Black Star: Natural World
If you are interested in learning about nature, here's a good place to start. The Black Star Activities will introduce you to the natural world and how it works.
World Conservation Badge
Canadian Wilderness Award
To earn the Black Star, choose and do any five of the A requirements and any two of the B requirements:
2. Without harming nature, mount and label a display of natural things, such as leaves, weeds, rocks, or seeds and tell about your collection
3. Grow a plant indoor and describe how it grew
4. Grow a sugar or salt crystal on a string
5. Plant a tree or shrub; describe how trees grow and why they are important to nature
6. Point out or describe some sources of pollution in your neighbourhood and describe possible solutions
7. Make a rain gauge and use it to record rain or snowfall for a month
8. Make and set up a birdbath, birdhouse, or bird feeding station, and look after it for a season
9. Show how to use and take care of common garden tools
10. Using the water cycle, show the route water takes to your home or show how acid rain is formed and how it affects nature
11. Point out the North Star and three constellations
2. Go on a ramble and identify six different kinds of birds, or keep a record of birds using a birdbath or bird feeder for a season. Know which birds are protected in your area
3. Visit one of the following places: conservation area, weather station, fish hatchery, observatory, tree farm, fire ranger tower, farm, greenhouse, park, zoo, forestry station, dam. Learn about how this place helps the environment.
2. Show how to orient and read a seasonal star map. Be able to find five constellations of your choice
3. Learn a story related to a constellation or an aboriginal legend regarding the night sky
4. Know and describe 3 sky features:
b. Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights
2. Prepare, plant, and look after for three months, one of the following:
b. A window box at least 60 cm x 25 cm. in size
c. Two or more perennial
d. A plant terrarium
b. 6 garden vegetables;
c. 4 common weeds;
d. 3 common friends of the garden;
e. 3 common pests of the garden
b. grow a tree seed;
c. start a vegetable from a seed on blotter or paper towelling;
d. grow a plant from seedlings;
e. grow a plant from the tops of turnips, carrots, radishes, parsnips or beets
Do any 6 of the following:
2. With the help of an adult, dye a piece of cloth or T-shirt using plants to make the colour
3. Make a plaster cast or take a picture of an animal track
4. Show at least 3 different ways animals camouflage themselves
5. Show at least 3 different ways that animals survive a Canadian winter
6. Show at least 3 examples of how plants and animals protects themselves from weather or predators
7. Take a hike through an urban community to look for nature
8. Observe any wild animal and report on what you learned from its behaviour
9. Find examples in books or real life and tell how plants and animals attract or repel others using colour and smell
10. Describe or draw some ways animals capture or eat food
Do any 5 of the following:
2. Recognize, point out (from life where possible), and describe some of the habits of 6 birds
3. Recognize and imitate 3 bird calls
4. Recognize and point out from life 6 spring, 6 summer, or 6 autumn wild flowers
5. Recognize, observe and report the habits of 6 insects
6. Recognize and point out from life 6 trees or shrubs and describe some of their uses
7. Recognize and point out 4 features of the night sky such as stars, constellations, planets, etc.
8. Describe the signs for different types of weather
9. Recognize and point out 6 different kinds of rocks or minerals
10. Recognize 4 different animal tracks or animal signs
Do any three in each of the categories:
2. With the help of an adult, check the tire pressure in a car to see if the tires are properly inflated to improve gas consumption
3. Bring your own non-disposable mug and eating utensils to use at camp or bring a garbage-free lunch to school regularly
4. Make a list or draw how you and your family could reduce the amount of electricity used at home
5. Keep a record of 4 different ways that you saved water at your house in a week.
6. Describe what you and your family did to reduce the amount of heat needed to keep your house warm.
7. Choose two items that you or your family bought this week that you could have done without. Commit to not buying those items for the next month.
2. Explain and show new uses for old plastic containers
3. Explain and show new uses for old jars and cans
4. Make a project from old lumber or Christmas trees
5. Describe and show news uses for different kinds of paper, greeting cards, bags and cardboard boxes
6. Repair and donate old toys to somebody
7. With help from an adult, collect old clothes, furniture or books and donate them
8. Make a list of all the things that you didn't need to buy during one week because you reused items you already had. Explain how reusing items reduces the amount of energy needed to make new things.
2. Help publicize a home toxic waste collection day in your community, such as for collecting old paints, garden chemicals, oil, etc.
3. Tell or show your pack 3 products that are made with recycled materials. Explain how using recycled materials helps reduce climate change.
4. Participate in a recycling project such as a bottle or paper drive
5. Visit or learn about a company or industry that is involved in recycling or collecting recyclable materials
6. Make a list of products that display the recycling symbol
7. Using old paper products, make your own recycled paper
8. Help organize or participate in a recycling program
9. Learn which items in your house can be returned when you are done with them (examples include computer parts, batteries, tires, etc.). Identify one item (from this list) you were planning to throw out and with an adult, bring it somewhere to be recycled.
Do any 6 of the following:
b. What kinds of plants live there
c. What the ground or soil is like
d. What the sources of water are for this area. Compare the two habitats and discuss why some plants and animals live in one place and not the other
e. Explain how if the temperature got hotter or colder than usual because of climate change the habitat might change.
3. Visit a habitat and discover what kinds of animal and insect homes are there. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each kind of home you kind.
4. Visit a habitat and look for signs of water. How does water affect where and what kinds of plants and animals live there?
5. Find out what it means to be an endangered species. Choose one endangered species and make a poster or a presentation to your pack on how it has been hurt by lack of food, what, shelter, space, or other causes. What can people do to help this endangered species survive?
6. Do a project that improves food, water, shelter, or space for wildlife. Some ideas are:
b. clean up a stream or creek
c. plant trees or shrubs that have fruit for animals to eat
d. remove trash or stop erosion so more; plants and animals can use the area
8. Write some rules for good behaviour while in the outdoors and share these with you six or pack.
9. Explain how climate change affects the natural environment and take one action, such as using a bike instead of a car, using less electricity at home, or recycling, that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions which cause climate change.
2. Earn the World Conservation Badge
3. Earn one other Natural World (Black Star) related badge (Astronomer, Gardener, Naturalist, Observer, Recycling)
4. Learn about and, if possible, visit a Provincial or National Park or Wilderness Area. Create a report or display that highlights the reasons why the park is there and some problems facing the park
5. Participate in a conservation project which improves a local park, sanctuary, refuge, or other wilderness area
6. Help show other Cubs some aspect of nature study of your choice
Our sincere thanks, to Akela at the 1st Whitby Wolf Cub group, who clearly learned the motto from Beavers, and freely provided us with all of these well put-together electronic excerpts from the Cub Handbook!