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Always learning something new

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  • Always learning something new

    I have been involved with Scouting now for 3 years, since my son was a Tiger. Tiger year was very wierd; Tiger leader quit about halfway through and I didn't realize we could still continue coming to meetings without a leader. I figured the CM would call when we had a new Tiger leader. No call came, and we didn't even realize the Pack was still active until we saw them in a local parade in the spring. So the following fall we returned. The Pack was still small, and my son was the only Wolf there so, since I was always with him, CM had us do stuff with the Bears and Webelos. On paper, I was the Wolf leader. I was still quite frustrated with the apparent lack of leadership and organization, but we stayed with it and my son advanced to a Bear. This past year, I started as the Bear leader on paper, but since my son was the only Bear at first, and he was involved in football, I came to meetings and assisted the de facto Webelos leader. We picked up one new Bear at Fall Roundup, so we kept him with the Webelos temporarily, but I knew I'd eventually have to brake from the group to do Bear stuff once my son was done with football and joined the group (of course we worked on some of the requirements at home). Meantime, the de facto Webelos leader quit, and after one fiasco of a meeting (again I assumed the CM would communicate with me but didn't), I had an activity planned for every meeting after that. Since I was officially the Bear leader, I did activities relating to the Bears. The CM, who was supposed to be the Webelos leader as well, had his Webelos do whatever activity me and my Bears were doing. We continued this way until the Tiger leader quit as well, taking her child with her because they moved to another area and joined that pack. After that the Wolf leader took in the Tigers, and around February or March announced to the CM they were done with the book. From then on they joined my group of Webelos and Bears, doing whatever we were doing. Up until now it has been an interesting learning experience, both rewarding in the respect I have (hopefully) earned from the scouts, and frustrating in planning activities that will teach and enertain the entire group.

    Which brings me to the purpose of the thread. Compared to some adults and leaders, I know quite a lot about scouting. Compared to a lot of other adults and leaders (who have been involved in scouts since they were kids) I know virtually nothing. I am learning new things all the time and I am pretty sure I have been aggravating some of the forum members here with all my questions and apparent lack of knowledge and terminology. Even after 3 years now in scouting I still feel like I am "new to scouting." Does anyone else feel that way? Comments? Suggestions?

  • #2
    Hi MarkF,

    Sadly you are another one of the growing messed up units, that is not functioning right.. Others are more positive then I am with the "Go, Rah.. Rah.."..

    I am not so good, I am more someone who throws a few sticks in, the fire, and if they don't catch fire I walk away to the campfire down the road that is burning brightly..

    So first thing I would say to you is to take a stand and let the CC know that you are the Webelos leader and that is it.. The other levels must find a leader from the parents, or not exist..

    In order to recharter with a tiger group you must have a tiger DL, some for each level.. On the charter the DL must be listed.. Insist that these name not be in paper only, but either they do their job, or those dens fall off the roster..

    Now from the sounds of it, that may mean if they don't organize themselves the Pack doesn't have enough kids to recharter, but that is not your problem.. It is the problem for the CC & the CM to solve..

    The Webelos need you to put the outing in scouting, and to work so you slowly move them out of cub scouts & into boy scouts.. If not these are the years that they will get board and leave the pack.. You need to run a Webelos program and you can not shackled with a day care center in tow..

    Sounds like your CC really isn't worthy of the job either, when you lost your tiger den leader he should have been at your very next meeting encouraging and insisting that one of you parents step up and take the position so that your den could continue.. He should have done the same thing when the Webelos leader left.. He is not doing his job..

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    • #3
      "I still feel like I am "new to scouting." Does anyone else feel that way?"

      27 years for me and YES!

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      • #4
        YEP on the always learning even when we've been Scouters for years. New positions, challenges and planning activities teaches us that.

        One question.. do you have Committee meetings Mark? Pack meetings? Are you happy where you are? Sounds like you are great as a den leader but everyone else is not doing their job and making it frustrating for you which takes away from the Scouting experience for you and your son. Wouldn't it be better to merge with a stronger Pack then you can do leadership (den leader) properly without all the extra baggage?

        No one mentioned UC (Unit Commissioner. UC acts a coach, mentor, guide and etc. to the CM. Mine has been working with me all along providing me with wonderful help. Sounds like your CM is taking the easy way out and letting you plan HIS meetings. I'd pick a different night and place and take your Bears. Two can still have FUN... *winka

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        • #5
          Yes!

          As our Troop is becoming more boy led I constantly have to re-adjust how I interact and what I do. Just as I was becoming comfortable...

          If nothing else the personalities change.

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          • #6
            We don't have a forum song leader.
            As a rule I hang around and wait for OGE to burst into song and take the lead.
            I think it was the Kinks that sung:
            It's a mixed up, muddled up, shook up world.
            Or something like that!
            This Scouting gig is a strange one.
            Strange because it's all about people and people are sometimes strange, little people are no exception.
            Still the one big qualification that is needed to be successful in Scouting is that you need to get on well with people.
            If you can get along with little people their parents and other members of this organization you are 99% of the way to making it as a fine Scouter.

            It is also very important to be fearless.
            Never fear that you will make a mistake or mess up.
            Each and everyone of us has at one time ended up with egg on our face or done something that has landed us in water that wasn't cold.
            Never fear asking.
            As a rule most of the people in this organization are good people they want to help and while maybe they don't say it they like to talk some more than others.
            Take the time to read some of the important publications that are available and attend the training's.
            Even if you come away feeling that they were a waste of time, I'll bet that within a month of coming home something that was said or presented will turn out to be of some use.
            Don't Be A Wallflower when you attend something and there are Scouter's there walk up to them introduce yourself. They don't bite and most will want to find out more about you. This is all too often how long and lasting relationships are formed.
            From what you have posted, so far your Scouting career has not been traditional or by the book.
            In my view I give you extra credits for sticking with it.
            Sometimes in forums like this people can come of sounding a little less friendly than they really are, -Don't take it to heart.
            As for learning?
            I learn something from every person I've ever met, every book I've ever read and every day I wake up on the right side of the grass.
            Maybe working in a State Correctional facility might mean that the stuff that I'm learning from the inmates might land me in water that's even a lot hotter.
            Thanks for sticking it out and my thinking is that the next 30 or 40 years will go a lot smoother!
            Ea.

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            • #7
              Scouting has so many things to learn. I keep on learning about various things and that is why I also want children to take full interest in scouting and other summer camp activities. It is the best time for them to learn new things.

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              • #8
                It's still a roller coaster.

                One week I'm up about how well the boys are taking the lead.
                The next week I'm down about a serious lack of follow-through.
                Then I get up over taking 75% of the troop to camp,
                and then I see really poor leadership from the camp staff.

                You get used to it. But I have to admit that I'm already thinking ahead to plan an exit on an 'up' note.

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                • #9
                  After 40 years in the program, I have found that one has to always be up to the task of learning each day. If the world in which we live isn't changing, then BSA is. The days of sitting with a cup of coffee staring off into the campfire enjoying one's thoughts, with boys all around doing the same thing, is not on the menu anymore. If I want to do that anymore, I have to do it outside the BSA program.

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