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  • New Webelos Leader

    Hello everyone. As the title suggests, I've been asked to step up as the new Webelos leader. I think I might have bitten off more than I can chew here. My son has been in the scouts for 3 years now. I've never been a scout so I've been learning along with him. Now that I've stepped up to be a leader, I feel I may be in over my head. So, what I'm asking from any of you are some good resources to get me started. I've found a few good things, but maybe something that explains to me a little better about earning awards, pins and beltloops would be great. It seems the handbook assumes you already know what is going on. Is there a den leader hand book that might explain this stuff a little better? Any help would be appreciated. I look forward to becoming part of this community.

  • #2
    Welcome to the Forums!

    I am a new Scouter and I have learned a lot by reading these forums. I will get you started with a few ideas and let the other members chime in with more.

    The Cub Scout Den and Pack Meeting Resource Guide has your meeting "helps" or outlines. Talk to the current Den Leaders at your monthly Leaders Meetings. They will be very helpful getting you started.

    A Google search on a specific activity pin will also give you meeting ideas. Parents should be asked to help with meetings I.e. an EMT would help with Readyman. The Pack may have completed Parent Talent Surveys on hand.

    Here is the link to the belt loops: http://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/CubScouts/Cub%20Scouts/UniformsAndAwards/sanda.aspx

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    • #3
      http://boyscouttrail.com/webelos/webelos-scouts.asp

      I usually give my parents the link to this website. I like the way it's laid out.

      Lots of luck!

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      • #4
        There used to be a BSA publication: Webelos Leader Guide. It is very helpful, offering detailed plans for laying out a long-term schedule for earning the activity pins and supporting activities. Don't give up on yourself; the time that we spent in Webelos were great for my son and me.

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        • #5
          Welcom wrobbel! I'm in the same boat (new Webelos leader), so we won't be going through this alone LOL.

          The Webelos Leader Guide is still being published and has been updated in the past 2-3 years. I also went to our district's scout store and picked up the BSA fieldbook and the Boy Scout Handbook so I can hopefully learn and then introduce the boys to the ways that they'll see/learn/teach when they cross over. Baloo's Bugle (located at http://usscouts.org/bbugle.asp) looks to have quite a bit of information in there, too. In our pack, I think the biggest problem with the Webelos level is that it was treated/run the same as the Wolf/Bear ranks (just den meetings, working on ranks, etc...no camping/denner/den emblem or name etc). Outdoor Webelos Leadership training might also be a good thing to attend, especially if you didn't go through the Webelos rank as a scout.

          I've also learned a ton from this site in the 3-4 weeks I've been researching. Google searches always bring up the pertinent threads on here, and there's a lot of collective knowledge among these members.

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          • #6
            Welcome, thanks for your service, and ...

            Get a Den Chief. An active boy scout will help with all that memorization your boys will need to learn. Plus, it's a potential connection to a boy scout troop that your boys may be interested in visiting.

            Have your Cubmaster contact a few neighboring troops to see if there is a boy who will qualify.

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            • #7
              Well a Den Chief would help, but it is easier to pan for gold in most places. The only time you luck out is if the troop is large, and there are not enough Positions or Responsibility within the troop for all the boys who need a position.. Or.. You find the real gem of a scout who really wants to work with young cubs..

              Most Scouts are excited about moving on to Boy Scouts, tired of the CS program.. And a Den Chief means extra nights & weekends to be at both BS meetings, BS weekend events, then also to be at Den meetings & pack weekend events..

              It is absolutely NOT ask and you shall receive.. More ask, and hope and pray, but don't be surprised if no one comes.

              Make sure to find out if your council holds anything like Scouting University, it is a fun day to pick from hundreds of classes each about an hour long, and you choose the classes that are of interest to you..

              Learn about Webelos to Boy Scout Transition.. Slowly the boys you work with should move from depending on your leadership, to working as a patrol and being more independent..

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              • #8
                Wow, MT. Thanks for the healthy dose of pessimism.
                I guess our units are charmed!
                Anyway, ask. Repeatedly. Even if no boy's available (or the one boy interested is a total slacker), it's worth trying. Otherwise, if you aim at nothing, you can be sure that's all you get.

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                • #9
                  Sorry, I know our area is not alone in this because it has been discussed on this forum before.

                  Sounded like your area didn't have the issue, by the way you wrote your post.. You are lucky to have created a culture where the boys see this as a position of respect, and not one where they just got a demotion. Smart troops will try to foster it, but it is hard to get started. Takes one or two gung-ho scouts that are well respected taking on this position, and giving it the prestige needed. Adults can talk it up, but if the scouts peers aren't buying it, neither will the scout..

                  Normally the people asking for a den chief are upset at the troop for being so rude to not respond to the call.. But, SM can't FORCE scouts into this position, if they did you might get a lump who does nothing, or someone who rarely shows up.. You only want to send scouts who volunterily take on the position.

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                  • #10
                    I NEVER camped or scouted (?) when I was a kid, so I didn't know jack when I became a WDL. Training and the internet were my friends and opened up the world of scouting to this city slicker. Put together a two year plan that incorporates as many outdoor activities (day hikes, day camp, camporees, joint activities with Troops) as possible. ABSOLUTELY have your den attend a Webelos 4 day/3 night resident camp between 4th & 5th grades - this summer if at all possible. If you're anywhere in the Midwest, Camp Rokolio (Bay Lakes Council) or Akela's World (Samoset Council) have fantastic reputations. Feel free to PM me if you have any specific questions.

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                    • #11
                      Wow! Thanks guys. I'll have to look around at the sites provided. It looks like I'll also have to find the time to have a good look around the site.

                      Right now I'm in the process of booking tours to a nature center and a landscape contractor to help earn their naturalist and Geologist Activity badges.

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                      • #12
                        One thing that might help, is to sit down and have a parents meeting with the den, explaining how Webelos is different than the previous 3 years, and explain to the boys as well that they will be responsible for much more.

                        Tell the parents that each family will be responsible for leading at least one activity badge. If they do not pick at that parent meeting, tell them you will assign them one. (That doesn't mean they have to personally teach it, they can get someone else to come in to teach it... But YOU don't have to do 20 Merit Badges personally.

                        I did mine in the form of a document, feel free to copy from that as much as needed.

                        https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ioGDZ9w7V4eBOknbkAzQQRDhvHLSf6_SbwR2SchGR0o/edit

                        There are only 4 Activity Badges that you must do to get your boys to Arrow of Light, and 3 others on which they have a lot of choices.

                        My suggestion for you: Go ahead and plan on doing Fitness and Citizen this fall, after Cub Roundups are finished. (Sept - Oct - Nov Timeframe)

                        After you have completed those two, schedule some parents to do their selected activity badges.


                        Find a good Scoutmaster to work with early. If your pack has a good relationship with a troop, work with them, if not, it might take some digging. Don't put that off until late in their second webelos year, let them meet some of the boy scouts and get involved as early as possible.






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                        • #13
                          Lots of great advice on this thread. Here are a couple of things that I would add:

                          * start thinking about how you are going to communicate with the parents. You need to find multiple ways to get information out to them.

                          * find the most efficient and accurate way to get information from your council and district. That might be by attending Roundtables and/or the council website.

                          * it is mind numbing to navigate but get familiar with the BSA national site. I really like listening to the monthly cubcast that is there.

                          I am in my third year as a DL and am looking forward to helping my boys reach AoL around March of next year. I was a Cub for about one year and a BS for about 6 months......I wish I knew then what I know now about Scouting. It is a wonderful program......thank you for your service.

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