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Discussions dealing with equipment topics (tents, lights, packs, boots, stoves, etc.)


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  • LATEST POSTS

    • Welp I guess this is the comment to finally bring me out from the lurker caves. Besides just being straight-up sexist (this is 2023, we should be beyond this), barring men without kids wouldn't just (unjustly) exclude plenty of terrific volunteers, including myself, it would simply kill scouting. I recently took a job as a DE in my council, and after going around meeting all the units and leaders, let me tell you 95% of units are surviving off the veteran volunteers that have been around for a while. They all say the same thing. They'd love to have some parent volunteers, but the fact of the matter is no parents are stepping up. So barring "grown men without children in the unit"? Instant death sentence. I don't blame the parents, you even said it yourself, your time is limited. Now more than ever it seems. But until something changes and parents can/do start actually volunteering, those veteran scouters without kids in the unit (or in rare cases, young men who were scouts and don't have kids yet such as myself) are what's keeping scouting alive. Trust me, in many cases they do want to retire and pass the torch to the next generation, but there's no one to pass the torch to. So IMO, these men should be rewarded for keeping scouting going, instead of criticized for the mistake of being born male and caring for the future of today's youth. I could go on and on about statistics and the existence female predators and how the BSA could market YPT better to the masses, but my food is getting cold. I will say this though. As a member of the first generation raised surrounded by these negative stereotypes about men, the pervasive fear of "anyone can be a predator so assume everyone is", and the complete lack of independence until 14-16 because I might get kidnapped or x or y or z (which isn't helped by America's car-dependent suburban lifestyle but that's completely off-topic) in American culture is developmentally harmful. Especially for boys. Does it work to prevent abuse? idk. YPT certainly does but the stats the FBI puts out doesn't paint a pretty picture.
    • We probably have about 10 minutes of "instruction time" too. Some weeks as much as 15-20, maybe, but not all at once.  Fun and games are how kids engage at this age and besides gamifying the lessons outlined for the adventure, games are one of the best ways for learning the skills of listening, understanding, and following rules, and provide opportunities to work on emotional regulation when the game doesn't go the way they want.  And kindness when it DOES go how they want and someone else is the one upset.  And, of course, training in cleaning up after themselves.  Don't fight the fun and games - just make it work for you instead of against!  We have one 1st grader meeting with us, so we're using the mixed lion/tiger plans here https://www.southfultonscouting.com/node/4851 but that website seems like a wealth of information for thinking outside the box in general.  Since our plans have to include all the requirements for both ranks, they really look closely at what the requirements actually say vs what is in the suggested meeting plan in the leader guide.  One example: the leader guide has a full on first aid lesson as one requirement of Animal Kingdom when the requirement is "show you know what to do in an emergency".  It says nothing at all about proving first aid.  The plan we're using reinterprets that as making a list of numbers of people to call in an emergency, what to do if the smoke alarm goes off, etc, and a quick "911 or not?" quiz.  Still fulfills the requirement. If the meetings are sapping your energy/enthusiasm, it sounds like you need to draw on some energy from other parents.  We rotate which parent leads the meeting each week, but if you think that's too much to ask, maybe you could enlist one of the more punctual parents to be in charge of an arrival activity every week while you get everything else in place.  Or ask someone to look into short movement-break activities. I know teachers often have a whole tool box of one-minute ideas to get the wiggles out. Maybe it could be someone else's job to direct the kids in some movement during the lull while you pass out supplies for a 2nd seated activity. Last year's lion den never got off the ground, so I know it's not always possible, but a healthy Lion den, run with shared leadership as it was designed, is a truly beautiful thing and one of the best ways to cultivate future pack leadership.
    • Good point. I don't think I can take going down some of these rabbit holes again. 
    • Curious as to why just us males are assumed to be pedophiles?  I am also amazed that the "equity" warriors are not demanding that their daughters are also not penalized for not registering for Selective Service.  It seems to me that we only want "equity" when it agrees with our agenda.
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