstarbsa.org/Forms...202012Info.pdf
            Thanks for the information! Have you participated in it any specifically? Any significant issues you've run across so far? (Yes, I'm nosy.)

            Comment


            • infoscouter
              infoscouter commented
              Editing a comment
              We had our first successful Lion den last year, after a previous attempt which didn't 'gel'. I generally like the program. Its low key enough for five year olds, and the materials incorporate solid direction for parents on how to be involved with their son. Our Grand Adventures took awhile to take off, but I know of other packs who were more successful with them.

              We converted a parent to a Tiger leader for this year, who has committed to taking training, so I'd say it was a good start.

          • #9
            Originally posted by perdidochas View Post
            Originally posted by MichScouter View Post
            I have seen cub scout lions for 5 year olds on this site a few times. Is this a BSA program or is it just being tested in a few places? My youngest son is only five but he wants to start cub scouts now after watching his older brothers get to do everything.
            IMHO, this is a horrible idea. Just too young.
            I think it depends on the program. It has to be age appropriate. The lions might not meet as often or for as long. i already bring my yougest son to some events. I have taken him on hikes with the pack and he love pinewood derby. Last year at B&G I gave him a hiking patch. Of course I paid for it my self. He loved getting it. Our council does a haunted forest at one of the campsin October. He loved that. Candy, hay ride, crafts and a patch. He loved it.

            2014-2015 will be to late. He will be a Tiger cub by then.

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            • #10
              We had a Pre-K brother at most of our meetings last year, he had a blast, and when he was there, there was a parent plus his older (Scout) brother to help. I wish that I could sign him and his friends that are gung-ho for Scouts up in Kindergarten.

              If they launch Lions Nationwide, we might ACTUALLY have a useful Spring Round Up, because we can hit the Preschools and drum up interest. For us, it would let us recruit from Jewish Preschools before the boys float off into various schools, as a result, we find the kids at the Jewish schools, but not so much the regular Public Schools.

              I would think, Lions like Tigers were 10+ years ago, earn a special Lion Tag to wear on the Uniform when they graduate (like Arrow of Light comes over to Boy Scouts). Lions should get a bead/meeting, regardless of what they do. Tigers should get Arrow Heads for Electives instead of Beads that go away at the end of the year... now that Tigers earn the Bobcat, time to acknowledge that Cubbing is three years (Tiger/Wolf/Bear) instead of pretending that Tiger is really a different program, it's not anymore.

              Comment


              • #11
                Alex, where are you located? I'm a council JCoS chair and just happen to have a few Lion pilots still running in my territory, although my council isn't enthusiastic about this like the Minneapolis-St Paul Council. I know of at least one Jewish Lion cub next year (his brother is a Maccabee recipient). I may even create a religious "emblem" (temporary insignia patch) for him to earn.




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                • #12
                  Hollywood Florida.

                  Okay, Kindergarteners will create a problem for our structure, where for Den Meetings we meet as a Pack, do the opening ceremonies, then break into Dens. I can't have 5th and Kindergarteners together... I didn't have Webelos last year.

                  But from a recruiting point of view, a Lion Round Up of Pre-K should do awesome, I would think. People haven't committed to other activities yet in Pre-K, and most houses of Worship offer Pre-schools, so that seems to me like a more natural recruiting environment.

                  Also, with starting up a Girl Scout Troop as well, having the ages overlap would be a good thing. We want to do joint recruiting, so we can slide the girls in one direction and the boys in the other. The Girl Scouts start in Kindergarten, so this will help.
                  Last edited by Pack18Alex; 06-28-2013, 04:41 PM.

                  Comment


                  • #13
                    Another Northern Star Pack here. We tried heavily to get Lions the last three years going. First year was just the younger brother of another scout. The second year we had two Lions, one skipped out early, the other was from a family closely connected to our COR. This year, we had an actual recruiting class of seven new Lions at the start of the school year. We recruited a Den Leader, tried to do regular, once-monthly "Den Meetings", and moved the Pack Meetings earlier (6:30 rather then 7:00 start). But by the end of December, ended up with only two left (one was a younger sibling, the other was a closely-connected family).

                    This Fall, I hope to get another group (and maybe convince some of the no-shows to try again). Rather then recruit a new Den Leader from their parents, I'm going to get one of our returning parents to lead for the first half of the year. And no monthly Den Meetings in the evening, stick with the "Grand Adventures" theme and try something different.

                    Kids at this age vary widely as to what they can do. I have twin girls starting Kindergarten this fall, one is almost reading full books (and will, I'm sure, once we get her newly-perscribed glasses), the other has to be reminded to use words rather then grunts to communicate. Finding activities will be a challenge. All-age inclusive activities with older Cub Scouts are great for some (the siblings and the connected families), but very intimidating for many other scouts.

                    Comment


                    • #14
                      Wasn't Lion a rank for 11 year olds back in the day?
                      When WEBELOS was created, as I understand it, it was an acronym for the cub ranks Wolf Bear Lion Scout.
                      I know I read that someplace.... just don't remember where.

                      For the current Lion rank idea.....
                      Personally, I think it's an interesting idea mainly for younger siblings.... but I'm not sure I support it.
                      I'm worried about burn out. Think it might be better to focus on a high activity and high energy program for the older boys that can handle the really "fun" stuff.
                      Sort of thinking that a fun high speed mud run might be more fun than a slow paced marathon.

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                      • #15
                        According to the Tiger Book (or the Online Training), or Leader Guide, or something Tigers aren't part of the Pack... but they are no. There is no distinction between Tiger level and the traditional Cub level anymore, even though the Doodles/AOL Emblems show Tiger before Bobcat as a holdover from when Tiger was created as a mini level. However, Cubs has gone from a 9/10/11 year old program, to a 6-10 year old program, to adding 5 year olds (though we push the 11 year olds out to Boy Scouts, so its 5-10)... That's a BIG range.

                        But we're seeing changes, they eliminated the Tiger/Webelos Leader Knots, we're all Den Leaders now, so no more "row of Knots" for 5 years of your life.

                        Going younger is good, but you need to do something with Webelos. Kindergarteners and 5th Graders should not be really interacting.

                        One thought I would have is that Lion Dens are NOT invited to Pack meetings until AFTER Blue and Gold. They should get introduced to the Pack @ Blue and Gold, which should be as you are sending off the fifth graders. Low key Den-only events for the little boys seems like it might help.

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