Life Skills for Kids: What Scouting Teaches Youth

What Scouting Teaches Youth

As a parent, you want your child to grow up and thrive as an adult. Character development for kids is vital to their success as adults. But how do you instill good character and teach them life skills? 

One way to ensure your child is equipped with life skills for kids is to join Scouting. BSA troops teach children valuable life skills that will serve them well into adulthood. It is the BSA’s mission to help youth develop academic skills, self-confidence, ethics, leadership skills, and citizenship skills that influence their adult lives. Read on to learn about how Scouting encourages character-building and teaches life skills to kids.

Top 10 Essential Life Skills for Kids That Scouts Will Learn 

In Scouting, there are many essential skills that youth will learn through various activities and experiences with their troop. Here are the top 10 life skills for kids that they will begin learning throughout their time with BSA.


Scouting places a strong emphasis on leadership development in daily life. Through opportunities like holding leadership roles within their troop, leading group activities, and planning events, Scouts learn how to lead by example, make decisions, and effectively communicate with others. These skills are invaluable in adulthood, whether in the workplace or community.


Scouting encourages children to work together as a team to achieve common goals. Activities such as camping trips, service projects, and games teach Scouts how to collaborate, share responsibilities, and resolve conflicts, skills that are vital in both personal and professional relationships.

Communication Skills

Effective communication is a cornerstone of success in life. Scouts learn how to express themselves clearly, listen actively to others, and communicate effectively through activities like public speaking, writing, and interacting with diverse groups of people. Social skills like communication are important for any age group.


Scouting often presents challenges and obstacles that require creative problem-solving. Whether it’s navigating a trail, performing basic first aid, building a shelter, or planning a campfire program, Scouts develop critical thinking and problem-solving skills that can be applied to various real-life situations.

Resilience and Adaptability

Scouts are exposed to various outdoor adventures, from hiking to camping, which teach them to adapt to changing conditions and persevere through adversity. These experiences teach children resilience and the ability to thrive in the face of challenges.


Scouting encourages self-sufficiency by teaching kids practical skills such as cooking, first aid, and navigation. These skills instill a sense of self-reliance and independence that can be applied in everyday life.

Respect and Integrity

Scouts are taught to respect themselves and others, regardless of differences. They also learn the importance of honesty and integrity, which are essential character traits in all aspects of life.

Service and Citizenship

Scouting promotes a sense of civic responsibility and community service. Scouts often engage in volunteer activities and learn about the importance of giving back to their community, fostering a sense of empathy and social responsibility.

Time Management

Balancing school, extracurricular activities, and Scouting responsibilities teaches kids the importance of time management and self-discipline skills that will serve them well as they juggle various commitments in adulthood.

Environmental Stewardship

Scouting encourages an appreciation for nature and environmental conservation. Scouts learn to care for the environment and understand their role in preserving it for future generations.

These are only scratching the surface of what positive traits Scouts can teach your child. Youth in the Scouting program grow academically, spiritually, and mentally through their unique experiences. 

How Scouting Encourages Character Development for Kids

Scouting not only teaches children the most important life skills, but it also accomplishes character-building for kids through its unique program and principles, including:

The Scout Oath and Law

Scouts recite the Scout Oath and Law, which embody values such as trustworthiness, loyalty, helpfulness, and kindness. These principles serve as a moral compass for Scouts and guide their actions starting at an early age.

Merit Badge System

Scouts have the opportunity to earn merit badges in a wide range of subjects, from camping and cooking to entrepreneurship and citizenship. This badge system encourages them to explore their interests, gain knowledge, and develop new skills. The merit badge system also assists in building character at a young age.

Outdoor Adventures

Scouting often involves outdoor adventures, which promote physical fitness, teamwork, and an appreciation for the natural world. Scouting provides unique character-building activities like camping, hiking, and other outdoor activities. Scouts with Great Rivers Council can even attend BSA summer camp at Camp Hohn in the Ozarks!

Adult Mentoring

Scouts are mentored by adult leaders who model good character and provide guidance and support as youth navigate challenges and make decisions. Activities are completed with adult supervision to ensure the development of children’s character.

Scouting offers an enriching environment for character development and life skills acquisition for kids. By participating in Scouts, children not only learn valuable skills but also develop the qualities and values that will help them become responsible, confident, and ethical adults. So, if you’re a parent looking to invest in your child’s future, consider enrolling them in Scouting and watch them grow into well-rounded individuals ready to tackle the challenges of adulthood with confidence and integrity.

Join Scouting Today

The Great Rivers Council is headquartered in Columbia, Missouri, and serves youth and adult volunteers in the surrounding areas. The Great Rivers Council organizes and facilitates various Scouting programs, including Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Venturing, and Exploring.

Sign up to join Scouts today and help your child succeed in learning life skills and building character!