BSA has created updated versions of the Troop Program features for Scouts BSA. The Engineering program feature is available in digital format on the BSA website or can be purchased as a publication from you local Scout Shop.
Engineering program ideas for Scouts BSA troops
The Engineering program feature teaches Scouts helps Scouts understand how problem solving and design can be used to help meet the challenges found in our society. These engineering program ideas include some general information and some more specific ideas for meetings:
- Learn about different types of engineers
- Chemical engineering
- Mechanical engineering
- Civil engineering
- Electrical engineering
- Explore sub-disciplines and specialties
Engineering program ideas: Troop meetings
Suggested troop meeting ideas are grouped by levels of essential, challenging, or advanced. Here are a few you can see in the guide.
- Build a water filtration system
- Experiment with different materials to filter water
- Learn how a water treatment facility cleans water
- Make some goo
- Discuss polymers
- Build string telephones
- Learn about flashlights by taking one apart
- Make a homemade LED flashlight
- Build a model dam
- Learn how dams are used to provide water and electricity to communities
- Build pop rockets and learn about the chemical reactions which power them
- Design and build a Rube Goldberg machine
- Take apart broken electronics to learn about the components
- Try to diagnose a problem in an broken piece of electronic equipment
- Build and test a small cable bridge
- Discuss how the length and spacing of the cables affect the integrity of the bridge
- Build a model rocket
- Discuss the chemical reaction which powers a model rocket
- Calculate the advantage of a pulley
- Learn about levers
- Make a homemade USB charger
Games and other resources
There are also several games suggested to keep things interesting at your troop meetings
- Sky high
- Parachute races
- Geocache scavenger hunt
- Balloon blowup
The plan even provides Scoutmaster’s minutes and ceremonies for meetings.
Main Event for the engineering program
Then there is the “Main Event”. Once again, there are suggestions for essential, challenging, or advanced. Details and planning aids can be found in the online guide.
- Go on a day trip to an amusement park and try to find as many examples of the different disciplines of engineering (mechanical, chemical, electrical, and civil) as you can (essential)
- Think of design improvements which could be made to the amusement park (challenging)
- Visit an amusement park for a physics day and record observations and results (advanced)
Find some related helps and achievements for the Camping Troop Program Feature below. Also check my STEM page for more hands on ideas related to engineering.
Homemade Silly Putty Recipe
Having a science themed meeting with your Scouts? Instead of a craft, make up a batch of silly putty. This stuff is stretchy and fun to play with.
Next Big Thing Scouts BSA Nova Award (Product Design) Helps and Documents
Next Big Thing is the Scouts BSA Nova Award for investigating astronomy and projectile science. To earn this award, Scouts must complete one of their design related merit badges and learn about topics such as prototypes, market research, brainstorming and…
Egg Drop Challenge – An Engineering Project
In an egg drop challenge, Scouts try to design a container which can prevent an egg from breaking when dropped. This is an excellent project to get kids interested in science and engineering.
Ziploc Bag vs Pencil Experiment
This simple experiment to demonstrate the scientific method is always a hit with the scouts. The results are not usually what they expect.
Book Review: Mini Weapons of Mass Destruction
My boys loved this book! It shows them how to make miniature catapults, bows, and other projectile machines out of common office supplies. This book would make a great basis for a open house or a just for a fun…
Start Your Engines! Scouts BSA Nova Award (Technology) Helps and Documents
Start Your Engines! is the Scouts BSA Nova Award for investigating technology. To earn this award, Scouts must complete one of their technology related merit badges and learn about related topics such as energy and fuel sources. Scouts design and…
Leave a Reply