Happy Easter!

Hopefully, you and your families are making the most of this enforced time together? As a nation, we enter week four of lockdown. As a group, we enter our third week of virtual scouting. During the first week, 149 young people took part in our virtual sessions! Slightly less in week two, but with it being Easter we anticipated this. It might the second week of the school break, but we’re still going to be scouting this week, with six virtual sessions available to ~220 young people.

Young people records

Your action needed, please

We are using this unusual time to streamline and update some of our records and procedures for keeping records up to date. Historically, the leaders have updated your details but this is not without challenges given not all sections had used the same fields on Online Scout Manager.  So we only hold the correct and critical information, we have standardised our record on Online Scout Manager.

If you could take 5 minutes to check your details and complete the new standardised fields that would be fantastic. To do so, click on your young person’s specific link that was emailed by Shauna, last week. Once you have finalised OSM updates, there is a box at the top (in yellow) to confirm that you have checked that you details we hold are current and correct. Thank you!

Badges at home

We’ve enabled a new component of Online Scout Manager, “Badges at home“. Within Parent Portal, you should be able to see all badges specific to your young person’s section. 

We’ve done this so you can upload video/photos with evidence of your young person completing badges. Once submitted, leaders will then be able to review them and update badge records. We love to recognise achievement and there no reason the young people shouldn’t be able to continue getting badges, even during the lockdown.

Zoom meetings

We will continue to use Zoom for our virtual meetings. If you take a look at our “Zoom FAQ” page there are some tips and important notes about using/getting the best out of the platform. Would like to call out a reminder: if your young person is in Beavers, Cubs or has a 1-2-1 carer whilst Scouting, a responsible adult must be present and supervising your young person whilst they take part in virtual Scouting. This helps keep the meetings a positive experience and limits potential challenges: for example, spamming the chatbox and/or annotating the screen outside of times asked or annotating in a disruptive manner. Thank you for your support.

As a reminder, the Coronavirus information and advice page on our website is updated regularly for the latest on Penistone Scouts’ arrangements: https://penistonescouts.uk/coronavirus

The week ahead (13th April onwards):

When participating in our virtual meetings, please change the name of the person joining to be that of your young person. This change can be made on a meeting by meeting basis, even if you’re using a work account to connect. By the young person’s name being visible, it really helps us to identify and engage properly with the young people. (Of particular benefit when the presenting leader may not normally be at your young person’s section meeting, so don’t know them by face).


All three colonies will be virtually meeting on Thursday 16th April. Their Zoom meeting starts at 18:30 and will last up to one hour. As with last week, parents/guardians need to please remain with their young person.

Brian has sent an email, via Online Scout Manager, which includes the pre-work your young person is to undertake (if possible) please complete before the session and then have to hand during the meeting. This week the young people are being asked to invent a machine then build a model of it. They can make it out of anything they like from Lego to paper, cardboard to straws, sticks to Playdoh. They’ll have the opportunity to share their creation and talk about it during the meeting.


Another challenge we have set the Beavers is to complete the “Stay Connected Challenge“; this has been created by Pawprint Badges and if they complete it then we will arrange for them to have the badge for their blanket. They have until the 30th April to complete the requirements, for Beavers that is one challenge from each of the four areas – Craft, Food, Games and Other.

It isn’t too late for beavers to join in – if you missed the invite then send an email to Brian and he will add you on. The link to the challenges is https://pawprintfamily.com/wp-content/uploads/woocommerce_uploads/2020/04/Stay-Connected-Challenge-Badge-Activity-Pack.pdf then forward photos of them undertaking the challenge to Brian.


All three packs will be virtually meeting on Tuesday 14th April. Their Zoom meeting starts at 18:30 and will last between an hour and 90 mins. As with last week, parents/guardians need to please remain with their young person.

Our programme this week is a cryptic treasure hunt followed by pets. (As suggested by the Cubs themselves)


Our scout troops will be meeting virtually, albeit on their normal section nights and not all three troops together.

Enigma (Monday) Scouts – will be meeting at 19:00 on Monday 13th April (Yes, even though it’s Easter Monday!)
Wibbles (Wednesday) Scouts – will be meeting at 19:00 on Wednesday 15th April
Viernes (Friday) Scouts – will be meeting at 19:00 on Friday 17th April

Our theme is ‘Exploring Beliefs’ and will require your Scouts to have done some internet research on three countries, their response to COVID-19 and your Scouts opinions on that response. This will form part of the Digital Citizen badge.

We will also be asking your Scouts about their favourite books and physical recreation whilst staying at home, to support their coping strategies during isolation. We would be grateful if you could remind your Scout to think about this prior to the Zoom meeting, to aid discussion.


Our explorer scouts will be meeting virtually, on Tuesday 14th April between 20:00 and 21:00.

Invite will come from Online Scout Manager. We would encourage all parents/guardians to add their young person’s email address to the “Member” field of the Parent Portal. They will also then receive notifications about events, meetings and updates via the OSM system.



This week Beavers worked on their Healthy Eating challenge. They produced a virtual plate divided into types of food and discussed what they liked/disliked. We then had a quiz about fruit and vegetables.


We caught up with all of the Cubs, checking in with each of them to see how they were and what they’d been up to before splitting into three breakout rooms. We enjoyed seeing each of the food plates the cubs had drawn, stuck (from cut-outs) or built from plastic or even real food! We talked about healthy choices before a quickfire quiz identifying fruits and veg by some pictures. “Lady fingers‘ anyone?


Scouts met on their normal section evening. We found this suited the older sections better than all together. They played bingo, but with a twist. Numbers were called either in Spanish or French. Once this challenge was completed, each section used the extra time independently. Engima socialised, Wibbles played Kahoot and Viernes Lie Swatter.


Explorers met on Tuesday and took part in some Kahoot quizzes the young people had prepared before then trying their hand at Scribblio (a bit like Pictionary).

3D Printing PPE (update)

We shared last week that one of our Scouts, Ben, has been 3D printing Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) Face Masks for healthcare professionals given the lack of them presently. They have partnered with others in the area who have 3D printers and are crowdfunding to raise monies for increased production. If you can spare a few quid, please donate here.

If your young person has something to share, please feel free to tweet us @PenistoneScouts or send details to us by email on [email protected]