Cub Scout Archives: Citizenship Belt Loop and Pin

Citizenship Belt Loop and Pin

The Citizenship belt loop and pin are part of the Cub Scout Academics and Sports program. This program gives Cub Scouts the opportunity to receive recognition for exploring different areas of interest.

Webelos who earn the Citizenship Belt Loop while a Webelos also complete requirement 8 for the Citizen activity badge.

Citizenship Belt Loop Requirements

Citizenship Pin Requirements

November Cub Scout Theme – Gives Goodwill (Citizenship)

BSA offers supplemental pack program ideas for each month. One theme for the November core value of Citizenship s a Gives Goodwill theme.

Here is what the  program helps say about this theme:

 Cub Scouts learn about the true spirit of Scouting this month as they show an act of goodwill by being good citizens providing a  service for someone in need during the colder months. Citizenship means contributing service and showing responsibility to local, state, and national communities. By helping fellow citizens in our  local community, we remember the Law of the Pack and what it means when we say “gives goodwill.”

So this theme will revolve around the idea of serving the community. Below you’ll find some ways to form your pack and den programs around this theme.

This would be a good month to do a den service project or perhaps work on religious emblems, many of which have a service component.

November Cub Scout Theme – Gives Goodwill (Citizenship)

Tiger Cub Scouts

Webelos

Academics and Sports Program

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When Must Belt Loop and Pin Requirement Be Fulfilled

Emily sent in this question

In working on BL and pin requirements, do the scouts need to complete the requirements during a current “year” (their Wolf or Bear year for example)? Or can they work on the requirements throughout their entire year in scouts. I had a den leader turn in a bicycling BL for a boy who refuses to bike and therefore did not complete requirement 3 of riding for at least half an hour. She says she’s sure he’s ridden for half an hour sometime in the last 2 years. Thanks for your help.

Emily is referring to the belt loops and pins which can be earned in the Academics and Sports program. The requirements are not year specific, so we have always allowed our Cub Scouts to work on the requirements at any time since they joined Cub Scouting.

The only exception is when Webelos are earning belt loops and pins to fulfill activity badge requirements. In this case, they must do all of the requirements since becoming Webelos. This is true even if they have earned the belt loop or pin in the past as a Tiger, Wolf, or Bear.

This will be a moot point soon since the Academics and Sports program will be discontinued as of May 2015.

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Who Can Earn Belt Loops

Auntie Scout sent in this question:

Can grade 2 children (He’s currently earning his Wolf Badge) earn Belt Loops? Can he earn the Pet Care belt loop if he hasn’t fulfilled all the Wolf achievements?

Any Cub Scout can work on the belt loops and pins in the Academics and Sports program at any time. This is a supplemental program though, so doing the achievements for the Wolf badge should be his first priority. But if he is interested in one of the areas in the Academics and Sports program, such as pet care, and he is making progress on Wolf, then yes, he should work on the belt loop.

The Academics and Sports program will be discontinued in May 2015 when the changes to the Cub Scout program are rolled out.

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November Cub Scout Theme – Your Vote Counts (Citizenship)

BSA offers supplemental pack program ideas for each month. One theme for the November core value of Citizenship s a Your Vote Counts theme.

Here is what the  program helps say about this theme:

Patriotism is an important part of good citizenship. Patriotism is love of and loyalty to our country. It involves honoring the democratic ideals on which this country is based and respecting and obeying its laws. It also involves accepting the responsibilities of good citizenship, such as staying informed about national issues, voting, and volunteering. We don’t often think about teaching our Cub Scouts about voting because of their age and the fact that it will be many years before they can vote. We can, however, explain the importance of voting. If we mentor them by our actions, then the responsibility of good citizenship by voting will become more meaningful as they grow.

You can add some fun to this theme by having your own “election”. Have a mock election of some sort. For young Cub Scouts, keep it light. Let them vote on which game they will play at the end of the pack meeting. Or create some silly leader position and have them elect one of the adults to it.

November Cub Scout Theme – Your Vote Counts (Citizenship)

Tiger Cub Scouts

Wolf Cub Scouts

Bear Cub Scouts

Webelos

Academics and Sports Program

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Messengers of Peace

The Messengers of Peace initiative is a program of the World Scout Committee. The Boy Scouts of America joined the Messengers of Peace initiative in 2012. This program encourages Scouts around the world to work for peace by being a positive force in their communities. All types of BSA units can participate in this program.

The program tracks how the efforts of Scouts around the world are making a difference for peace. You can even see a map with pins where Scouts are participating.

Participating is easy. When you submit a service project for Journey to Excellence,  just select “Messengers of Peace” as your partner organization.

Scouts and Scouters who participate in a Messengers of Peace service project may wear a Messengers of Peace ring patch around the World Crest on their uniforms.

What type of service project qualifies as a Messengers of Peace project?

You don’t need to travel the world to be a Messenger of Peace. According to the BSA website:

A Messengers of Peace service project is defined as any project that touches on one of these dimensions of peace:

  • The personal dimension: harmony, justice, and equality
  • The community dimension: peace as opposed to hostility or violent conflict
  • Relationships between humankind and its environment: security, social and economic welfare, and relationship with the environment

Many of the service projects your units are doing will qualify. See the Messengers of Peace Service Project Ideas page for lots of examples.

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November Cub Scout Theme – Fifty Great States (Citizenship)

BSA offers supplemental pack program ideas for each month. One theme for the November core value of Citizenship s a Fifty Great States theme.

Here is what the  program helps say about this theme:

“Fifty Great States” reminds us that we are to contribute our service and show responsibility to local, state, and national communities. Cub Scouts develop good citizenship skills when they learn about respecting the flag and providing service to the community.

So this theme will revolve around the ideas of flag etiquette and service to the community, perhaps with a little geography thrown in. Below you’ll find some ways to form your pack and den programs around this theme.

November Cub Scout Theme – Fifty Great States (Citizenship)

Tiger Cub Scouts

Wolf Cub Scouts

Bear Cub Scouts

Webelos

Academics and Sports Program

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How to Raise an American: Citizenship Activities for Kids

This is a book for adults interested in instilling citizenship and a love of our nation in kids. It includes 1776 specific ideas for raising patriotic Americans.

Purchasing information: How to Raise an American: 1776 Fun and Easy Tools, Tips, and Activities to Help Your Child Love This Country

From the publisher:

“Ideas even the busiest parent can use to instill a sense of patriotism within their family.” ––Washington Times

Do you love America? Now, what about your kids?

How to Raise an American shows you how to make patriotism an important part of your family’s daily life, with engaging and entertaining ideas on every page. This practical and easy-to-use guide offers tips, games, activities, quizzes, and information that will help your children to become proud Americans, including:

•Dinner-table debates that will have the whole family talking
•Road-trip ideas that bring America’s history to life
•Books and movies that exemplify our shared ideals
•Inspiring stories of American courage, honor, and ingenuity
•Fun and educational ways to celebrate American holidays such as the Fourth of July and Veterans Day

Part discussion on patriotism, part American history primer, part activity guide, How to Raise an American will teach your kids to love and respect our country.

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Flag Etiquette for Kids – Our American Flag

Looking for information on flag etiquette for kids? This book covers why countries have flags, the history and requirements of US flag designs, and flag etiquette.

Purchasing information: Our American Flag (American Symbols)

The flag is a powerful symbol of our nation and it is important that our children learn its history and how to display and treat it. This aspect of educating young citizens is a crucial part of the Scouting program.

From the publisher:

Its stars and stripes ripple and wave. Its the United States flag, and Americans have flown it for more than 200 years. Join seamstress Mary Pickersgill for a trip through time to see how this symbol of freedom came to be.

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The United States Constitution: A Graphic Adaptation

This story of the Constitution in graphic format will engage young readers who are seeking to learn more about the US government.

Purchasing information: The United States Constitution: A Graphic Adaptation

From the publisher:

Our leaders swear to uphold it, our military to defend it. It is the blueprint for the shape and function of government itself and what defines Americans as Americans. But how many of us truly know our Constitution?

The United States Constitution: A Graphic Adaptation uses the art of illustrated storytelling to breathe life into our nation’s cornerstone principles. Simply put, it is the most enjoyable and groundbreaking way to read the governing document of the United States. Spirited and visually witty, it roves article by article, amendment by amendment, to get at the meaning, background, and enduring relevance of the law of the land.

What revolutionary ideas made the Constitution’s authors dare to cast off centuries of rule by kings and queens? Why do we have an electoral college rather than a popular vote for president and vice president? How did a document that once sanctioned slavery, denied voting rights to women, and turned a blind eye to state governments running roughshod over the liberties of minorities transform into a bulwark of protection for all?

The United States Constitution answers all of these questions. Sure to surprise, challenge, and provoke, it is hands down the most memorable introduction to America’s founding document.

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Citizenship Pin for Cub Scouts

One of the Aims of Scouting is to instill a sense of citizenship in our Scouts. Cub Scouts can learn about our government and how they can get involved in the community by earning the Citizenship pin  from the Cub Scout Academics and Sports program.

Citizenship Pin Requirements

Earn the Citizenship belt loop, and complete five of the following requirements:

  1. Interview someone who has become a naturalized citizen. Give a report of your interview to your den or family.
  2. Write a letter to your newspaper about an issue that concerns you. Send your letter by mail or e-mail.
  3. Create a collage about America.
  4. Make a list of items to check for a home safety or energy audit and then inspect your home. Talk with your parent or adult partner about correcting any problems you find.
  5. Visit your local site of government. Interview someone who is involved with the governmental process.
  6. Visit a courtroom and talk with someone who works there.
  7. Go to the polls with your parents when they vote. Talk to them about their choices.
  8. Take part in a parade with your den or pack.
  9. List ways you can recycle various materials and conserve and protect the environment.
  10. Attend a community event or visit a landmark in your community.
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Citizenship Belt Loop for Cub Scouts

One of the Aims of Scouting is to train youth in the responsibilities of citizenship.  One way to promote citizenship in our younger scouts is to encourage them to earn the Citizenship belt loop from the Cub Scout Academics and Sports Program.

Webelos who earn the Citizenship Belt Loop while a Webelos also complete requirement 8 for the Citizen activity badge.

Citizenship Belt Loop Requirements

Complete these three requirements:

  1. Develop a list of jobs you can do around the home. Chart your progress for one week.
  2. Make a poster showing things that you can do to be a good citizen.
  3. Participate in a family, den, or school service project.
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Journey To Excellence Service Projects

As many of you know, the old Quality Awards have been replaced by the Journey to Excellence program. The Journey to Excellence Service Project initiative is part of this program.

“Scouting’s Journey to Excellence” is the BSA’s new council performance recognition program designed to encourage and reward success and measure the performance of our units, districts, and councils. It is replacing the Centennial Quality Awards Program as a means of encouraging excellence in providing a quality program at all levels of the BSA.

All Scouting units are encouraged to carryout meaningful service projects as part of this initiative. I think that every BSA unit should be carrying out multiple service projects over the course of a year.

Once your unit completes a service project, you can go to the Journey to Excellence Service Project website and report your hours. This site will keep track of all of the service projects your unit has done and provides your local council a record of your service projects.

The Unit Tips for Success page provides some excellent advice for planning and carrying out service projects. There are lots of service project ideas available there and practical considerations for carrying them out. It also has a great section at the bottom called Ideas for Everyday Kindness and Good Turns. These are not really service projects, but ways to “Do a Good Turn Daily.”

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March Cub Scout Theme – Planting Seeds of Kindness (Compassion)

BSA is starting to provide supplemental themes based Pack meeting plans for each month’s core value. The March Cub Scout theme features the core value of Compassion.  I have heard through the grapevine that the first supplemental plan for this core value will be “Planting Seeds of Kindness”.  For more ideas for use with this theme, see my Planting Seeds of Kindness Theme for Cub Scouts page.

Here is what the old program helps said about this theme:

Let’s spread Seeds of Kindness in the form of multiple small service projects. Helping others encourages compassion and gives boys the opportunity to see the bounty produced by spreading many small seeds of kindness. The boys can discover that just as the large, strong oak tree came from the small acorn, big things can happen from spreading small seeds of kindness and charity. Conduct a food drive or collect coats and gloves for those in need; report your hours to Good Turn for America. Work on the Citizenship belt loop and pin.

The Citizenship Belt Loop and Pin is specifically mentioned, but this theme also brings to mind some other Cub Scout achievements and electives:

  • Tiger Elective 9 – A New Friend
    • Help a new boy or girl get to know other people.
  • Tiger Elective 10 – Helping Hands
    • Along with your adult partner, help an elderly or shut-in person with a chore.
  • Tiger Elective 11 – Helping the Needy
    • Help collect food, clothing or toys for needy families with your den or pack.
  • Tiger Elective 12 – A Friendly Greeting
    • Make at least two cards or decorations and take them to a hospital or long-term care facility.
  • Wolf Achievement 12 – Making Choices
    • Requirement 12d. Justin is new to your school. He has braces on his legs and walks with a limp. Some of the kids at school tease him. They want you to tease him, too. What would you do?
    • Requirement 12i. Mr. Palmer is blind. He has a guide dog. One day as he is crossing the street, some kids whistle and call to the dog. They want you and your friends to call the dog, too. What would you do?
  • Bear Achievement 24 – Be a Leader
    • Requirement 24f. Complete the Character Connection for Compassion.
      • Know. Tell why, as a leader, it is important to show kindness and concern for other people. List ways leaders show they care about the thoughts and feelings of others.
      • Commit. Tell why a good leader must consider the ideas, abilities, and feelings of others. Tell why it might be hard for a leader to protect another person’s well-being. Tell ways you can be kind and compassionate.
      • Practice. While you complete the requirements for this achievement, find ways to be kind and considerate of others.
  • Webelos Citizen Activity Badge
    • Requirement 8. As a Webelos Scout, earn the Cub Scout Academics belt loop for Citizenship. At a Webelos den meeting, talk about the service project Good Turn that you did.
    • Requirement 17. Name three organizations, not churches or other religious organizations, in your area that help people. Tell something about what one of these organizations does.

To add additional crafts and activities to this theme, incorporate some projects which tap in the “seed” idea.

  • Tiger Elective 30 – Plant a Seed
    • Plant a seed, pit, or greens from something you have eaten.
  • Wolf Elective 15 – Grow Something
    • Elective 15a Plant and raise a box garden.
    • Elective 15b. Plant and raise a flower bed.
    • Elective 15c. Grow a plant indoors.
    • Elective 15d. Plant and raise vegetables.
  • Bear Elective 12 – Nature Crafts
    • Elective 12e. Collect eight kinds of plant seeds and label them.
  • Naturalist Activity Badge
    • Requirement 3. Set up an aquarium or terrarium. Keep it for at least a month. Share your experience with your Webelos den by showing them photos or drawings of your project, or having them visit to see your project.
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BSA Webelos Den Meeting Plan 6: Citizen and Webelos Badge

BSA provides den meeting plans for den leader on the Scouting.org website. Today, I am going to go through the sixth Webelos plan. If you don’t already have the BSA den meeting plans, download BSA Webelos Den Meeting Plan 6 to follow along with this article.

The BSA meeting plans are designed to be done in order. This plan continues work on the Citizen activity badge and covers Webelos badge requirement 3, Webelos badge requirement 4, and Webelos badge requirement 7 .

The BSA den meeting plans are designed to be completed in order, so look at the previous ones first. You should also check my Citizen activity badge page for more ideas to use with this den meeting plan along with alternate den meeting plans for completing the requirements.

BSA Webelos Den Meeting Plan 6: Citizen and Webelos Badge

Before the Meeting and Gathering

Most of the preparation for this meeting involves arranging the field trip to visit a community leader at his or her place of work.  This might be a mayor, alderman, city council member, etc. If this is not feasible, pick one of the other Citizen activity badge requirements instead. See the list of helps on the left side of this page or visit my Citizen activity badge page for different ways to complete the requirements.

The Constitution Word Search Puzzle makes a nice gathering activity for this meeting if you haven’t done it already and could easily be done on a field trip. They could also work on their poster for the Citizenship belt loop (Citizen activity badge requirement 8).

Opening

You need to continue working on flag ceremonies so every Webelos gets to do one for Webelos requirement 6. See Simple Indoor Flag Ceremony if you are indoors or Raising and Lowering the US Flag if you have access to a flag pole.

Business

Keep it short and sweet.

Activities

If you are on a field trip, the main event is the visit with the community leader. Cover the other requirements if you can, but sometimes this is difficult if you are away from your regular meeting place. You might have to save the Webelos badge requirements for another meeting if your time on the field trip doesn’t allow you to do these.

Closing

This is a good time to practice the Scout Oath and Law. It takes a lot of repetition for the Webelos to really learn these.

After the Meeting

Another meeting complete! It would be nice to have the den send a thank you note to the community leader you visited. And it’s always time to start getting ready for the next meeting.

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Ideas for November Cub Scout Pack Meeting – Citizenship

The core value for Cub Scouts for the month of November is Citizenship. According to the program helps citizenship is:

Contributing service and showing responsibility to local, state, and national communities.
Cub Scouts develop good citizenship when they are learning about respecting the flag and providing service to the community.

So how can you fit this into your pack program? Here are some ideas:

What will your pack do in November to promote citizenship? Add your comments below.

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Scouting For Food

The featured core value for Cub Scouts for the month of November is citizenship.  Our Pack will help encourage citizenship in our Cub Scouts by participating in the local Scouting for Food program this month.

This program has been going on since 1985 in our council. It provides three months of food for our local food pantries. On the second weekend in November, Scouts deliver bags to every house in the area. Then, the next weekend, the pick up the bags which have been filled with food and left out for them.

In our Pack, participation is mandatory. Cub Scouts are grouped as pairs or triples. With their parents, they arrange a time to deliver the bags on the first weekend and pick them up on the second weekend.  If we know a family is going to be out of town for one of the weekends, we put them in a triple group. Otherwise, they just need to arrange a time to get out despite all of the sports events and other activities.

The Boy Scout Troop and Venture Crew also get involved. On the second weekend, they run a food collection point at our church. The Cub Scouts bring the bags of food they collected. Then the Boy Scouts and Venturers sort it and box it up so it can be delivered to local food pantries.

Hopefully your Scouts will be participating in a Scouting for Food event or other service project this month also.  If they do, make sure they know that they can use this as one of the requirements for their Citizenship belt loop.

Citizenship Belt Loop and Pin Requirements

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Webelos Citizen Activity Badge Den Meeting Plan Part 2

This meeting plan completes the requirements for the Webelos Citizen activity badge which were started in Webelos Citizen Activity Badge Den Meeting Plan Part 1.

The first meeting focused on the flag requirements. At this meeting, we will do the requirements which relate to government and personal citizenship.

To make it more fun, we will play a game at the end to reinforce some of the things which they learned.  The meeting plan allots 15 minutes for the game, but you might have to adjust this if the rest of the meeting takes more or less time than you anticipated. Also, if you didn’t complete the flag requirements at the first meeting, you can continue working on those and omit the game.

This meeting completes some of the requirements for the Citizenship belt loop. They will need to record their progress doing chores at home. They must also participate in some sort of service project. Our Pack participates in Scouting for Food every November, so we will count that. Or they can count a project they did with their family or at school.

Printable copy of    Webelos Den Meeting Plan for Citizen Activity Badge – Part 2 (includes timetable)

Webelos Citizen Activity Badge Den Meeting Plan Part 2

Preparation

Your will need to gather these materials beforehand:

  • A US flag
  • Printouts for the meeting
  • Materials for Citizenship Football
  • Crayons and poster board or a large sheet of paper
  • A list of government officials for requirement 2

Gathering Activity

Make a large poster together showing ways to be a good citizen – for Citizenship Belt Loop requirement 2

Opening

See simple opening flag ceremony

Activities

Character Connection for Citizenship – requirement 1

While doing the Character Connection, have each Scout mention another boy he thinks is a good citizen and 3 other people (from any country) who they thing are good citizens – requirements 12 and 13

Discuss government leaders and the rights and duties of a US citizen – requirements 2 and 8

Discuss doing chores at home and how that is part of being a citizen – Citizenship belt loop requirement 1

Talk about how the National Anthem was written – requirement 6

Play Citizenship Football Game

Announcements and Closing

Hand out recognitions

Announcements for upcoming pack and den events

Hand out Chore Chart for Citizenship Belt Loop Requirement 1

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Helps and Requirements for the Cub Scout Academics and Sports Program Belt Loops and Pins

The Cub Scout Academics and Sports program gives Cub Scouts the opportunity to receive recognition for exploring different areas of interest. Cub Scouts earn belt loops which can be worn on the official Cub Scout belt when they investigate one of these areas. When they explore one of the topics further, they earn a pin. […]

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