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  • AoL Troop Visit Requirements

    I was looking at the Arrow of Light requirements for giggles just now, and I came up with a question regarding requirements 4 and 6, because as far as I can tell no Webelos that's joined our troop anytime lately has met them.
    Req 4 requires the boy to participate in a den visit to both and troop meeting and "Boy Scout-oriented outdoor activity." For years, we've invited Webelos to our sports center lock-in. Some years, we invite them to our summer beach trip, which is in a cabin. If it were me, I wouldn't fuss over the cabin trip, but a lock-in clearly isn't an outdoor activity. No Cub leader has ever indicated the issue to us. The meeting visit is accomplished with our open house.
    Req 6 requires a second, individually-oriented visit to a troop he "might like to join" by the Webelos and his parents, wherein he has a conference with the Scoutmaster. Not one Webelos has ever come back for a singular visit or had an individual conference with our Scoutmaster.

    Am I reading things wrong, or is the pack fudging those two requirements? I'm a little alarmed. How do your all's packs interpret/handle these requirements?

  • #2
    I was just looking at those requirements this evening because my Webelos den is starting to work on AOL requirements. I am frustrated because I sent emails out to the two local troops who we'd be most likely to join, and neither SM has gotten back to me yet. I will be persistent because I never fudge requirements. I'll take my Webelos to another town if I have to just to do something with a troop to meet those requirements. The way I see it, the Webelos need to visit a troop (not necessarily your troop) at least twice. Once with their den for sure. The other could also be with the den, but definitely has to include the parent. Do you know for certain that no Webelos has attended two troop meetings? Do you know for certain that no Webelos has had an individual conference with a SM? An individual conference could be as simple as a phone call or a short conversation, and it could be with any troop the boy "thinks" he might like to join, not necessarily with the troop that he actually ends up joining.


    • #3
      <begin sarcasm> I am completely shocked and alarmed that cub scout leaders are doubling up and fudging AOL requirements! <end sarcasm>

      Does your council have a Scout Fair? Would the outside portion of your Scout Fair count?
      Our district has WTSE, and Troop Fairs. In WTSE our Webelos can join scouts in outdoor activities at the event.
      Giving full benefit of the doubt, they may be going to other activities where you aren't.

      Generally you are correct though. There's the den visit, then after (often overlooked) completing reqs 1-5 there is the SMC. I had the hardest time convincing parents to actually read requirement number 6 to understand that the SMC has to come after everything else.


      • eaglewolfdad
        eaglewolfdad commented
        Editing a comment
        sarcasm continued, I had the hardest time convincing the SM of our troop that he had to do SMC for our boys crossing into the troop. In five years he had never
        had the pleasure of doing one. The last two happened the night before cross over

    • #4
      The requirement is NOT to do these things with the Troop you ultimately register with. The requirement is to do these things with A (ANY) BSA Boy Scout Troop.

      Heck, while in 4th grade, they could have visited with a Troop on the other side of the country for all you know. It would have been perfectly valid.

      I suggest concentrating on the Boy Scout requirements they are currently working on, and not getting your undies in a twist over what MIGHT have happened in a totally different program.


      • #5
        When I as CM, the Webelos not only attended troop campouts at different times, they also participated in camporees in which the troops established Webelos-appropriate activities and contests. Our Webelos had a blast at these things. I can't remember a single indoor activity we ever did outside of B&G and PWD in which troops assisted with judging, etc.

        So, it appears that the requirement was 'fudged' if I read the OP correctly. Time to get those boys outside!


        • #6
          Our Troop invites the Weblos to Fall Camp O'Ree (not many show up because we go out of district) and then to another event later in the Fall. (They did a Wilderness Survival Campout in NOVEMBER one you in the snow, sleet, and freezing rain; i'm surpised any boys joined that year!) In January we have a Welcome Weblo's night during one of our regular troop meetings.

          The best things a WEBLO's leader can do is to the those boys to see as many troops as possible. Every troop has a differnt flavor. We loose a lot less boys now that we point out other troops for them to visit. When they boys are actually choosing between troops they seem to be more vested in their decision.


          • #7
            When we hadn't had a son in the Boy Scout program that Scout Master conference was a mystery. In fact I think the CC called talking to a group of 20 Webs and parents a SM conference. (The shirt was tan....we didn't know, or perhaps we were in a rush or they were busy) Second time around (with different troop) we made sure the Webs had good conferences with the SM. I don't think the SMC is described at all in the Webelos handbook.

            An outdoor activity with a Boy scout troop can be a day hike from the cub camp to the boy scout camp and a tour. (We did this better the second time around also -- invited ourselves to the district fall camporees.) I think it does come down to the Pack and Webelos den leader knowing the Boy Scout program. And the troop understanding the Webelos program and making a plan for recruitment. Not every SM or ASM was a WDL.

            - AK


            • blw2
              blw2 commented
              Editing a comment
              I was thinking the same thing...... As a cub parent and leader, what do I know about a Scout Master conference. I don't know yet what the WEBE LOS book says, but I can totally imagine me and others thinking that when the ASM spoke to the den for a few minutes during our visit, that it would count towards whatever conference requirement.

              Most of us are just winging it and not even getting den specific direction form our 'elders' in the pack!

          • #8
            The troop puts a lot of effort into planning a campout in the fall just for the Webelos2s. This year only 2 of 14 attended (yes, I was a bit miffed.) We invited them to day trip skiing in January and I don't think anyone attended. About the same time we invited them to visit a troop meeting, too. Most came to that. Shortly thereafter I got an email from the WDL asking if the troop meeting counted for the outdoor program with the troop. Umm, NO! But I held my piece and told him it was his call. Of course a month later everyone of them received AOL at crossover. And no, they didn't meet with another troop.

            I guess you only have to complete the requirement you and/or your DL has time for.


            • dedkad
              dedkad commented
              Editing a comment
              I think it is great that you are reaching out to the Webelos dens. That is more than what I am seeing with our local troops. Please keep up your effort. As a Webelos leader, may I make a suggestion? I love camping, but strangely enough, not all parents in scouting are campers and accompanying their Cub Scout on a campout may not be do-able for some families. A ski trip is cool, but is really expensive. Again, might not be do-able for all families. What about an evening campfire, a hike, an outdoor ceremony, or an outdoor service project like trail work or litter pick-up instead? The requirement is to do a "Boy Scout-oriented outdoor activity". Not really sure what they mean when they throw the word "oriented" in there. Are the suggestions I made the type of things that your troop does?

            • Twocubdad
              Twocubdad commented
              Editing a comment
              We could probably send a limo and pick the boys up at home, too. Or better yet, send patrols of Boy Scouts to each Webelos house and camp in their backyard. Parents would neither be inconvenienced or worried about where Dear Sweet Thing went.

              Either your son is going to join Boy Scouts or he isn't. Make a decision and we'll move on from there.

              The campout was turn key. All you have to do is drop him off at the Scout House Saturday morning. The Webelos camp under Webelos guidelines, which mean they are allowed to camp with their den and Den Leaders. Parents aren't required to camp, but we do strongly encourage it. While the Boy Scouts are working with the Webelos, the troop leaders spend the weekend working with the Webelos parent to explain how Scouting and our troop work. I would think that would be a strong incentive for the parents to attend and learn about what they're signing their son up for. And anyone who wants to go home at the end of the day is welcome to do so.

              The ski trip cost $28 including lift tickets, equipment rental and an hour of instruction. We provided transportation. The council trip cost $65, you have to drive 3.5 hours to WVa and probably pay for a room. Plenty of folks attend that.

              Oh, we also had a free orienteering hike in January and a one-night campout the Webs were invited to. No one attended.

              Now three months since crossover, I'm learning the big problem was the DL who seems to have checked out a year or more ago. No one knew much about the programs and there was certainly no sense of urgency communicated to the Webelos that the outings were required for AOL. But the parents were more than willing to sit back and be catered to. None of them showed much concern, either.

          • #9
            Originally posted by ScoutNut View Post
            The requirement is NOT to do these things with the Troop you ultimately register with. The requirement is to do these things with A (ANY) BSA Boy Scout Troop.

            Heck, while in 4th grade, they could have visited with a Troop on the other side of the country for all you know. It would have been perfectly valid.

            I suggest concentrating on the Boy Scout requirements they are currently working on, and not getting your undies in a twist over what MIGHT have happened in a totally different program.
            Well, excuse me for having a question. They "might" do a lot of things, and I haven't said they don't, but what do you think the odds are that in 10 years every Webelos crossover to our troop had an individual Scoutmaster Conference with another troop he had no intention of joining, and never with us? I put it between zip-o and unlikely.

            Everyone else, thanks for your input/advice. I mainly wondered what the perspective is on those requirements. We generally only do one event for Webs, it looks like we can help those DLs be more honest if we offer more opportunities and a greater variety of opportunities.
            Last edited by Scouter99; 06-17-2013, 07:36 PM.


            • #10
              I have a SMC with each webelo that joins the troop....and a Parent scout meeting right afterward...We go over our welcome packet.....I would like to tand them off to the SPL but we are not to that point yet.