The Round Up Badge is a rip-roaring adventure in a romanticised version of the American West. The simple life of wandering through extreme weather, campfires and song. Dressing up as a cowhand and practising your skills on the range will help you and your Squirrels get your Round Up Badges. These ideas would work well for a wild west party as they include party games and bakes.
Dress up as a Cow Hand
Rodeo Horse walks the Squirrels through everything they need to be a cowhand. Cowboy and cowgirl are easy costumes to put together, especially if you follow the instructions from the episode. A cowhand needs a hat, boots, a good shirt and a horse. The most important thing is the hat of course.
The Squirrels all make their own horses and your Squirrels can too. Here are some ideas for how:
- Small Hobby Horse from the Hey Duggee Website – A downloadable template for making your own horse from the website.
- Hobby Horse Craft from Messy Little Monster – This is a simple craft with not too many components.
You could also take inspiration from the Squirrels. Roly’s broom horse ingeniously simple. Tag’s stick horse is pretty awesome too.
Once you are all dressed up practice being a cowhand with these instructions from Rodeo Horse.
- A cowhand needs to do is look.
- A cowhand has to listen.
Play Games on the Ranch
Once you have practised being a cowhand it is time it’s time for some ranch games. I have made a few different Wild West themed games for events including:
- Cactus ring toss – using a wooden cut out of a cactus with pegs attached as spines and the rings from a quoits set.
- Horseshoe and sheriff badge noughts and crosses – using card cutouts of the pieces.
- Horseshoe toss – using plastic horseshoes and the pegs from a quoits set.
- Panning for gold – for this, you need a water trough filled with a mix of water and sand, sifts and some fools gold or stones painted gold.
- Lasso – Tieing a lasso is a tricky endeavour and even when you do it is hard to get any swing if you don’t have any know-how. The easiest way I have found to do this with kids is to attach a hula hoop to a rope for them to throw.
Bake Like a Cowhand
I like to include a cooking with kids activity whenever we are getting our Hey Duggee Badges. Pinterest has many ideas for treats and bakes for a Wild West party including hay bales and cowpats.
We made some simple cow buns by dividing a cake mixture in two and adding cocoa powder to half.
The most appropriate drink to accompany your cowhand feast is of course a milkshake (with a straw).
Wild West Crafts
The Squirrels traverse the American West in the Round Up Badge, following in the 19th-century pioneers. They cross a variety of terrains, including swamp and the desert that we associate with cattle herding in the wild west. Cacti are fascinating plants for children and this Badge is an opportunity to investigate them further. There are lots of options online for cactus craft activities. We decided to make simple handprint cacti together. We then experimented with different ways of decorating them with paint.
Here are some other easy cactus crafts:
- Toilet Roll Cactus from The Best Ideas for Kids.
- Sandpaper Cactus from Princesses, Pies, & Preschool Pizzazz.
More Round Up Badge Resources
The glory days of the cowboy were not a time of equal rights for women. The writers of Hey Duggee neutralise this by referring to Rodeo Horse and her colleagues as cowhands throughout the episode. This is also the time that the woman’s suffrage movement began to gain momentum. There are many women from this period that are fantastic role models. One woman you could talk about from the American west is Annie Oakley, who overcame widespread discrimination to become a performer as a sharpshooter in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show. She was able to use her fame to campaign of women’s rights. Check out this book for an introduction to her life story: