For the Geologist Activity Badge, the Scout needs to complete 5 out of 10 requirements, all of their own choice. To see all the requirements, click here for the list on Boy Scout Trail.
These were our choices as they made the most sense for the time of year and things that were available in Colorado Springs:
7. Describe what a fossil is. How is it used to tell how old a formation is? Find two examples of fossils in your area.
The Dinosaur Resource Center in Woodland Park offers a Scout Day each year. Woodland Park is about 40 minutes or so from our house and about 15 minutes from my work, so this was an easy activity to complete. Ben actually attended it with several other Scouts in his troop.
Activity days for Scouts at museums and similar places are usually really well done and meet requirements for badges and belt loops. We've done all sorts of fun ones. Many local museums or science centers have fossil and dinosaur exhibits.
5. Make a drawing that shows the cause of a volcano, a geyser, or an earthquake.
As homeschoolers, I knew we needed to do a little more on this one, so I headed over to Enchanted Learning to check out their printable options.
We used the main page on volcanos for facts about the topic, then used our subscription for some of the printable activities. Ben chose the "Label a Volcano" to add to his geology notebook. We had also built pretend volcanos for our Blue & Gold banquet, so we were able to add that to our list too.
6. Explain one way in which mountains are formed.
Again, we're homeschoolers! And this was a combination of Webelos and science class. Explaining one way seemed a little minimalistic. Instead, we looked up how mountains are formed online and in Ben's Webelos handbook. He decided to make a poster showing the three main types of mountains from his book.
A few of the mountain links we used:
A piece of advice to those who might have perfectionist children? Posters with information glued on top!!!! Ben did each mountain on printer paper first, then we glued it to the construction paper. If he made a mistake, it was easy to erase or, in the very worst case scenario, he could have started a new one on the smaller piece of paper.
4. List some of the geologic materials used in building your home.
I googled the phrase "geologic materials used in building your home" to see what we could find. Near the top of the search results, I saw an awesome diagram of a house with numbered areas:
That took us to a great site from the Illinois State Geological Society that explain all the different minerals used in each part of your house! That's what those numbers represent.
Since this was a personal project for just Ben and for us to keep in our homeschool notes after sharing at Scouts, I enlarged the graphic and printed him a single copy so he could label it with all the different materials. We talked about each area and guessed what might be used, along with reading to check on our answers.
8. Take a field trip to a geological site, geological laboratory, or rock show. Discuss what you learned at your next Webelos den meeting.
We wanted another outdoor activity and Colorado Springs has lots of great nature outings. We chose to head over to the Florissant Fossil Beds to hike and check out the fossils. Once again, it is less than an hour from our house and we really love the area!
The visitor center has samples of fossils, rocks, and minerals to check out and the park itself is an easy walk. There are even fossilized Sequoia tree stumps within the park.