Information for new Cub Scouting parents
Please click on the different program drop downs below to learn more specifics about Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Venturing, and Exploring. You can also contact the Northeast Iowa Council Service Center at 563-556-4343 with questions. We are happy to help.
What is Cub Scouting?
Cub Scouts is a program within the Boy Scouts of America that serves youth from 5-11 years old. The Cub Scouts program aims to prepare youth to grow into self-reliant and dependable adults.
Cub Scouts achieve this with a lineup of hands-on activities and adventures focused on:
- Character Development
- Spiritual Growth
- Good Citizenship
- Sportsmanship and Fitness
- Family Understanding
- Respectful Relationships
- Personal Achievement
- Friendly Service
- Fun and Adventure
Why Join Cub Scouting?
- Your time is valuable. More than ever, today’s families struggle to fin time to spend together. Cub Scouting helps to support your family by providing ready-made opportunities for you and your child to do things together.
- Your child needs to belong to a group of children their own age. Through this sense of belonging, they build self-esteem and learn to get along with others.
- As a parent, you want to be assured that the groups that your child joins will teach values consistent with good citizenship, character development and physical fitness. The Boy Scouts of American has been weaving these lifetime values into fun and educational activities since 1910.
- In a society where your child is taught that winning is everything, Cub Scouting teaches them to “do their best” and to be helpful to others.
- Scouting teaches family values and works to strengthen your relationship with your child. Scouting activities can bring added value to the time you already have with your child.
Come join the fun of Cub Scouting as a family…It’s fun! You’ll make new friends too, as you work with the parents of your child’s new friends. No task is too difficult when you’re having fun as part of a team of Cub Scout parents, reinforcing each other’s efforts to help your children grow up to be good citizens.
How Does Cub Scouting Work?
One unique thing about Cub Scouting is that you, as their family, join in on the program with your child and you will help them along the way. The family is the basis of Cub Scouting. It exists to support your family and help enrich your family time together.
The Cub Scouting program takes place at two levels: Den and Pack. Your child will be part of a den, a small group of children in the same grade level who usually meet weekly or twice a month. All dens from grades K through 5, make up a pack. Once a month, the dens, with their families, are together at the pack meeting, where Scouts show off the new skills they have learned during the month and are recognized for the badges they have earned.
Lion Cub Den (Kindergarten): A youth and their parent or caring adult partner join Scouting and attend meetings together.
Tiger Cub Den (Grade 1): A youth and their parent or caring adult partner join Scouting and attend meetings together.
Wolf Cub Den (Grade 2)
Bear Cub Den (Grade 3)
Webelos Scout Den (Grades 4 & 5): Places an emphasis on leadership roles and preparing to become part of Scouts BSA.
Find more information on how Cub Scouting is Organized
What will my Scout do?
Each Scout will participate in age appropriate activities in their dens on different topics, such as hiking, nature, science, citizenship, first aid, sports and more. As a pack, there will be special events and activities such as banquets, races, and community service project.
Find more information about Cub Scout Activities
How Can You Help?
The most important help that you, as a parent, can give your child is to work with them on their Cub Scout activities. And then it is all-important for you to attend the monthly pack meeting with your scout, so that you can celebrate their achievements. Your role as a parent is the secret to a successful Cub Scouting program!
The den and the pack also rely on parent participation to run a successful program. Consider volunteering as a member of the pack leadership team. By volunteering in Scouting, you are also giving your child the gift of your time. What could be more valuable? Below are some of the ways you could volunteer. For those with less time to give, be sure to fill out the Talent Survey and give to a pack leader.
Den Leader. Leads the den a weekly den and monthly pack meetings. Attends the monthly pack committee meeting.
Cubmaster. Helps plan and carry out the pack program with the help of the pack committee. Emcees the monthly pack meeting and attends the pack committee meeting.
Committee Chair: Presides at all pack committee meetings. Helps recruit adult leaders and attends the monthly pack meeting and pack committee meeting.
Advancement Chair. Maintains advancement records for the pack. Orders and obtains all badges and insignia. Attends the monthly pack meeting and pack committee meeting.
New Member Chair. Manages the transition of new Scouts into the pack and coordinates orientation for new Scouting families.
Secretary/Treasurer. Keeps all records for the pack, including pack bank account, financial records, etc. Attend the monthly pack meeting and pack committee meeting.
Scouting’s adult volunteers provide leadership at the unit, district, council, and national levels. Many are parents of Scouts; many entered Scouting as youth members and are now giving back. Each chartered organization establishes a unit committee, which operates its Scouting unit, selects leadership, and provides support for a quality program. Most unit committees depend on parents for membership.
The unit committee selects the Cubmaster, Scoutmaster, Crew Adviser, or Explorer Adviser, subject to approval of the chartered organization. The unit leader must be a good role model because our children’s values and lives will be influenced by that leader. Get to know your child’s unit leader and be involved in the unit committee activities so you can evaluate and help direct that influence.
Being a leader in the BSA is a privilege, not a right. The quality program and the safety of our youth members call for high-quality adult leaders. We work closely with our chartered organizations to help recruit the best possible leaders for each unit. A background check is also required for every adult application. We also preach a concept called “Two-Deep Leadership” at ALL times. This requires at least two registered adults for all Scouting meetings, trips, or outings.
The Boy Scouts of America offers convenient training for everyone. All new Cubmasters and Den Leaders are required to be trained for the position in which they are registered. The training is available online by visiting my.scouting.org. Studies have shown that families have better Scouting experiences when they have a trained leader. At the same time, trained leaders are more knowledgeable and confident in their positions.
The safety and welfare of your child is our number one priority. Creating the most secure environment possible for our youth members is critical to the Boy Scouts of America. To maintain such an environment, the BSA has developed numerous procedural and leadership selection policies. We also provide leaders and parents with training and resources needed for all of our programs.
Training is a critical part of effective leadership. Every youth member of Scouting deserves a trained leader. All unit leaders, committee members, and any other adult who will be in direct contact with a youth member of the Boy Scouts of America are required to take Youth Protection Training. Youth Protection Training is designed to help leaders keep the youth safe. Leaders learn the BSA’s Youth Protections Guidelines, signs of abuse, and how to report suspected abuse. This certification MUST be completed to volunteer with the BSA and MUST be renewed every two years.
Click here for more information on the policies and standards the National Boy Scout Office mandates to help keep Scouts safe.
- All Scouting activities are open to parental visitation. There are no “secret” organizations within the Boy Scouts of America.
- Leadership is restricted to qualified adults who subscribe to the Declaration of Religious Principle, the Scout Oath, and the Scout Law.
- Citizenship activities are encouraged, but partisan political activities are prohibited.
- Military training and drills are prohibited. Marksmanship and elementary drill for ceremonies are permitted.
- The Boy Scouts of America recognizes the importance of religious faith and duty; however we do not align with any particular faith or religious institution. We leave specific religious instruction to the member’s religious leaders and family.
- If the unit happens to be chartered through a religious organization, such as a church, members who do not belong to that church shall not be required to participate in its religious activities.
- Two registered adult leaders or one registered adult leader and a parent of a participant, one of whom must be 21 years of age or older, are required at all meetings, activities, and outings. If activities are coeducational, leaders of both sexes must be present.
- Corporal punishment and hazing are not permitted. Parents and unit leaders must work together to solve discipline problems.
- One-on-one activities between youth members and adults are not permitted; personal conferences must be conducted in plain view of others.
- If you suspect that anyone in the unit is a victim of child abuse, immediately contact the Scout Executive, who is responsible for reporting this to the appropriate authorities.