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Boy Scouts Of America To Offer Animation Merit Badge

Wherever you grew up, there's a good chance that you were a member of the Scouts or Guides, and spent many of your formative years working to gain as many badges as possible. If so, prepare to be jealous of today's members of the Boy Scouts of America, as the organisation is now offering youngsters the chance to earn a merit badge in animation.

The 136th badge to be offered, the new programme is to be offered to all enrolled Scouts between the ages of 11 and 18 as of this month. Animation has been identified as an area of interest for many young people and the new badge will allow them to learn all about the history and production of the artform. The programme has been developed with the help of  Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) and animation industry professionals. It will allow Scouts to get to meet people involved in the industry and have the opportunity to take part in Studio tours- both virtual and in-person. This will also be the first badge to be offered both in print form and digitally.

The opportunity for the kids to produce their own animation is easily the biggest selling point of this new scheme. If you've got kids or young relatives of the right age (or if indeed you're one of younger readers) this looks like a very exciting opportunity. Not only will it give interested parties a real insight into what goes into making the animation they love- but who knows, maybe it will help shape the next generation of animators?

The BSA teamed up with SCAD to develop the animated short Baxter, which you can see below. The short will be used to teach Scouts key principles of animation. More details on Merit badges can be found on the BSA's website.

Baxter from Ty Coyle on Vimeo.