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  • New Parent Orientation

    After seeing on several threads that many troops offer a New Parent Orientation or packet, what does you troop do to teach new parents? What info do you include?

    Thanks,
    G

  • #2
    As SM, I talk to the new parents frequently and try to orient to the boy led troop concept, which is the hardest thing for them to grock.

    As for writen material, you can see for yourself at http://www.scouttroop14.org. Just click on "joining info."

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    • #3
      The BSA has a Supplemental Training Module called "Orientation for New Boy Scout Parents"

      This can be found at:

      http://www.scouting.org/boyscouts/supplemental/18-110/index.html

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      • #4
        We teach them:
        - to volunteer
        - how the troop runs (by the boys)
        - to volunteer
        - how advancement works
        - to volunteer
        - how merit badge works
        - to volunteer
        - how the troop finance comes to be
        - to volunteer
        - how fundraiser works
        - to volunteer
        - what to expect in an outing (camping, summer camp, hiking, etc)
        - to volunteer
        - what high adventure is
        - and to volunteer

        Did I mention that we teach how and what to volunteer for?


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        • #5
          The former SM of our group and I sat down with seasoned parents last year and came up with a New Parents "What I wish I'd known" type list. We were surprised that "Advancement" topped the seasoned parent's list.

          What we found out from these Eagle and Life parents was that they wish they'd known more about how advancement worked from the beginning. Not just the basics, but the nuts and bolts. Example: they wish they'd been oriented early on to the change in the level of expectation on things like MBs and the amount of work required.

          To that end, I creatd a parent's guide to advancement for each and every parent--not just the newbies. We then had a parent's meeting and discussed what advancement is and isn't. Some of the stuff I included are:

          1. There is no more "Akela". There are leaders, mentors, counselors, etc. The lingo is different. Each was explained.

          2. There is a higher level of expectation and it is not expected that your boy will be able to achieve it today. Help is available.

          3. When the MB counselor asks your boy to "write about....." that does NOT mean print it off an internet site and bring it in. It means write it IN YOUR OWN WORDS. (that caused a real stink believe it or not)

          4. MBs are not the sole focus of BSA. There are rank advancements too and how they go hand in hand.

          The biggest one was that little quirk parents here in my area cannot understand that to paraphrase from the Advancement guidelines goes something like, "A badge is not a reward for something attempted, but a recognition of what they can consistently do" or something similar. (don't have my book with me). They also didn't like that MBs are individually done in most cases. They want the troop meetings to foucs on everything and have no accountability at home. I even had one new mom who said she was "busy" and the SM would have to make all the arrangements for her boy to get to and from the MB counselor, meetings, and outings. She is a stay home mom with one child and frankly I see her as one of those moms that believes BSA is baby sitters of America. Her boy is a high maintenance kid and I think she sees this as her break from him. (BTW, they tried 4H and FFA before BSA and quit b/c those leaders wouldn't be chauffeur either).

          I think new parents are different everywhere, but I recommend the parent review of "what they wish they'd known". It was a real eye opener for us.

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          • #6
            Someone PM'd me about this topic asking me what I had to share, and then my computer crashed. It's still on the fritz,so I'm using the library's. If you were the one who PM'd me, please do so again. I have print materials I can send via US postal mail if you are still interested, but I don't want you to post your address here.

            Sorry for the delay, but I can't get back to that email again as it's in the crashed laptop. Sorry.

            MollieD.

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            • #7
              Mollie,
              I did PM you, I'll do that again.
              Thanks

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              • #8
                Mollie Duke,
                Thanks, the packet just arrived.
                Gonzo

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                • #9
                  The one thing I have had trouble with new parents is getting them to realize this isn't Cub Scouting. Their son will not advance at the same pace as the other boys in his Patrol. He will be faster or slower, but not the same. This is a change for parents of transitioning Cub Scouts, particularly former Den Leaders. They are used to doing advancement activies at Den meetings and everybody moving through the program together.

                  Also a big item is preparing New Scouts and their Mothers for Summer Camp. I have a meeting with the parents of 1st year campers every year to address the problems that surprise mid-week visits by Mom can cause. In the past I have seen boys who are doing great at camp have their Mother pop out of the trees and turn them into quivering wrecks.
                  Experience has shown me that if a boy leaves summer camp early with Mom, I'll not see much of him in the future. The other boys just never seem to let it go. It can really be the "Lord of the Flies" with the boys sometimes.

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                  • #10
                    My son doesn't like sports in general and we were thinking about giving cub scouts a try. Does anyone have advice on finding a good group?

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                    • #11
                      Parent motivation, information and orientation for all the parents in Scouting is very important , if you want to succeed. The parents have to know what is going on in the troop, without lecturing them to death. Here is what I did:
                      A.. PLC voted to have a Troop bulletin published each month, in charge would be our JASMS.and article from PL's were welcome .
                      B...Every 2 month ,we would have a court of honor/ parent night , and a motivational skid put on either by patrols or our " Leadership Corps " The scouts would show the parents what they have learned...stretcher carry, bandaging, ham radio communications, and slide presentation of our last canoe trip down a ' crocodile, shark invested river ; ha,ha, joke,,,
                      C...We would invite any parent, older brother, grandparent or a friend of the family to attend our committee meetings , without registering them with the Boy Scouts. They had all the rights to voice their opinion, but had no vote on the committee .

                      Many parents complimented me ,for putting on this " Parents night show ", they enjoyed seeing their boy enjoying Scouting, by showing off the stuff they have learned. I have to run...see you again on some other site.." Be Prepared to enjoy Scouting game " Jambo

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