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Showing content with the highest reputation on 07/24/19 in all areas

  1. 2 points
  2. 2 points
    😎 Ah, I again find myself the student. Barry
  3. 2 points
    I, however, am not a Scouter coming online here for the first time. I'm a Scouter who has read almost everything published by the BSA regarding uniforms from the past 30+ years, and so I know the materials and I understand where the BSA stands on this issue. Believe me, even if I were to attend your district, council, or even regional meetings where the terms Class A and B were promulgated, promoted, and pushed, it would not be enough to "convince" me that the terms were official synonyms for Field and Activity. Only official materials published by the BSA would be enough to do that, and their position is clear. Much of the problem is that you automatically assume that to correct this issue is to "disparage" (to use your term) others. This is not a fair representation of those who want to follow BSA policy. Just because a Scouter upholds standard policies and procedures does not mean he or she disparages those who do not feel the same. If I, or others, correct the terminology, it is not because we think less of you, look down on you, or wish to belittle you. It is simply driven by a desire to rise above mediocrity in thought and action, and to help our Scouts pursue a higher level of commitment. If you don't share that same desire, that's entirely your privilege, but don't expect us to follow suit and be content with your opinions. It is good and healthy to pursue excellence in all things, even uniforms, and so you can't expect us to be content with terminology that is expressly corrected in official BSA materials. Just as you insist that we be permissive in how you wish to express your standards, so also must you accept that fact that others will stand firm in getting the terms right - especially when we are attempting to model values and principles to the Scouts with whom we work.
  4. 2 points
    I do find it rather frustrating when people become sticklers for ... well, let's say a lackadaisical attitude towards the uniform. I could simply repost a comment I made earlier in another thread concerning uniforms, but as far as this topic goes, I have only one line of thought: changing our personal language to refer to field and activity uniforms (as opposed to "class A and B") requires almost no effort beyond a conscious choice, and those who find such a tiny alteration of their speech challenging are hindered not by the difficulty of the task, but rather by their own attitudes and prejudices. The BSA asks us, repeatedly, not to use the terms 'class A or B.' You can obey and thus model forthright obedience to your Scouts, or you can flippantly (or even belligerently) ignore it, and so model all the accompanying values and behaviors of that choice to your Scouts in turn. I, for one, find it an important and helpful distinction, and regardless of what perceptions may be promulgated in this thread, I will continue to post my feelings on it so long as the BSA teaches the difference. How others choose to respond is entirely up to them, but I must do my part in standing for what I believe to be an important point of our uniforming pedagogy.
  5. 1 point
    I didn't want to post this in the original thread because I didn't want to derail. I seem to see someone bring up the classification of uniforms any time the words "Class A" or "Class B" are used. I just wanted to say that this interjection of correctness (pedantry IMHO) isn't helpful or courteous most of the time. Most of the time it easy to tell if people mean "Class A = Field" and "Class B = Troop T-shirt" or some small variant of that. In most circumstances it really isn't important that the field is the only real uniform and that there isn't an accepted variant on "fully uniformed." If it is important to differentiate what people mean by "Class B" then you should probably ask. If the discussion revolves around these designations of classes or what an official activity uniform is, then it might be useful to bring up, otherwise maybe think about contributing something else.
  6. 1 point
    Yep. A result of turning the neckerchiefs into little hankies to decorate the uniform and then making them optional in troops. But using them as Scouting identity items when not otherwise in uniform has some merit. I am seeing more Scouters wearing neckerchiefs over the collar and tied at the ends with a friendship knot, in the fashion of many of our international Scouting cousins, often when not in the official uniform.
  7. 1 point
    "Class N." BSA finally came around to the idea of allowing neckerchief wear with activity uniforms and non-uniform clothing. The purpose is to make it possible to identify youth and youth groups as Scouts when they are out being active -- camping, hiking, working on service projects. That is, to raise the visibility of Scouting in the community even when youth aren't in recognizable uniforms. And as RichardB notes, it is a widespread practice around the world. If we want to promote the practice of wearing neckerchiefs when we're otherwise not in BSA uniform, giving that practice an unofficial but easily understood name raises the status of wearing the neckerchief by itself: "Class N" makes it sound like "neckerchief only" is actually a recognized uniform category along with "Class A" and "Class B."
  8. 1 point
    Great points, Barry. Definitely a challenge for the lone (and lonely!) Scout who would be at least 100 yards from any other Patrol or adult. Wilderness Survival MB comes to mind... I'd hesitate to say "never" as that word negates all opportunity for growth and learning.
  9. 1 point
    Sadly, the Patrol Method and the notion of patrol spirit are largely extinct. BSA is totally oriented to the troop as the basic operational unit of ScoutsBSA, and has been for decades. Patrols in ScoutsBSA are for administration (collecting and distributing information and resources) and a nod to tradition, but not for operations -- by which I mean planning, preparing for, and carrying out campouts, hikes, service projects, etc. A big factor contributing to the near abandonment of the patrol as the basic operational unit in ScoutsBSA is modern society, in which families have a wide variety of youth activities to choose from and participate in, on top of family and school events. This leads to schedule conflicts and widely variable attendance by patrol members at meetings, outings, and events. The Patrol Method is based on shared responsibility, and patrol spirit is based on shared experiences. They can only develop when most of the patrol members are in attendance at most activities. All of which is to say: Under today's Troop Method, in which patrols have diminished significance, it is perfectly acceptable to adapt to circumstances, bypass patrol membership obstacles, and do what is best for the Scouts on the campout, within the rules.
  10. 1 point
    Youth protection: I have never ever been comfortable with a 16 year old sharing a tent with an 11 year old. When my son joined the troop 15 years ago, the SM encouraged close-age tenting. SM used subtle hints to drive this. Almost always, it just occurs naturally. No extra work. No extra planning. No big discussions. It was just common sense and subtle guidance. ... Also, it was easier as we started with new-scout patrols and the patrol tented together. Then, those patrols tended to stay together. The exceptions tended to be near same age. Patrols: My experience leans more and more into letting the individual scouts figure out their patrols. Not the adults. Not the PLC. Then, let the patrols figure out the age thing ... with subtle adult guidance. ... Yes, we do start the scouts in a new-scout patrol. But it's more because they are all in the same situation. After, if they have a good experience, they stick together. But then again, if a scout wants to go to another patrol, we'd let them. IMHO, patrols design is less about same age/mixed age and more about associations. IMHO, the scouts should tent, camp, cook, game, swim, canoe, (... etc ...) by who they normally associate. That association is a patrol. So ... How are the troops with mixed age patrols handling campouts? ... We let the scouts figure it out on their own. If there is an obvious age difference, we will provide subtle guidance.
  11. 1 point
  12. 1 point
    My council conducted NYLT (5 courses, 50 participants per course, 2 of the five courses were co-ed). We didn't have separate facilities for males and females, so there were assigned times for each demographic, male, female/ youth, adult to shower separately. Renovations of existing facilities would come before wholesale rebuild of facilities.
  13. 1 point
    When I was a youth (I'm 53 now), I would have thought it strange that adults were showering with Scouts. I don't think I would do it. I might have showered with other youth, but I wouldn't have liked it. I don't think I ever showered at summer camp, though, or at almost any campout, as a youth.
  14. 1 point
    BSA does seem to have arrived again in Orange County in 1920, The Santa Ana Register for November 4, 1920 solicited men as Scoutmasters for "Santa Ana Council" and mentions Scout Executive Elmer E. Heidt, often said to be the first Scout Executive in Orange County. Beyond that, things get vague, This article confirms that, as in many other areas, Scouting did not wait for BSA to arrive: "Noted local historian Phil Brigandi will discuss the history of Scouting in Orange County at the Orange County Historical Society's meeting this Thursday, Jan. 14, 7:30pm, at Trinity Episcopal Church, 2400 N. Canal St., Orange. He will also be available after the talk to sell and sign his excellent new book, On My Honor, A Century of Scouting in Orange County. Scouts (past and present) and the general public are welcome at no charge..The photo above shows Boy Scouts from Yorba Linda Troop 99 in about 1918. The photo below shows several Scouts from Orange County's first troop, Anaheim Troop 1, on an outing to Hewes Park in El Modena in about 1911. The Scout standing next to his bike in the center is future Anaheim mayor Charlie Pearson." AND "The first attempt to provide some sort of county-wide organization and support for local troops was in 1912, when the Santa Ana Council was formed with help from the YMCA. It lasted less than a year, and Scouting faded until World War I was over." I rely on the Troop 43 Log Book for the early history of that troop. But that was long ago. The present "Orange County Council" has claims founding in 1920 and 1921. It was founded in 1972 by the merger of two councils - Orange Empire and Northern Orange BSA has never had much interest in Scouting's past, especially the competing and pre-BSA past: the American Boy Scouts (later "United States Boy Scouts" and then "American Cadets"), Michigan Forest Scouts, LifeSaving Scouts, Colonel Cody’s Boy Scouts (1909), YMMIA Scouts, YMCA Scouts, Polish National Alliance Scouts, New England Boy Scouts, Knights of King Arthur, Knights of the Holy Grail, National Scouts of America, and Rhode Island Boy Scouts, to name just some. Some troops chartered with the Scouts in the UK, such as Barre, VT, Troop 1 in 1909. BSA would later describe the hundreds of troops founded other than through BSA as not "officially chartered" before their chartering with BSA, even if chartered by Baden-Powell's "Scouts."
  15. 1 point
    The troop no longer exists. When BSA arrived for good in Orange County, California, in 1926, my troop was offered "Troop 1" but declined. It had its cheers, song and dark green silk flag proclaiming it's birth date and number. (made by a mom who embroidered it with "Semper Paratus" and the UK fleur-de-lis) As "The best troop in all the land is Troop 43," a numeral 1 was trivial. It irritated Troop 1 no end that every Scout Saturday, Troop 43 stood at the right of the line in the Santa Ana College bowl as senior troop. The oldest, but not the original Scout troop, in what is now Lake Erie Council is Troop 22, founded in 1908 at the Huff Avenue Presbyterian Church. Troop 22 went out of charter briefly in 1940 when every commissioned Scouter was in the same Guard unit nationalized by the Government - right at recharter time. A few weeks later, new Scouters had volunteered. Per the contemporary newspapers, there were 99 troops waiting when BSA arrived in the Cleveland, Ohio area in 1912, to establish the "Cleveland District" of BSA, five then claiming "Troop 1" status. A select committee of notables had to sort it out. Several different churches sponsored 22, which is now chartered to St. Paul's Episcopal Church in Cleveland Heights. Oddly, the Scouts of Old 22 also think their troop is best. ☺️ I am surprised that troops would give up their historic number for a "1."
  16. 1 point
    I thought every troop that predates ~1920 calls itself Troop 1.
  17. 1 point
    California Peace Scout Troop 43 first had camping, by patrils, in October, 1908 on private property in orange County, California.
  18. 1 point
    Two-Deep is required at the activity. It doesn't mean 2 adult Scouters must be within arm's-reach at all times. I would see nothing wrong with dropping qualified and competent Scouts at a location a few km away from home base. Of course I'd ensure they were prepared, and had communication devices. Don't really see much difference between this and sending Scouts off to MB classes at summer camp while Scouters stay back at camp. Or if we must be overly protective, who's to say the Scouters couldn't just follow along, not interacting or helping.
  19. 1 point
    When I was a scout, the scouts in our troop who attended the OA Ordeal weekend came back a different more mature person. The requirements of that Ordeal are considered hazing today. It seems today's culture feels that growth gained from enduring the strain of designed purposeful circumstances is not considered healthy. Barry
  20. 1 point
    I think, sometimes, the beneficiary isn't really so keen on the project, but gives the scout the OK so that he can earn his eagle. They see themselves as helping out the scout rather than being the beneficiary of the scout's project.
  21. 1 point
    I think what's likely is one of two things. Either someone did the following calculation: 1. If someone falls on a wood boardwalk we allowed to be installed, they might sue us for permitting it to be slippery or a tripping/falling hazard. 2. If someone falls on a natural trail, they can't sue us because "hey, it's the ground!" or Someone with some clout was out there and saw the leaf covered boardwalk and thought it was ugly because they just "wanted to enjoy the pristine wilderness in it's natural state".
  22. 1 point
    Good list. I'm not sure how our scouts learned courtesy during trips. But, I know that generally abuse came from younger scouts. Problems disappeared with troop age maturity. Same goes for wearing the uniform during travel, older scouts had no trouble, it's always the 12 and 13 year olds in their self-identity years who complained. Barry
  23. 1 point
    I can highly recommend Camp Rainey Mountain's Whitewater KR program. Eagle son and his Eagle best friend did this camp as their last ever youth summer camp. The CRM staff was awesome in helping two Mitten State Eagle Scouts fit in with mostly southern campers. They really made the boys feel special for travelling such a distance to camp. Believe it or not they weren't the farthest away campers. There were scouts from Texas and Florida that traveled further than they did. The guys raved about how great the rafting was and how much fun they had. There only complaint was the quality of the food. An overall great last summer camp. The staff was also great to me as I hung out and volunteered at the CRM camp proper. The whitewater camp is held off site.
  24. 1 point
    I run a Cooking Merit Badge program for our toop. We start off with an hour meeting where the boys plan the menus that they will be cooking in the outdoors. I do the shopping for them based on their food lists (this saves money because I can combine the lists (so you don't have 4 pounds of butter when each group only needs a 1/4 pound) and can use spices and other ingredents from my pantry at home). The class is 8 boys where they are paired up into 4 groups. Then we meet in my backyard on a weekend day at 8:00. The start out by washing their hands. Then we prepare a dutch oven full of monkey break. I then teach them how to cut with the various cooking knives and then they chop ham, cheese, onions and peppers. By the time the monkey bread is ready, they have made egg omlettes and fried up some bacon. We then eat and clean up. We then spend some time going over first aid, foodborne illnesses, safe food handling and food allergies (Requirement 1). The boys then cut up some potatoes, start a fire, grill some sausages over the open flames and deep fry the potatoes in a dutch oven. We eat and clean-up. We then talk about healty eating habits (Requirement 2) and then about cooking methods (Requirement 4). We talk about backpacking food and make some beef jerky. That takes us to around 3:00. The boys then begin cooking dinner and dessert. Each pair of boys cooks a full meal and dessert both using a Dutch Oven. In the past they have cooked braised short ribs over polenta, beef lasagna, BBQ spare ribs with apple sauce, cole slaw and corn bread; chicken cacciatore over pasta and beef stew over noodles. The desserts have included a chocolate cake (not a dump cake, but one baked in a cake pan), chocolate brownies, choccolate chip cheesecake, peach blueberry cobbler and an apple pie. The boys' parents join us for dinner and we award the Cast Iron Chef honor to the pair that got the best results. The boys clean up and we call it a day. We then have one more hour long meeting where we discuss food labels and careers (Requirements 3 and 8). The boys then have to make their menus, pepare their shopping lists and cook the meals at home and then on a trial hike or backpacking trip (Requirements 5 and 7). I accept prior cooking on backpacking trips as long as the write up the menu and shopping list. So, it probably takes 1 hour ahead of time, 9 hours on the weekend, 1 hour follow up and then the work to do at home and on the trail. I have thought about designing a program for our summer camp for next summer. There would have to be an hour a day session for the coursework and then a morning, afternoon and evening session for the outdoor meals in lieu of the dining hall and then two trail hikes for a breakfast and lunch on the trail
  25. 0 points
    Interestingly, Troop JTE Objective #9 reads: "Patrol method: Use the patrol method to develop youth leaders." The various levels are likewise phrased in a way that paints the Patrol Method as a method of leadership development. This shows how far astray BSA has really gone in diminishing and muddling up the Patrol Method into something unrecognizable. The real, classic Patrol Method is about teamwork and citizenship. Teamwork in that all patrol members share responsibility and are involved in decisions. Citizenship in that the patrol is a miniature community - a gang - in which the members need to learn how work with each other peacefully and productively to carry out the patrol's shared goals and responsibilities. Leadership development is a separate, and different Method of Scouting.