The Scout Library, No. 4

Scouting Games

by Sir Robert S. S. Baden-Powell

Author of "Scouting for Boys," "Yarns for Boy Scouts,"
"Boy Scouts Beyond the Seas," etc.

Sixth Edition



Table of Contents

CHAPTER II -- STALKING GAMES.

1. DEER-STALKING.

The Scoutmaster acts as a deer, not hiding but standing, and moving occasionally now and then. The Scouts go out to find the deer, and each tries in his own way to get up to it unseen. Directly the Scoutmaster sees a Scout he directs him to stand up as having failed. After a certain time the Scoutmaster calls "Time," and all stand up at the spot which they have reached, and the nearest wins. The same game may be played to test the Scouts in stepping lightly. The umpire being blindfolded. The practice should preferably be carried out where there are dry twigs, stones, gravel and so on lying about. The Scout may start to stalk the blind enemy at one hundred yards distance, and he must do it fairly fast-say in one minute and a half to touch the blind man before he hears him.

2. STALKING AND REPORTING.

The umpire places himself out in the open and sends each Scout or pair of Scouts away in different directions about half a mile off. When he waves a flag, which is the signal to begin, they all hide, and then proceed to stalk him, creeping up and watching all he does. When he waves the flag again, they rise, come in, and report each in turn all that he did, either in writing or verbally, as may be ordered. The umpire meantime has kept a look-out in each direction, and every time he sees a Scout, he takes two points off that Scout's score. He, on his part, performs small actions, such as sitting down, kneeling up, and looking through glasses, using handkerchief, taking hat off for a bit, walking round in a circle a few times, to give Scouts something to note and report about him. Scouts are given three points for each act reported correctly. It saves time if the umpire makes out a scoring card beforehand, giving the name of each Scout, and a number of columns showing each act of his, and what mark that Scout wins, also a column of deducted marks for exposing themselves.

3. SCOUT HUNTING.

One Scout is given time to go out and hide himself. The remainder then start to find him. The object of the hidden Scout is to got back to the starting-place as soon as he can without being caught. The seekers advance from the starting-place in a circle, gradually expanding outward so the further the Scout goes from home to hide himself, the further apart the seekers will be when they reach his hiding-place, but he will then have a longer distance to go to reach home again.

4. SHADOWING

A Patrol is told off to shadow a party of the enemy, who are advancing through the country (consisting of another patrol or the rest of the troop). The patrol told off to shadow the rest must follow on as closely as possible, but it is best to send on one or two Scouts ahead, to signal when it is safe to advance. As soon as the enemy see a Scout shadowing them they can give chase, and if they overtake him he is a prisoner, and has to march with the main body. They can also split up into two parties and join again further on, or leave some behind in ambush. It is only necessary to touch the shadowers to make them prisoners. If they cannot throw them off their tracks within a certain distance (two miles or so), or else capture more than half of them, they must own themselves defeated; and then another patrol takes the place of the shadowers. (This can be practiced along a route march-it has the advantage of always covering fresh ground in the advance.)

5. AMBUSHING.

The main body advances along a road, with Scouts thrown out on either side to prevent any danger of surprise. Two patrols (the enemy) are following them behind, and attempt to ambush them by one patrol getting in front and the other attacking in the rear. They shadow the main body as it advances until a suitable part of the country is reached, when one patrol attempts to get ahead by going round in a semi-circle and joining the road again further on. If they can do it, they hide in an ambush and attack the main body when it comes up; the other patrol which has been following behind should then immediately attack in the rear. For it to be a successful ambush the patrol in the rear should be able to attack immediately the ambush is reached, and so should follow closely behind. If the patrol making the semi-circle are seen, they should be followed and the ambush discovered; both they and the other patrol behind can be captured, just as in 11 Shadowing," by merely being touched.

6. MIMIC BATTLE.

For this game two sides are needed, the numbers being settled among the players.

The ammunition is a quantity of paper bars. Every Scout has a plate, and the parties take up positions within throwing distance of each other. If the ground isn't flat, toss up for the advantage of the slope. Each Scout lies flat on his stomach, and just in front of him props up his plate by sticking the rim into the ground. At the word "go " each warrior aims a ball at an opponent's plate. When a plate is knocked down, the Scout to whom it belongs is " put out of action." The side which succeeds in " killing " most opponents in a given time wins.

CHAPTER. III -- TRACKING GAMES.

1. SEEKING THE SCOUTMASTER.

The Patrol-leaders of a troop are each handed a sealed envelope, and being told that the envelopes are important, are put upon their honor not to open them before a certain time. This waiting makes the game more exciting. When the moment for opening the envelopes arrives, they find inside a rough outline map of some particular district, and instructions stating that :-All are to meet at a certain point, the patrols will form themselves, and each patrol, proceeding by its special route, will make for the place depicted in the map where the Scoutmaster will be hiding,. Naturally, the boundaries of the place must not be too confined, or the Scoutmaster's discovery will quickly take place. A reward is offered to the patrol which first finds their Scoutmaster, so each patrol should work together, searching the ground carefully in extended order. If the Scoutmaster is still concealed at the expiration of half an hour, or some agreed upon time-after the troops' arrival at the spot, he blows a whistle and the game is at an end. Then the troop could go on with other Scouting work. The spot selected should contain undergrowth in plenty and should be physically suited for concealment. In the envelope of each Patrol-leader would be placed a paper showing the route his men must follow to reach the spot, and these routes should be equal in length, otherwise one patrol will have an advantage over another. This is done so that the patrols shall feel they are working on their own. The sealed orders would teach the Scouts to restrain their curiosity. This game can be played after dark if necessary,

2. THE TREASURE HUNT.

The treasure hunt needs observation and skill in tracking, and practically any number can take part in it, Several ways of playing the game are given below :

1) The treasure is hidden and the Scouts know what the treasure is; they are given the first clue, and from this all the others can be traced. Such clues might be -

a) Written on a gatepost: " Go west and examine third gate on north side of stream ";

b) on that gate Scout's signs pointing to a notice-board on which is written: " Strike south by south-east to telegraph post No. 22,"

and so on. The clues should be so worded as to need some skill to understand, and the various points should be difficult of access from one another. This method might be used as a patrol-competition, starting off patrols at ten minutes intervals, and at one particular clue there might be different orders for each patrol, to prevent the patrols behind following the first.

2) The clues may be bit, of Colored wool tied to gates, hedges, etc., at about three yards interval, leading in a certain direction, and when these clues come to the end it should be known that the treasure is hidden within so many feet. To prevent this degenerating into a mere game of follow-my-leader, several tracks might be laid working up to the same point, and false tracks could be laid, which only lead back again to the original track.

3) Each competitor or party might be given a description of the way-each perhaps going a slightly different way, the description should make it necessary to go to each spot in turn, and prevent any "cutting" in the following way: " Go to the tallest tree in a certain field, from there go 100 yards north, then walk straight towards a church tower which will be on your left," etc. All the descriptions should lead by an equal journey to a certain spot where the treasure is hidden. The first to arrive at that spot should not let the others know it is the spot, but should search for the treasure in as casual a manner as possible.

3. THE TORN MANUSCRIPT.

A secret hiding, place is known to exist somewhere in the neighborhood, but the only clue to it is a torn piece of paper upon which the key to it was once written. (A description of the way to the spot could be written on a piece of paper, and then the paper torn down the middle roughly, and half given to each of two competing patrols.) The key was torn in two purposely for safety, just as in a bank the two chief clerks each have a key, but it needs both keys together to open the safe. Two parties have got hold of this; key, and each with their half are trying to find the spot, because some old smugglers' treasure is thought to be hidden there.

4. LION-HUNTING.

A lion is represented by one Scout, who goes out with tracking irons on his feet, and a pocketful of corn or peas, and six lawn-tennis bars or rag balls. He is allowed half an hour's start, and then the patrol go after him, following his spoor, each armed with one tennis-ball with which to shoot him when they find him. The lion may hide or creep about or run, just as he feels inclined, but whenever the ground is hard or very greasy he must drop a few grains of corn every few yards to show the trail. If the hunters fail to come up to him neither wins the game. When they come near to the lair the lion fires at them with his tennis-balls, and the moment a hunter is hit he must fall out dead and cannot throw his tennis- ball. If the lion gets hit by a hunter's tennis-bah he is wounded, and if he gets wounded three times he is killed. Tennis-balls may only be fired once; they cannot be picked up and fired again in the same fight. Each Scout must collect and hand in his tennis-balls after the game. In winter, if there is snow, this game can be played without tracking irons, and using snowball instead of tennis-balls.

5. WOOL COLLECTING.

Cut up some skeins of wool into pieces about a foot long - the cheapest kind will do, but do not select very bright colors. With this lay the trail across country. It goes without saying that the permission of the farmers over whose land you travel is first obtained, and patrols are given strict orders to shut all gates after them, and not to break through fences. Do not put all the wool on the ground, but tie some of the pieces to gates and hedges, on low branches of trees, and so on, leaving about twenty yards between each piece. Then two or more patrols are started on the trail, the idea being to follow the trail as expeditiously as possible, and at the same time to collect all the pieces of wool. When a Scout sees a piece he gives his patrol-call loudly in order that the rest of the boys of both patrols may know where the trail was last sighted, and he at once hands over the wool he has found to his Patrol- leader. While the scouting is in progress no boy may give his patrol-car except when he has hit off the trail. The patrol wins whose leader has at the end of the run collected most pieces of wool. Marks will also be given for ingenuity displayed by the Scouts in spreading out and making the best use of their numbers. This game gives a good opportunity for the Scoutmaster to notice who are the best individual trackers. If the trail is ingeniously laid the resourcefulness of the Scouts will be put to a severe test. This form of scouting has one great advantage over the use of tracking irons. The signs to be found are not all on the ground, so Scouts learn to look upward for signs and not keep their noses always on the ground.

6. "SHARP-NOSE."

One Scout goes off with half a raw onion. 'He lays a "scent " by rubbing, the onion on gateposts, stones, tree trunks, telegraph poles, etc. The troop follow this trail blindfolded - the Scoutmaster, however, is not blindfolded, so that he may warn his boys of any danger (as when crossing roads). The Scout or patrol which arrives at the end of the trail first wins the game. The boy who lays the " scent " stays at the end of the trail till the first " scenter " arrives.

7. CLIMBING.

No fellow can justly call himself a Scout until he can both swim and climb. Climbing is as good an activity as any in this book. It supplies a field of adventure and sport that cannot be beaten whether you take to rock climbing, tree climbing, mountain climbing, or even the most dangerous of the lot - house climbing. Moreover, it is by being able to climb that many Scouts have been able to save life or prevent accidents. But climbing of any kind is not a thing that every fellow can do right off without practice, so my advice to every Cub and Scout is to teach it to yourself. One of the first things to learn is to be able to keep your balance, and for this the practice of "Walking the Plank" and "Stepping Stones" has been devised and is most valuable. Walking the Plank is practiced on an ordinary plank set up on edge, and you walk along it from end to end. Every day you raise it a few more inches above the ground until you can use it as a bridge. Stepping Stones are imaginary stones across a river, marked out on the floor by chalk circles, pieces of card- board or flat stones, tiles, etc. in a zigzag course at varying distances.

The difficulty and sport of this game is added by carrying a flat board with a ball upon it, and he who crosses the " river " without missing his footing and without dropping the ball wins the competition.

Some fellows get jolly good at these games with practice, and once they have gained a good balance in this way they generally make good climbers. Many troops have now set up for themselves a climbing apparatus on which you can practice exercises that will make you good for almost every kind of work, whether it is climbing trees or masts or rocks or mountains or chimney stacks. This apparatus is made of a few timbers or scaffolding poles, securely lashed together with climbing ropes suspended from the top bar, and on such an apparatus you can invent all manner of stunts and competitions, such as will make you an adept climber.

CHAPTER IV -- INDOOR GAMES.

1. KIM'S GAME. HOW TO PLAY IT.

THE Scoutmaster should collect on a tray a number of articles-knives, spoons, pencil, pen, stones, book and so on-not more than about fifteen for the first few games, and cover the whole over with a cloth. He then makes the others sit round, where they can see the tray, and uncovers it for one minute. Then each of them must make a list on a piece of paper of all the articles lie can remember-or the Scoutmaster can make a list of the things, with a column of names opposite the list, and lot the boys come in turn and whisper to him, and he must mark off each of the things they remember. The one who remembers most wins the game.

2. DEBATES AND TRIALS.

A good way of spending an evening in the camp or clubroom is to hold a debate on any subject of interest, the Scoutmaster or a Patrol-leader acting as chairman. He must see that there is a. speaker on one side prepared beforehand to introduce and support one view of the subject, and that there is another speaker prepared to expound another view. After their speeches he will call on the others present in turn to express their views. And in the end he takes the votes for and against the motion, by show of hands, first of those in favor of the motion, secondly of those against. The best way to choose a popular subject for debate is to put up a paper some time before on which Scouts can suggest the subjects they like. The proper procedure for public meetings should be used, such as seconding the motion, moving amendments, obeying chairman's ruling, voting, according votes of thanks to chair and so on.

In place of a debate a mock trial makes an interesting change. The Scoutmaster or Patrol-leader, as before, appoints himself to act as judge, and details Scouts to take the parts of prisoner, police-constable, witnesses, counsel for prisoner, counsel for prosecution, foreman and jury (if there are enough Scouts). The procedure of a court of law must be followed as nearly as possible. Each makes up his own evidence, speeches, or cross-examination according to his own ideas. The prisoner, of course, is not found guilty unless the prosecution prove their case to the jury. The story in Scouting for Boys (" Winter's Stab") makes a good subject for a trial, or one of the stories in The Scout.

3. SCOUT'S CHESS.

The first thing needed is a rough map or plan of the surrounding country, on a very large scale. It can be chalked on the floor or a table in the clubroom, or on the wall, and be kept permanently. On the map should be marked all paths and roads, and if in the country, the fields, with the gaps in the hedges and places to get through carefully marked. Then something is needed to represent Scouts'; ordinary chessmen will do, or if the map is on the wall, small flags to stick in the wall. With these, various kinds of Scouting games can be played. Each " Scout " can move one inch (or other distance according to the scale of the map) each turn. The best game is for one dispatch runner to try and get from one place to another on the map without being overtaken by the enemy, one patrol, who should only be allowed to walk (i.e. go half the distance which the runners allowed to go each turn). To capture him two Scouts should get within two turns of him, by driving him into a comer. They can, of course, only go along the recognized paths and tracks,

4. FARMYARD.

This Is not a new game, but it is both amusing and instructive, and teaches Scouts to make the correct cries of different domestic animals. It can be played round the camp fire when the day is done. The Scoutmaster relates a story of a visit to a farmyard, having first divided the Scouts into groups of different farmyard animals. (If sufficient animals can be thought of, each Scout can represent one animal.) A good story can be made from these few suggestions : Small, spoilt boy, not a Scout, just recovering from an illness, is sent by doting, foolish parents to stay with an uncle and aunt at a farmhouse. Makes his departure by train, and directions from over-careful parents rather absurd, and not the kind of thing a Scout would allow. First day of visit most successful, Tommy still feeling too weak to be mischievous. On the second morning, however, Tommy wakes early and goes out before his aunt is about. He visits in turn all the animals in the yard and causes disaster wherever he goes. Pigs, he considers, should be allowed to run in the garden, hens and ducks wherever they please, and small chicks should be able to swim as well as small ducks, and he drives a brood into the pond, all being, drowned; horses are let out of the stable, sheep driven out of the orchard, cows turned into the road, doves freed from cages, turkeys and geese sent in all directions, and the whole farmyard turned upside down.

As the narrator mentions each animal, the Scouts representing them make the correct "cry," and this should be done seriously and as well as possible; at the word "farmyard," whenever it occurs, all the Scouts make these cries together, and if done well, this should be quite realistic. The part of donkey and goose should be reserved as a punishment for any who fail to make their " cry " at the proper time, or who make the wrong "cry."

5. THIMBLE FINDING.

The patrol goes out of the room, leaving one behind who takes a thimble, ring, coin, bit of paper, or any small article, and places it where it is perfectly visible, but in a spot where it is not likely to be noticed. Then the patrol comes in and looks for it. When one of them sees it he should go and quietly sit down without indicating to the others where it is, and the others, if they see it, do the same. After a fair time any one of those sitting down is told to point out the article to those who have not yet found it. The first one to see it is the winner, and he sends the others out again while he hides the thimble.

6. SCOUT'S NOSE.

Prepare a number of paper-bags, all alike, and put in each a different smelling article, such as chopped onion in one, coffee in another, rose-leaves, leather, aniseed, violet powder, orange peel and so on. Put these packets in a row a couple of feet apart, and let each competitor walk down the line and have five seconds' sniff at each. At the end he has one minute in which to write down or to state to the umpire the names of the different objects smelled, from memory, in their correct order.

7. SPOTTING THE SPOT.

Show a series of photos or sketches of objects in the neighborhood such as would be known to all the Scouts if they kept their eyes open-for instance, cross-roads, curious window, gargoyle or weathercock, tree, reflection in the water (guess the building causing it), and so on, and see who can recognize the greatest number; or else let each Scout contribute a picture or sketch of something remarkable passed during the last outing.

8. HOW LONG ?

A good camp practice is to see that all Scouts have a piece of paper and pencil, and to make them write down answers to various questions regarding lengths and heights. For instance: " What is my height when I'm wearing my hat ? " " How long is the camp table ? " Of course that boy wins who most nearly gives the correct number of inches.

9. OLD SPOTTY-FACE.

[This is an adaptation of the game in Mr. E. Thompson Seton's Birch Bark Roll of the Woodcraft Indians,(Published at 1s. net by A. Constable & Co.) and is recommended for regular practice as an eye strengthener and for developing the sight.]

Prepare squares of cardboard divided into about a dozen small squares. Each Scout should take one, and should have a pencil and go off a few hundred yards, or, if indoors, as far as space will allow. The umpire then takes a large sheet of cardboard, with twelve squares ruled on it of about three-inch sides if in the open, or one and a half to two inches if indoors. The umpire has a number of black paper discs, half an Inch in diameter, and pin.3 ready, and sticks about half a dozen on to his card, dotted about where he likes. He holds up his card so that it can be seen by the Scouts. They then gradually approach, and as they get within sight they mark their cards with the same pattern of spots. The one who does so at the farthest distance from the umpire wins. Give five points for every spot correctly shown, deduct one point for every two inches nearer than the furthest man. This teaches long sight.

10. QUICK SIGHT.

"Quick Sight" can be taught with the same apparatus as used in Spotty-Face, by allowing the Scouts to come fairly close, and then merely showing your card for five seconds, and allowing them to mark their cards from memory. The one who is most correct wins.

11. NOBODY'S AIRSHIP.

The players divide into two sides (four or five a side is best); between them a string or tape is fastened across the room about the height of their faces; then a small air-balloon is thrown in, and each side tries to make it touch the ground on the other side of the tape. It must be hit over the tape, and in hitting it, hands must not go over the tape.

12. BLOW BALL.

The players divide into two sides and take their positions at each end of a wooden table about 6 feet long. A ping-pong ball (or any light celluloid ball) is placed in the center, and each side tries to blow it off the table at the other end-if it goes off the sides it does not count, but is put back in the center again. The game soon develops strong lungs, but needs composure just as much-because the best player is the one who can blow without laughing at the faces of those opposite him as they blow. It is best to play kneeling or sitting round the table. A more complicated way for five players a side is to have a goal at each end marked on the table ; then each side has a goalkeeper, two forwards, stationed at the other end to blow into the enemy's goal, and two backs to pass the ball to their forwards.

13. ARTISTS.

Players sit round a table, each with paper and pencil. The right-hand one draws a picture, in separate firm strokes, of an ordinary figure or head-putting in his strokes in unusual sequence so that for a long time it is difficult to see what he is drawing. Each player looks over to see what the man on his right is drawing and copies it stroke by stroke. When the right-hand artist has finished his picture, compare all the rest with it.

14. A MEMORY GAME.

In order to play this game successfully, it is necessary that the list of words and sentences given below be memorized by one of the players, who acts as leader. This leader, turning to his next neighbor, remarks: "One old owl." The latter turns to his neighbor, and gives the same formula. So it passes around the circle till it comes to the leader again, who repeats it, and adds the formula: "Two tantalizing, tame toads." again it goes around, and again, and each time the leader adds a new formula, until the whole is repeated, up to ten. It is safe to say, however, that no society will ever get that far. Those who forget part of the formula are dropped from the circle. Here is the whole:

One old owl.
Two tantalizing, tame toads.
Three tremulous, tremendous, terrible tadpoles.
Four fat, fussy, frivolous, fantastic fellows.
Five flaming, flapping, flamingoes fishing for frogs.
Six silver-tongued, saturnine senators standing strenuously shouting: " So-so."
Seven serene seraphs soaring swiftly sunward, singing: " Say, sisters."
Eight elderly, energetic, effusive, erudite, enterprising editors eagerly eating elderberries.
Nine nice, neat, notable, neighborly, nautical, nodding nabobs nearing northern Normandy.
Ten tall, tattered, tearful, turbulent tramps, talking tumultuously through tin trumpets.

15. QUESTIONS.

The Scouts all sit down, either on the floor or on forms, and the Scoutmaster or Patrol-leader asks each boy in turn various questions on subjects of general knowledge. A mark is given for each correct answer, and the boy who gains the most marks naturally win the game. The questions would vary, of course, according to locality, but here are some which one troop were asked. What does K.C.B. mean? On what railway is Peterborough Station ? How would you get from London to Torquay ? What is the test for the Fireman's Badge ? When is the Chief Scout's birthday ? When is Trafalgar Day ? Why does a Scout wear the fleur-de-lis ? Where are the Headquarters of the Boy Scouts' Association ? What was last week's cover of THE SCOUT ? Next time you want something to do at your clubroom, try this game. Not only will it test your knowledge, it will also increase your stock of useful and interesting information.

16. WHO SAID THAT ?

This is a memory test, and is well worth trying in your clubroom. Throughout the evening, and unknown to the others, one Scout should, in a handy notebook, jot down some twenty of the most striking remarks made in the general conversation. Towards the end of the evening he then slips away, and on each of twenty sheets of paper, put a-side for the purpose, he writes one of the " sayings " in a bold hand. Blue or black crayon should be used for this, so that each sentence may be clearly seen when the sheets &e fastened up. The sheets are numbered, pinned up together, and turned over one by one-a sufficient time being allowed for competitors to write on slips of paper "Who Said That ?"

17. CELEBRITIES.

A good game can be devised by cutting, from the papers a selection of portraits of celebrities, pasting each portrait on a numbered card and inviting the company to name them; soldiers, monarchs, statesmen, preachers, and athletes will be the most readily recognized.

18. PATTERNS.

For this game get two draught boards and tan white and ten black draughtsmen. You have one board and your friend the other. Divide the draughtsmen equally, each having five white and five black. Then while you look another way, your friend arranges his men on his board in any formation he likes. When he has done this he allows you to look at his board for a few seconds; then he covers it over and you have to arrange your men in the same way on your board, within two minutes. You take it in turn to place the men in position, and whoever replaces them correctly the most times wins.

19. ROUND THE RING.

This is a good game for the fun it gives and for developing the wrists and arms. About one dozen players sit down in a ring with their feet pointing inward. The feet make a circle just big enough for another player to stand in. The player inside the circle stands perfectly rigid, and as soon as the other players are ready lets himself fall, either backwards or forwards, on to the outstretched hands of the players forming, the ring. The members of the ring push the center player from hand to hand, and when one of the former lets him fall he changes places with the center player, and in his turn is passed round the circle.

20. BADGER PULLING.

Here is a good game, called Badger Pulling, which you can play either in your clubroom or outdoors. Two boys take part, and two or more scarves are knotted together and hung over the players' heads. A line should be drawn between the two players, and the idea of the game is for each to try to pull the other over this line, using heads, hands and knees alone. There should be no catching hold of the handkerchiefs or the -arms and hands, otherwise the fun will be lost.

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