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Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure for 2024

The Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure is a great opportunity for Bear Cub Scouts to learn important skills. In this adventure, Scouts work with tools and build a project. This helps them learn how to safely use tools and understand why safety is important. It’s a fun way for Scouts to get hands-on experience with building and fixing things.

Baloo the Builder Bear Adventure Belt Loop

This adventure is part of the Cub Scouts’ STEM Engineering focus. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. By building a project, Scouts see how engineering is used in everyday life. They learn problem-solving skills, which are important in STEM fields. These skills can help Scouts in school and in future jobs.

Working on the Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure also helps Scouts grow more confident and independent. When they complete a project, they feel proud and capable. This boosts their confidence in trying new things and solving problems. It’s not just about building; it’s about growing.

Lastly, this Baloo the Builder adventure encourages teamwork among the Scouts. They learn to plan projects and share tasks. Working together helps them understand the value of cooperation and communication. This is a key part of being a good team member in any situation.

Requirements for the Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure

Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure Requirements

  1. Learn about some basic tools and the proper use of each tool. Learn about and understand the need for safety when you work with tools. 
  2. Practice using four of the tools you learned about in requirement 1.
  3. Choose a project to build.
  4. Determine the tools and materials needed to build your project in requirement 3.
  5. Build your project.

Resources for the Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure

Exploring Tools and Safety

Learn about some basic tools and the proper use of each tool. Learn about and understand the need for safety when you work with tools. 

In the Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure, Bear Cub Scouts start by learning about basic tools and safety. This first requirement is important because knowing how to use tools safely is essential before starting any building project. Scouts learn the names of tools, their uses, and important safety rules.

  • Hammer: A hammer is a versatile tool that is used for driving nails, removing nails, and shaping materials.
  • Screwdriver: Screwdrivers come in various sizes and types, including flathead and Phillips head. They are used for tightening or loosening screws and are an essential tool for any construction project.
  • Square: A square is a critical tool for ensuring accurate angles and straight lines. It’s commonly used in woodworking and metalworking for marking and measuring right angles.
  • Hand Saw: A hand saw is a manual tool used for cutting wood and other materials.
  • C-Clamp: A C-clamp is used to hold objects firmly in place during tasks like gluing, welding, or sawing.
  • Drill: A drill is a tool used for making holes in various materials or for driving screws. It comes with different bits for different purposes.
  • Coping Saw: A coping saw is a small, hand-held saw used for intricate cutting and shaping, particularly in woodworking. It’s ideal for cutting curves and complex shapes.
  • Pliers: Pliers are used for gripping, bending, and cutting wires or other materials. They come in various types, including needle-nose pliers, slip-joint pliers, and cutting pliers.
  • Tape Measure: Accurate measurements are crucial in building projects. A tape measure is a must-have tool for taking precise measurements of length, width, and height.
  • Safety Glasses: Safety glasses are an essential tool for protecting your eyes from flying debris, dust, and other hazards. Always wear safety glasses when using hand tools.

Remember, safety should always be a top priority when using hand tools. Follow these general rules to ensure safe usage:

  • Read and understand the manufacturer’s instructions for each tool before use.
  • Wear appropriate personal protective equipment, such as gloves and safety glasses.
  • Keep your work area clean and organized to prevent accidents.
  • Use tools only for their intended purpose and avoid using damaged or faulty tools.
  • Store tools properly in a toolbox or designated storage area when not in use.
  • Keep tools out of reach of small children and unauthorized individuals.
  • Regularly inspect tools for any signs of wear or damage and replace as necessary.

Here is an option for fulfilling Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure requirement 1:

  • Tool Time
    • Cub Scouts practice using four different tools.
    • Supplies: safety glasses, hammers, screwdrivers, brace and bit, saws, vice or clamp, measuring tools, sandpaper, small piece of wood, first aid kit
    • indoor, moderate energy, 1 to 3 days prep

Hands-On Tool Practice

Practice using four of the tools you learned about in requirement 1.

After learning about tools and safety, Bear Cub Scouts practice using the tools they’ve studied. This second Baloo the Builder requirement lets them handle tools to understand how they work. It’s a practical step that prepares them for building their own projects. They use real tools under close supervision to ensure they apply what they’ve learned about safety.

  • Tool Relay Race: Set up stations with different tools and simple tasks at each station. Scouts race to complete a task with one tool before moving to the next station.
  • Miniature Projects: Give Scouts small, simple projects like assembling a birdhouse from a kit, where they can use different tools.
  • Practice Boards: Provide boards and safe materials like nails or screws. Let Scouts practice hammering, screwing, and measuring.
  • Tool Charades: Scouts act out how to use different tools without speaking, while others guess the tool and its use. This reinforces both the tool’s function and proper handling.

Here is an option for fulfilling Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure requirement 2:

  • Tool Practice
    • Cub Scouts practice using four different tools.
    • Supplies: hammers, screwdrivers, saws, vices or clamps, nails, screws measuring tools, boards, rags, safety glasses, first aid kit, timer
    • indoor, moderate energy, 1 to 3 days prep

Choosing a Project to Build

Choose a project to build.

For Requirement 3 in the Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure, Bear Cub Scouts select a project to build. This step allows them to apply what they’ve learned about tools and safety. Choosing their own project makes the experience more engaging and personal. It encourages creativity and decision-making, as Scouts consider what they can make within their skill level.

  • Wooden Toolbox: Scouts can build a simple toolbox to hold the tools they use during Cub Scouts. This project involves measuring, cutting, and assembling wood.
  • Birdhouse: Building a birdhouse teaches basic construction and provides a home for local wildlife.
  • Picture Frame: A simple wooden picture frame is a great project for practicing precise measuring and cutting.
  • Small Bench: A bench for use around the campfire or at home can be a more challenging project that requires careful planning and assembly.
  • Hiking Stick: A hiking stick is a unique project that combines woodworking with outdoor exploration. See instructions here.
  • Tic-tac-toe Game: Instead of using traditional X’s and O’s, Scouts can create their own game board by drilling holes in a wooden board and using golf tees as markers. See details.
  • Personalized Name Sign: Creating a personalized name sign is a project that allows Cub Scouts to express their individuality and pride. They can cut a piece of wood and use stencils and paint to design and create a sign with their name or initials. Add a hangar to the back.

Here is are some options for fulfilling Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure requirement 3:

  • Find Our Own Project
    • Cub Scouts determine a project to build that is not in the handbook.
    • Supplies: none
    • indoor, very low energy, minimal prep
  • Project from Handbook
    • Cub Scouts choose a project to build: bat house, candy dispenser, tic-tac-toe board or caddy.
    • Supplies: paper and pencils
    • indoor, very low energy, minimal prep

Planning Your Project

Determine the tools and materials needed to build your project in requirement 3.

In Requirement 4 of the Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure, Bear Cub Scouts learn to plan by determining the tools and materials needed for their chosen project. This step is crucial because proper planning helps ensure the project can be completed successfully and safely. It teaches Scouts to think ahead and organize their resources, which are valuable skills in any project.

  1. Material Scavenger Hunt: Create a list of materials and tools needed for the project. Have Scouts search around the meeting area or in a provided pile to find these items.
  2. Tool and Material Matching Game: Set up cards with pictures of the project stages and cards with tools and materials. Scouts match tools and materials to the correct stage of the project.
  3. Budgeting Exercise: Give Scouts a budget and have them “purchase” their materials from a mock store you set up, practicing budget management.
  4. Resource Role Play: Assign roles to Scouts, such as shopper, budget manager, and tool checker. They must work together to gather all necessary items for the project, encouraging teamwork and planning.

Here is an option for fulfilling Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure requirement 4:

  • Tool and Material Selection
    • Cub Scouts determine tools and materials are needed to build their selected project.
    • Supplies: Tool and Supply List, pencils
    • indoor, low energy, 1 to 3 days prep

Building the Project

Build your project.

The final step in the Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure is for Bear Cub Scouts to build their chosen project. This requirement brings together all the skills they’ve learned about tool use, safety, and planning. Building the project gives Scouts a chance to put their knowledge into action and see the results of their hard work. It’s a rewarding experience that teaches persistence and attention to detail.

  • Supervise Closely: Always provide close supervision to ensure Scouts use tools safely and correctly.
  • Step-by-Step Guidance: Break the building process into clear, manageable steps so Scouts can follow along easily.
  • Encourage Teamwork: Promote teamwork by having Scouts help each other and share tasks based on their strengths.
  • Review and Reflect: After completing the project, review what went well and what could be improved. This reflection helps Scouts learn from the experience and feel proud of their work.

Here is an option for fulfilling Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure requirement 5:

  • Project Build – Bat Box
    • Cub Scouts build a bat house.
    • Supplies: Bat House instructions, power drill with drill bits, crosscut or circular saw, screwdriver, tape measure, pencil, straight edge, safety glasses, pocketknife, caulk, paintbrushes, primer, paint, screws, plywood, boards
    • indoor, moderate energy, 3 to 5 days prep
  • Project Build – Candy Dispenser
    • Cub Scouts build a candy dispenser.
    • Supplies: Candy Dispenser instructions, power drill with drill bits, screwdriver, hammer, tape measure, pencil, straight edge, pocketknife, sandpaper, wood glue, safety glasses, boards, dowels, canning jar, circular saw or jigsaw, nails or wood screws, brads, jellybeans or gumballs
    • indoor, moderate energy, 3 to 5 days prep
  • Project Build – Tic-Tac-Toe Board
    • Cub Scouts build a tic-tac-toe board.
    • Supplies: Tic-Tac-Toe Board instructions, power drill with drill bits, tape measure, pencil, black sharpie, straight edge, sandpaper, safety glasses, 2×4, golf tees, paint, hand saw
    • indoor, moderate energy, 3 to 5 days prep
  • Project Build – Tool or Art Caddy
    • Cub Scouts build a caddy for tools or art supplies.
    • Supplies: Caddy instructions, power drill with drill bits, tape measure, pencil, straight edge, sandpaper, safety glasses, board, dowel, hand saw or circular saw
    • indoor, moderate energy, 3 to 5 days prep
Safety Resources

Before any activity, check the SAFE Checklist to make sure everyone is safe. Everyone involved in Scouting America activities should know the Guide to Safe Scouting and other relevant guides or books. Also follow any state or local rules that are more strict than Scouting America rules and guidelines.

Before starting this Adventure, complete the following:

During the Adventure:

  • Allow time to train all youth and adults on using the tools correctly.
  • Provide constant, qualified adult supervision and discipline during the project.
  • Follow all manufacturer’s instructions and age or skill restrictions. If there is a conflict, follow the strictest guidelines.

More information

Frequently Asked Questions for the Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure

What tools will my Scout need for this Baloo the Builder adventure?

Your Scout will need basic tools like a hammer, screwdriver, measuring tape, and safety goggles. Check the adventure guide for a full list.

Is it safe for my Scout to use these tools?

Yes, with proper supervision and safety training. Teach Scouts the correct use of each tool and always supervise them during tool use.

Can we pick any project for Baloo the Builder Requirement 3?

Yes, Scouts can choose any project that is safe and appropriate for their skill level. It should allow them to practice using tools and building something useful.

What should we do if we don’t have all the tools?

You can borrow tools from other den members or ask parents if they can bring extra tools to the meeting. Sometimes, local hardware stores also lend tools for educational projects.

How long does the project take to complete?

The time can vary depending on the project, but plan for at least one or two den meetings to complete it. Some projects might take longer, especially if they’re more complex.

Can parents help their Scouts with the project?

Parents are encouraged to help, especially with guiding safety practices and supervising tool use. However, let Scouts do as much of the work as possible to build their skills and confidence.

Building Skills and Confidence

The Bear Baloo the Builder Adventure is a hands-on experience designed for Bear Cub Scouts. It teaches them about tools, safety, and the basics of building. Scouts start by learning the names and uses of common tools, along with essential safety practices. This foundation is crucial for ensuring they can handle tools safely.

Next, Scouts get practical by using the tools they’ve just learned about. They practice on real projects with close supervision, gaining confidence in handling tools correctly. This step is all about applying knowledge in a real-world setting.

After learning and practicing, Scouts choose a project to build for the Baloo the Builder adventure. This could be anything from a simple birdhouse to a small bench. They plan their project by listing the necessary tools and materials, which teaches them to think ahead and organize effectively.

Finally, Scouts build their project. This is where all their new skills come into play. Building the project not only improves their technical skills but also boosts their problem-solving abilities and self-esteem.

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