Select councils will gear up this fall to pilot Lions, a new Scouting program for kindergarten-age boys. Sounds simple, right? Isn’t it just a matter of adding a new rank to Cub Scouting?… Not so fast! Although there are similarities, there are also differences between Lions and the core Cub Scouting program and we’re here to break it all down for you.
The Lion program, like all Scouting programs, weaves the concepts of character development, leadership skills, personal fitness, and citizenship into activities that are age-appropriate and fun.
Lion Adventures, Uniforms and Pack Involvement
“Adventures” (themed sets of activities and experiences) will assist Lion families in exploring the world around them. As they complete the requirements for each adventure, Lions will earn an adventure sticker to be placed in their Lion Adventure Book. Lions earn stickers, not adventure loops (belt loops) as they will do in Cub Scouting. Additionally, Lions will be led by parents filling the role of “Lion Guides” and will meet as dens of six to eight kindergarten-age boys.
Lions will wear their own approved uniform, a Lion t-shirt! It will be available in pilot-approved Scout Shops to help the Lions feel unique and special. Lions should not wear the Cub Scout uniform until they are old enough to officially transition into Cub Scouting as a Tiger. Lion dens may be invited to participate in a few pack meetings, but care should be taken to ensure that any meetings they attend are fun and engaging for boys of Lion age. Boys are restless by nature, younger boys even more so. Late nights, long meetings, lots of sitting and listening should be avoided for Cub Scouts and Lions, alike. Instead, meaningful and fun activities should be planned for Lions in any meetings they attend. At the end of the kindergarten year, Lions will “graduate” into Cub Scouting as a Tiger – where even more fun and adventure will await!
Councils have begun to consider their options in applying to become a national Lion pilot site for fall 2016. Scout Executives have been made aware of the procedures to do that. If approved, pilot councils will provide feedback to the national Program Development Department for further study.
Since its announcement a few weeks ago, the Lion pilot program has generated much enthusiasm! Please join in that excitement as we test new ways to reach America’s youth with the benefits of Scouting!
More information, including program specifics and FAQ’s, will be made available in the coming months so check back on Scouting Wire for the latest updates. Have questions about the Lion program that you would like to see answered on Scouting Wire? Leave them in the comments below.