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Thursday, September 1

History of a Boy Scout (Dave Brubeck Quartet)

Don't forget....if you want to hear the post song, just click on the video above!
We live very busy lives.  Too busy at times.  We just want to squeeze every single second out of each day!!  But sometimes, there are too many things to be done, and like everyone must eventually learn to do, the kids have learned to multitask.  I don't mean watch tv, talk on the phone, and try to do their homework at the same time multi-tasking.  I mean combining activities to kill two birds with one stone.

Boy Scouts has been a big part of their extracurriculars since way back in Tiger Cubs.  They enjoy the hands-on projects and time spent with the other boys, and we've encouraged those bonds.  So when I saw a way to combine some of their school requirements with the things required of older Boy Scouts, we nudged the boys into that direction.  It's simple actually :

Less Work = Less Stress & Higher Quality 

As Cub Scouts, we had been incorporating activities for their pins and elective badges into their school work (weather badge = weather unit study).  It led to lots of great hands-on experiences and field trips, and we got to work together as a family!

We are fairly hands-on already in our homeschooling, but I like that the badges include ideas (and requirements) for aspects of a topic that I would not have considered.  Also, since there are so many different badges available, the boys have a chance to really delve deep into the things that interest them...or that they think might interest them.  It can be difficult at times, as the teacher, to facilitate these activities - especially if I'm completely unfamiliar with them - but that's where your merit badge counselor comes in handy!

The badges incorporate public speaking, research, tactile activities, outside references, and group learning.  Homeschoolers don't always have the chance to practice these skills (particularly the first and last), so it's nice to belong to such a great troop, where they can get these experiences.  (And we do have a wonderful group of boys!!)

If you’re looking into Boy Scouts for your own son, or if you’re already involved, why not consider incorporating the practical skills being taught into his school?

Homeschool Legacy offers unit studies that provide resources and activities covering both school work and badge work.  Each unit studies completes all of  the required badge work for one or more badges.  You can see our complete review of Homeschool Legacy here.  The company offers both Boy Scout (BSA) and American Heritage Girl (AHG) badges as part of their studies.  Two of my favorite aspects of these unit studies are :
  1. They can be used with multiple children of various ages.
  2. They require no advance planning on my part.
As of spring 2016, available titles (and accompanying badge) include :
  • Birds of a Feather – AHG Our Feathered Friends/BSA Bird Study badges 
  • Horsing Around – AHG/BSA Horsemanship badges
  • Forest for the Trees – BSA Forestry merit badge
  • Weather on the Move – AHG Young Meteorologist/BSA Weather badges
  • Knights and Nobles – BSA Art merit badge 
  • Christmas Comes to America – AHG Music Appreciation/BSA Music badges 
  • Native America – AHG Native America/BSA Indian Lore badges
  • Early Settlers – AHG Book Adventurer/BSA Reading badges
  • Revolutionary Ideas: the Story of the American Revolution – AHG Dawn of Our Country/ BSA American Heritage badges
  • We the People: Getting to Know Your Constitution – AHG Citizenship and Government and Our Flag badges/BSA Citizenship in the Nation Merit Badge 
  • Lewis & Clark: From Sea to Shining Sea ­­ – AHG Nature and Wildlife/BSA Nature badges
  • Westward Ho I & II – AHG Our Heritage/BSA Journalism badges 
I hope that Homeschool Legacy will continue to come out with new units, including some for Eagle-required badges, such as Citizenship in the World, Sustainability, Emergency Preparedness, Communications, and Personal Management.  (Soon...mostly because these are the ones we still have left to tackle with the oldest!)  

So how exactly does this work?  What badges can you use for school credit?  Here are some suggestions :

Boy Scout badges you can incorporate into middle school 
  • Animation
  • Athletics
  • Bird Study
  • Chess
  • Citizenship in the Community
  • Coin Collecting
  • Digital Technology
  • Geology
  • Indian Lore
  • Insect Study
  • Inventing
  • Mammal Study
  • Music and Bugling
  • Nature
  • Painting
  • Reptile and Amphibian Study
  • Robotics
  • Scholarship
  • Space Exploration
  • Sports
  • Theater
  • Weather
Boy Scout badges you can incorporate into high school
  • American Business
  • American Labor
  • Animal Science
  • Archaeology
  • Architecture
  • Astronomy
  • Automotive Maintenance
  • Chemistry
  • Citizenship in the Nation
  • Citizenship in the World
  • Cooking
  • Drafting
  • Emergency Preparedness
  • Engineering
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Family Life
  • First Aid
  • Game Design
  • Graphic Arts
  • Home Repairs
  • Journalism
  • Law
  • Medicine
  • Model Design and Building
  • Moviemaking
  • Nuclear Science
  • Oceanography
  • Personal Fitness
  • Personal Management
  • Programming
  • Public Health
  • Public Speaking
  • Soil and Water Conservation
  • Traffic Safety
  • Veterinary Medicine
  • Welding
  • Wilderness Survival
  • Wood Carving
  • Woodwork

One activity meeting two requirements?  Yes, please!!!
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