Scouting for All Ages
By joining the Cub Scouts, you've taken your first step on the Scouting trail.
Many people stay in Scouting, one way or another, for many years. Some stay
for a lifetime.
Youth of different ages have different ranks in Cub Scouting. As you go from
Tiger (age 7) to Webelos Scout (age 10), you learn new things and new skills
that you use to meet new challenges as you get older.
- Tiger Scouts. First-grade youth join a Tiger den, where
each Scout works with an adult partner on the requirements to earn
the Tiger badge.
- Wolf Scouts. Second-grade youth graduate into a Wolf
den. They go to weekly den meetings on their own, but their
families still help them work on the requirements for the Wolf
- Bear Scouts. Youth in the third grade are members of
a Bear den. They also work with their families to do the
requirements for the Bear badge, but Scouts this old have enough
knowledge and skill to take on more of the work by themselves.
- Webelos Scouts. Youth in the fourth and fifth grades
become Webelos Scouts. Webelos Scouts do more advanced activities
to get ready to graduate into Boy Scouting.
Where you begin in Cub Scouting depends on your age at the time you join.
If you join when you're in first grade, you will begin as a Tiger Cub. If you
do not join until the third grade, you'll begin as a Bear Cub Scout. You won't
have to go back and earn the Tiger Cub and Wolf badges.
The Arrow of Light Rank
The highest rank in Cub Scouting is the Arrow of Light rank, which you will
begin working on as a Webelos Scout. It is the only Cub Scout badge that you can
wear on the Boy Scout uniform. As you work on the Arrow of Light rank, you
practice outdoor skills, get physically fit, and learn more about citizenship
and working with others. All of these things prepare you for the next stage of
The Boy Scout program is for youth who are 11 years old, are at least ten
years old and have finished the fifth grade, or are at least ten years old and
have earned the Arrow of Light rank as a Cub
Scout. The purpose of Boy Scouting is the same as it is for Cub Scouts: to
help youth grow into good citizens who are strong in character and personally
fit. But because they're older, Boy Scouts have a program with more and
Boy Scouts work together in groups called patrols. The patrol leader
is an older youth, not an adult. The Scouts in the patrol elect their patrol
Patrols are part of a troop. The troop has adult leaders, but their
job is to give guidance and advice to the Boy Scouts. The Scouts run their own
Boy Scouts have exciting outdoor activities. They go on long camping trips
and long-distance hikes. They go canoeing and whitewater rafting, and more.
They move through the Boy Scout ranks, from Tenderfoot to Eagle Scout. They
earn merit badges that show many kinds of knowledge and skills. Scouts can
also earn special awards for feats of skill, such as completing a mile swim
or 50 miles of hiking.
Venturing is for young men and women who are 14 (and have finished the
eighth grade) through 20 years old. Venturing has six experience areas:
social, citizenship, service, leadership, fitness, and outdoor. The
activities in Venturing help young people become adults, follow their special
interests, get skills as leaders, and become good citizens.
Venturing is the last of the three Scouting programs for young people.
But it isn't the end of the Scouting trail. You can stay in Scouting even
as a grown-up by becoming a member of the National Eagle Scout Association
or Order of the Arrow, volunteering as an adult leader, or taking a job
in professional Scouting.