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For Den Leaders

Ideas from 2019 Den Leader Brainstorm


In July 2019, we held a Den Leader Brainstorm meeting. The following are ideas that came from the meeting. Den Leaders, please feel free to continue to contribute suggestions as to how we can improve our programs within our dens. These are only ideas for the den leaders, and except as stated in BSA policy, are not requirements:

  • Set a curriculum and calendar at the beginning of the Fall and Spring to share with parents

  • If there is another Den of the same rank, consider coordinating with the other Den leader to stagger which adventures are covered so that a Scout can attend the other Den to make up a required activity

  • Enter the Den meetings in Scoutbook when the calendar is set, or at the very least before the date of the Den meeting. Scoutbook can be used to take roll.

  • Scoutbook can be used by the Den leader to enter advancement for all Scouts in attendance. There is a quick entry panel in Scoutbook to enter advancement for the Scouts in attendance. If the Den leader does not enter advancement, then using Scoutbook to take roll, or sending an email out through Scoutbook with the names of the Scouts present and what activities were covered is helpful to parents to track advancement. The general consensus appeared to be that the Den leader entering advancement after the meeting was the most efficient route to tracking our Scouts’ advancement.

  • After camp outs, Den Leaders can consider entering advancement or sending a follow up email regarding advancement activities.

  • Plan joint Den activities with same rank Dens to encourage fellowship of the similar aged Scouts.

  • Wolves and older can earn STEM / NOVA awards. The Cubmaster will work STEM requirements into some of our Pack meetings. Den Leaders can consider including STEM activities in Den meetings as well.

  • Plan Den meetings to meet the online Scoutbook requirements, as our Scout’s  handbooks and leader manuals (especially if handed down) may not match the Scoutbook requirements.

  • Complete each adventure within no more than two Den meetings.

  • The Houston Library has program resources available. If there are other similar resources, please share them.

  • Den Leaders should encourage parents to volunteer run a Den meeting programs. There is enough variety in the program that each parent should have some activities that they would be interested in leading. Some leaders assign parents to run meetings, if there are not enough volunteers.

  • Den Leaders may earn a knot award to wear on their uniform, if they complete the program and training benchmarks set forth for the Den Leader Training Award.

  • Den leadership should be comprised of one registered Den Leader and at least one registered Assistant Den Leader. Ideally, each Den would also have one Scouts BSA Den Chief that participates with the Den.

  • We need all Den leaders and Assistant Den leaders to be registered with the BSA at the beginning of the program year.

Den Awards

In addition to working with your Scouts towards rank advancement, there are awards you can work with in your dens. Please let me know if you have other ideas.


Cub Scout World Conservation Award

To encourage all youth members to think globally and act locally to preserve and improve our environment. Involves advancement and project work.

Cub Scout World Conservation Award Application

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SCOUTStrong Healthy Unit Award

Commit to three healthy practices at your regular unit meetings – fruit & veggie snacks, water, physical activity – and everyone earns a patch! (can be earned by den)

SCOUTStrong Healthy Unit Award Application

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Interpreter Strip

If you or a Scout in your den speaks a language other than English, they may qualify for an interpreter strip. (Any member who speaks a specific foreign language; demonstrate knowledge by carrying on a five-minute conversation in this language, translating a two-minute speech or address, and writing a letter in the language (does not apply for sign language); or, translating 200 words from the written word.) 

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