Boy Scout Program

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Boy Scouting is a program of the Boy Scouts of America. It is available to boys under the age of 18 who meet any of the following qualifications:

OR
  • boys at least 10 years old who have completed the fifth grade
OR
  • boys who are at least 11 years old.
Prior participation in Cub Scouting is not required.

The Boy Scout program is designed to develop a boy's character, citizenship, and personal fitness using the following methods: a structured advancement program, high ideals, the patrol method, outdoor activities, adult association, personal growth, leadership development, and uniforming. This program and development structure is referred to as the Aims and Methods of Scouting.

Contents

Structured advancement and recognition

Ranks

The Boy Scout advancement program is divided into three main areas. The first and primary advancement area is a series of Ranks that the Scout progresses through known as the Eagle Scout trail. The rank system occurs in two distinctly different phases.

After earning the Scout Badge (which is simply the way boys join Boy Scouts, not a rank), boys work on the Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class ranks. During this phase, all three ranks may be worked on at the same time. These ranks focus on Scouting skills - the outdoors, physical fitness, citizenship, patrol/troop participation, and personal development. After completing these ranks, a Scout should be adept at participating in all of the activities in the Boy Scout program, literally a First Class Scout.

During the second phase, Scouts work on the Star Scout, Life Scout, and Eagle Scout ranks. These ranks are worked on one at a time and must be earned in order. Here the focus of advancement switches from Scouting skills to personal development and community service. Merit badges are an integral part of this part or rank advancement.

After earning the Eagle Scout award, a Scout still has the opportunity for advancement recognition by earning Eagle Palms.

Merit badges

Merit badges are the second main area of the Boy Scout advancement program. Unlike ranks, there is a degree of choice in the merit badge program. A sub-group of merit badges are known as Eagle required merit badges (listed in bold in the table below). To earn Eagle Scout, most of these badges must be earned although some of them are optional. The remainder of the badges help with earning ranks as well as Eagle Palms after the Eagle Scout award has been earned.

Boy Scouts may work on merit badges from they time they join a Scout troop until they turn 18 years old. There is no time limit for completion of merit badges other than age 18. Merit badges currently available to Boy Scouts include:

List of current Merit Badges

The following are all the Merit Badges currently offered by the Boy Scouts of America:

  1. American Business
  2. American Cultures
  3. American Heritage
  4. American Labor
  5. Animal Science
  6. Archaeology
  7. Archery
  8. Architecture
  9. Art
  10. Astronomy
  11. Athletics
  12. Automotive Maintenance
  13. Aviation
  14. Backpacking
  15. Basketry
  16. Bird Study
  17. Bugling
  18. Camping
  19. Canoeing
  20. Chemistry
  21. Chess
  22. Cinematography
  23. Citizenship in the Community
  24. Citizenship in the Nation
  25. Citizenship in the World
  26. Climbing
  27. Coin Collecting
  28. Collections
  29. Communication
  30. Composite Materials
  31. Computers
  32. Cooking
  33. Crime Prevention
  34. Cycling
  35. Dentistry
  36. Digital Technology
  37. Disabilities Awareness
  38. Dog Care
  39. Drafting
  40. Electricity
  41. Electronics
  42. Emergency Preparedness
  43. Energy
  44. Engineering
  45. Entrepreneurship
  46. Environmental Science
  47. Family Life
  48. Farm Mechanics
  49. Fingerprinting
  50. Fire Safety
  51. First Aid
  52. Fish and Wildlife Management
  53. Fishing
  54. Fly Fishing
  55. Forestry
  56. Game Design
  57. Gardening
  58. Genealogy
  59. Geocaching
  60. Geology
  61. Golf
  62. Graphic Arts
  63. Hiking
  64. Home Repairs
  65. Horsemanship
  66. Indian Lore
  67. Insect Study
  68. Inventing
  69. Journalism
  70. Kayaking
  71. Landscape Architecture
  72. Law
  73. Leatherwork
  74. Lifesaving
  75. Mammal Study
  76. Medicine
  77. Metalwork
  78. Mining in Society
  79. Model Design and Building
  80. Motorboating
  81. Moviemaking
  82. Music
  83. Nature
  84. Nuclear Science
  85. Oceanography
  86. Orienteering
  87. Painting
  88. Personal Fitness
  89. Personal Management
  90. Pets
  91. Photography
  92. Pioneering
  93. Plant Science
  94. Plumbing
  95. Pottery
  96. Programming
  97. Public Health
  98. Public Speaking
  99. Pulp and Paper
  100. Radio
  101. Railroading
  102. Reading
  103. Reptile and Amphibian Study
  104. Rifle Shooting
  105. Robotics
  106. Rowing
  107. Safety
  108. Salesmanship
  109. Scouting Heritage
  110. Scholarship
  111. Scuba Diving
  112. Sculpture
  113. Search & Rescue
  114. Shotgun Shooting
  115. Skating
  116. Small-Boat Sailing
  117. Snow Sports
  118. Soil and Water Conservation
  119. Space Exploration
  120. Sports
  121. Stamp Collecting
  122. Surveying
  123. Sustainability
  124. Swimming
  125. Textile
  126. Theater
  127. Traffic Safety
  128. Truck Transportation
  129. Veterinary Medicine
  130. Water Sports
  131. Weather
  132. Welding
  133. Whitewater
  134. Wilderness Survival
  135. Wood Carving
  136. Woodwork

Note: Merit badges shown in bold italics are Eagle-required merit badges.

Awards

Awards are the third area of the advancement. Unlike the first two areas or advancement, awards are completely optional. However, they are still an important part of the program providing opportunities not available in the other areas. Awards currently available to Boy Scouts include:

Venture Patrol
Honor Awards

Varsity Scouts and qualified Venturers may earn Boy Scout awards.
List of all Scouting Awards
Scouter Awards for leaders


See also

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