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The Patrol Method

Lessons and questions of Scout leadership and operating troop program

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  1. Adult Patrol Coaches

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  2. question

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  3. Choosing patrol members

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  4. The Patrol Method

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    • I was wondering what you think is the proper number of Scouts in a single Leatherwork Merit Badge Class should be? Our Council schedules 20 per class and up until recently it was for a 3 hour class.  Now it is 4 hours. At 4 hours, by myself, I am able to get all the kids done and signed off.  If I had an assistant, we might be able to get more Scouts through, but I'm not sure that is a good idea. Any thoughts?  
    • Several years ago, I sat in the leatherwork merit badge class at summer camp (as a Scouter).   I had recently started leatherworking myself and wanted to see what they were teaching.  The counselor was a Scout (not unusual at summer camps) and based on his knowledge, I'm not sure he did the merit badge himself.  After camp I went to our council office and had a discussion with the director.  I explained what I witnessed at the camp and this what he said.  With some merit badge classes, the counselor is chosen by the process of, "whoever is not doing anything else at the time".  That was even more disappointing.  We then got into a deeper conversation about merit badges in general.  I brought up the issue of the "Merit Badge" events and whether the kids were able to learn anything in the 3 hour classes.  He said that kids today have a shorter attention spans and that most kids wouldn't go through the same process,  I did as a scout, of finding a MBC and scheduling a time and actually reading the MB book before seeing the MBC.   So they have to provide these opportunities for them. Fast forward a year and my son had turned 18 but I still wanted to stay involved.  I decided to become a MBC for Leatherwork so I went to one of these events and assisted the MBC that was teaching the class.  He actually had taught the class several times so I was looking forward to learning from someone that knew what they were doing.  I was excited.  The class started and after introductions he said, "I know what I'm doing because last night, I read the Leatherworking MB book 3 times".  What?  Sure he knew some of the basics but when asked some questions, he got them wrong. Then, on top of all that, they didn't even have any projects to work on.  The had some suede mystery bracelets and leather lace.  Nothing they could stamp on.  So I went to the person in charge of merit badges at the event and told her the situation.  She said, "there is nothing we can do about it now, so we have to use what we have".  I explained that what they had was not enough to complete the merit badge and she said that the blue cards had to be signed.  So I offered to run home and get some projects for the next class.  I got back just in time for the class and offered to teach it while he observed and did all the paperwork.  We were able to get all the requirements done but a few had to stay late to do it.    So I've worked my way to be the "go to" person for any leatherworking.  I've done some Cub Scout Day Camps and more MB classes.  I did get them to change some things.  We order the MB kits that come with everything they need to complete the class.  Now the LW MB classes are 4 hours long instead of 3.  I'm trying to get a helper in every class. Is it perfect?  No.  But we do manage to get all the requirements completed.   Yes.  Ideally, I'd like to spread the class over 2 days.  This way the leather can have enough time to dry after dying.  We can assemble the next day plus give them some extra time to stamp on some leather scraps just to have fun.    
    • When I first saw a photo of an Evzio Naloxone auto-injector, at first glance I thought it was an Auvi-Q (epinephrine auto-injector) until I realized that the color and wording are wrong.  Both share the same really distinctive shape.  Scary, really.  If you are having an anaphylactic reaction, you don't want somebody to grab the wrong auto-injector.  On the plus side,  having a device that talks someone through how to inject it seems like a good thing. According to https://www.businessinsider.com/price-of-naloxone-auto-injector-evzio-2017-2    
    • The naloxone kits provided to lay personnel, is rarely a high enough dose for "full reversal" of the kind of dose that a drug addict would use. However, it is likely that first responders to an overdose will also need to be prepared to perform CPR, or at least administer rescue breaths.  Most of the time, the naloxone doesn't last as long as the effect of an opioid. I don't think anyone was confused about the use of naloxone, but the question if this is part of an advanced first aid kit or not.   My two cents amounts to this is a decent addition to an camp/troop first aid kit.  If you aren't carrying something backpack/dufflebag sized, then you probably have other things that could use that space.  In most cases, appropriate CPR/Rescue breaths can suffice until more advanced help arrives. 
    • And to know what to do when it kicks in. Most drug abusers aren't too happy when you ruin their fix.
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