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Suggested Indoor Activities when Webelos visit Troop??

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Our troop holds a weekend camping event where we invite the Webelos IIs from the local packs to join us for the day. This is one of our primary activities where we attempt to "plant the seeds of interest" in the Webelos and their parents, so that they will want to crossover to our troop later in the year.

At the campout, we have several outdoor "Scout stations" where we either demonstrate some aspect of Scouting, and/or have the Webelos join in. These have worked well, and we have been able to keep the Webelos happy and active for the better part of the day.... as long as the weather cooperates.

Last year, it poured, and we quickly improvised some indoor activities, but ran out of ideas after about an hour or so. This year we want to have plenty of indoor things planned and ready, should we need them as a backup. But it's kinda tricky to think of Scout things (which can be presented indoors) that the Webelos haven't already encountered in some form as Cubs.

Sure, we can have a slide show of troop events. Someone can talk about High Adventure activities they've attended. Someone can talk about summer camp, etc. But we'd like to give the Webelos a hands-on chance to "get a taste" of what's ahead of them in Scouts, not just talk.

Doing this outdoors is easy. Indoors is more limiting. Anyone else faced this? Any suggestions? Thanks.


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How about some knot tying and building stuff. Simple things like a camp stool or maybe a competition of some kind.


What's your Troop's favorite indoor game? Our's is Broom Ball. Kind of like hockey with a ball and brooms. The guys teach this game to every Webelos group.


Make scarf slides. Make them something unique to the campout.


What kinds of things does the Troop usually do when it is raining. Just take those and scale them for Webelos.

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ScoutNut -

Good ideas. We were already looking into building something (lashing skills) but scaled down suitably for indoors. Knot tying is under consideration as well, as long as we don't go over Cub knots, and can demonstrate that the knots have a practical use. Making scarf slides is an interesting one.


Indoor games like you suggested are impossible due to limited size of the cabin at the campsite.


As far as what does our troop usually do when it rains? Well, if it just involves the troop, we just cancel the activity. Otherwise we muddle through as best as we can. It's hard enough just trying to coordinate and support a primary activity, let alone a backup that in most cases would not be used.

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Knots are always good, even Cub knots!


Instead of putting on a show and tell, why dont you just do what you would normally do and let the Webelos join in? Just be careful to plan activities that are appropriate for the younger boys?


When I visit a troop with our Webelos I like to see what normally happens within the troop that we are visiting. I dont want to see a highly planned and orchestrated Webelos Welcome Wagon because it is not indicative of the normal and routine troop activity/interaction.



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As a Webelo Leader I would know my boys would not like a repeat of anything they learned in Cubs. But would be fascinated by anything that is Boy Scout specific. Camp cooking, Rank and Organizational info (Kind of a short BSA- 101 course in how a Troop works, patrols, patrol leaders etc.) Merit Badge choices, Order of the Arrow.


It is not really Webelos Welcom wagon, but is more true to the goals of your outing to show/see the difference between Cubs and Boy scouts.

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Try fire building skills. No, don't light them unless you have a fireplace in the cabin. Teach them the difference between tender, kindling and larger fuel. Teach them different fire lays and starting techniques.


Show them how to pack a backpack and have them set up some small free standing tents. Show them how to seal seams and some basic tent repair skills.


How about a demo of different sleeping bag and pad types and how to sleep warm in cold weather.


These are all things they will need to know and will assist them in equipment selection before an over ambitious parent goes out and buys Johnny an 8'x10' tent and a 25 lbs flannel bag before a winter hiking trip.


The presentations can be made fun and even done as a competition.

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  • 3 weeks later...


I just wanted to add a couple of comments since I just arranged two visits to two different Troops for my Webelos.


A. Ask the Troop to mention the upcoming visit to the Patrol leaders or all the Boy Scouts so they know younger boys are coming. The second Troop we visited didn't know why the Webelos were there and ignored them for quite awhile.

B. Ask the Boy Scouts not to refer to them as little boys or anything similar. One of the Troops we visited was a great, very active Troop, but our Webelos were turned off because they treated them like little kids. My Webelos were much younger than most of them, but they hated being treated like babies.

C. Tell the Boys Scouts not to assume they can't tie knots or know nothing about camping. The boys in that troop wanted to impress them with camping skills and never asked what our experiences were.


I really wish I'd made those arrangements ahead of time because it was a troop that I hoped the boys would be most interested in. It ended up they loved the other Troop because those boys spent time teaching them the structure of Boy Scouting and the Scout Oath and then played hide & seek. It is a VERY small troop, but they acted like they like my boys and that's all it took for them to feel like they belonged.


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I liked louie6000's idea about showing the Webelos the ropes on rank and Troop structure. I have been on Troop committee's almost a year and I am still trying to figure them all out.


I also like the lashing/knot suggestions.


One more that may/may not be good is First Aid. No matter what rank a Scout is, they can always use some better first aid skills!



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In my area there are over ten troops within a five mile radius. When we "recruit" Webelos our emphasis is not only to introduce them to Boy Scout activities in general but to show them the particular merits of our troop. In your area, the real recuitment aspect may just be to convince the boys (and their families) to continue on to Boy Scouts and not necessarily sell your individual troop. Depending on your goals, your activities would vary.


From a Webelos perspective, I would caution one to judge a troop by the "special" activity the troop may be doing for the Webelos visit. As a Webelos Den Leader, I would talk to the Troop adult leadership and mention that I and the boys would like to drop in in the December - January time frame for a troop meeting and then drop in unannouced to see what a "real" troop meeting is like.


From a troops perspective, I would not try an tailor a meeting for the Webelos. Run the best troop meetings you can and that should sell itself.

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We recently had serval Webelos visit, after starting with a flag ceremony they Webelos then were taken to several different stations byt the SPL 1st was Dutch oven cooking we had a Star scout supervise and let the Webelos dump the ingredients in the D.O.

2nd was a 1st aid station where some Webelos had wounds put on them with sticks and bones sticking out of their arm and had the other Webelos dressed the wounds.

3rd they would visit a station theat showed kayacks that were made by the scouts.

4. Knots and then a team bulding game

5. Scoutmaster would talk to them, and then a closing and they got to taste the cobler that the Webelos made.

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I like Acco40's anwer a lot. Although I see the thought process behind putting on a "special show" to impress the potential members, what happens when they see your week-to-week program?


Your troop meetings are hopefully well prepared and fun anyway. I am all for showing the Webelos what they can honestly expect each and every week when they join the troop.


The one addition I would make is a parent orientation, to let the adults ask questions and to inform them what membership in the troop entails.


Bob White

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