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Baloo's Bugle


March 2004 Cub Scout Roundtable Issue

Volume 10, Issue 8
April 2004 Theme

Theme: Cubservation
Webelos: Family Member & Sportsman
  Tiger Cub: Our Colorful World and Conservation



Things to discuss when it comes to saving resources...

Circle Ten Council

Recycling - When an object can be shredded, melted or otherwise processed and then turned into new raw material -- for instance, aluminum cans can be melted down to make more cans, glass can make more glass, cardboard and paper make more cardboard and paper, plastic bags and containers can be turned into other plastic products. This takes some energy (very little for aluminum), but it is a good choice.

Reusing  - When you find a use for an existing item - like decorating a bag and using it as a gift bag instead of buying wrapping paper; putting leftovers into a clean container from some other food; turning a used box into storage; decorating a can to hold pencils; saving packing peanuts and boxes and using them the next time you need to ship something or give a gift.

It is important to 'reuse' items wisely -- reusing packing peanuts to pack an item is by far the best way to use them. Recycling them, if it is available, would be the next best thing. Giving things in good condition that you no longer need to charity is another good way to reuse things like outgrown clothing or toys. Reusing is often the best way to save resources. This is something to consider year-round, not just around the winter holidays.

Shop Wisely  - Can the container be easily recycled or reused? Will a larger container reduce the amount of packaging and perhaps cost less per serving? Is everything that can be recycled being recycled?  Save resources (and money) by asking yourself if the item is something you really need, and if it is well suited for the task, and if it will last. Not only can this save you money, it can save you space and work, too. Five toys that are loved and played with are more fun than 10 toys that are broken or are boring to play with. And it's quicker to pick up 5 toys and put them away than to pick up 10.

After discussing ways to recycle do the following activities:

ü       Divide den into two teams. Open up a mystery trash bag at each table and identify which things can be recycled. Lift up the bag again and feel how much lighter it is when people take things out of the trash, which can be recycled

ü       Give the boys a pencil and paper. Tell them they are going to examine a specific tree.
Use the following procedure:
Ask them to use their senses to make observations about the tree. (Provide them time to do this silently, then discuss in the den)

ü       Have them touch and smell the tree.
Ask them to close their eyes and listen for sounds associated with the tree.
Next, have them look for signs of who or what uses the tree, and then discuss their observations.
Ask: "What could hurt the tree? How? Why?"
Pose the following "What if" questions for them to consider:
What if this tree (or all the trees in our community) were gone? What would be good/bad/interesting about that?
What if the birds that use this tree went away? What will be good/bad/interesting about that?
What if lots of trees were planted on the school grounds? What would be good/bad/interesting about that?
Ask: "Whose job is it to care for the tree? Why?"
This activity was adapted from a lesson written by: Phyllis Youngberg, a teacher at Burnt Mills Elementary School.

ü       When the weather is pleasant, ask the boys to go outside to sit and observe the area around them. They are to use their senses to observe other things in nature (sky, ground, plants, birds, etc.) Have them take a pencil and/ or crayons and paper and:
Draw a picture of themselves outside.
Draw their observations.
Draw or write about their feelings about nature. (Provide ample time for this.)
When the boys return inside, provide time, if needed, to complete their work. Then have them share their work. Use the opportunity to discuss the importance of taking care of all things that are provided by the Earth.

Conservation Projects

Longhorn Council

Whenever we take the boys out of doors, we need to be conservation minded. There are a lot of conservation projects available to Cub Scout aged boys. Check with your local forest preserves, chartered organization, and your local city government. When in the outdoors, we must always be aware of its beauty and how precious it is. With all the construction going on all the time, some of the natural habitats for many animals are being relocated. We should make sure the boys are aware of need for conservation and preserving our resources. There are many books written to help us with ideas for these projects and how to accomplish the planning and carrying out of them. Your local library is a great resource for some of these ideas. Your local Scout shop has books on taking the boys out into the great outdoors. Let’s not forget we need to give back to Nature all the beauty it has given to us.

Listed below are some typical conservation projects that Cub and Webelos Scouts can perform in the local community. Always secure permission from the proper authorities for those projects that are performed on public or private property.

1.       Build and set out bird boxes, feeding stations, birdbaths, or dust baths in backyard or park.

2.       Plant shrubs in yard or park that provide food or cover for wildlife.

3.       Plant grass seed on bare ground in park, yards, school or church yard to prevent erosion.

4.       Plant tree seedlings in yard or park for shade, landscaping, or ground cover.

5.       Work on Wolf and Bear conservation achievements or on Webelos-activity badges.

6.       Visit fish hatchery, game farm, game refuge, or sanctuary to see how fish and game animals are raised.

7.       Study different kinds of soils in yard or community.

8.       Visit a farm and find out how conservation practices help protect soil.

9.       Take window boxes and plant flowers or plant tubs with trees or shrubs.

10.    Plant and maintain small flower garden in front of home.

11.    Plant and maintain small flower garden in park.

12.    Make litterbags for family’s and neighbors’ cars or boats.

13.    Take Outdoor Code posters, put up in school, and explain the code to other boys and girls.

14.    Write a set of rules for pack, den, or family to follow when visiting parks or picnic areas.

15.    Write a set of rules or make posters or charts about how to prevent forest fires.

16.    Have a nature or conservation film shown at pack-meeting.

17.    Go fishing and find out what kinds of fish are found in the area.

18.    Take nature walks and learn to recognize trees, birds, and mammals.

19.    Help can or freeze locally grown food.

20.    Help in the family garden.

21.    Help distribute fire-prevention (or other conservation-subject) posters in the community.

22.    Make exhibit for pack meeting that show how wild animals are important source of food, clothing, and recreation.

Ideas for Speakers at your Pack Meeting

Great Salt Lake Council

Park Ranger                                         Zoo Worker

Ecologist                                              Astronomer

Wildlife Specialist

Take a Walk

Circle Ten Council

Different types of walks you can take with the boys.

RAINBOW WALK — look for items of different colors, try a color per block or every so often, or just plain color identification.

HAWKEYE WALK — a list of items to spot or pictures of items to look for.

SUNSHINE AND SHADOW WALK — play with the shadows, measure some, make creatures, and play shadow tag.

PHOTO WALK — take pictures before and have the boys look for certain items. Try weekly pictures to sequence spring development.

BINOCULAR WALK — make binoculars for toilet tissue rolls and use them on the walk to focus on items. It makes for a new look at the same old scenery.

ALIEN WALK — take your walk on this planet earth as if you were from another planet. Try to identify the things you see, not knowing their real name of purpose.

BINGO CARD WALK — on a bingo type card, with pictures or drawings of items, go for a walk to identify the items on the card.

SIGNS OF POLLUTION WALK — clean up the environment as you go using plastic gloves to protect hands.

ALPHABET WALK — make a list of things with letters of the alphabet and have the boys identify them.

Conserve Energy Door Hanger

Great Salt Lake Council

Enlarge the elephant and copy it on card stock, color and hang on doorknobs to remind people to turn off the lights.

Encourage boys to come up with their own ideas for pictures for the door hangers.  CD

Paper Bag Kite

Longhorn Council

For the kite, use a brown paper grocery bag with rectangular bottom. Cut a piece of cardboard the same size as the bottom. Cut an oval shape in the center of the cardboard. Using the cardboard as a pattern, cut a matching hole in the bottom of the bag.

Punch a hole in each corner of the cardboard piece. Attach a long piece of string to each corner, Glue cardboard to bottom of bag, matching the oval openings. Take all free ends of the string and tie them together, so that all lengths are even. Tie them to the actual kite string, which is already wound around a piece of wood or other kite string holder. Decorate as desired. Have fun kite flying! !

Survival Kit

Longhorn Council

35mm film can

1 chalk stub                                                4 paper clips
1 pencil stub                                            6 straight pins
2 safety pins                                             2 thumb tacks
1 black crayon                                      1 piece of string
2 kitchen matches                                             4 aspirin
1 band-aid

1 piece of masking tape                           rubber bands
piece of sandpaper (glue to bottom)


Longhorn Council

Summertime cushion for picnics or backyard fun! This is a GREAT project.


12 double pages of newspaper


Start at one side of double page, make a 2-½ inch fold and crease well.

Continue folding paper over and over until you have one strip.

Fold all 12 pages the same way.


Lay out 6 strips side by side.

Beginning approximately 4” from one side, weave remaining 6 strips of paper in and out.

Leave a 4” tail of each of the 12 strips on all sides.

Finishing Edges:

Start with all ends facing upward (every other one),

Make a 1 ” fold then fold over and tuck inside of strip beneath it, as shown.

Turn Sit-Upon over and do the same with the remaining ends.

All corners will be double-tucked (on top and bottom).

For more information on how to make these – just find a Girl Scout leader!!  Or check the websites at the end of the issue.  Many have great pictures to help you.  These things are great !!  You can take leftover bath or kitchen Sanitas (or similar) wallpaper, cover them so they last!!  CD

Endangered Species

Longhorn Council

 Choose an endangered species.  Do a research project on that animal.  Create a “science fair” board presentation and have displays around the meeting room.  Dress like you are on safari.

Field Trips

Longhorn Council

 Visit your local Nature Center to hike the trails and see various plants, animals and exhibits that they may have.

More Hikes

Longhorn Council

Color Hike -             Using color charts from the paint store, one per person, find objects in nature to match each color as closely as possible. DO NOT COLLECT!

Inch Hike -                Find as many objects as possible that measure one inch high, long, wide, or around. Take rulers with you. This helps to discover many small things.

Initial Hike -             Find 3 objects in nature beginning with your first, middle, and last initials.

Home Hike -             Look for spider webs, nests holes or other nature homes.

String Hike -            Follow a string that has been laid out in advance to identify.  Have nature objects along the way.

Sound Hike -            Take a hike and listen for special sounds picked out before leaving the start.

Unnature Hike -       How many things can you find that don’t belong in nature.

Track Hike -            Take a hike looking for tracks. See how many you can find.

Baby Hike -               How many baby animals or plants can you find?

Smells Hike -           Take a hike looking for things that have different smells.

Insect Hike -             Look for insects and compare their body shapes and sizes.

Leaf Hike -                Look for how many different types of leaves you can find.

Stop. Look and Listen Hike - Hike for five minutes or a designated number of steps. Stop for one minute and write down everything you see or the sounds you hear.


Circle Ten Council

Instead of recycling old newspapers, why not turn them into a hammock? Here’s how.

This sounds like a great project for the den to make for their leader (or the Pack for the Cubmaster) for the next Pack Family Camping trip.  CD


LOTS of newspapers


An old bed sheet

Rope or strong clothesline cord




·         Make a stack of 30 sheets of newspaper.

·         Roll up the stack the long way to form a tight, narrow tube.

·         Tape the tube closed.

·         Repeat step 1 until you have about 20 tubes.

·         Cut three lengths of rope or clothesline, each at least 12 feet long.

·         Lay the ropes parallel to one another.

·         Now tie each tube, one by one, to the ropes.

·         Tie over and under knots, leaving 2” to 3” between each tube (A).

·         Remember to leave at least 3 feet at the end of each rope so you can hang up the hammock.

·         When the hammock is long enough for you to lie in, tie the ropes together at each end (B).

·         Hang your hammock between two trees in your back yard, or ask your mom or dad to help you hang it from your patio roof.

·         Throw an old bed sheet over the hammock so you won’t get newsprint on your clothes.


Circle Ten Council

What You Need
1 cup of used coffee grounds

1/2 cup of cold coffee

1 cup of flour

1/2 cup of salt

Wax paper

Mixing bowl

Some small objects to make impressions in the dough

Empty can or a butter knife

Toothpicks, optional

String to hang your fossil, optional

How To Make It

1st.        Stir the together the coffee grounds, cold coffee, flour, and salt until well mixed.

2nd.       Knead the dough together and then flatten it out onto the waxed paper.

3rd.       Use the can to cut out circles of the dough or use the dull knife to cut slabs large enough to fit your "fossil" objects.

4th.        Press your objects firmly into the dough. When you take the object out, you have your "fossil". If you want to hang the fossil, poke holes into the edge to hold the string. 

5th.        Let the fossil dry overnight and then hang it if you wish.

Tip -    Bake them for a short period to get the "dough" to harden.

Milk Carton Bird Feeder

Baltimore Area Council



3 half-gallon milk cartons make 2 feeders,

two 8" lengths of 3/16 inch wooden dowel,

pencil, utility knife, carpenter's square, stapler,

leather punch, wire coat hanger, wire cutters, pliers.


1.                   Using the carpenter's square, mark 2 lines, one 2 1/4 inch from the bottom and one 11/4 inch from the top of the milk carton.

2.                   Repeat on the opposite side of the milk carton.

3.                   Have an adult set the utility knife so that the least amount of blade is exposed and cut all four of the lines you just drew.

4.                   Now cut opposite corners between the lines to create a flap on each side of the milk carton.

5.                   Fold the flaps in and staple them to form double thick walls.

6.                   Use the pencil to punch a hole centered one half inch below each opening. Make the holes only big enough to insert the dowel.

7.                   Cut the top and bottom of a second milk carton off and then cut apart at opposite corners to form two roof sections.

8.                   Measure the top vertical portion of the milk carton.

9.                   Using the carpenter's square and pencil score a line on either side of the fold inside of the roof section. These lines should be the same distance from the fold as the measurement you took of the top of the carton.

10.                Fold on the scored lines and attach the roof with staples as shown.

11.                Have an adult punch a hole in the center of the roof ridge with a leather punch.

12.                hAve an adult cut the coat hanger into two equal pieces with the wire cutters and bend each piece into a hanger for the two feeders.

13.                Fill with bird seed and hang outdoors where you can observe the birds that will flock to your feeder.

Ant Home

Longhorn Council

Materials: one-gallon jar or large peanut butter jar, soil and an ant hill, black paper.

1.                   Fill a one-gallon jar with soil.

2.       Find an anthill and put as many of the ants and as much of the surrounding debris in the jar as you can collect.

3.       Place some cotton over the dirt and pour a little water in the ant jar every several days.

4.       Put lid with small holes in it back on the jar and cover the entire jar with black paper. The ants will make tunnels and can be observed by the Cubs.

Marshmallow on a Stick Neckerchief Slide

Longhorn Council

Materials: Floral wire, white beads, glue

Directions: Shape heavy floral wire to look like a roasting fork. . Glue white beads to end. (Using small forked twig, sharpen forks to fit beads & glue in place.) Epoxy finished stick to piece of plastic plumbers pipe big enough for neckerchief to pass through.







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