Participation stories are a great way to get the boys involved and teach them to protect our environment.
Assign each boy or a small group one of the characters (i.e. sparrow, snake, etc.). Give each group a chance to practice their noise. During the story, each time they hear their assigned character, they all say it. When you read the story, emphasize the character in the story to catch the group's attention. Pause and let them say their part and then continue with the story. (This story was found at MacScouter PowWow Books, April 1999, p. 12.)
CUB SCOUTS IN THE WOODS
Sparrow(s): “Chirp, chirp”
Squirrel: “Chatter, chatter”
Rabbit: “Hippity, hoppity”
Tree(s): Stand up and sway
Cub Scout(s): “Do your best”
A flock of SPARROWS swooped into the woods and settled on the branch of a TREE. Their chirping quickly caught the attention of the animals in the forest. The RABBIT and the SQUIRREL came close to listen to the news. The SNAKE pretended he didn’t care. “It’s terrible news!” said one of the SPARROWS. “That pack of CUB SCOUTS is coming to spend the day again.” “Oh, no!” sighed the TREES. “Last time they came we lost branches and leaves. Two of them built a fire so close to us the oak TREE almost caught fire.”
The RABBIT’s ears had positively frozen in place when he heard the words CUB SCOUTS. “I had to run for my life. They chased me until I was about to pass out.” The SQUIRREL almost fell off the branch he was sitting on and the SNAKE forgot that he was pretending not to hear. “CUB SCOUTS,” the SNAKE hissed. “Why do they have to come here! Last time, they caught me and tried to put me in a bag to take me home with them. I barely escaped with my life.”
“They are coming tomorrow,” chirped the SPARROWS. “Tomorrow,” sputtered the SQUIRREL. “I’ve got to gather acorns before they come and take them all.” The RABBIT hopped off muttering about how he could reinforce his home. The SNAKE just lay there trying to think of hiding places.
The next day dawned clear and pretty, and the CUB SCOUTS, their parents and their leaders arrived. The TREES rustled, the RABBIT trembled, the SNAKE hid, and the SQUIRREL jumped to the highest branch and stayed there as quiet as he could. Then they all saw an amazing thing.
The CUB SCOUTS started picking up all the trash and putting it in big plastic bags. Some of the boys saw the SQUIRREL. They pointed at him and told the others what he ate. Some of the CUB SCOUTS gathered a pile of acorns and left it under the TREE. The SNAKE was hiding beside his favorite log. He looked pretty much like one of the old branches, but one of the sharp-eyed CUB SCOUTS spotted him. They came close to him quietly, looked at him and talked in a whisper. They did not try to catch him. The SNAKE couldn’t believe it. Some of the CUB SCOUTS tried to break a branch off a TREE but other boys told them that it was not a good idea.
That evening the SPARROWS returned to see how the day had gone. They couldn’t believe how clean the forest looked with all the trash gone. The RABBIT told them, “The CUB SCOUTS picked up all the trash.” The TREES and animals were glad the CUB SCOUTS had come