Homeschool Crafts: How To Create a Binder for Scouts

A Guest Post

If you remember from our first week of Scouting, I had the kids making seed bombs for a naturalist/restoration badge.  I brought them to Belle Isle Park, in Detroit, where there is an entire island in need of attention.  If you locals have never visited, I hope you do soon as there is a Conservatory, Nature Center, great playscape, beach and water slide, and much much more to explore there!  Even the Aquarium is likely to re-open, so if you’re on Facebook add this page to your favorites to learn more.  We picked a strip of field along Woodside Drive and with some plastic gloves and bags we picked up all the trash we could.  We sat all the bags next to each other and then I suggested we throw all the trash back on the ground – just dump it out right then and there.  How absurd it was to think about dumping a whole bag of trash at a park!  It’s just as absurd to think of throwing one piece at a time though, isn’t it?  We then threw our seed bombs to replace the trash, which was really fun.  After, we enjoyed the island.

So when you go, look for wildflowers on Woodside Drive!

Scouting, Week TWO:

Our Next activity day had us making scouting binders to keep the various information from workshops and the worksheets the kids will do.  It is also where our badge stickers will be added, onto a special sheet, for safekeeping.  I ordered sheets of 20 stickers of each badge from Zazzle.com and am quite happy with the way they turned out.

I was trying to decide what to use for the covers of our binders, and had been waffling between having the kids decorate a nice thick piece of watercolor paper or cardboard when another mom suggested using plywood.  I thought that was brilliant, so I went to Home Depot and got sheets of thin 2x4ft plywood.  I had a scout dad them cut in half and then the halves quarted to make front and back covers slightly larger than the 8×12 cardstock we were going to use.  You could probably have the lumber store do this for you if you don’t have the equipment at home.  I then had the dad drill three holes in the wood on the left side where binder rings will go, and we were ready to paint!

 

 

This is where the stencil we made last week comes back in to play.  All the kids were able to decorate their binders however they wanted after putting the group logo on front.  To hers, AV wanted me to add some stars using a really neat embossed stamping technique.

 

 

 

 

The neat thing about these being plywood with binder rings is that not only does it allow us to add as many pages as we’d like as we go along, but also that it really gives a Summer Camp feel to them.  Plus they are nice and sturdy, perfect for taking with us on our nature adventures and using as a hard surface to write on out in the field.

As I said earlier, the most important thing we’ll add to our scouting binders is a laminated sheet with our badge goals printed out.  I wanted the kids to be able to visualize what their goals would be for doing each activity.  I created an image with circles the same size of the badge stickers I ordered, and the kids will stick them in as they are earned.  Some badges, such as the Naturalist Badge they earned from cleaning up Belle Isle, will be earned doing one week’s activity (meaning, they prepared for it on one day and completed it the next).  Others, such as the Survival Preparedness Badge I have them doing, will take several weeks of activities to work up to.  All of them will be chronicled in their binders.

Next week I will show you more about the embossing tool and another neat trick when we make our own personalized stamps and LetterBox for Week Three of Homeschool Scouts.

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