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Good Permanent Activities

When I started with the pack we had next to no good program supplies. We’ve been working on building up our buy once, use for years activity collection.

I’m looking for activities that when a den meeting runs short you can get out supplies and fill 10 minutes of time.

NOT arts and crafts. The kids are not interested in coloring with markers 30 times a year.
I can already buy balls, that’s easy. I can buy board games and card games, that’s easy.

Things I have and like:
I built a compressed air rocket launcher for this spring
I cut a giant jenga set (buy 2x3x8’ boards, cut into 4.5" pieces) for last spring
I have a rundamentary frisbee golf course- tomato cages and laundry baskets.
I have an animal dice game, I made my own variant with three dice
two flags for capture the flag (dowel, screw in eyes, keyrings, two scout scarfs with grommets)

What are other super affordable, buy/make once activities that will last for years, are age appropriate for K-5, don’t take a ton of space to store and get the kids actually doing something constructive. Building, thinking, exercising

Even better if it’s something that can be done inside when there’s a foot of snow on the ground.

The key goal is it should not require spending money over and over to make it work. I have good luck getting parents on board with dues when they see their money is building program equity.

  • Compressed air cans and drinking straws make great rockets. Cheap. Nova.
  • Pitch a tent.
  • Build a fire. Light it or don’t light it, your choice.
  • Carve something out of wood.
  • Make a crystal radio out of junk.
  • Make a movie with your phone.
  • Build a birdhouse out of garbage.
  • Snap circuits (one-time purchase, years of benefit)
  • Paper airplane contest.
  • Balloon juggle.
  • Bust an old circuit board with a hammer.
  • Mad libs.
  • Human wheelbarrow race.
  • Make slime.
  • Paper helicopters.
  • Survival kit inventory.
  • First aid kit inventory.
  • Make a den flag.
  • Learn a skit.
  • Watch a fishing video on YouTube. (Preview first of course)
  • Tie a fishing knot and practice casting.
  • Patch throw game (toss old patches into buckets for points)
  • 5-minute LEGO build race
  • Make a self-propelled boat out of cardboard and a rubber band.

I guess I could say “get the Wolf and Bear handbooks from 1975 and pick any two pages”—I think we have lost some things over time,


Games - Steal the Bacon, use s scout scarf

Helicopter - one thick rope, about 3/4" x 10’, tied to a small bag with a soft weight in it. I use a stuff sack with more rope inside. Adult sits in the middle of a circle of scouts, starts moving the weighted rope around the circle, sliding it like a helicopter blade on the floor. After one revolution, scouts move closer and jump the rope as it goes around. When a scout gets hit on the foot by the rope or bag, all stop, all repeat in unison Scout Oath/Scout Law/etc., then scouts back up and the rope starts moving again. Have not tried it with a scout doing the center part yet.

Easy compass game:

Possible adaptations might include burying a foot long piece of capped 3/4 inch PVC in each of the locations. Then a flag can be attached to conduit for each station.

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