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Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure for 2024

This for the 2024 program year Cub Scout updates. This new program takes effect on June 1, 2024. See more details about the overall program updates here.

The Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure introduces Wolf Cub Scouts to the microscopic world of germs and the importance of good hygiene practices. This adventure is designed to teach Scouts about the unseen dangers of germs, how they spread, and the simple steps everyone can take to prevent illnesses. Through a series of fun and educational activities, Scouts learn critical health information that enhances their understanding of personal and public health.

Wolf Germs Alive Emblem

Scouts start by learning the proper way to wash their hands. They practice washing their hands thoroughly while singing the “Happy Birthday” song twice, which helps them measure the time needed to ensure their hands are well cleaned. This simple but effective activity emphasizes the importance of regular handwashing in removing germs and preventing the spread of diseases.

Next, the adventure includes interactive games like “Germ Magnet,” which simulates how easily germs can spread from person to person through contact. This game is followed by washing hands, reinforcing the lesson that proper hygiene can significantly reduce the risk of catching and spreading germs.

Scouts also engage in visual demonstrations, such as the sneeze and mucus demonstrations, to see firsthand how germs can be propelled through everyday actions like sneezing and coughing. These demonstrations are eye-opening for Scouts, highlighting how behaviors like covering a sneeze can prevent germs from traveling.

Finally, the Scouts undertake a scientific experiment by growing mold cultures from various sources. This activity allows them to observe the growth of microbes over time and learn about different types of germs. Presenting their findings at a den or pack meeting fosters a sense of achievement and shares valuable lessons with peers.

Through the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure, Scouts gain a better understanding of microbiology and health. They also develop habits that promote a healthier lifestyle for themselves and their communities. This adventure is an essential part of their journey, combining science education with practical life skills.

Requirements for the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure

Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure Requirements

  1. Wash your hands while singing the “Happy Birthday” song.
  2. Play Germ Magnet with our den or your family.  Wash your hands afterward.
  3. Conduct the sneeze demonstration.
  4. Conduct the mucus demonstration.
  5. Grow a mold culture.  Show what formed at a den or pack meeting.

Resources for the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure

Clean Hands Club

Requirement 1 of the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure teaches Wolf Cub Scouts the proper way to wash their hands, a fundamental skill for maintaining good health. This activity is simple but crucial, as it helps prevent the spread of germs and illnesses.

  • Demonstration: Start by demonstrating the correct technique for handwashing. Show Scouts how to wet their hands with warm water, apply soap, and lather all surfaces of their hands, including the backs of hands, between fingers, and under nails.
  • Singing While Scrubbing: Explain to the Scouts that they need to scrub their hands for at least 20 seconds to effectively remove germs. Teach them to sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice while scrubbing, which is a fun way to time the handwashing process.
  • Rinsing and Drying: Show Scouts how to rinse their hands thoroughly under clean running water and then dry them with a clean towel or air dryer.
  • Glow Germ Experiment: Use a special lotion or powder that simulates germs and glows under a black light. Have Scouts apply the lotion, wash their hands, then check under the black light to see how well they did. This visual aid shows the importance of thorough handwashing. Read more here.

By focusing on handwashing in a fun and interactive way, the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure helps Scouts understand the impact of hygiene on health and instills lifelong habits to keep themselves and their communities healthy.

Germ Magnet Game

Requirement 2 of the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure involves playing the “Germ Magnet” game, which is designed to teach Wolf Cub Scouts about how easily germs can spread from person to person. This interactive activity highlights the importance of handwashing in preventing illness.

How to Play the Germ Magnet Game

  1. Preparation: You’ll need a glitter to represent germs. Each Scout starts with a small amount on their hands. If you can have a different color for each Scout, that is even better. If glitter is not allowed in your meeting space, use flour instead.
  2. Game Play: Scouts go about normal activities like shaking hands, high-fives, or passing objects to each other. The goal is to avoid getting more “germs” (glitter or flour) on themselves while trying to pass it onto others.
  3. Observation: After a few minutes, stop the activity. Let everyone look at their hands and clothes to see how much glitter or flour has transferred. This visual representation shows how germs spread through direct contact.
  4. Discussion: Talk about what happened during the game. Ask Scouts to think about how often they touch their faces or eat without washing their hands and how that behavior could spread germs.

Playing the Germ Magnet game not only educates Wolf Scouts about how germs spread but also visually demonstrates the critical role handwashing plays in keeping everyone healthy. It’s a fun and effective way to highlight everyday hygiene practices.

Sneeze Safely

Requirement 3 of the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure involves conducting a sneeze demonstration to show Wolf Cub Scouts the surprising distance germs can travel when someone sneezes. This vivid illustration helps Scouts understand why covering sneezes properly is crucial in preventing the spread of illnesses.

How to Conduct the Sneeze Demonstration

  1. Put a large spoonful of confetti inside a balloon which has not been blown up. A funnel might be helpful.
  2. Blow up the balloon. Use a balloon pump if you have one. Do not tie the balloon.
  3. Pretend like you are going to sneeze.
  4. Hold up the balloon and let the step open up so the confetti sprays out.
  5. Discuss how far the pieces went and how this is like the germs in a sneeze. That is why we should cover our noses and mouths when we sneeze.
  6. Sweep up the pieces of confetti.

Read more details about the sneeze demonstration here.

This sneeze demonstration is a powerful, hands-on way to teach Wolf Scouts about the importance of good hygiene practices like covering one’s mouth when sneezing to protect others and themselves from germs.

Sticky Situation

Requirement 4 of the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure includes conducting a mucus demonstration. This activity helps Wolf Cub Scouts understand the role of mucus in trapping germs and preventing them from entering our bodies. It’s a hands-on way to visualize how our bodies defend themselves against everyday germs.

How to Conduct the Mucus Demonstration

For the Germs Alive! mucus demonstration, you make fake “mucus” from borax, warm water, and glue.  Then you use something like glitter or cocoa powder to see how the mucus traps small particles.

Read the complete recipe and instructions for the Mucus Demonstration here.

The mucus demonstration is not only educational but also engaging, providing Scouts with a clear, tangible understanding of how their bodies work to protect them every day from germs and illnesses.

Growing Knowledge

Requirement 5 of the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure engages Wolf Cub Scouts in growing their own mold cultures to observe how microbes develop and thrive in different environments. This hands-on science experiment enhances their understanding of microorganisms and their effects on our world.

How to Grow a Mold Culture

  1. Materials Needed: You’ll need clear plastic containers, bread slices, banana, cheese, water, and plastic wrap.
  2. Setup: Moisten the food items with a few drops of water (not too wet) and place them on the paper plate. Cover with plastic wrap to keep moisture in and prevent contamination from outside sources. Leave a note that they shouldn’t be eaten!
  3. Observation Station: Label the container with the date and place it in a warm, dark place. Check the culture daily to observe any changes. Scouts should note when mold begins to appear and how it spreads over time.
  4. Recording Results: Encourage Scouts to keep a daily log of their observations, including changes in the appearance of the mold, colors, and any other notable features. This log will be useful for their presentation.

Growing mold cultures not only teaches Scouts about microbiology but also about the scientific method—making hypotheses, observing changes, and presenting their conclusions. This activity cultivates curiosity and a scientific mindset, important traits for budding young scientists.

Sneeze Demonstration: This Germs Alive! activity involves putting confetti in a balloon, blowing it up, and then popping it. The confetti ends up all spread out, like germs in a sneeze.

Mucus Demonstration: Make fake “mucus” from borax, warm water, and glue. Then you use something like glitter or cocoa powder to see how the mucus traps small particles.

Germ Transfer Demonstration: Learn how to use Glo Germ to show kids how easily germs spread.

The Germ Song: This is sung to the tune of Happy Birthday but has lyrics related to hand washing.

Frequently Asked Questions for the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure

Why do we sing “Happy Birthday” when washing our hands?

We sing “Happy Birthday” twice to make sure we wash our hands long enough (about 20 seconds) to get rid of germs.

What is the Germ Magnet game?

The Germ Magnet game shows how germs spread from one person to another when we touch things or each other.

What happens in the sneeze demonstration?

In the sneeze demonstration, we use water to show how far germs can travel when someone sneezes without covering their mouth.

Why do we study mucus in this adventure?

We study mucus because it helps trap germs and stop them from getting into our bodies, which keeps us healthy.

What is the purpose of growing a mold culture?

Growing a mold culture helps us see how mold grows and spreads over time, teaching us about how germs can grow in different environments.

Germ Busters

The Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure takes Wolf Cub Scouts on an educational journey into the world of germs and hygiene. Through interactive and engaging activities, Scouts learn how germs spread and the importance of maintaining cleanliness to stay healthy. The adventure begins with a simple but effective demonstration of proper handwashing, where Scouts sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice to ensure they wash long enough to eliminate germs.

Scouts then play the Germ Magnet game, a fun and eye-opening activity that visually demonstrates how quickly germs can spread from person to person through contact. This game is followed by thorough handwashing, reinforcing the lesson learned. The adventure also includes the sneeze and mucus demonstrations, which show Scouts the biological defenses against germs and the importance of covering sneezes and coughs to prevent the spread of germs.

Additionally, Scouts grow their own mold cultures, which not only fascinates them but also teaches patience and observation as they watch day by day how germs can grow and multiply under suitable conditions. This activity culminates in a presentation where Scouts share their findings with their den or pack, enhancing their communication skills and reinforcing their scientific knowledge.

Overall, the Wolf Germs Alive! Adventure teaches Scouts about personal hygiene and health science, creating a sense of responsibility for their own health and the health of others around them. This adventure helps Scouts with practical skills and understanding that contribute to lifelong health awareness.


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