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How to scout a new troop ?

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  • #16
    Don't forget your second son. He almost certainly will follow his big brother.

    I'm getting a little bit too much of 'what Dad wants in a troop' from your responses. It's hard not to impose your will on your son's selection, but you need to do everything you can to make it HIS choice.

    I pushed like heck to get my son to visit other troops. Nope. He was going with his friends, period.

    Comment


    • King Ding Dong
      King Ding Dong commented
      Editing a comment
      I hear you JoeBob and if he wants to stay where he is that is fine. But he needs to know what the alternatives are and where I see our troop headed. Several of the key players are moving on at the end of the year and unless the parents of the new crossovers really step up there are going to be big problems. There is no obvious SM replacement and once the ACs son gets his Eagle the AC is done. There are no ASMs. The CC is doing her job but is burning, and one of her sons dropped and the other seems rather indifferent to the whole thing. These are issue he is not aware of or should he be at this point.

      There are only 5 camping nights on the schedule this fall and one night is that hotel room in a cave we already discussed. He will likely only get in one night on the backpacking outing because he is the only one not backpacking. (We hashed that out in the Tune-up thread). There are six camping nights in the spring and a cabin weekend. No day hikes or other activities scheduled. Oh and I just found out the committee bungled the summer camp lottery, so we will have to pick the dregs after the whole council gets their shot. Unforgivable.

      Our good friend BD has been screaming at me for a while to find a new troop. I am finally getting off the pot.

      Second son is a Bear, loves camping but is ready to leave after breakfast. 3 mile hike is about his limit. Guess it's the age, he bores quickly. A lot can happen in two years. He is the more social one so what his friends do will have a big impact.
      Last edited by King Ding Dong; 10-14-2013, 11:30 AM.

    • Eagle92
      Eagle92 commented
      Editing a comment
      JB,
      Not necessarily. two of my friends in the troop had younger brothers who joined another troop with their brothers. Also my troop lost it's COR/CC when his Cub Scout age son moved up to Boy Scouts and joined another troop. Like your son, in both cases, the Scouts went with his friends.

  • #17
    When someone jumps up and says let their sons pick the troop, I like to tell about the crossover ceremony where I asked the Webelos why they chose to join this particular troop. They said it had the best game of the troops they visited. None of them were in scouts a year later. Sadly the forum isn't what it used to be because this question always brought out some good advise for parents needing reasonable answers. Many posters now seem more expressive of personal prejudice like 300 ft, and no wood badge adults instead of looking at who runs meetings, asking the SM his goals for the scouts and what they think is boy run. While many on this forum kind of know what 300 seperation rule really represents, nobody outside the forum does and they will think of you a clueless geek for asking. Truth is many here on the forum these days are a bit extreme in their opinions, so they don't help much in real life situations. KDD, may I suggest learning from forum contributors who give more grounded advise that is closer to your local programs like MattR and Eagle92. Scouters in the real world don't know what 300 ft means and it's ok to work as a team with your son to help him find a good troop. Let your son hang with a patrol For a meeting while you pepper the SM with questions of program. Then compare notes and see where that goes. I remember one mom who brought her son four times before choosing our troop. It took her that long to see why our program worked for her son. So there is no huge hurry. Barry

    Comment


    • JoeBob
      JoeBob commented
      Editing a comment
      Barry has valid points about youth not noticing some of the big picture when they're visiting a bunch of loud strangers.

      I want you to realize that your son may get more out of a troop that does not fit your ideals. A large troop that offers lots of places for a boy to hang out under the radar for a while, until he makes some new friends, might be best for someone new to the community.
      A small intensely boy-led troop may bring more pressure than he wants at first.

      Just be sure that the questions you ask him are neutral. Our sons want to please their fathers, and he'll pick up on any slant to your conversation.

      I don't want you on the board a year from now telling us that he dropped out of the troop that you picked for him...

    • King Ding Dong
      King Ding Dong commented
      Editing a comment
      I am really trying to get some more visits set up. Received a response back from my troop guide at IOLS and have some suggestions, she also said I should talk to our DE and I have a call into him. Also requested some suggestions from my patrol.

      A big troop I can see getting lost in, if they act as a troop and not patrols. Certainly less opportunity for PL but he is a way off from being ready for something like that and may never be. He needs experience and modeling to see how it is done, just not much opportunity for that in a young, low activity troop. The boy signs up for every opportunity at school and the troop as long as it doesn't involve a ball or running.
      Last edited by King Ding Dong; 10-14-2013, 11:45 AM.

  • #18
    Both patrols are working the council halloween gig this weekend. They are in different camp sites quite by accident.... So 300 feet it is. I am going to try to bunk in one of the lodges.

    I will add that I did lose a family when Dad didn't understand why I was not up front leading or teaching. SPL was struggling, I tried to explain boy lead and learning by teaching and my goal is for the boys to do 100% of the program.... the patrols broke up into the patrol meetings and then the game. He didn't say anything. Just never came back.

    Most parents don't care about 300 feet and boy led or Patrol day hikes or campouts. Most want a very organized adult led meeting.

    Comment


    • #19
      Originally posted by Basementdweller View Post
      Most parents don't care about 300 feet and boy led or Patrol day hikes or campouts. Most want a very organized adult led meeting.
      Yuuuuuuup.

      Comment


      • jblake47
        jblake47 commented
        Editing a comment
        Leadership development, maturity and character development are a threat to most parents. No parent want's their dear little boy to actually grow up until the day after their 18th birthday.

        Stosh

      • perdidochas
        perdidochas commented
        Editing a comment
        Exactly Stosh,

        I think that's the main reason that crossover percentages are so low. I really think if we did Webelos III, we could probably enhance retention quite a bit. However, we would lose much more than the extra Scouts would be worth. While my oldest was doing his Eagle project, I marveled that we allowed a 15 yr old boy to lead 7 younger boys to dig and place posts in very visible locations around a church (part of outdoor stations of the Cross). I can't imagine any other place where a 15 yr old would be allowed that much responsibility in this day and time.

    • #20
      Originally posted by Basementdweller View Post
      Both patrols are working the council halloween gig this weekend. They are in different camp sites quite by accident.... So 300 feet it is. I am going to try to bunk in one of the lodges.

      I will add that I did lose a family when Dad didn't understand why I was not up front leading or teaching. SPL was struggling, I tried to explain boy lead and learning by teaching and my goal is for the boys to do 100% of the program.... the patrols broke up into the patrol meetings and then the game. He didn't say anything. Just never came back.

      Most parents don't care about 300 feet and boy led or Patrol day hikes or campouts. Most want a very organized adult led meeting.
      True, unless they are educated about boy led when they visit. To some degree, when prospective parents come to a troop meeting, the SM and ASMs have to sell them on the troop. They need to explain why boys are running the meeting, etc. They need to be taught the concept that Boy Scouts is preparing the boys to be independent, and part of that is the goal that the only roles for adults is to 1) drive the boys, 2) do things they can't (i.e. make reservations for campsites, etc.) and 3) to drive the boys to the hospital if needed.

      I know as WDL, I tried to explain some of the above to my future crossovers. Lost a lot of boys due to that. however, the ones that stayed were pretty hardcore, and still are.

      Comment


      • jblake47
        jblake47 commented
        Editing a comment
        Boy-led isn't for everyone. Those that what program, go for adult-led, those that want the character development, independence, opportunities for their boys then check out boy-led. The activity is the destination, leadership development is the journey. Yes there are the boys who just want to show up and parents who support them. For them, they need to find an adult-led program, and then they can fight with the adults every time they suggest that little Johnny help out or even carry his fair share.

        Stosh

    • #21
      Well oldest has pretty much made up his mind. I don't think he will get a chance to visit the troop I would like him to visit, and instead will be visiting the troop he said "NO!" to out of courtesy. He went camping with a second troop and had a great time. Oldest scout was 13, and the unit as a whole was rough around the edges. BUT the SM and ASM know their stuff, worked through the PL ( one patrol troop at the moment, soon to change though) and have their goal for Philmont in 2016!

      LOTS of potential and reminds me a little of one troop I worked with.

      Comment


      • #22
        I read lots of things. As someone who went through a troop change with my son it is important that the scout likes the troop more than the adult liking (unless it's a safety issue)

        After reading I would suggest when going with a troop on a campout to see how the troop functions that a camporee might not be the best view. Many camporees are way to organized by the hosting troop whether it's merit badges or competitions. Also depending on where it is being held and how the hosts set up where troops set up really affect how a troop operates. The camporees we've been to last while have been so over scheduled by the hosts that adults will do all the cooking so that the boys have some free time. Seriously the schedules barely give them a moment to just relax or get a game of football going with another troop. A regular troop campout you will better see how they operate in my opinion. But since your son's current troop isn't going it would still be good to go especially if he's not been to a camporee. I'm just saying this as a head's up when judging a troop

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