I started this page so that there would be a page of all the great ideas we are ALL doing, so whether you are just starting, or need new ideas this page is one place to collect them.
Some are ideas that need to be flushed out, others hopefully are enough to get you started. Create an account and add your ideas to this page, or send me an email with yours at email@example.com - that's what we all need right now.
It doesn't matter what technology you pick - it has to work for your group. The first time they join is no different than the first meeting or camp - they don't know what to expect, they are overly excited or anxious - let them explore a bit and then set expectations.
We paid for Zoom because we didn't want parents to stand by at the 40-minute mark. It was the best $20 we have spent in a long time, and still cheaper than monthly crafts, camps, snacks, etc. or whatever other expenses we no longer have. Check out Zoom Basics with Steve Dotto
Other technologies that might work for you:
- Microsoft Teams
- Google Hangouts, Duo, etc.
- Discord (it's a great way to hook in the gamers in your group, as well as get others interested)
- Jitsi - free, but security not as good. e.g. if the organizer leaves then the password is removed - unless you host your own
We are using Zoom, and YES it is secure now, and getting more so every day. Keep your software up to date, or it won't matter which one you select. Apple, Google, Microsoft have all gone through the same security concerns.
We tried out the main ones - WebEx, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Skype, Discord, Jitsi - but Zoom was the easiest to adopt and has the most devices supported. Don't switch it up on parents, once they are comfortable, they will be fine.
Check out Steve Dotto's videos for a getting started with Zoom - Zoom Basics
Adjust the difficulty level, but any of these can be done at any level.
- Join Folding@Home, Team 250015 (World Scouting) as a group and help fight COVID19 - more details to get started are at Folding@Home Getting Started
- Watch a Youtube video together - Scoutadelic has a lot of great ones - building lego, building a bird feeder, etc.
- Tic Tac Zoom - everybody has a piece of paper with an X or O - when it's time, hold up your paper and see which has the most in a row (could also be Connect 4, 5, etc.) Or most sets of 3 in a row (can be done with hands crossed for X or make an "O" too
- Show them knots and how to tie them
- Zoom War - everybody brings a deck of cards - 1,2,3 - war - highest card wins
- Puppet show night - tired of looking at each other? Bring a puppet and put on a show for the camera - record it for later? So easy to do when they are offscreen.
- Hangman / Wheel of Fortune - using the shared whiteboard
- Scattegories - Give them 10 - 12 categories and a letter - see what they come up with
- iSpy with my little eye something that is purple! When they need a clue, narrow it down to which room it is in (need to be in gallery mode)
- Charades on the Whiteboard
- Scavenger Hunt - go find something that is a battery, pillow, tool, Scouting, utensil
- Simon Says
- Bring assorted Lego, start the timer and see what you can build in 60 seconds
- Freeze Tag
- Freeze Dance
- Red light / Green light (first to the camera)
- 20 Questions
- Wax Museum - who moves first? (best in gallery mode)
- Funny Hat day
- Costume party
- Show and Tell
- Online magicians, reptile guys, etc. many are moving to Zoom hosting shows
- Meet up with another group that you don't often see (like from Beaveree/Cuboree/Competition Camps) - show them that Scouting is still going on!
- Local College/University might have a STEM or Science program available - McMaster University in Hamilton, ON does
- Talent Night
- Funny Face challenge
- Build a robot out of lego (or draw it), be able to talk about the robot's powers (Scouter William Mahaffy)
- Draw an imaginary creature made out of two real animals. eg. skunk horse - Runs really fast but nobody wants to ride it. (Scouter William Mahaffy)
- The RCMP has a great Emergency Preparedness Scavenger Hunt that also covers off some of the OAS skills (Barb Taylor)
- Comedy night - each scout had to bring two jokes (Scouter Unknown)
- Royal Botanical Gardens (Scouter Janet Anderson)
- Toronto zoo is having virtual camps May long weekend Saturday and Sunday night - (Scouter Janet Cass)
- Newfoundland and Labrador Council has a weekly bingo card on FB page (Scouter Steve Kavanagh)
- MuseumHack.org built teambuilding.com when COVID hit this is their "tiny campfire" - (Scouter Martinello)
Need more work
Any takers to flush these out?
- Badge work - Personal Achievement challenges, or Outdoor Skills that apply at home
- Trivia Night - each team is given the noise and they have to make that noise to answer (like on call-in radio programs) Kahoot or use Zoom Polls
- Repeat after me songs can become rounds due to lag - but they are still fun to sing
- Plastic cup stacking race
- Build a bird feeder (no bird seed - use cheerios, peanuts, etc.)
- We are working on a version of Murder Wink, or Steal the Keys - needs more testing
- Virtual Museum tours
- Stargazing with Stellarium (inside or outside) - no need to wait until it gets dark
- Virtual Zoo tours with a scavenger hunt - still in development
- UK Scouting Activities
- House Party for Apples to Apples, Pictionary, etc.
- Board Game Arena
- Virtual Tropical Rain Forest Trail (thanks 1st Beamsville!)
- Plant Contest
- Lego night
- 3D design
- Tinker CAD
- Directed drawing. We used a YouTube video (Art Hub for Kids is great for the younger kids) and followed the directions to draw a picture together. We chose a baby bird in a nest in honour of spring. (Scouter Jennifer Gallant, 70th London Scouts)
- I haven't tried this one yet, but it's on my list: Make your own Jeopardy-style quizzes for free (Scouter Jennifer Gallant, 70th London Scouts)
- What does the Scout sign mean? – (Thanks Scouter Melanie of 1st Winona)
- What does the World Scout Badge? (Thanks Scouter Melanie of 1st Winona)
- Is it a Scarf or a Necker? – (Thanks Scouter Melanie of 1st Winona)
So far Scavenger Hunt - which is as simple as "Go find something blue, then red, then ..." let the first Beavers back pick the next colour. No fair using markers or a handful of Lego.
My personal favourite has been the Pet Care badge, where the dog or cat has been part of the meeting. Watching Rufus sit next to the Beaver on an ottoman and sniff the camera cracked everyone up. Or watching Garfield play with the mouse was equally funny. No pets? No problem, tell us how you keep your stuffy safe, clean and how much you care for them
- Pet Care Beaver Badge - show us your animals and how you care for them
- Hobby Badge - show us what you do for fun
- So far we have worked on Olympic Beaver, Pet Care Beaver, Community Beaver, Beavers of the World
- Exploring Beaver - Neighborhood Bird Watch & Count
- Home Helper Beaver - Specialty Badge - Help around the house with specific tasks like vacuuming, laundry, dishwasher etc.
- Nothing specific to Cubs, but would love to hear some ideas!
- Action Figure night - bring your favourite action figure to the meeting - who has more figures than Akela/Kaa/Bagheera?
- Online Escape Room at Somerset Scouts Escape Room or
- Online Paid Escape Rooms
- Harry Potter Escape Room - Scouter Jennifer Gallant
- Trivia in breakout rooms or using Zoom polls
- Online Orienteering - use Google Maps/Earth and plot out a course. When you reach the destination get a clue, then move on. You can travel the world with your compass
- Using Google maps to do orienteering - still a work in progress and needs a Google Map platform setup
- Online hikes - maps of the Bruce Trail, and have them plan the trip
- Visit a virtual destination and do a scavenger hunt
- Online Geek Squad Learning - Thanks to Scouter Janet, 401st Toronto
- Heads Up!
- Maps and Compass exercises
- PC Builder sites - give them a budget and see what type of system they can build
- Virtual PC Builder - put all those parts and hook them up virtually (still looking for a free version to do this)
- Online Dungeons and Dragons
- Looking for ideas ...
- (Scouting Life) Volunteer Voice: The Canadian Path Goes Virtual - Top Tips and Tricks for Online Youth-led Scouting
The last hint for now - let the youth think of the next thing - it's so much fun not knowing the answer beforehand! When they yell out Purple you actually have to react!
Happy to hear any more ideas, but our Beavers have been great and participating.
Add your ideas to this page, or send me an email with yours at firstname.lastname@example.org