Notes for presenting astronomy
at Cub Scout meeting
A Cub Scout group may ask us to present astronomy at a Pack
meeting. The presentation is likely to be a featured activity
during a longer monthly meeting. This page offers an outline to
cover the astronomy topics addressed in the Cub Scout awards.
If possible, I prefer to cover these topics during an outdoor
observing session rather than as a talk in a meeting.
Scouts will typically ask us to speak for a half hour. There
is much more to cover than you can fit into a half hour. You will
not be able to give the boys all the information they need to
complete any of their awards in a half hour. But you can give
an overview and show your own excitement about astronomy. You
can customize this outline to talk about topics you are most passionate
about, and cut off the rest when time is up. The Cub Scout group
will have to take the starting point you provide and follow up
in Den meetings in order to complete all the requirements of the
Show and tell is great. I would love to set up a projector
to show great images at a Scout meeting, but have never talked
in a location that had the equipment. I certainly don't own it
myself. I usually bring a couple of books and a pair of binoculars
to show. You probably don't want to set up a telescope unless
you have time to show the boys how to use it. You also want at
least one experienced adult to chaperone each telescope.
I usually tell about discovering the night sky when I was
a Cub Scout.
My own main motivation is the awe and fun of observing.
Astronomy is an ancient and beautiful science.
Finding out about the objects in the cosmos is fun. There
is also awe and joy in recognizing how old, how distant, and
how big objects are.
There is lots we don't know yet. This science is exciting
There is room for amateurs to contribute new knowledge and
make real discoveries.