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Audience Participation – The Story of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox

Audience participation activities inject a little interest and fun into Pack meetings. Too much sitting makes Cub Scouts fidgety. So get them (and their parents) to stand up and participate in this activity.

This a story about the cold winter when Paul Bunyan found Babe the Blue Ox. A few words and names are repeated throughout the story. Your audience will be divided into groups and assigned a word or name. Whenever they hear it, they must say something – loudly and with enthusiasm – and do an action. Cub Scouts usually enjoy these “action stories”.

This activity fits in well with my Winter Wonderland theme. It would also work well with Bear Achievement 4: Tall Tales.

Audience Participation – The Story of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox

Divide the audience into four sections and give them these instructions:

Group 1: When you hear the word “cold” say “BRRRRRRRR!” and shake like you are shivering
Group 2: When you hear the name “Paul Bunyan” say “Mighty!” and make strong man arms
Group 3: When you hear the name”Babe the Blue Ox” say “Swish swish” and move your arm like it is a swishing tail
Group 4: When you hear the word “ton” say “Heavy!” and pretend you are lifting something heavy

Now read the following story. When you get to a _____, pause so the group can do their sound and action.

One winter it was so cold _____ that the snow was blue. It was so cold _____ that if you talked, the words came out of your mouth frozen. To hear what somebody else said, you had to pick up the words and take them over to the fire so they would thaw.

During that cold _____ winter Paul Bunyan _____ went out walking. He heard a sound coming from the blue snow. He dug around a little and found a tiny ox. It was completely blue. So Paul Bunyan _____ took the little ox home with him and he named it Babe the Blue Ox _____ .

Just like everything else that Paul Bunyan _____ was with, the creature grew and grew and grew. If you watched him you could see him growing. Babe the Blue Ox _____ ate a ton _____ of hay for breakfast. He ate another ton _____ for lunch. And then he ate another ton _____ for dinner.

Paul Bunyan _____ used Babe the Blue Ox _____ to haul a load of logs. Babe the Blue Ox _____ loved the cold _____ winter because logs would slide easier on the icy road. The giant beast did not like summer as much. So Paul Bunyan _____ took a ton _____ of butter and smeared it all over the road. So then Babe the Blue Ox _____ like the summer as much as the cold _____ winter.

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4 Responses to Audience Participation – The Story of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox

  1. Carrie August 7, 2012 at 1:18 PM #

    Thank you thank you for all your ideas on folklore. Your shortened versions of these stories are perfect! Thanks for sharing and for the cute activity idea for Paul Bunyan.

  2. Kathy November 21, 2013 at 8:14 PM #

    Thank you so much. I did this with my Bear group and they just loved it! What a fun way to learn about Tall Tales!

  3. Brook December 5, 2013 at 8:17 PM #

    Thank you so much for sharing these ideas! I’ll be doing this one with my bears tomorrow and I just know they’ll love it!

  4. Sherry Smothermon-Short February 25, 2014 at 2:41 PM #

    This is great! I know my boys LOVE the participation games, and this is a great way to talk about the tall tales.

    I linked to your post from my website: Cub Scout Ideas.

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