Whoever said Beavers can't do as much as Cubs and Scouts had clearly never met our Beaver Scouts.
My first major activity as an Assistant Beaver Leader was to plan the JOTT walk for 2016. It's the first time our colony have taken part and it's not going to be the last.
JOTT is held on the second Saturday of May each year so it one of those activities that is really easy to plan into the calender well in advance and with no restrictions other than your own risk assessments it's a great opportunity to show your children how they are part of the wider Scouting community.
And as an added bonus it comes with it's own special badge for leaders to order for anyone who took part.
So what did we do for JOTT 2016?
Our Beaver Colony is based in the Hallm district of Sheffield so we're not short of a footpath or 2. We are a stones throw away from Rivelin, Beeley Woods, Wadsley Common and many many more if we choose to travel further afield. This year, being a newbie, I wanted to stick to somewhere I was confident on, and at 5 miles was just about perfect for our team of 6-8 year olds.
I met a leader from another local group in Stannington a couple of weeks ago and some of their Beavers joined us which was a great opportunity for the children to make new friends.
We met at Middlewood at 10am and after some ground rules and team sorting we set off with our scavenger hunt and the rules of "take only photo's and leave only memories". As part of their photographers badge they had to take good pictures of some of the things on their list.
The next stop was Beeley Wood, which gave us an opportunity to look at water safety, plants, different leaves and fungi. The Beavers found the old water pump really interesting, almost as interesting as the wolf (big husky) that came bounding up to them.
After numerous rounds of "I'm hungry", "is it lunch time yet?" and "when can we stop" (all before 11am) we reached our picnic destination, Coronation Park in Oughtibridge. The Beavers enjoyed a well earned sandwich and a play before we looked at the symbols on a map to work out what we would see as we walked through Oughtibridge.
Coombes Brook was our next stop and a climb to the top of the staircase (and back down).
Back down to Worral .... for another rest...
...and through the woods back to Wadsley and our HQ.
Where the grown ups collapsed with tea and biscuits and the boys (yup, not one of our girls joined us) enjoyed ice pops and orange juice while they drew maps of the route.
Beavers Adventure: Green Cross Code, Outdoor activity, Walk
Beavers Navigator: 4 compass points, Use map, 10 Photos, Camera use
Beavers Explore: Explain, Explore, Predict
Some of the Beavers got an extra badge requirement in Beaver Challange/ Teamwork as a "friend"as they took my own Beaver in Training under their wing, keeping him safe from the road and picking him up when he fell down.
Did you go JOTT'ing this weekend?