Your Role as a Parent
Cub Scouting encourages closeness to family. The program will
give you opportunities to take part in activities with your son that you
normally couldn’t do. It provides a positive way for parent and son to
grow closer together, and encourages you to spend quality time together.
In this way, Cub Scouting is a program for the entire family, and your
involvement is vital to the program’s success.
Some specific things you can do to help your son in Cub Scouting are:
- Work with your son on projects
- Help your Cub Scout along the advancement trail
- Participate in monthly pack meetings
- Go camping with your son
- Provide support for your son’s den and pack
- Volunteer to be a leader
The Cub Scout years are developing years for young boys, falling
between the dependence of early childhood and the relative independence
of early adolescence. As he grows, your son will gain the ability to do
more things “on his own,” but at this stage of his development, your
help is critical.
Work with your son on projects
Boys often start projects at den meetings and finish them at home with
the help of a parent. Such projects become the catalyst for parents and
boys—often joined by siblings and friends—to interact with each other in
an informal, relaxed way.
Because the purpose of projects is to teach a boy new skills, a
project will challenge a boy to do tasks that he hasn’t currently
mastered. It’s not uncommon, therefore, for a boy to need help from his
family to do some of his projects. In Cub Scouting, boys are not
expected to do things entirely on their own. So long as a boy does his
best to do as much as he’s capable of, it’s perfectly acceptable for a
parent or sibling to help him with the tasks he’s unable to do on his
Help your son along the advancement trail
The advancement plan is designed for parents to use to create a learning
environment in their home. With the Cub Scout handbooks as a resource,
parents and boys work together to do the achievements required for each
badge. The advancement plan provides fun for the boys, gives them a
sense of personal achievement as they earn badges, and strengthens
family understanding as adult family members work with boys on
While Cub Scouts will learn skills and begin work on projects in
their weekly den meetings, the parent remains at the center of the
advancement program. As each task is done or each skill is demonstrated,
the parent signs the Cub Scout’s handbook to record its completion. And
when the boy has completed all the requirements to earn an award, the
parent are present as the award is presented at the next monthly pack meeting.
Participate in monthly pack meetings
The weekly den meetings are for Cub Scouts and their adult leader. Parents are welcome at Den meetings and required for Tigers. The
pack meeting is for the entire family of every Cub Scout. At pack
meetings, parents see their sons in action with their friends, meet
other parents, and join with neighbors in caring and sharing. These
types of opportunities are scarce, and pack meetings highlight how Cub
Scouting teaches boys cooperation and collaboration.
The pack meeting is also a monthly showcase for all that the boys
have worked on in their den meetings. Achievements and awards are presented, projects are on display,
skills are demonstrated, and skits are performed. While boys at this age seem to be
struggling toward independence, having the approval of their parents and
other adults whom they admire remains important to them—so your
presence at these meetings is critical to underscore the importance of
the lessons your son has learned.
Go camping with your son
Besides being fun, camping is a chance for quality time together. Camping is one of the ways that scouts get the "outing" out of Scouting. Family camps are offered by the Council
and are a chance to build an enriched family life. These programs are largely recreational
opportunities—they're not on a tight time schedule and enjoying the time outdoors —and together— is the main objective.
Provide support for your son’s den and pack
It’s important to remember that the adult leaders of your son’s den and
pack are volunteers who give their own time to provide a quality program
for your son. While they have been carefully selected and extensively
trained for their roles, there are always times when they could use help
from parents in the pack.
Pack events such as the pinewood derby, blue and gold banquet, or
field days take a lot of effort—more than the monthly meetings. The
pack’s leaders welcome any help you can give. Likewise, den
leaders will be grateful to parents who can lend a hand with field
trips and outings. By pitching in as needed, you can show your son the
importance of helping others. Be on the lookout for opportunities for
you to help the den, the pack, and its leaders.
Based on material from Fulton, Maryland Cub Scout Pack 1702 (© 2012)