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Big changes on the horizon for Cub Scouts. Effective May 2015, Cub Scouting will adopt a new "adventure" based advancement program as well as the Scout Oath and Scout Law. The Cub Promise and Law of the Pack will be retired. Details here. Click here for the official BSA page on the changes.
Visit the new hub for all things Cub Scout from National BSA-- The CubHub!
The Cub Scouting movement was founded by Robert Baden-Powell in 1916, nine years after the founding of the Scouts, in order to cater to the many younger boys who had not yet reached the age limit for the Boy Scouts but who wanted to take part in Scouting. During these first ten years many troops had either allowed younger boys to join or had set up unofficial Junior or Cadet Scout Troops. These Cadet Troops taught a much simpler form of Scouting, including just the basic knotting techniques, basic first aid and tracking. In 1914, there were articles in the Headquarters' Gazette (a then regular newsletter to leaders) outlining an official scheme, however this was not what Baden-Powell wanted. Rather he sought something quite different — a movement in its own right, with its own identity and program.
In 1914 Baden Powell announced a Junior Section for Scouting. In 1916, he published his own outlines for such a scheme. It was to be called Wolf Cubbing. Baden-Powell asked his friend Rudyard Kipling for the use of his Jungle Book history and universe as a motivational frame in cub scouting. Baden-Powell wrote a new book, The Wolf Cub's Handbook, for junior members. In 1917, junior members became known as Wolf Cubs.
The BSA obtained the rights to Lord Baden-Powell's The Wolf Cub Handbook in 1916 and used it in unofficial Wolf Cub programs starting in 1918. The BSA began some experimental Cub units in 1928 and in 1930 the BSA began registering the first Cub Scout packs. Initially, all Cub Scouts belonged to the Webelos tribe, symbolized by the Arrow of Light and led by Akela. Webelos was an acronym meaning Wolf, Bear, Lion, Scout--the first Cub Scout ranks. The name was later given a backronym of "WE'll BE LOyalScouts". The initial rank structure was Wolf, Bear and Lion, with ages of 9, 10 and 11. Dens of six to eight Cubs were entirely led by a Boy Scout holding the position of den chief.
Cub Scouting has ideals of spiritual and character growth, citizenship training, and personal fitness. Cub Scouting provides a positive, encouraging peer group, carefully selected leaders who provide good role models and a group setting where values are taught to reinforce positive qualities of character.
The Methods of Cub Scouting
The Purposes of Cub Scouting