Coronavirus

 Last Updated:  

Key information for Leaders

Before reading the information below, please ensure you’re up to date with the guidance available at: 

scouts.org.uk/coronavirus

gov.uk/coronavirus

gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-the-charity-sector


On the Monday, 16 March the Prime Minister said that everyone in the UK should avoid non-essential travel and contact with others.

Given this guidance, the UK Scout Association has said that all face-to-face Scout meetings, activities and events must be suspended from Tuesday, 17 March 2020. This suspension applies to young people and adults, and will be until further notice.

In our district we are trying to continue scouting in the best ways we can and have invested in tools and resources to try and deliver the best experience we can for young people and leaders. Please check this page regularly for updates, we will be continuously adding to it.

Please remember that despite the different methodologies required through these challenging times all Standard Safeguarding Rules Still Apply.


General Resources

Your first stop for information during the lock-down

Local Programme Ideas

Resources and ideas tried and tested by members of this district

Digital Platforms

Help and guidelines for the use of digital platforms

Digital Heroes

Volunteers to help you set-up and use digital platforms.

Resources

Below are a list of important subjects and resources to be aware of through the lock down at the Tonbridge District level. Many of the answers you might be looking for are answered here on the Scout Association Coronavirus FAQs.

Activities

While our normal activity ideas may no longer be available to us there are still plenty of ways to have fun!

Leaders and parents alike, check out the Scout Association’s website for activity ideas through the lock down. There are some excellent ideas for all ages and some of them progress towards a badge as well.

In addition to these we are keeping a list of activities already tried approved by leaders in the district.

Activities

Cart Wood

Cart Wood, like all other scouting venues in the district is closed.

Events

Following the advice to suspend all face-to-face meetings, activities and events, it is important to consider any events you may have scheduled as a group.

International Events

  • EuroJam – Postponed until 2021

National Events

  • Day of Celebration at Windsor – Cancelled
  • Beaver and Cub Fun days at Gilwell Park and Woodhouse Park – Cancelled
  • Gilwell 24 – Cancelled
  • Reunion – Under review

County Events

  • MAYhem 2020 – Now Camp@Home!
  • KIJ2021 – Still on as planned

Tonbridge District Events

  • Operation Founder – Postponed until further notice
  • Cub Water Fun Day – Postponed until further notice
  • 17th Tonbridge Scout & Guide Band 50th Anniversary Tattoo – Rescheduled for 6th June 2021

Mental Health & Loneliness

Everyone’s mental well-being is being affected by the lock-down environment, but with so many other issues it is widely overlooked.

That’s why, we’re asking young people to share Three for 3. Write (or draw) three things you’re doing to look after your mental well being during this challenging time and share these ideas with three other people.

Once you’ve shared your three things, the people you’ve shared with should share their own three things with you and three others, keeping the conversation about wellbeing going. You can do this with your family, friends, or if you’re over 13 and have social media, by tagging people on social media using #Threefor3.

By taking action you’ll be helping other people find out new ways to support their wellbeing.

Remember, only share things you feel comfortable sharing, and remember – when something’s on the internet, it’s ‘out there’ for anyone to see and very difficult to delete permanently.


Talking about Coronavirus

Mind, the mental health charity, has some great info for young people who are worried about coronavirus and want to know how to cope with changes to their lives. Support from Mind

General Mental Health Info

Infectious disease outbreaks, like the current Coronavirus (Covid 19), can be scary and can affect our mental health. While it is important to stay informed, there are also many things we can do to support and manage our well being during such times.

Looking after your mental health while you have to stay at home

The government is now advising us to avoid all but essential social contact. This will mean that more of us will be spending a lot of time at home and many of our regular social activities will no longer be available to us. It will help to try and see it as a different period of time in your life, and not necessarily a bad one, even if you didn’t choose it.

It will mean a different rhythm of life, a chance to be in touch with others in different ways than usual. Be in touch with other people regularly on social media, e-mail or on the phone, as they are still good ways of being close to the people who matter to you.

Create a new daily routine that prioritises looking after yourself. Remain productive. For Leaders this may mean tackling tasks and admin you’ve been unable to complete or taking this an opportunity to complete training or review your risk assessments so we can hit the ground running when normal services resume again. For young people it might be an opportunity to practice a skill you’ve learnt or Scouts or for an event when we start back again.

Try to avoid speculation and look up reputable sources on the outbreak

Rumour and speculation can fuel anxiety. Having access to good quality information about the virus can help you feel more in control.

You can get up-to-date information and advice on the virus here:

Gov.uk

Follow hygiene advice such as washing your hands more often than usual, for 20 seconds with soap and hot water (sing ‘happy birthday’ to yourself twice to make sure you do this for 20 seconds). You should do this whenever you get home or into work, blow your nose, sneeze or cough, eat or handle food. If you can’t wash your hands straightaway, use hand sanitiser and then wash them at the next opportunity.

You should also use tissues if you sneeze and make sure you dispose of them quickly; and stay at home if you are feeling unwell.

Try to stay connected

At times of stress, we work better in company and with support. Try and keep in touch with your friends, and family, by telephone, email or social media. Stay in touch with your Scouting friends especially any one vulnerable or may be more isolated than most. It would be fantastic for older sections such as Scouts, Explorers and Network to organise catch-ups via video conference and talk about what you’ve been up to.

Stay in touch with friends on social media but try not to sensationalise things. If you are sharing content, use this from trusted sources, and remember that your friends might be worried too.

Also remember to regularly assess your social media activity. Tune in with yourself and ask if they need to be adjusted. Are there particular accounts or people that are increasing your worry or anxiety? Consider muting or unfollowing accounts or hashtags that cause you to feel anxious.

Get as much sun light, fresh air and nature as you can

Spending time in green space or bringing nature into your everyday life can benefit both your mental and physical well being. It can improve your mood, reduce feelings of stress or anger, and make you feel more relaxed. Social distancing doesn’t mean you have to be contained indoors and there’s plenty you can do in the garden, local park or nature that doesn’t require you coming into contact with people.

It’s possible to still get these positive effects from nature while staying indoors at home if you are self isolating. You could try the following:

  • Spend time with the windows open to let in fresh air.
  • Have flowers or potted plants in your home.
  • Arrange a comfortable space to sit, for example by a window where you can look out over a view of trees or the sky, or watch birds and other animals.
  • Look at photos of your favourite places in nature. Use them as the background on your mobile phone or computer screen, or print and put them up on your walls.
  • Listen to natural sounds, like recordings or apps that play birdsong, ocean waves or rainfall. Get as much natural light as you can. Spend time in your garden if you have one, or open your front or back door and sit on the doorstep.
Cubs running up hill
Get outdoors when you can

It is important to:

  • keep active
  • eat a balanced diet and drink plenty of water
Cubs eating healthy
Eat Healthy

Try not to make assumptions

Don’t judge people and avoid jumping to conclusions about who is responsible for the spread of the disease. The Coronavirus can affect anyone, regardless of gender, ethnicity or sex.

Try to manage how you follow the outbreak in the media

There is extensive news coverage about the outbreak. If you find that the news is causing you huge stress, it’s important to find a balance.

It’s best that you don’t avoid all news and that you keep informing and educating yourself, but limit your news intake if it is bothering you.

Further Support

Young Minds
www.youngminds.org.uk

Childline
0800 1111
www.childline.org.uk

Mind
www.mind.org.uk

SAMH
www.samh.org.uk

Protecting vulnerable people and volunteers

Tonbridge is proud to have a diverse membership in its ranks. We ask that during this difficult time we all do our best to look out for one another and think about anyone who in our Scouting family who may be at risk.

The kind of things you might be able to do for an older or vulnerable Scouter potentially includes things like:

  • offering to drop off some groceries
  • picking up the phone for a natter about Scouty stuff

The UK Government has issued the following advice regarding protecting older people and vulnerable adults.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-social-distancing-and-for-vulnerable-people/guidance-on-social-distancing-for-everyone-in-the-uk-and-protecting-older-people-and-vulnerable-adults

Scout Shop

Unfortunately due to the face-to-face restrictions the Tonbridge Scout Shop is closed until further notice.

Staying Safe Online

Besides being a great source for funny cat videos, the Internet has the power to bring people closer together. For Scouts, we know it can be a great source for tools and information to make the world a better place. In this exceptional times there is a real opportunity to harness digital tools to stay connected and socialise in a positive and healthy way even if you are self isolating. 

However, the Internet can also be a source of serious issues, like cyberbullying, harassment, identity theft and abuse. This can happen when chatting and posting on social media, gaming platforms and even Scouting channels – just as bad things sometimes happen in real life.

Online behaviour that is unacceptable includes: stealing private information, sending, posting or sharing false content about someone else, continuing to contact someone who asked not to be contacted, sending inappropriate remarks or photos to a young person or asking them to do so, and sending threats or hate speech. Staying safe online


We want Scouts like you to feel safe online so that you can continue to use the Internet to create a better world. Make sure you are always prepared by reading these tips to stay safe online:

Golden Rules of Internet Safety: 

Be kind 

Treat others with kindness, the way you would want to be treated. Respect differences in feelings and opinions. If you witness bullying online, you should let a trusted adult know.

Be mindful about what you share  

Don’t share your – or anyone else’s – personal information online. This includes addresses, phone numbers, passwords and pictures you wouldn’t want the public to see. Before sharing anything about another person, ask them if they are ok with it. Check your sources and make sure any news or facts you share are true.

Don’t meet in-person with people you meet online

People you’ve only met online are still strangers – even if you’ve been talking for a long time. Sometimes, a person might lie about who they are, which can be dangerous. Check with your parents or carers for permission to meet someone you’ve met online, and only meet them with them present.

Keep your personal information private

Check the “Privacy Settings” on your social media channels and make them private so that your personal information is only shared with those you choose to have as friends. Even then, never post personal information on the Internet.

Report harmful posts or content

Here’s a way you can help make the Internet a safer place for everyone! If a post online makes you feel uncomfortable, take the responsibility to click “Report”. This includes posts that are inappropriate or harmful to yourself or others. 

Tell a trusted adult

If you receive messages or see posts that make you feel uncomfortable or unsafe, tell a trusted adult, like a family member or Scout leader, about the message you received or the post you saw. 

Safety Online Booklets

The Scout Association have some fantastic booklets available specific for each section about staying safe online:

The Yellow Card – Young People First

When Scouting Online, the principles of the ‘Yellow Card’ and ‘Child protection policy’ applies.

There must be at least two adults present at all times during any online activity. Ideally both adults should be Scout volunteers, but you can use a parent rota to support as you might normally do. Young people must never be left in a one-to-one situation with an adult. This protects us all and also ensures that young people understand that even in these difficult times, the Scouts take safeguarding seriously.

What online systems are appropriate for Scouting online?

All systems put in place by Tonbridge District are fully GDPR compliant and have safe guards in place to protect both our young people and volunteers.

Here are some of the tools available to volunteers in Tonbridge District:

  • OSM (Online Scout Manager)
    • Communicating via OSM emails guarantees that member’s are BCc ed in emails (Blind Carbon Copy) this means that no email addresses are passed onto other members.
  • Enterprise license of Office365 which includes:
    • Scouting email with group domain name so recipients can be confident emails are from someone involved with local scouting.
    • Access to Microsoft Teams for online video conferences, webinars and instant messaging.
    • 1TB Onedrive and Sharepoint for secure storage and sharing of files and resources.
    • Microsoft Forms for secure collection of data but also quizzes and surveys.
    • Yammer for creating a secure and private social network

What platforms are suitable for young people?

There are many different platforms you can use to communicate with young people and families online. They’re all slightly different with different features, and most importantly, different levels of security and privacy.

Be sure to check the platform’s own websites, as many of them are changing their features and offers to help and support people because of the coronavirus.

Even if the platform is suitable, it is always worth checking the content you are planning to show before sharing it with the young people. Many websites rely upon user created content and getting around safeguarding checks are often seen as a challenge to malicious web users.

Age requirements

13

Most collaboration or online platforms have an age requirement, on most users need to be over 13 to make an account. Check the terms and conditions of services to make sure they are suitable for the Scouts in your group. If the young people in your group are under the age limit of the tool you want to use, then their parents or carers must set up the required accounts and remain nearby through the meeting. More advice on Digital platforms

What do I do if I have a concern?

You can raise any safeguarding concern no matter how trivial, with the District Commissioner.

or our national safeguarding team
safeguarding@scouts.org.uk 
or call us on 0345 300 1818

If having looked through both the Scout Association FAQs and the resources above you cannot find what you need contact dc@tonbridge-scouts.org.uk and we will update this resource.


Digital Platforms

Before you use any of the tools below read the Scout Association’s guidelines for Scouting Online. These cover all aspects of Safeguarding and what is expected as well as providing guidance on software available.

Guides and guidelines for digital platforms we think will be useful to you during this time. For any additional help see the Digital Heroes section

Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams has lots of functionality but the main one we are interested in at the moment is video conferencing.

In this guide we will cover:

  • Why you might want to use Microsoft Teams
  • How to schedule a video conference
  • Additional training materials

Coming Soon: In meeting controls

Why Use Microsoft Teams?

  • Microsoft Teams is FREE with our charity subscription for Microsoft Office
    • So every leader has access to run video conferences using their tonbridge-scouts.org.uk email address.
  • Video conference calls with your members only requiring a link to join.
  • The ability to share your screen for joint online activities.

Schedule a meeting

Step 1 – Log into Microsoft Office Online:

The fastest way to access all of your Microsoft 365 goodies is by going to this link:

https://office.com

You might want to make it a bookmark, it comes in handy!

Step 2: Navigate to your calendar

Find the icon shown above and click on it. This will take you to your Microsoft Outlook Calendar.

Step 3: Create a new event

There are two ways of doing this:

Method 1: Click on the Calendar

If you click on the calendar you will see a window like this:

Calendar pop up

If you use this method you should now click the “More options” button in the bottom right hand corner.

Method 2: Click on “New Event” in the top right hand corner of the Calendar screen

new event button

Step 4: Create event

Next you need to fill in the time and date of the event you wish to create. You can invite attendees but you do not have to.

create event

Step 5: Ensure you turned on the Teams Meeting Switch!

Ensure the Teams meeting switch is turned on (blue). This is what gives your event a video conferencing link.

With that checked we can save our event.

Step 6: Disseminate your video conferencing link

Double Click on the event you just created and move onto step 7.

If you single clicked on the event, you will see the view demonstrated below, you can see the “Join Teams Meeting” link here but to be able to copy and paste into emails for your members we need to click on the arrows in the top right.

Step 7: Finding your link

You can copy the “Join Microsoft Teams Meeting” text shown underlined and in purple towards the bottom of the meeting’s details, you can now paste this link into any email you would be sending to your members.

When you click on the link you will be prompted to download Microsoft Teams, while you don’t have to do this the experience is better.

For more help see our list of digital heroes for Microsoft Teams.

Want to learn more?

Click the link below to visit Microsoft’s own training materials:

Microsoft Teams Training

Online Scout Manager

Online Scout Manager is now used by all groups in Tonbridge for managing membership and badges. Its additional features including payment collection and event management enable many sections to reduce administration and/or run more events.

Within a week of lock-down, Online Scout Manager released a new “Badges at Home” feature that allows leaders to highlight badge requirements they would like their members to have a go at. The members evidence can then be uploaded through the OSM badge portal, reviewed by leaders and requirements ticked off.

Click or tap to visit OSM

There is a community help forum and useful videos available from within OSM; just log in and tap the “Help” menu item in the bottom left corner.

For more on Badges at home, check out this tutorial video from Tim O’Brine from 2nd Tonbridge or contact one of our digital heroes.

Tim’s guide to OSM Badges at Home

Zoom

Zoom Pro licences are now available for each group. To get yours, register here.

In this guide we will cover:

  • What Zoom is and why you might want to use it.
  • How to schedule a video conference via Zoom.
    • Where to find the details, to share your meeting with your members.
  • How to start a meeting.
    • Advanced usages while the meeting is running.
  • How to add basic users.
    • “Basic users” can host meetings on your Group’s account on your behalf.

What is Zoom

Zoom is a video conferencing platform. It enables you to have large scale video conferences and share your screen with participants.

Why use Zoom

You would rightly question why you would want to use Zoom given we have Microsoft Teams free for the district. The main benefit of Zoom over Teams are:

  • The gallery view – where you can see everyone’s videos rather than the last few who spoke.
  • Breakout rooms – where you can separate your participants into their own conference calls so that you can perform activities you would normally do in groups.

Scheduling a meeting

Step 1 – Download the client

First start by downloading the Zoom Client, for Microsoft Windows users this can be installed by using the below link:

https://zoom.us/client/latest/ZoomInstaller.exe

Step 2 – Scheduling a new meeting

Open the Zoom by double clicking on the desktop icon, you should be presented with the below welcome screen where you will need to select sign in.

Enter your login details for Zoom and click the blue sign in button.

Once logged in Click the schedule icon to setup a new meeting.

You have a number options on the following screen start by adding a meeting name in the ‘Topic’ text box, this should include your Group or Unit name.

  • Select your start time and meeting duration.
  • Meeting ID should be set to ‘Generate Automatically’
  • Password should be set to required, a random Pin will be assigned
  • Video Settings,  use these options to select if the host or participants video should be on
  • Audio,  Choose to allow participants to connect via Telephone, Computer Audio or both.
  • Calendar, Set this to ‘other calendars’
Schedule a zoom meeting

To enable some more advanced options, expand ‘Advanced Options’ at the bottom of the screen.

Check to make sure ‘Enable waiting room’ is selected (this is hold all participants in a separate room until you can confirm them and allow them in. Remember that two adults should be online before you begin the meeting. Zoom has set all meetings to have a meeting room by default since 5th April. Meeting rooms mitigate a number of the Zoom security risks that have been reported recently in the media: You should always use a waiting room

Once happy click the Schedule button to set up the meeting.

Step 3: Share the meeting with your members

The Following screen holds on the meeting information which you will need to share with your participants, if you want them to just join via a computer they will just need the ‘Join Zoom Meeting’ Link – be careful when sharing this out as this is the key to your meeting room!

Some parents have reported the need to provide the meeting password when joining from certain devices, like an iPad, so you’ll want to make sure that parents know the password before the meeting starts.

Once you’ve copied your meeting information you may close the window using the cross in the top right corner.

Starting a meeting

From the welcome screen you should see your up and coming meetings, find the meeting you want to begin and click the start button (a meeting can be started at any time, you do not have to wait until the scheduled start time).

You’ll be next asked how you wish to connect to the audio, in most cases click ‘Join with Computer Audio’.

Congratulations! You’re now in your meeting and ready to go.  To enable/disable your camera and audio use the first two icons on the toolbar (bottom left).


Managing Participants

As the host of the meeting you’ll have more options than participants, the first icon you want to find is the ‘Manage Participants’ icon on the lower toolbar.

Click this button and a new window will appear to the right side of the screen.  This new screen will allow you to control the participants within the meeting.

In the screen below you will see 1 person is waiting in the waiting room. To allow this person in, hover over them and the ‘Admit’ button will appear, click this button and they will be admitted into the meeting. (you can move participants back into the waiting room by simply right-clicking on their name and then chosing the option to send them to the waiting room)

You should now see the participant next to you on the meeting window (those without their Video enabled will appear as their name only).


Restricting Participant Functions

You may wish to prevent your participants from using some of the functions. Clicking the ‘Security’ icon will allow you to switch on and off certain functions as you need them.

  • Lock meeting – this will prevent any new participants from joining
  • Enable waiting room – you may feel that for an adult meeting you don’t need the waiting room, deselecting this option will allow participants to join straight away.
  • Share Screen, Chat and Rename themselves switch on and off those functions

Chatting

Clicking the chat icon will bring a further window in which you can type messages to and from participants, select the intended recipients in the ‘To’ field and type your message.

You may wish to explore the advanced options once you have a basic understanding of Zoom. These will allow you to control/prevent a participant from sending private messages between people,  the District accounts are enabled users to chat to ‘Everyone’ or the ‘Host’ privately but not between participants. 

We recommend only allowing public chat to avoid 1 on 1 communication.


Screen Sharing

You may wish you share your screen or allow a participant to share theirs, this can be done by clicking the ‘Screen Share’ icon on the bottom toolbar, you will be asked to select which computer screen or individual application you wish to share.

Share an application where possible to avoid pop-ups from other applications from appearing in your Screen Share.

While screen sharing you can also share your computer’s sound (bottom right).

It is also possible to allow other participants to share control of the mouse pointer, useful for shared games or technical issues but be wary of the control this provides.

Advanced Functionality

Breakout Rooms

Breakout rooms allow you to split you meeting into several smaller sub meetings, once you’re happy with the basics of Zoom you can experiment which this additional tool.

Select ‘Breakout Rooms’ from the tool bar and you’ll be asked how many rooms you wish to create (you can add more later).    You can set the participants to be randomly assigned to rooms or manually choose who will be in each room.

Once ready click Create rooms and the below screen will appear,  you can move people between rooms here before opening them up,  remember your Yellow card and avoid 1 on 1 meetings and ideally have at least two adults per room.

When you’re happy with the rooms, click the blue ‘Open All Rooms’ button to invite the participants into their sub meeting rooms.

As a host, you can return to the menu at any time by clicking the Breakout Rooms icon again. Once running you can join a room yourself or move people between rooms. To close all the sub rooms and return participants back to the main room, click the red ‘Close All Rooms’ they will be given 1 minute to finish their breakout room before being returned.

To leave a breakout room and join another room simply click the ‘Leave’ link next to your current room.


Co-Hosting

You may wish to have more than one host to control the meeting. To do this the current host can right-click on the participant’s name and select the ‘Make Co-Host’ option,  agree to the popup message and then the Co-host will have the same rights as you!  (If you do not have this option you may need to enable this through the advance settings in the website – speak to a Hero if you need help doing this!)

Adding Basic Users

Zoom Pro account holders licenced through the Scout Association can now add “basic” users (other leaders) to their accounts to start and manage a meeting on their behalf – after sharing the host key (for each scheduled meeting) with them.

Basic users MUST sign-up on this form to be associated with a licensed account.

How does it work?

  • The licensed user schedules the meeting on the zoom site
  • The licensed user invites the relevant basic users to the meeting
  • The licenced or basic user can share the meeting details with young people, parents and others who should be invited to the meeting – these will all be guest users
  • If the licenced user isn’t attending the meeting, they’ll need to share the host key with the basic user so that they can become the host (instructions below)
  • The basic user will then need to click ‘claim host’ in the participants list at the bottom and enter the host key from the licenced user (instructions below)
  • The basic user can then end the meeting or act as the host during the session (don’t forget to ‘end the meeting for all’ so no one is left behind in Zoom – just like you would before locking up your meeting place!)

See this help article on how to obtain host key as licensed user.

This article explains how to claim host as basic user.

Guidance on using the Scout Pro Zoom accounts is available here.

Want to learn more?

This guide is intended to get you started, there are more options which could be used, to find out more speak to a Hero or take a look at the below product support site.

Zoom Video Tutorials


Local Programme Ideas

This section contains tried and tested online activities that have been run by leaders in Tonbridge. Use the toggles to filter by section or activity type. If you want more information on an activity, check the digital heroes section below to get contact details.

“Scout of Games” Quiz

A Scout-themed quiz based on Richard Osmon’s “House of Games” quiz show.

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 60 minutes
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Video Conferencing 

Instructions:

Invite the Scouts to a video conference then share the PowerPoint.

The Scouts can either work individually, or (if using Zoom), put in teams in breakout rooms to answer questions.

If using breakout rooms, you will need to have 2 leaders in each room. Each leader will need a copy of the PowerPoint and the ability to share their screen.

Tips and gotchas:

We recommend that you practice using breakout rooms before attempting it live!

The grid reference round in particular is a good training aid and can be used on its own.

Opening Slide
Sample Question

Run by: Chris Parker at 17th Tonbridge Scouts.

Badges A-Z

Send badge ideas to Scouts each week.

Type: Online ChallengeRunning Time: 26 Weeks!
Sections: ScoutsDigital platforms: n/a

Instructions:

Send badge ideas to Scouts each week with the proviso that it is optional given that some are being inundated with school work.

The first week we sent out A for Artist. The ideas sent pick out various bits from Artist Activity badge but we tried to make it a bit more fun.

There are no activity badges starting with B (!) so we made up a few fun ideas that tick bits of other badges.

Tips and gotchas:

Run by: Jo Hillas-Smith at 11th Tonbridge Scouts.

Bingo!

Email your members digital bingo tickets then share your screen with the bingo numbers being called.

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 90 minutes
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Video Conferencing & online Bingo

Instructions:

  • Contact the Bingo Digital Hero for a software licence key
  • Install Bingo software
  • Email bingo tickets to members and get them to select a page from the 200 tickets available.
  • Share bingo calling screen via video conferencing software.
  • To win, first someone must have all numbers in a single line. Then everyone plays to win two lines in the same box. Then everyone plays to be the first to have all numbers in a box.
  • When anyone thinks they have won they share with you a number in the bottom left of the ticket and you enter it into the bingo software to check the numbers.

Tips and gotchas:

  • Make it explicitly clear that you are playing with multiple boxes on each page and that two lines is within a single box.
  • Save paper and use highlighting tools in adobe reader to highlight numbers that have been called.

Resources:

Run by: Adam Chilton at Central Explorers

Bridge Building

An engineering challenge…using spaghetti and marsh mallows!

Type: Online Challenge/LiveRunning Time: 60 minutes
Sections: Cubs, Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: None/Video Conference

Instructions

Participants are challenged to build a bridge to span a 20cm gap using only spaghetti and marshmallows in 30 mintes.

If a participant cannot get spaghetti and marshmallows, they could build a bridge to span a 10cm gap using cocktail sticks and peas.

Once complete, participants must test their bridge by loading it with £1 coins

Tips and gotchas:

Could you build this!?
Instructions Powerpoint Slide

Run by: Stuart Sharp at 6th Tonbridge Scouts.

Choc Chip Cookies

Simple online cooking activity

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 60 minutes +
Sections: Cubs, Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Video Conferencing 

Instructions:

Send out a simple choc chip cookie recipe beforehand, with instructions. (See resources below)

Get everyone on a video conference and go through the recipe step by step.

Tips and gotchas:

You need to have a filler activity or something planned to cover the 10-12 minute cooking period and a 10 minute cooling period. We had some announcements, and a “interview the leaders” Q&A from one of our scouts.

Yum

Run by: Stuart Sharp at 11th Tonbridge Scouts.

Close Up Quiz

Young people take close-up photos for everyone else to try to guess.

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Video Conferencing

Instructions:

Ask each scouts to take a zoomed in picture of a household object before the meeting. During the meetingv, each Scout takes a turn at sharing their screen to show their image. Rotated through the participants, calling out the image number then leaving the image on the screen for approx. 30sec to 1 min to allow people to guess.

Once all the images have been shown, go back through them asking the Scouts to reveal the answers.

Tips and gotchas:

Some weren’t able to share a screen or were accessing via a phone. Consider asking the scouts to email their images in beforehand. .

Can be slow when people are learning to share screen – You could email all images to a leader in advance, but that might loose the participation factor.

A positive is that the whole family can get involved.

Close up example
Close up example

Run by: Stuart Sharp at 6th Tonbridge Scouts.

Geogussr.com – guess where you are

Get dropped in a location on google streetview, you can (virtually) walk around but be fast, there is a time limit before you must guess where in the entire world you are.

Type: Live Activity, Online ChallengeRunning Time: 90 minutes
Sections: Scouts, Explorers, NetworkDigital platforms: Video Conferencing & Geoguessr.com

Instructions:

  • Navigate to Geoguessr.com
  • Select a pre-made challenge or create on limited to an area of your choice. We made one around Tonbridge, amazing how many streets you’ve never been down!
  • Share challenge link to your members, everyone gets dropped in the same locations and has to make the best guesses of where you are on the smaller map in the bottom right hand corner.
  • Just click the small map and confirm your guess.

Tips and gotchas:

  • Start with a Tonbridge challenge, then try a ready made challenge based on well known points of interest around the world.
  • You get 1 free game per day but for a pro login contact Adam via the digital heroes section.

Resources: Geoguessr.com

Run by: Adam Chilton at Central Explorers

Google Maps Treasure Hunts

This idea involves participants collecting clues using Google Maps Street Views then using those clues to complete another Google Maps link to find the final destination.

Type: Online ChallengeRunning Time: 30 minutes
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Google Maps

Instructions:

Send out the instructions or screen share them during an online video conference call.

Participants can either complete the treasure hunt individually or in teams if using video conferencing with break-out rooms.

See downloads for Scout and Explorer versions.

Tips and gotchas:

Some Scouts struggled to understand how the links worked.

The Explorers were better at it!

Scout Version
Explorer Version

Run by: Stuart Sharp at 6th Tonbridge Scouts + The Central Explorer Leaders.

Kahoot – Online Quiz

Kahoot is online quizzing software used primarily by schools, so many of your members will be familiar with it. You can use it to create your own quizzes or run ready made quizzes on the platform.

Type: Live Activity, Online ChallengeRunning Time: variable
Sections: Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Explorers, NetworkDigital platforms: Video Conferencing 

Resource: Kahoot.com

Login: District login details are available in the Kahoot Digital Hero section

Method:

  • Create a quiz or use other people’s quizzes. Share your screen via Video conferencing technology (See Digital Platforms).
  • Users will use their mobile phones, tablets or computers to go to Kahoot.it and enter a code shown on your shared screen.
  • Your participants will then answer questions as fast as they can on their own devices.
  • Kahoot shows the answers and keeps score.

Tips:

  • Check pre-made quizzes thoroughly as you would with any user made content
  • It is possible to combine quizzes together to make a quiz up to 100 questions long. Ask our digital hero if you need help with this.
  • To see a full leader board at the end of the quiz you will need to go into Reports section on the top menu and find your quiz.

Previously Run By: Central Explorers, Adam Chilton

Murder Mystery

Each member is given a role and reads their part in the mystery to try and work out who-dunnit!

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: ~30 mins / mystery
Sections: Explorers, NetworkDigital platforms: Video Conferencing

Instructions:

  • Split participants into groups per the number of roles in the mystery.
  • Provide each member the pdf for their role in murder mystery.
  • Get each participant to read out their story, the conversation should start to flow.
  • Guess who-dunnit!

Tips and gotchas:

Use Zoom breakout rooms to allow multiple games to run simultaneously and with the same roles being used in each game.

Resources:

See Murder Mystery Digital Heroes for download links.

Run by: Adam Chilton at Central Explorers.

Online Board Games

Below are a number of free online board games we’ve found to be quite good.

These will require users to sign up, so this activity is more involved. But if you take the time to do this then there is a lot of content here.

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 90 minutes
Sections: Scouts, Explorers, NetworkDigital platforms: Video Conferencing & online board games

Games

Codenames

Codenames is a game of word clues as 1 member of each team known as the spymaster attempts to guide their team of field agents to the correct words code-names of undercover operatives.

Instructions:

  • Visit horsepaste.com select an easy name for your game room.
  • Get your spymasters to navigate to the room and click the spymaster button in the bottom right hand corner.
  • Have everyone else either navigate to the room but not press spymaster OR share your screen via video conferencing.
  • On their respective team’s turn the spymaster for that team will say a single word and a number. The word is the clue and the number is the number of words on the grid it refers to.
  • The team will then try their best to figure out which word(s) the spymaster was guiding them to.
  • Teams must always guess at least one word and may guess up to the number stated by the spymaster plus one more.
    • For example if the blue spymaster gave the clue “Freeze, 2” the team might guess “Water” & “Snow”, they would then have the option of one additional guess, which could be used to guess words from previously given clues.
  • If the team ever guesses a word that is not their own, they end their turn and the opposition team would get another clue.
  • If either team guess the word shown in black to the spymaster they immediately lose the game as they have selected the assassin.

Tips:

  • The rules are fairly simple but familiarise yourself with them before playing with your Scouts.
  • The video embedded below explains the game in basic terms.
This is what the team sees
This is what the spymaster sees

Dominion

The aim of the game is to purchase cards to increase your ability to purchase better cards and eventually victory points.

Each game table can play 6 people so use Zoom breakout rooms and get multiple games running simultaneously.

Resource: dominion.games

Tips:

  • For beginners set the cards to be base game only when creating a table.
  • Hide the victory point counter for more suspense.

BoardGameArena

Board game arena is a board game hosting website with many well known games available in it’s free tier.

Resource: boardgamearena.com

Tips:

  • Get everyone to find and read the rules for the game prior to playing.

Run by: Adam Chilton at Central Explorers

Online Escape Rooms

A web based escape room via Google Forms.

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 30 minutes / room
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Video Conferencing 

Instructions:

  • Invite the Scouts to a video conference then share one of the escape room links.
  • The Scouts can either work individually, or (if using Zoom), put in teams in breakout rooms to solve the puzzles.
  • If using breakout rooms, you will need to have 2 leaders in each room.

Hogwarts Escape Room

Tips:

Encourage the Scouts to do the escape rooms in teams, reading the instructions out load and talking through the puzzles but entering the answers on their own computer.

Encourage everyone to read, especially for the Hogwarts escape room.

Change teams for the second escape room.

Resources:

South Berkshire Escape Room – Escape the Hut

Run by: Adam Chilton, Central Explorers

Paper Towers

The young people are challenged to build a free-standing paper tower and post a photo of them with it.

Type: Online ChallengeRunning Time: n/a
Sections: Cubs, Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Closed Social Media Group/Website

Instructions:

Challenge the young people to make a free-standing tower, using only paper and sticky tape.

Get them to post a picture of their tower, with them standing along side it, to your social media channel(s).

Tips and gotchas:

We ran this as a competition but had several Scouts submitting pictures of them standing by their towers then claiming to be over 6’8″! Get parents to measure the height of the towers. 🙂

Our tower

Run by: Chris Parker at 17th Tonbridge Scouts.

Pub Quiz

A slow paced quiz run over video conferencing

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 90 minutes
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Video Conferencing 

Instructions:

  • Invite the Scouts to join a video conference.
  • Get them to each have a pencil and paper to record their answers.
  • Self mark the quiz.

Tips and gotchas:

  • Use the screen share function to share picture or video rounds.
  • Use Share computer audio to run a music round
  • Test any special rounds before playing with the group.
  • For a faster auto-marked quiz check out Kahoot.
Example question from Minion Quiz

Run by: Adam Chilton at Central Explorers.

Scavenger Hunt

A scavenger hunt carried out in the Scouts’ homes with challenges set in groups using screen sharing on a video conference. Scouts post their finds as photos and videos to a closed Facebook Group.

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 90 minutes +
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Video Conferencing & Closed Facebook Group

Instructions:

Just before the meeting, in your Closed Facebook Group, create a separate post for each Patrol. This is where (with their parents’ help), the Scouts will post their finds as comments.

Start the video conference and screen share the PowerPoint instructions.

Give the Scouts 10 to 15 minutes to complete each set of 5 “missions”, posting their photos and videos as they go.

Award 1 patrol point for each mission completed.

Tips and gotchas:

Parental help is definitely required, if only for access to Facebook.

Adjust the timing of the rounds based on how many Scouts tell you they’ve finished.

If you have enough leaders, assign one to each patrol to offer encouragement (in the form of “well done” comments and likes) and to add up the scores.

Initial Instructions
Round 1 instructions

Run by: Chris Parker at 17th Tonbridge Scouts.

Skribbl.io – Online Pictionary

Skribbl is an online Pictionary game where each player takes turn drawing and everyone else guesses the word, points are awarded for the fastest correct guesses.

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 30 mins per 12 player game ( 4 rounds )
Sections: Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Explorers, NetworkDigital platforms: Video Conferencing 

Resource: Skribbl.io

Number of Participants: 12 per Skribbl room

Tips:

  • Use Zoom breakout rooms to run multiple games at once for more than 12 participants.
  • For younger users download the word list at the bottom of this resource and copy and paste them into the custom words field. Then check the use custom words exclusively checkbox.

Method:

  • 1 player create a room and share the link at the bottom of the lobby via video conferencing.
  • Everyone in the video call, navigates to the link and enters their name.
  • Each turn one player selects from three words and begins to draw as the timer runs down.
  • Every other player will see the number of letters and tries to guess the word, entering their guesses in the bottom right.
  • Most correct answers and fastest answers win!

A similar alternative is sketchful.io. Check out this demonstration by Tim O’Brine at 2nd Tonbridge:

Sketchful.io

Previously run by: Central Explorers, Adam Chilton

Stop motion Video

Make a short film using almost anything.

Type: Online ChallengeRunning Time: 60 minutes +
Sections: Cubs, Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Closed Facebook Group

Materials:

  • Tablet / Ipad or if the mums and dads want to get involved a digital camera. We used stop motion studio, a downloadable app to do this.
    • There is a Lego version too but its not that easy to download as your finished films have to be checked by Lego for content.
  • Something to support your tablet or Ipad and keep it still while making your film.
  • A single colour background.
    • This helps if you want to add effects and if the camera moves a bit.

Instructions:

When making your film, move the bits around very small amounts to bring the objects to life, every 12 photos makes 1 second of film.

If you’re stuck for ideas, have a look on YouTube, there are quite a few “how to and ideas” videos.

Most of all have fun and post your finished films on a social media platform, such as Facebook or Instagram.

Tips and gotchas:

Get parents to ensure that the software and videos on YouTube are appropriate and that you are happy for your cub/scout/explorer to view / use them

Resources:

Young people will need “Stop Motion Studio” App or something very similar. “Stop Motion studio” can be found on the app store or Google play.

It is free to download and use with some very cheap upgrades or £4.99 for the complete upgrade package. The upgrade isn’t required for a basic video. 

Sample stop-motion video
Sample stop-motion video

Run by: Andy Timms at 11th Tonbridge Mountbatten Cubs.

Talent Competition

The members create videos of them performing (anything: Songs, playing an instrument, doing magic, telling jokes…) and upload them before the meeting. The meeting is then a talent competition with leaders acting as judges.

Type: Online Challenge & Live ActivityRunning Time: 90 minutes +
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Video Conferencing & OSM Badges at Home

Instructions:

Use OSM’s “Badges at Home” to set up the entertainers badge for all the members to do. The Scouts upload videos of their performances onto the “Badges at Home” portal together with evidence of planning and rehearsal, so completing the requirements of the badge.

The meeting is a video conference where the host shares all the uploaded videos and a vote is taken on the winner.

For added entertainment (and to pad out the evening), have one leader act as a compare, interviewing each performer about their act, then have more leaders on a judging panel giving comments and scores for each act.

Tips and gotchas:

If you have a video wizard, it helps to combine all the videos into one with a pause between each.

When sharing the performances on a video conference, ensure you have enabled “Share computer sound”.

You can engage the audience with an audience vote. We used Zoom’s polling ability for this, but it can only have up to 10 options for a poll and we had 20 performers, so we had a vote at the end of the first half and another after the second. The votes were added to the judges’ scores to get the overall winner.

Run by: Chris Parker at 17th Tonbridge Scouts.

VE Day Badge Quiz

An online badge quiz for VE Day on 8th May.

Type: Online ChallengeRunning Time: 30 minutes
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: None

Instructions:

Send out the link below for Scouts to work their way through the quiz and learn about Scouting during WWII.

Tips and gotchas:

Quiz Title Page
VE Day Badge Quiz

Run by: Stuart Sharp at 6th Tonbridge Scouts.

Who am I? (Version 1)

Scouts try to guess who you are pretending to be within 20 or 30 questions that are answered yes or no.

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 30 minutes
Sections: Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Video Conferencing 

Instructions:

  • Research some age appropriate characters.
  • Invite your members to a video conference call.
  • Get your members to ask yes/no questions.

Tips and gotchas:

  • Get your members to take it in turns to ask questions.
  • Have your search engine open ready to query any obscure questions.
Who Am I? | Psychology Today UK

Run by: Adam Chilton at Central Explorers

Who Am I? (Version 2)

Type: Live activityRunning Time: 20-30 minutes
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Zoom

Instructions:

Participants are shown a series of pictures of people or objects.

For each, they need to guess what they’re seeing.

If they guess after the first clue, they get 8 points, after the second clue, 6 points and so on.

An incorrect guess means that participant is out for that round (so taking a guess is a gamble.)

Run the meeting on zoom with 1 leader sharing the power point presentation and then allocate 3-4 participants each to your other leaders (make them co-hosts). The scouts then send their guesses to their allocated leader via the chat facility who keeps track of the scores giving them a verbal indication if they were right or not.

Tips and gotchas:

Make sure to mute the participants so they don’t get excited and reveal the answer!

Initial Instructions
Example questions

Run by: Stuart Sharp at 6th Tonbridge Scouts.

Would I lie to you?

A Scouting replication of the popular BBC show.

Type: Live ActivityRunning Time: 60 minutes
Sections: Scouts, ExplorersDigital platforms: Video Conferencing 

Instructions:

  • Email Scout’s parents for an interesting or funny fact about their child. This doesn’t need to be embarrassing but obscure facts are good.
  • Meanwhile create some lies to randomly give out.
  • Invite the Scouts to a video conference.
  • Tell them the rules:
    • If the statement is not true their are to try and convince everyone that it is.
    • If it is true, be truthful but obscure as to try and dupe as many people as possible.
    • If you knew the statement to be true before the game, stay quiet about it.
  • The Leader says the name of the person so they can prepare themselves. Then reads out the statement and invites everyone to ask questions to the person about the statement.

Tips and gotchas:

  • Use simple lies to allow for improvisation.
  • Start with your most confident scout or one who has done improvisation before as it can be stressful trying to lie.

Run by: Adam Chilton at Central Explorers

If you have run a great online activity for your section, we’d love to hear about it. Please use this form to send us all the details.

For more activity ideas check out these great resources:


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