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  1. Today
  2. DeaconLance

    Adult Religious Service Award

    For Catholics the adult religious emblem knot is used to represent the St George Emblem alone. So it sounds like they simply gave you the knot as an award which is not a proper use of the knot given there are several patches the National Committee provides for such a purpose.
  3. You could make the BSA training one hour of jam packed info and you'd get about the same attendance. The simple reality is that the basic mechanics of Scouting are pretty straight forward and can easily be learned on the job. A significant percentage of Scouters realize this and don't bother to get trained. Most packs and troops don't bother to push the issue. In the process, we have whole generations of leaders who's training amounts to whatever they saw the leaders before them do. The sad reality is that we as Scouters bear much more responsibilty for the lack of trained leaders than any BSA content. As experienced Scouters, it's within all our power to encourage new leaders to get trained. If experienced leaders insisted on trained leaders, it would happen. But, we don't, and so it doesn't happen.
  4. Maybe this is why people think the program is advancement. I see where you're coming from but shouldn't the objectives and purposes for each unit be the aims? Living the oath and law? Maybe there are different ways to get there but the goal is the same. The thing missing is how the methods get us to the aims. It would do a lot of good to talk about how advancement teaches a scout to help other people at all times. That alone should get us over the idea that the goal is eagle. How does the patrol method encourage selfless decision making? I could go on for every method except the one about ideals (and that's mostly just redundant to the aims). Something else missing is teaching the scouts all of this as well. I've never understood that. Why doesn't the scout handbook explain the program as well? I would think everyone in at least a troop should understand what the program is. Why the outdoors, why advancement, why patrols, etc. That way, when one of the adults, parents, or scouts start making a mess the everyone else will know something is wrong. When the parents start complaining that their kids aren't advancing fast enough it would be so much easier to point them to some page in the handbook that explains how advancement helps a scout reach the aims of scouting. "Here, read this page with your child." While I agree that this is a good thing to describe, the problem is that not enough people even understand that older scouts should be working with younger scouts. If you mean adults want training that is to the point, timely, and useful, I agree. My experience was that the BSA training was not that.
  5. karunamom3

    Uniform for parade 90 degrees

    So after all of the debating and back and forth with the new scout parents... we show up and the oldest, most experienced scout was there in shorts along with his leader parents in shorts 🙃 I dont think I ever saw a group of scouts unzip their convertible pants so fast 🤣. Thanks everyone!
  6. In both my Cub Scout & Boy Scout volunteer experiences, I joined troops with established leadership groups. We had leaders who had been around for a while. The leadership team in the pack is about 10 people. In the troop about 20. There is a defined pack/troop culture that was established by the "senior" leaders. New leaders certainly take on positions of responsibilty, but there is always someone who can point them in the right direction. Someone new shows up and starts making waves, someone pulls them aside and points them in the right direction. It's all very positive as everyone is pulling in the same direction trying to have the best troop possible. In my humble opinion, I think this kind of culture would be useful in more packs and troops.
  7. Ahh. Yes, that would be problematic. In my troop every adult is (at a minimum) required to do the position specific training. But from there, there is little guidance provided to new adult leaders from experienced ones. I think this probably is a part of why we do still have some issues getting adults to back off and let the kids actually run things. We have a couple adult leaders that really think their job is to "keep the boys/girls on task".
  8. elitts

    As an adult, what about my ideas?

    In our troop "the committee" for all practical purposes is just any registered adult that shows up for the committee meeting. Personally, I do double duty as an ASM and Equipment Coordinator. I just respect the restrictions of each role. (ie: even though I'm on the committee, I don't sit Boards of Review because I'm also an ASM)
  9. In our troop we seem to have a paradox new leaders expect to get their guidance from more experienced leaders. They don't got to training because they know the experienced adults will show them the ropes once untrained leaders get some experience they decide that they know the basics already and it's pointless to go spend a day taking training. So, after a while you see a whole bunch on untrained, experienced leaders.
  10. I think this is a function of stupid rules and inconsistent programming. One can only read just so much stupidity before you starting thinking "Hell, if just this part that I've read is asinine, why bother with the rest?"
  11. That's what I meant. Same age patrols can have growth through shared comraderie. A group of mates working together to solve challenges that they run into. I'm not arguing that same age patrols are better. Most point is really just - if leaders understand the purpose and goals of patrol method then could they accomplish the same with mixed age patrols? Could you develop a strong program for older youth by leveraging roles like Troop Guide? I could envision a model where Scouts work together in their same age patrol. They grow together as they mature and their patrol strengthens. As their learning opportunities begin to run out at the patrol level, they then take on roles like Troop Guide, SPL, ASPL, Quarter Master, etc. The Scouts grow in responsibilty and challenge as they mature. I think you make a very compelling argument that an older youth program is the key to a strong troop. MIxed age patrols are one path to providing meaning for older Scouts. But, I wonder if it's the only path. Couldn't you accomplish much the same by utilzing same age patrols as I decribe above?
  12. elitts

    Not Quite Prepared for Philmont

    If it starts to flare up again, consider getting a Strassburg Sock to take with you. It's a lightweight version of a "night splint". Keeping the achilles tendon stretched out during the night makes a huge difference for me on whether or not I have pain during the day.
  13. Isn't it the job of the Scoutmaster to lead the program? Presumably he/she has a pretty good understanding of what patrol method is and how to utilize it in a program. Other leaders should look to the SM for guidance. If the Scoutmaster doesn't understand patrol method, that's a bigger issue. Presumably you've chosen the Scoutmaster based on their understanding of the program and their demonstrated desire to run a good program. I wonder if this has something to do with how people learn today. I get the sense that many people are ignoring the training. Trained leader percentages are well below 50%. The BSA materials are fully of information on patrol method, but people tend to ignore it. So, I wonder if the BSA materials are trying counter that by focusing more on the theory thinking "if we explain it, then people will find more value in the training materials and attempt to learn them."
  14. Yesterday
  15. Eagle94-A1

    BSA patrol method is lost in the fog

    I hate to say it, but the Patrol Method died October 1, 2018. That is when 2 adults were required for ALL activities, including patrol meetings, hikes, and day activities. Also the No more than 2 years apart rule for tents put a nail into the coffin as well. Traditional Patrols, aka Mixed aged patrols, that have been around since 1910 in the BSA, I have encountered have had people more than 2 years apart. Part of the Patrol Method is eating, sleeping, and working with your patrol mates. Older Scouts mentored and trained the younger ones. As for national and their experience with the Patrol Method, I would say less than 2 percent. And the lawyers got to them.
  16. eagle90

    Camp Program Options

    Our camp offers jet ski and ATV classes for older scouts and also has a pontoon boat troops can rent and have a couple hour's cruise on the Lake.
  17. fred8033

    BSA patrol method is lost in the fog

    I sadly agree. It's very hard to get a large set of adults on the same page. Where the patrol can be a get learning opportunity, it is often reduced to dividing the scouts into manageable numbers. Just now, I went to scouting.org to look at "aims and methods". Found it for cub scouts. But "Scouts BSA" has nothing. It's gone. Only lists Advancement, Merit Badges and Eagle rank. I suspect lots is being re-written, but it's surprising to me that "aims and methods" of scouting doesn't exist at the national site anymore for their premier program. I would be surprised if aims and methods are changing. I did find the scoutmaster specific training syllabus, last updated 2018. I was surprised at two things. #1 there are four aims of scouting. I've always been used to three aims (character, citizenship and fitness ... 2010 scoutmaster handbook). Now, leadership development is added as an explicit aim. I always heard leadership development described, but it was not explicitly another aim. It was more under character or citizenship or mental fitness. #2 2018 SM position specific training still is aligned with 2010 scoutmaster handbook. Only describes, new, traditional and venture patrols. Does not mention mixed age excel that traditional patrols should not have more than three years between the oldest and youngest scouts. BSA needs to decide where they are with their program. Maybe BSA should acknowledge that it's a rough shell that charter orgs and create many different styles of troops within and where all those troop styles are all legitimate. Each charter org should decide their own objectives and purposes for the troop. This would be more aligned with the venturing style of unit. Or maybe BSA should proscribe a purposes and objectives and ask units to work toward those ideals. This applies toward this thread with how patrols learn and grow. Is it through a TG that mentors the patrol or through more senior scouts embedded inside each patrol. I'd like more BSA thought on this.
  18. JoeBob

    The "Right Way" to retire U.S. Flag...

    My COR has a nice big jar of grommets in a place of honor at his home. It got to the point that he would cut off the corners and wire the grommets together to aid in recovery after the ceremony.
  19. chief027

    Camp Program Options

    Does your camp have any program options that aren't usually offered at scout camps that you Unit enjoys? For example, my Camp offers adventure day on Wednesday where scouts can go on a hike, float trip, or bike trip. The program is designed so there are no classes this day so everybody has a chances to go on a trip off the property.
  20. 69RoadRunner

    Not Quite Prepared for Philmont

    I bought 2 packs of trash compactor bags and handed them out to the crew to use as liners. I have a nylofume bag for myself. Good advice on the pads.
  21. I think we're going to give this one a whirl. https://slumberjack.com/overland-8-person-tent/?gclid=CjwKCAjw8qjnBRA-EiwAaNvhwOn-xO2BcfZqzQ3K4HmosUIQWnYrRWdysHaIL0FuVU4vdAFslNosYBoCICIQAvD_BwE
  22. Eagledad

    BSA patrol method is lost in the fog

    Can you think of one teacher that influenced the rest of your life. How about two? A coach? Maybe a friends mother or father. Im not sure how older older patrol mates are excluded from shared comraderie. I remember my patrol role models very well. I can list the influence they made on my life. Now if what you meant same age patrols can also have growth through shared comraderie, I certainly agree. But, it’s far more challenging to maintain that growth thru age 18. I believe the reason National doesn’t get deeper into explaining the patrol method is they just don’t know. First off, how many of the professionals at National had a youth patrol method experience. My opinions of patrol method are heavily based from my experience as a youth verified by my experience as an adult. Also, I’m not sure National really has much appreciation for patrol method. For most adults, patrols are just a convenient way to control large numbers of boys (youth). I was talking to a friend who is getting back to scouting. He is being asked to be the next SM, but he is concerned about the family scouting that is being discussed. And they have new girls that is causing youth protection confusion. Patrol method is a lower priority of concern. Barry
  23. This was my struggle as a Cubmaster. I had every book and went to every class. I knew the the "what" really well. Yet, the BSA materials and training don't cover the "how". Later I saw the same thing in the troop. I knew we wanted the eigth methods, but "how" was not terribly well defiend. As they said in school - the "how" was an exercise left to the reader. So, as a result, we spent countless amounts of energy trying to figure it out. Yet, there's a part of me that wonders if the BSA should really try to define patrols to this level of detail. What matters more - exactly how patrols are structured, or that patrol method is being leveraged in a way that maximizes it's benefits. For example, there are various ways to accomplish @Eagledad's recommendation of developing a strong program by focusing on the quality of the older Scout program. If we leverage that fact that there is shared comraderie in solving problems together, there is value in putting Scouts in patrols of the same age. Scouts grow together and develop bonds together. It can lead to a model where a patrol is strong buddy group - perhaps even one where Scouts become life long friends.
  24. ParkMan

    Working With Others

    You could write it down, but I think it would be more effective to discuss it face to face at a leader's meeting. Once you communicate your expectations, then continue to live them. If someone is chronically disgegarding them, then ask them to move on. But, reading the earlier replies, three things I've picked up in my Scouting travels as a unit leader (CM & CC) Put program first. Scouts, parents, other volunteers respond when it's about making sure the Scouts are active and having fun. Raise the bar. As Cubmaster, you need to challenege the other leaders to deliver the best program in your district. That you had a Tiger den leader who did nothing is inexcusable. Half hearted uniforming - same thing. Vaping in front of Scouts - same thing. Everyone needs to be looking for ways to make this the absolute best program they can. Grow your pack. The phrase "solo TIger Scout" is a red flag. You should have 8+ TIger Scouts. When you start to have a small group, you are stuck with whatever leaders show up. WHen you have a big group, stronger leaders emerge. Focus on program and actively look to grow. Active, fun, well run packs turn into big, active, fun, well run packs. Best of luck!!!
  25. SSScout

    Working With Others

    Howdy, fifthGenTexan….. Whoever ends up being your CM, it all takes cooperation. The Scouts, no matter what age, see and pick up on "what's right" in inter human behavior by being around other humans bigger and more powerful than they. Parents, Scout Leaders, do they argue, or discuss? Do they INSIST and REQUIRE? Do they cooperate and get things done or sit around and (shudder) drink beer at inopportune times? The best Scout Unit Committees in my experience have no "guidelines", if only the Scout Promise and Law. These folks just know what needs to be done how and talk and work and cooperate to get it done. Some folks call it "consensus". The best operating units , the CM or SM have a very good relationship, open and working, with the CCh. Good luck to you.
  26. Under 20 is my wish so this would work for me but my husband wants to be able to stand up in more than just the center of the tent so most done styles are out. And cabin style tents are all 30+ 😕 maybe I should just get one tent for him and one for me. 😅
  27. Aw man, the next size up would be perfect if it weren’t almost 50 lbs. and so expensive. Cool looking design though.
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  • Posts

    • For Catholics the adult religious emblem knot is used to represent the St George Emblem alone.  So it sounds like they simply gave you the knot as an award which is not a proper use of the knot given there are several patches the National Committee provides for such a purpose.
    • You could make the BSA training one hour of jam packed info and you'd get about the same attendance.  The simple reality is that the basic mechanics of Scouting are pretty straight forward and can easily be learned on the job.  A significant percentage of Scouters realize this and don't bother to get trained.   Most packs and troops don't bother to push the issue.  In the process, we have whole generations of leaders who's training amounts to whatever they saw the leaders before them do. The sad reality is that we as Scouters bear much more responsibilty for the lack of trained leaders than any BSA content.  As experienced Scouters, it's within all our power to encourage new leaders to get trained.  If experienced leaders insisted on trained leaders, it would happen.  But, we don't, and so it doesn't happen.
    • Maybe this is why people think the program is advancement. I see where you're coming from but shouldn't the objectives and purposes for each unit be the aims? Living the oath and law? Maybe there are different ways to get there but the goal is the same. The thing missing is how the methods get us to the aims. It would do a lot of good to talk about how advancement teaches a scout to help other people at all times. That alone should get us over the idea that the goal is eagle. How does the patrol method encourage selfless decision making? I could go on for every method except the one about ideals (and that's mostly just redundant to the aims). Something else missing is teaching the scouts all of this as well. I've never understood that. Why doesn't the scout handbook explain the program as well? I would think everyone in at least a troop should understand what the program is. Why the outdoors, why advancement, why patrols, etc. That way, when one of the adults, parents, or scouts start making a mess the everyone else will know something is wrong. When the parents start complaining that their kids aren't advancing fast enough it would be so much easier to point them to some page in the handbook that explains how advancement helps a scout reach the aims of scouting. "Here, read this page with your child." While I agree that this is a good thing to describe, the problem is that not enough people even understand that older scouts should be working with younger scouts. If you mean adults want training that is to the point, timely, and useful, I agree. My experience was that the BSA training was not that.
    • So after all of the debating and back and forth with the new scout parents... we show up and the oldest, most experienced scout was there in shorts along with his leader parents in shorts 🙃 I dont think I ever saw a group of scouts unzip their convertible pants so fast 🤣. Thanks everyone!
    • In both my Cub Scout & Boy Scout volunteer experiences, I joined troops with established leadership groups.  We had leaders who had been around for a while.  The leadership team in the pack is about 10 people.  In the troop about 20.  There is a defined pack/troop culture that was established by the "senior" leaders.  New leaders certainly take on positions of responsibilty, but there is always someone who can point them in the right direction.   Someone new shows up and starts making waves, someone pulls them aside and points them in the right direction.  It's all very positive as everyone is pulling in the same direction trying to have the best troop possible. In my humble opinion, I think this kind of culture would be useful in more packs and troops.
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