Skip to main content

Volunteering at Scouts is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing at Scouts. Read more

Discover what this means

Traditions and phrases

Traditions and phrases

Historically, 8 to 10 year olds within the Scouts were known as ‘Wolf Cubs’. Although this term is no longer used, its influence can still be felt, with many of the everyday words and phrases Cubs still use today originating from old traditions.

For example, Cub groups are called ‘Packs’ and Cub leaders are traditionally called Akela after the wise leader of the wolf pack in Rudyard Kipling’s novel, The Jungle Book. If you want to embrace this tradition in your own group, you and your leadership team could choose to go by Jungle Book themed nicknames. Common examples include Baloo, Kaa and Bagheera. Or, if you’d rather use your real names, that’s fine, too.

Cub ceremonies

Most Cub packs have an opening and closing ceremony – something that they do at the beginning and end of every meeting to kick things off and wind them down.  Some Cub packs use a traditional greeting called the ‘Grand Howl’ to do this. Others create something new.  

Making the Promise

As well as enjoying plenty of adventures, being a Cub is about going on a journey to understand who you are and what you stand for. When they join the Pack, your Cubs will explore these ideas by making the Cub Scout promise. 

The promise reflects the fact that there are some things all Cubs agree on – such as the importance of treating everyone in the Pack with kindness, and doing their best to care for the community and wider world in which they live.

Cubs make their promise to do their best to make a positive contribution to society and stick by their values.

There are a number of versions of the promise to choose from. It’s your job to chat through all of them, helping your Cub to pick the one they feel is most appropriate for them. 

Making the promise is a big celebration within the Pack. Every time a new Cub decides to join permanently, they chat through their promise before making it. Usually, they do this by saying their promise out loud in front of their fellow Cubs. Family and friends might come along to see this, too. The process is known as being ‘invested’ into Cubs, and it usually takes place a few weeks into their Cub experience, once they’ve had time to settle in.