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Required Adventure

This Adventure is all about being a good citizen. You’ll learn about the different types of voting and how our national government maintains the balance of power. You’ll meet with a local politician and discuss how they were elected and their role in government.

Requirements

Learn about majority and plurality types of voting.
Denner Election
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List2
Prep Time2

Demonstrate plurality voting and majority voting to determine your next denner.

  • Webelos handbook 
  • Slips of paper, two for each Cub Scout 
  • Pencil or pen, one for each Cub Scout 

If you have a den of 10 or less, you may consider conducting this activity with the Cub Scouts and all their family members or ask the Cubmaster if you can conduct this activity at a pack meeting or event.

Before the meeting:

  1. Become familiar with the voting concepts of majority and plurality.
    • Majority means that to win a vote the candidate must receive more than 50% of the vote, this represents the majority. The benefit of a majority vote is that the majority of people get what they voted for. The potential challenge with a majority vote is when there are multiple candidates or topics, and a lot of people involved it may be difficult and/or take a lot of time to get a majority of people to agree on one candidate or topic. It may take several votes to get to a majority with no guarantee a majority will ever be reached. Conducting elections on a large scale is very costly.
    • Plurality is a system of voting, common in democracies, where the candidate who receives the most votes wins the vote, this is most common when there are more than two candidates on a ballot. The benefit of a plurality vote is that chances are greater that at least one person or topic will receive the most votes. Plurality votes usually only take one vote. The potential challenge is that people who are voting expecting a majority vote may feel like their vote didn’t have an impact.
    • The President of the United States is elected using a combination of majority and plurality system called the electoral college. Several states use majority voting to assign their electoral votes. In total there are 538 electoral votes and to win a presidential election the candidate must receive the majority of those electoral votes which is 270.

During the meeting:

  1. Explain that Cub Scouts will elect a denner today Remind Cub Scouts that the purpose of this is to explore the difference between majority and plurality voting that everyone in the den will eventually have the chance to serve as the denner and that this vote is just to see who the denner will be for the next meeting.  For the purpose of this activity even if someone has served as the denner previously they can still run for the position and serve again.
  2. Tell the Cub Scouts that; “First we have to decide who wants to serve as denner. The first part of most elections begins with what is called a nomination. This is where people recommend someone for the position by nominating them, if the person wants to run for the position, they accept the nomination.  If the person does not want to run for the position, they can refuse the nomination.”
  3. Allow Cub Scouts to start nominating other members of the den for the position of denner. When someone is nominated by another Cub Scout, ask if they want to accept or deny the nomination, if they accept then place them on the ballot.
  4. Continue to allow nominations until at least three candidates have been nominated and accepted. It is important to have at least three candidates to give a greater chance that not one candidate will receive the majority of votes. The lesson is more powerful when Cub Scouts realize that there are times when majority voting doesn’t give results right away or may cause a tie that cannot be broken.  Plurality voting is more likely to give a result right away and prevents stalemate situations that keep any one candidate from winning.
  5. Allow Cub Scouts who are running for denner give a brief reason why they want to be the denner.
  6. After the nominees have given their brief speech conduct the vote.
  7. Hand out a slip of paper and pencil to each Cub scout and have them write the name of the person they are voting for on the paper and turn it in to you. Tell them that this is a secret ballot so no one will know who you voted for.
  8. Count the votes and post the results.
  9. Explain to Cub Scouts that we can decide who won the election in one of two ways. The two most common methods are majority and plurality. Plurality is when the person who received the most votes wins.  Majority is when someone must have the majority of the votes which is more than half the votes to win.
  10. Discuss the results.
    • Is there someone who received the most votes (plurality)?
    • Is there someone who received the majority of votes (majority)?
    • Explain to Cub Scouts – Imagine if this was an election where there were thousands or millions of voters. There is a lot of time, money, and energy it takes to conduct an election and it can be a drain of resources to keep conducting an election until there is a majority.
    • Based on this election who do you think should be the denner?
Snack-Lections
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List2
Prep Time2

Using a variety of voting, select the snack for your next den meeting.

  • Three pieces of poster board
  • Crayons, markers, or colored pencils
  • Slips of paper (one for each Cub Scout)
  • Pencils (one for each Cub Scout)

Before the meeting:

  1. Become familiar with the voting concepts of majority and plurality.
    • Majority means that to win a vote the candidate must receive more than 50% of the vote, this represents the majority.   The benefit of a majority vote is that the majority of people get what they voted for.  The potential challenge with a majority vote is when there are multiple candidates or topics, and a lot of people involved it may be difficult and/or take a lot of time to get a majority of people to agree on one candidate or topic. It may take several votes to get to a majority with no guarantee a majority will ever be reached. Conducting elections on a large scale is very costly.
    • Plurality is a system of voting, common in democracies, where the candidate who receives the most votes wins the vote, this is most common when there are more than two candidates on a ballot.    The benefit of a plurality vote is that chances are greater that at least one person or topic will receive the most votes.  Plurality votes usually only take one vote.   The potential challenge is that people who are voting expecting a majority vote may feel like their vote didn’t have an impact.
    • The President of the United States is elected using a combination of majority and plurality system called the electoral college. Several states use majority voting to assign their electoral votes.  In total there are 538 electoral votes and to win a presidential election the candidate must receive the majority of those electoral votes which is 270.

During the meeting:

  1. Explain that Cub Scouts will decide on a snack for the next meeting. Let the Cub Scouts know that the purpose of this is to explore the difference between majority and plurality voting.
  2. Tell the Cub Scouts that; “First we have to decide what types of snacks we may want.  The first part of most elections begins with what is called a nomination. This is where people recommend someone for the position by nominating them, in this case you are going to give a nomination for a snack.  For the snack to make our ballot at least one other Cub Scout has to agree to put it on the ballot, which does not mean they have to vote for it and I as the den leader have to approve it.”  Have a list of things that the snack should be.
  3. Allow Cub Scouts to start nominating snacks.  If no one else wants that snack on the ballot, then it does not go on the ballot.  Remember the den leader must approve the snack to ensure a snack that is not practical is not voted on.  For example, sushi may not be a snack that is in the den budget, but pizza is.
  4. Continue to allow nominations until at least four snacks have been accepted. It is important to have at least four candidates to give a greater chance that not one snack will receive the majority of votes.  The lesson is more powerful when Cub Scouts realize that there are times when majority voting doesn’t give results right away or may cause a tie that cannot be broken.  Plurality voting is more likely to give a result right away and prevents stalemate situations that keep any one snack from being chosen.
  5. Hand out a slip of paper and pencil to each Cub Scout and have them write the name of the snack they are voting for on the paper and turn it into you.  Tell them that this is a secret ballot so no one will know who you voted for.
  6. Count the votes and post the results.
  7. Explain to Cub Scouts that we can decide what snack won the election in one of two ways.  The two most common methods are majority and plurality.  Plurality is when the snack that received the most votes wins.  Majority is when a snack must have the majority of the votes which is more than half the votes to win.
  8. Discuss the results.
    • Is there a snack that received the most votes (plurality)?
    • Is there a snack that received the majority of votes (majority)?
    • Explain to Cub Scouts –  Imagine if this was an election where there were thousands or millions of voters.  There is a lot of time, money, and energy it takes to conduct an election and it can be a drain of resources to keep conducting an election until there is a majority.
    • Based on this election what  do you think should be the denner?
Speak with someone who is elected to their position. Discover the type of voting that was used for to elect them and why.
Our Elected Official
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List1
Prep Time4

Invite a community-elected official to learn about the type of voting used in their election.

  • Government Types found in Additional Resources

Before the meeting:

  1. Contact an elected community official and ask if they can attend your den meeting and answer questions about how they were elected.  Make sure that they are willing and able to share about majority and plurality voting and which system was used for them to become elected and what would happen if there were a tie.
  2. Review the Government Types document.

During the meeting:

  1. Introduce the guest speaker.
  2. Encourage Cub Scouts to raise their hands to ask questions.
  3. If Cub Scouts are having a hard time asking questions, using the Government Types document, consider the following questions:
    • When did you first get elected?
    • How often is the election held for your position?
    • Is there a limit on how long you can be in the position?
    • Were you elected by a majority or plurality?
    • How many votes did you receive?
    • What percentage of people eligible to vote in your election actually voted?
  4. Thank your guest.

After the meeting:

  1. Send your guest a thank you card.

Government Types

Choose a federal law and create a timeline of the history of the law. Include the involvement of the 3 branches of government.
History Of The Americans With Disabilities Act
LocationIndoor
Energy 2
Supply List2
Prep Time3

Cub Scouts learn about the history of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

  • Timeline template found in Additional Resources
  • Markers, crayons, or colored pencils
  • Small images representing the three branches of government found in Additional Resources
  • Tape or glue
  • Printer

Before the meeting:

  1. Familiarize yourself with the history of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
  2. Print one copy of the timeline template for each Cub Scout and enough copies of the branches of government images so that each Cub Scout has 3 of each image. Cut them out.

During the meeting:

  1. Pass out the printed templates and branches of government images to each Cub Scout.
  2. Start the meeting with a simple explanation of the ADA and its importance. Ask Cub Scouts what disabilities are and how laws can help protect and support people with disabilities.
  3. Briefly explain to Cub Scouts the roles of the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government.
  4. Tell Cub Scouts that you’re going to tell them about the history of the Americans with Disabilities Act. While you’re explaining it, they are to create their timeline including writing the date, writing a short description of what happened, and taping the image of the branch of government that was involved.

Tip: The ADA National Network has a timeline of the history of the American Disabilities Act.

  • 1988 – Americans with Disabilities Act was introduced in Congress.
  • 1989 – ADA passed in the Senate.
  • 1990 – ADA passed in the House and was signed into law by President George H.W. Bush.
  • 1999 – Supreme Court heard several cases about the ADA. Their rulings narrowed the scope of the ADA.
  • 2008 – ADA Amendments Act was signed into law. It counteracted the actions of the Supreme Court rulings.
Participate in a service project.
Diaper And Formula Drive
LocationIndoor
Energy 3
Supply List3
Prep Time5

With your den, host a diaper and formula drive to donate to an organization that gives them to those in need.

  • Collection boxes or bins
  • Paper
  • Markers, colored pencils, or crayons

Before Meeting 1:

  1. Find a local organization such as a shelter or transitional housing that would need items such as diapers and formula.
  2. Decide on the date and duration for the drive.
  3. Ask the organization if they can have a member attend your den meeting to pick up the donations and set the date for the visit.

During Meeting 1:

  1. Have Cub Scouts create posters or flyers advertising the drive.
  2. Hang up your flyers or posters around the neighborhood, at school, and in other places where people will see them.
  3. With permission, set up collection boxes or bins in places where people can easily drop off donations, like schools, community centers, or local stores.

Before Meeting 2:

  1. Pick up donations from the collection boxes.

During Meeting 2:

  1. Have Cub Scouts sort the donated items into bags or boxes.
  2. Present the donations to the member of the organization who is attending your meeting.
Happy Birthday Bag Project
LocationIndoor
Energy 3
Supply List3
Prep Time3

Cub Scouts help those less fortunate have a happy birthday by making birthday bags for a local food pantry.

  • Brown paper bags, at least 2 for each Cub Scout
  • Cake mixes, at least 2 for each Cub Scout
  • Canned frosting, at least 2 for each Cub Scout
  • Birthday candles, at least 2 for each Cub Scout
  • Markers and stickers
  • Hand sanitizer

Before the meeting:

  1. Ask parents or legal guardians or community members to donate the supplies needed for the birthday bags.

During the meeting:

  1. Set up tables to create an “assembly line” for the items going into the bags. As Cub Scouts arrive, have the denner help them sort their donated supplies on the tables. For example, all the cake mixes go in one area, all the frosting in another, etc.
  2. Set up a bag decorating table that Cub Scouts can sit at with the markers, stickers, and bags.
  3. Tell Cub Scouts to decorate their bags using markers and stickers. Encourage them to write Happy Birthday on the bag.
  4. After all the bags are decorated, have Cub Scouts use hand sanitizer.
  5. Ask Cub Scouts to line up along the assembly line table and pass each bag down the line, adding one of each item to the bag.

After the meeting:

  1. Deliver the birthday bags to your local food pantry.
Webelos Scouting For Food
LocationTravel
Energy 3
Supply List1
Prep Time5

Participate in your Council-sponsored Scouting for Food event.

  • Activity Consent Form
  • Collection bags provide by local council
  • Vehicle to carry collected food such as a truck or van
  • Map of area to distribute bags and collect food donations
  • Check with local council for any additional items

Before the Meeting:

  1. Contact your local Council to participate in Scouting for Food collection event.
  2. Review council provided materials for Scouting for Food event.
  3. Communicate the details to the parents and legal guardians of your Cub Scouts.
  4. Distribute Activity Consent Form to the patrol.
  5. Confirm with local council the area to distribute bags and collect food donations.
  6. Confirm with local council the location of drop off for donations.
  7. Get collection bags provided by local council.
  8. Communicate date, time, and location for bag distribution to the patrol.
  9. Communicate date, time, and location for food collection distribution to the patrol.
  10. Refer to your council provided resources for any additional items to be completed before the event.

During collection bag distribution:

  1. Collect Activity Consent Form for each Cub Scout.
  2. Create buddies.
  3. Assign area for buddies to distribute collection bags.
  4. Review how to approach residences safely and politely as they distribute collection bags.
  5. Remind Cub Scouts that it is illegal to place collection bags in or on mailboxes.

During food donation collection:

  1. Collect Activity Consent Form for each Cub Scout.
  2. Create buddies.
  3. Assign area for buddies to collect donations.
  4. Review how to approach residences safely and politely if there is no donated food left out.
  5. Take donated food to the assigned collection point.
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 Scoutingand applicable program literature or manuals.

Watch this video about Service Projects in Cub Scouting (6:44)

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 starting this Adventure complete the following:

  • Use the Service Project Planning Checklist  to plan your den or pack service project.
  • Review the SAFE Project Tool Use is an at-a-glance reference for service projects, not crafts.  It includes age guidelines for tools and types of allowed activities allowed for service projects.

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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