10 Things to Know About the Cub Scouts in 2015, Pt. 1

The Cub Scouts are to the Boy Scouts what preschool is to school. It is where the future leaders of the world learn the very basic tenants of what it means to be a Boy Scout and how to work hard with a purpose in mind. Like many venerable and long-lived institutions around the world, the Cub Scouts haven’t changed all that much in the past years. That being said, it seems as though the Cub Scouts have recently undergone a massive overhaul so that what they teach and instill is more in line with the world we currently live in. Here are the first 5 major differences that parents should know about for the Cub Scouts in 2015.

new scout books

The covers of the new Cub Scout program books.

  1. One oath, one law: Up until this year, every level in the Scouting organization had a different oath and set of laws that required scouts to constantly readjust and re-memorize whenever they rose to the next level. This is no longer the case and in an attempt to bring all the levels closer together, all levels in the Scouting organization are going to be memorizing and following the same oath and the same law. The new oath is “On my honor, I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country, to obey the Scout Law, to help other people at all times, and to keep myself physically strong, morally straight and mentally awake.” and the new law is “A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.” These will go far towards bringing all the levels closer together and fostering an understanding of how what you learned as a Cub Scout is still relevant as you’re entering your Eagle Scout phase.
  2. The ranks are unchanged: While the oath and law aspect of the scouts might be different, the ranking system isn’t changing. This means that all boys that join the Cub Scouts will still start as a Bobcat.
  3. No more academic or sports programs: These programs have been scrapped since they have nothing to do with the ranking system within the Scouting organizations. Since they didn’t have anything to do with rank advancement and most kids got the badges for pursuing activities they would’ve normally outside of the Scouting program, they are no longer around.
  4. Advancement is simplified: Now, instead of needing to accomplish a different number of badges and activities for each level, all levels simply need to complete exactly 7 “adventures” before they can move higher. This will go far towards getting rid of any confusion and difficulties when it comes to figuring out what you still need to complete to advance to a higher level.
  5. Instant recognition through belt-loops: Instead of receiving instant or delayed recognition based on your rank and a series of convoluted rules, recognition is now instant due to the use of belt-loops which speak to the activity accomplished as well as the age-group and rank the scout is. This will go far towards helping the children stay motivated about working towards their goals.

These are just 5 of the 10 major changes. I’ll be writing about the remaining 5 in my next post but if you’d like to read them all now, click the link here.