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Are Elective Arrows obsolete? How do we compete with Belt Loops/Pins?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by daveywow View Post
    We sell popcorn. Sometimes I feel like we're the "Selling Stuff Scouts" instead of Cub Scouts. We make just enough to run the program. Thankfully, our Council is changing vendors, (from Trail's End to Camp Master). Rumor has it there will be more low end items, which would help our kids. Many of them live in low income areas and have a hard time selling $25-50 items. If there were extra money, I'm pretty sure we could find good ways to spend it , but it still probably wouldn't be on belt loops.

    Understood, the other things we have done has been to sell hot dogs and such at local events. The boys get assigned 30 minute shifts and enjoy the event while making money for the pack. In our area, the packs in the better off areas help out the packs in lower end financially areas. Maybe get local businesses to sponsor the pack? just some thoughts.


    • #17
      My group has earned belt loops together, mainly because the webelos have to earn it and we're doing den meeting together. The wolves and bears did earn a bunch of belt loops at camp, though I was there and they didn't actually complete all requirements, but commissioner decided to award the belt loops anyway. (Did the same with webelos' camp and activity pins.) I do LDS scouts, where boys are automatically signed up for scouts on the 8th birthday. This isn't a family decision to put the boys in scouts. Many of the boys come to scouts because that's what they're supposed to do and then they do no more scouts at home. We have to focus on just getting the rank achieved at scouts (though there's always a few requirements that must be done at home). We also have kids coming in all through the year, so we have to redo stuff. I have been trying to keep track of all the boys' progress. My son earned 3 arrow points for each rank of wolf and bear. It was mostly stuff he just happened to do- or he was bored and I suggested he look in his scout book for something to do. I saw a webelos scout at both camps (not sure how he got to go to wolf/bear camp, when he's clearly a webelos), who had about 9 or 10 arowheads for each rank, a belt full of bling, his webelos colors were full, and he had a jacket full of patches. His mom had another jacket full of patches. My guess is that mom is one of those, who is very good at motivating her boy. (Had a chat with her at webelos' camp and she homeschools her kids as well. She's also interesting and needs no motivation to talk about herself and kids.)


      • Pack18Alex
        Pack18Alex commented
        Editing a comment
        I realize that this is more work than you necessarily want to do, but I think you could make your life less insane with an annual schedule of events, and ask the parents to step up more.

        I would look at your calendar of when your Den Meets (around holiday/school schedule). I would lay out the Wolf Trail/Bear Trail along the calendar, so you know you do Achievement X this month, Y that month. So whenever the boy ages into the Den, they begin on the trail as scheduled. It'll take a year to finish the trail, but they'll finish it by their birthday. 8 month program w/ 2 Den Meetings/month gives you 16 meetings. You can schedule 16 Bear Achievements, and the 12 Wolf Achievements + 4 groups of Wolf Electives. Try to line up the Wolf/Bear ones that are related. So the boy finishes around his next birthday when it's time to rank advance. Scout Camp can supply Belt Loops/Pins/Electives.

        LDS Webelos is one year, right. Figure you have 14 Meetings for Webelos Activities and 2 Meetings dedicated to "Troop Stuff." Schedule a meeting for Scout Master discussions meeting, and a learn Scout Sign/Oath/Law meeting, and get a Den Chief/ASM/SM to come in for those. Schedule the Den Hike/Campout with the Troop as well. Across 14 Meetings, you can do 7 Webelos Activity Pins w/o trouble and complete the Arrow of Light.

    • #18
      Last year for Wolf, my son earned 3 arrows, was two electives away form his fourth but I couldn't motivate him to do more..... He's indifferent about it, doesn't get too excited about awards..... wish I knew a trick to invigorate him!
      Anyway, we had 1 boy signed off for 8 points, others earned (or were signed off for) 6, 2, and 1. And four boys earned none.

      Our pack does seem to focus a bit more on the loops. Honestly I think its mainly because nobody is working in the books until the last minute.
      Loops are easy, and an easy way to pull together a quick den meeting.
      I'm sure that that our high arrow earners were benefactors of moms flipping through the book and signing off on things that little Jr. did some day. Didn't matter that they didn't honor the requirements to the letter or that they even did it under the "Auspices of Scouting". I even called one mom on an elective that required a presentation to the den..... and I sure don't remember him doing any presentations..... She quoted some other requirement from a book that didn't have the presentation required..... I figure it might be from older brother's outdated book. Anyway, I wasn't going to fight over it and just wanted to make the point about following the letter. Told her if that's what her book says then we'll let it go but suggested she might want to use the current book next year....


      • #19
        It may interest some of the cub leaders to know that the award of belt loop isn't recorded anywhere with their council. It's as if the award don't really exist; at least not on paper. The arrow points, on the other hand, do show up on the council advancement reports.

        I'm in the process of going though my sons advancement report in preparation for him submitting his Eagle Scout application. He has a whole string of beltloops from cubs in his closet, but they don't count for anything--only the arrow points show up on the advancement report. Luckily nothing from cubs matters when it comes to eagle rank, but it was interesting to see since our pack also pushed beltloops over arrow points.


        • ssgjbroyles
          ssgjbroyles commented
          Editing a comment
          Believe me, belt loops ARE ON INTERNET ADVANCEMENT!!! I just updated my Pack's records...more like am progressing nicely on it. Belt Loops are recorded on Internet Advancement.

        • Khaliela
          Khaliela commented
          Editing a comment
          Yes, you can type them in on the internet advancement; and you need one of those nifty paper sheets if you are turning in paper advancement forms, however, the councils don't retain the records. They vanish-- Belt loops do not show up on an advancement report generated by your council. We're on our 4th Eagle BOR this year and none of the boys beltloops show up. Two were from a pack chartered by the VFW; on was from a Catholic Pack; (the preceding 3 were from the same council); the last was from a council in Ohio, he has no beltloops recorded either.

          It's not a big deal because nothing from Cubs matters anyway, but it is interesting that so many packs are trying to earn them when they won't show up on an advancement report when the kid goes up for Eagle. The Arrow points do show up though.

        • Sqyire21
          Sqyire21 commented
          Editing a comment
          The belt loops 'can' show up on internet advancement...but it depends on who you have input your awards. I know I input dozens of belt loops as advancement chair, but when I spoke to the district register, she didn't care at all, and even admitted she didn't input them. Overall, I still find it interesting how many parents want to ensure Little Johnny has all the Belt Loops and Arrow Points, when really...only the Arrow of Light goes on any final reports...kinda like Eagle...