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Gizmos And Gadgets – Lion

Elective Adventure

Lions with their adult partner will build a useful object together and explore the properties of motion and force.

Requirements

Explore properties of motion.
Jumping Cars
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List4
Prep Time3

Use Hot Wheels™ cars to conduct some tests of motion.

  • Hot Wheels or other die-cast cars, one per Cub Scout and adult partner
  • 1 – 6” long 5” wide vinyl rain gutter
  • Table, any size
  • Duct tape
  • Shoebox ramp, see photo in Additional Resources
  • Utility knife
  • 1” blue painter’s tape

Before the meeting:

  1. Build the shoebox ramp.
  2. Set up an area with the table and attach the rain gutter to the table using duct tape. Attach the shoebox ramp to the bottom of the rain gutter using duct tape.
  3. The space should allow for cars to race down the rain gutter, jump the ramp and a clear area for cars to land.
  4. Identify an area where there is a smooth surface for Cub Scouts and adult partners to run cars on. Place a one-foot-long strip of blue painter’s tape on the floor and another one-foot-long strip 10 feet apart to create a start and finish line. Set up a set of start and finish lines for each Cub Scout and adult partner pair.
  5. Review the concepts of motion by watching this YouTube video, “FORCE & MOTION How Things Move *Explained*.”

During the meeting:

  1. Gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners and share with them the concepts of motion.
  2. Hold up a Hot Wheels car and ask the Cub Scouts how some ways are we can make this car move. Give time for answers.
    • To make this car move we have to apply force and there are two ways we are going to do that. The first is to apply the force ourselves by pushing the car.
    • The second way we can apply force is to allow gravity to do the work.
  3. Share with the Cub Scouts and adult partners that first we are going to apply the force ourselves. Pass out a car to each Cub Scout and each adult partner. Have each Cub Scout and adult partner pair pick a spot with a starting line and a finish line. Have adult partners and Cub Scouts race their cars against each other as the push their cars to go from the finish to the start line.
  4. Next gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners to the rain gutter jump ramp. Share with them that everyone will get a chance to jump their car.
  5. Have Cub Scouts and adult partners place their car at the top of the rain gutter and let it go, allowing gravity to do all the work.
  6. When everyone has had a chance to jump their car using gravity, let everyone take a second turn. This time allowing them to push their car down the rain gutter.
  7. When everyone has had a second chance to jump their cars, ask Cub Scouts what they like best and what they notice about how their cars moved based on the different activities.
Moving Marbles
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List2
Prep Time2

Make a marble maze out of a paper plate.

  • 100% compostable heavy-duty paper plates, one for each Cub Scout and adult partner
  • Construction paper in assorted colors, one sheet for each Cub Scout and adult partner
  • Tape
  • Marbles, one for each Cub scout and adult partner
  • Crayons, enough to share

Before the meeting:

  1. Learn how to make a marble maze with a paper plate.
    • Take a paper plate, facing up, and on one edge of the plate write the word “START”.
    • On another edge of the plate write the word “END”.
    • Cut four strips of construction paper about 1” wide and about 4” long.
    • Take one strip of construction paper and plate the number 1 with an arrow pointing up.
    • Tape one end of the construction paper onto the paper plate, form a tunnel big enough for the marble to fit through, and tape down the other end. Test to make sure that the marble can freely move under the strip of construction paper.
    • Now add a second strip with the number 2, a third strip with the number 3, and a fourth strip with the number 4.
    • The objective is to move the marble from the start, go under each strip of paper in order and in the direction of the arrow, and then move the marble to the end by holding the edges of the plate and moving the plate around to move the marble.
  2. Make your own marble maze to use as an example and demonstration.
  3. Set up the meeting location so Cub Scouts and adult partners can complete the activity together.

During the meeting:

  1. Gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners and inform them that in this activity they are going to explore the property of motion. Motion is simply when something moves. We are going to use marbles to explore how marbles move when we move them around on a paper plate by making a maze.
  2. Show your marble maze and demonstrate how to play the maze.
  3. Demonstrate how to make the marble maze.
  4. Have Cub Scouts work with their adult partners to make a marble maze. Have each adult partner make one too.
  5. Once they have made their maze have them try it out, once they are able to do their own maze have them switch with their adult partner to try their maze.
  6. Ask the Cub Scouts what tricks they learned that they would share with others to help them complete a marble maze.
On a Roll
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List3
Prep Time2

Roll different-sized balls to explore the movement and rotation.

  • 1 ping pong ball
  • 1 tennis ball
  • 1 softball
  • 1 soccer ball
  • 1 chair
  • 1 – 2’ wide and 4’ long piece of plywood
  • 1 brick or concrete paver

Before the meeting:

  1. Identify a flat area to set up the demonstration. Place the plywood against the seat of the chair, placing the brick at the bottom of the plywood to keep it in place, making a ramp for the balls to roll down.

During the meeting:

  1. Gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners and inform them that in this activity they are going to explore the property of motion. Motion is simply when something moves. They are going to watch what happens when we roll different-sized balls down this ramp.
  2. Inform the den that there are four different balls and ask them which ball they think will go down the ramp the fastest and why.
  3. Roll each ball down one by one.
  4. See who was right. Ask the den what is making the balls move? Gravity
  5. Gravity is a force that pushes down on everything. One thing that can change how gravity pushes on something is it’s mass. Mass the amount of substance in something. The soccer ball has a lot of air in it and air is not made up of much. However, the softball has a hard center, so the softball has more mass then the soccer ball that is why it rolls faster.
  6. Tell the den that we can figure out the mass of something by the way gravity effects it or in this activity by how fast it rolls down the ramp.
  7. Rolls the balls down again and see if the den can place the different balls by their mass which is the same as how fast they roll down the ramp.
  8. Ask the Cub Scouts what type of ball would have a lot of mass?
    • Bowling ball
    • Golf ball
    • Cannon ball
Ping Pong Ball Derby
LocationIndoor
Energy 3
Supply List2
Prep Time2

Race ping pong balls across a table by blowing through a straw.

  • 6-foot-long table
  • Straws, one for each Cub Scout and adult partner
  • 2 – Ping Pong balls
  • 2 – 16 oz. plastic cup
  • Roll of 1” blue painter’s tape

Before the meeting:

  1. Set up the meeting location with a 6-foot-long table that is in a safe place free of obstacles that Cub Scouts and adult partners can freely move around the table.
  2. Tape the plastic cups, laying down with the opening of the cup facing the other end of the table. The objective is to be able to blow the ping pong ball into the cup.

During the meeting:

  1. Gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners and inform them that in this activity they are going to explore the property of motion. Motion is simply when something moves. They are going to have fun moving ping pong balls by blowing on them through a straw.
  2. Pair up Cub Scouts to race each other by placing each ping pong ball on one end of the table. The goal is to get the ball across the table and into the cup on the other side without the ball falling off the table. The first one to do so wins.
  3. Have Cub Scouts race each other and then pair up adult partners and have adult partners race each other.
  4. Ask the Cub Scouts what tips they would give someone when playing this game.
Explore properties of force.
Cars That Run On Air
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List2
Prep Time3

Build balloon cars to see how air can be a force to move things.

  • Cardboard 2” x 4”, one for each Cub Scout
  • Plastic straws, two for each Cub Scout
  • Bamboo skewers, one for each Cub Scout
  • Plastic bottle caps, four for each Cub Scout
  • 9” balloon (check for latex allergies), one for each Cub Scout
  • Small rubber band, one for each Cub Scout
  • Duct tape, enough to share
  • Drill
  • 7/64” drill bit
  • Small manual balloon pump

Before the meeting:

  1. Learn how to make a balloon car. Watch this YouTube video for an example, “BUILD A BALLOON CAR THAT WORKS!!
  2. Make your own balloon car to use as a demonstration.
  3. Identify a place at the meeting location that is flat and smooth where the balloon cars can run.
  4. Take the bottle caps and in the center bottle cap drill a hole using the 7/64” drill bit.

During the meeting:

  1. Gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners and share that this activity is about force. Inform the den that force is an action that changes or maintains the motion of a body or object. Simply stated, a force is a push or a pull. Forces can change an object’s speed, its direction, and even its shape.
  2. They are going to explore how the force of air can push on a balloon car to make it go forward.
  3. Show your balloon car as an example.
  4. Have adult partners help their Cub Scouts make a balloon car.
    • Cut the straw in half into two pieces that are just a little longer than 2”, these will be part of the axle of the car.
    • Cut the bamboo skewer in half, it should be about 1” longer than the length of the straws. If there is room cut off the sharp tip.
    • Attach one bottle cap to the end of the skewer and then insert the skewer through the straw then attach another bottle cap onto the other end. Check to make sure that the wheels can spin freely.
    • Tape the axles with the wheels onto the cardboard body. Tape them about 1” inch from the ends and 2” from each other. Make sure that they are square with the body of the car and each other. Flip the car over
    • Cut the other straw about three inches long. Attach the straw to the balloon by inserting it into the balloon about an inch then wrap the rubber band several times around the balloon and straw.
    • Attach the straw with the balloon to the back of the car. The balloon should rest on the body of the car and the straw should stick out of the back about an inch or so, this way you can blow up the balloon with your mouth or a balloon pump.
  5. Once everyone has made their car, allow them to run their cars. You may even conduct a race.
  6. Ask them what they notice about the force of air and how it is acting on their car. Ask them if they know why their car eventually stops. Friction is a force that is caused by the air the car is traveling through, the wheels on the ground, and even the spinning of the axle is causing friction.
Does This Thing Fly?
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List2
Prep Time1

Making paper airplanes and comparing it to paper balls explores the concept of friction as a force.

  • 4 sheets of 8.5” x 11” pieces of paper for each Cub Scout

Before the meeting:

  1. Learn about making paper airplanes with Scout Life Magazine “Make Your Paper Airplane Soar With These Tips.”
  2. Make a paper airplane to use as an example.
  3. Identify an area in your meeting location that is safe and free of obstacles for Cub Scouts to fly paper airplanes.

During the meeting:

  1. Gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners and share that this activity is about force. Inform the den that force is an action that changes or maintains the motion of a body or object. Simply stated, a force is a push or a pull. Forces can change an object’s speed, its direction, and even its shape.
  2. Inform the den they will explore motion by making paper airplanes.
  3. To demonstrate this, have everyone take a piece of paper and crumble it up into a tight ball, as tight as they can. Explain that friction can be thought of as when there is something that is keeping something from moving. When two things are rubbing against each other it causes friction. When you throw the paper ball the air keeps the ball from moving forward forever and gravity is what causes the ball to drop to the ground.
  4. Have everyone throw their paper balls in the designated area.
  5. Explain that when we make a paper airplane, we can reduce the friction, the force that is pushing against the plane, because the plane is smooth so there are fewer places for the air to push against. Gravity is still going to push down on the plane but since we reduce the ability for the air to push against the plane it will take longer causing the plane to stay in the air longer.
  6. Demonstrate how to make a paper airplane, if Cub Scouts or adult partners know how to make a different plane that is OK.
  7. Have adult partners work with their Cub Scouts to make a paper airplane.
  8. When everyone is finished have them fly their paper airplanes.
The Force Pushes and Pulls
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List2
Prep Time1

Cub Scouts identify the difference between pushing and pulling as a force.

  • Cub Scouts will need their Lion handbook, page 36
  • Crayons, enough to share

Before the meeting:

  1. Set up the meeting location so Cub Scouts and adult partners can work on the activity together.

During the meeting:

  1. Gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners and share that this activity is about force. Inform the den that force is an action that changes or maintains the motion of a body or object. Simply stated, a force is a push or a pull. Forces can change an object’s speed, its direction, and even its shape.
  2. Have Cub Scouts work with their adult partners to color the images on page 36 of their Lion handbook.
  3. Then place an X on images that show pushing and an O on images that show pulling.
Use household materials to create a useful object.
2 Liter Bird Feeder
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List2
Prep Time2

Make a bird feeder by reusing a 2-liter plastic bottle.

  • Cub Scouts will need their Lion handbook, page 37
  • 2-liter plastic soda bottles with caps, one for each Cub Scout
  • Craft scissors, a pair for each Cub Scout
  • ¼” wood dowel one foot long, one for each Cub Scout
  • 2 feet of paracord for each Cub Scout

Before the meeting:

  • Prepare the meeting location so adult partners can work with their Cub Scouts to complete the activity.
  • Review the directions to make the bird feeder on page 37 of the Lion handbook.
  • Make a bird feeder to use as an example.

During the meeting:

  • Gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners and have them make their bird feeders following the directions on page 37 of the Lion handbook.
  • Remind them to hang their bird feeder at home.
2 Liter Bunny Planter
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List3
Prep Time3

Make a planter by reusing a 2-liter plastic bottle.

See Additional Resources for examples of a pig and frog that can be made. If making those adjust the color paints you use.

  • 2-liter plastic soda bottles, one for each Cub Scout
  • 12 oz. white spray paint
  • 1 qt. of black acrylic paint
  • 1 qt. of dark pink acrylic paint
  • Paint brushes , one for each Cub Scout
  • Craft scissors, one for each Cub Scout
  • 2 pairs of 2” googly eye stickers, a set for each Cub Scout
  • 4 cups of planting soil, per Cub Scout
  • Sweet basil plugs, one per Cub Scout (substitute sweet basil for any other common herb or flower)
  • Water

Before the meeting:

  1. Lightly spray paint each of the plastic 2-liter bottles light pink and allow to fully dry.
  2. Give each bottle a second coat of paint and allow it to dry.
  3. Set up the meeting location so adult partners can work with their Cub Scouts to make the planter.
  4. Review how to make the bunny planter.
    • Take the painted 2-liter bottle and halfway down the bottle start cutting around. Cut out bunny ears as you cut around the bottle.
    • Use pink acrylic paint to paint the inside of the ears and make a nose.
    • Glue on the googly eyes.
    • Use black acrylic paint to paint the whiskers.
    • Fill the inside of the planter with planting soil.
    • Dig a hole to plant the sweet basil plug.
    • Water the plant.
  5. Make a bunny planter to use as an example.

During the meeting:

  1. Gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners and demonstrate how to make the planter.
  2. Have adult partners work with their Cub Scouts to cut and decorate their planter to look like a bunny.
  3. Once decorated, have Cub Scouts add potting soil and plant the basil.
  4. Allow the planter to dry before taking it home.
  5. Remind Cub Scouts to keep the basil inside near a window and to keep the soil moist.
Lion Pinewood Derby Car Display
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List4
Prep Time4

Build a Pinewood Derby car display.

These plans make 4 Pinewood Derby car displays. Before the meeting, you will make one as an example. Take this into consideration when purchasing materials.

  • 1 – 1 in. x 4 in. x 6 ft. Premium Kiln-Dried Square Edge Whitewood Common Board, one for every 4 Cub Scouts
  • Table saw
  • Eye protection
  • 220 grit sandpaper, 1 sheet per Cub Scout
  • 8 oz. of quick-drying wood glue
  • 1” paint brushes, 1 for each Cub Scout
  • 1 qt. of yellow acrylic paint
  • 1 qt. of blue acrylic paint
  • 4 bowls of water to wash paint brushes
  • 1 roll of paper towels
  1. Using the table saw, wearing proper safety gear including eye protection, cut the 1” x 4” board into the following lengths: 4 – 12” long, 4 – 3” long, 2 – 6” long.
  2. Take the two 6” long pieces and cut them in half longways to make (4) – 1 ¾“ x 6” pieces. Check the width of the piece, it should be the same width as a pinewood derby car.
  3. Review the directions to make the Pinewood Derby display.
    • Gather one of each of the following pieces – one 12” x 4”, one 3” x 4”, and one 1 ¾” x 6”.
    • Sand all the pieces to remove sharp edges and give a better surface for the paint to stick to.
    • Assemble the stand by placing the 12” x 4” piece (the base) flat on the workspace. Place wood glue on the 4” edge of the 3” x 4” (stand) and place it in the center of the 12” x 4” base. Place wood glue on the other 4” edge of the 3” x 4” and place the 1 ¾“ x 6” (plate) piece flat on the top.
    • Allow the glue to set.
    • Paint the base blue, the stand yellow, and the plate blue.
  4. Set up the meeting location with enough workspace for Cub Scouts and adult partners to assemble and paint their Pinewood Derby display together.
  5. Protect the workspace and floors from paint spills.
  6. Identify a location for Pinewood Derby displays to dry when they are finished being painted.
  7. Set up a workspace for each Cub Scout with the materials needed to make the Pinewood Derby display.

During the meeting:

  1. Gather the Cub Scouts and adult partners and demonstrate how to assemble the Pinewood Derby display.
  2. Have adult partners work with their Cub Scouts to sand and assemble their display.
  3. Once assembled, adult partners work with their Cub Scouts to paint their display.
  4. Allow displays to dry before taking them home.
Print

Safety Moment

Prior to any activity, use the BSA SAFE Checklist to ensure the safety of all those involved.

All participants in official BSA Scouting activities should become familiar with the Guide to Safe Scouting and applicable program literature or manuals.

Be aware of state or local government regulations that supersede BSA practices, policies, and guidelines.

To assist in the safe delivery of the program you may find specific safety items that are related to requirements for the Adventure.

Before conducting a craft activity, review the Craft Tips video (2 minutes 34 seconds.)

If choosing the Lion Pinewood Derby Car Display activity for requirement 3, complete the following:

During the Adventure

  • Give time for proper training on the use of the tools that will be used to complete the project to all youth and adults.
  • Provide continuous, qualified adult supervision and discipline during the project.
  • Following all manufacturer’s literature and age and skill restrictions shall supersede the recommendations in the publication. If there is a conflict, leaders shall follow the most restrictive guidelines.

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