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Showing content with the highest reputation on 10/07/19 in all areas

  1. 4 points
    A lady I know has a daughter who teaches at a small, indigent elementary school outside one the Navajo reservations in New Mexico. When I heard about the difficulties they have gathering resources and helping the children who attend that small facility, my heart went out to them. So when I heard they had almost no books in their school library, I put on a combined book drive with five other packs to collect gently used books they could enjoy and use for their education. I set a date for the book drive to coincide with our monthly pack meeting, and then sent information to everybody on every roster of every pack - every Scout was asked to gather and collect as many books as he could during the month leading up to the event. I also offered contest medals to the three Cub Scouts who collected the most books, and a pizza party to the den with the most (cost of the prizes = $25 total). At the combined pack meeting, the books were counted by helpful Boy Scouts as each boy brought in his box or bag or handful of books. The winning Scout brought in over 300 books, and in total we were able to donate more than 4,200 books to the school so that they could enjoy the benefits of a real, functional library. We took pictures of the Scouts and their collections, and then all the Scouts helped box the books and load them into the lady's truck. They were delivered the next week when she went to visit her daughter. In return, the teachers sent us wonderful letters from the school children thanking us for the books. All I did was then enter the appropriate information into the JTE website, and as a result, every participating Cub Scout, Scouter, and Boy Scout received a Messengers of Peace ring. It was simple, easy to organize, and had a powerful impact on both communities. I believe that's the spirit of the award.
  2. 2 points
    In #14, it mentions activities where participants shoot/ throw objects AT each other. In frisbee, baseball, etc, you're not throwing the object AT another player. You are throwing the object TO them. The goal is not to hit them with the object, but rather for them to catch the object. There is a difference in throwing something AT someone instead of TO someone. And yes, according to GTSS & YPT, if you are a registered leader, you'd have to cancel the sleep over if a 2nd registered leader is not present. Then consider the implications if your 8th grade son is in a Troop. Your 3rd grade daughter is in a Pack. Your son wants to have a Scout over for the night, but not as a Scout event. Your wife is not a registered leader. Since your daughter is also in Cub Scouts, you need to have a registered adult female present to spend the night also. Try running that one by your wife so that your son can have a friend over.
  3. 1 point
    2 more tips: Select a campsite with a breeze. A point on the lake, a ridge in the mountains. You can make repellent last longer and work better against chiggers and seed tics by spraying the insides. Before putting pants on, turn them inside out, spray repellent, let it dry, reverse pants, wear. Avoid repellents that react negatively with your skin.
  4. 1 point
    the Webelos Diamond patch has been discontinued and the diagram you are using is old, pre-2015. Here is a link to the current info https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/33066/33066_Cub_Scout_Insignia_WEB.pdf Basically she doesn't wear any rank until she gets her Webelos oval.
  5. 1 point
    I guess, but I think those are pretty ugly.
  6. 1 point
    The look and feel of merit badges has evolved quite a bit since scouting first began in the early 20th century. In the beginning, merit badges were embroidered on a square piece of cloth. Later, the edges around the embroidery began an inexorible process of shrinking, and being rolled up along the edge. It wasn't until the 1960s that merit badges which looked like the kind we give scouts today started to emerge, with no cloth background apparent and a neat twilled border all the way round. The different stages of merit badge evolution are identified as "Type A" through "Type K". Found this cool image on the 'net that shows how merit badges looked across the decades...
  7. 1 point
    I'm actually trying to keep two steps ahead of that by starting to address this NOW. I'm letting families and leaders know that I will be collecting any and all uniform items after December, and I'll collect and catalogue all of it for other units in the area to use as a resource until it's all be donated. I know it's only a small gesture, but I hope it will help alleviate some of the loss for our district going forward since we represented a significant portion of our area's population and funding. I estimate I'll be able to get enough uniforms to fully supply at least 40 - 50 Scouts.
  8. 1 point
    Oct 4 EEE Update from Southern New England Narragansett Council. All overnight camping at Council properties is canceled until the first hard frost. This includes tents, cabins and shelters. Activities during daytime hours (after dawn and before dusk) are allowed. More details at source: http://www.narragansettbsa.org/EEE
  9. 1 point
    Because my first SM was Council Training Chairman for Life (11 consecutive years High School Teacher of the Year selected by students and faculty- Wood Badge at Gilwell Park while in Army overseas), I got to see lots of Patrol Method Scouting. “[The patrol members] interact in a small group outside the larger troop context outside the larger troop context, working together as a team and sharing the responsibility of making their patrol a success.” B.S.A., Scouting.org (2018)[emphasis added] “Patrols will sometimes join with other patrols to learn skills and complete advancement requirements.” B.S.A., Scouting.org (2018)[emphasis added] “Your Boy Scout troop is made up of patrols, with each patrol’s members sharing responsibility for the patrol’s success.” B.S.A., The Boy Scout Handbook, 13th Ed. (2016) at p. 25 (current publication) In Scouting, a troop is composed of several patrols. Scouting happens in the context of a patrol. The patrol, a small team of eight or so Scouts, is more than an organizational convenience or a Scouts BSA version of the Cub Scout den. It is the place where Scouts learn skills, take on leadership responsibilities, and develop friendships that will often last throughout their lifetimes. B.S.A., Scoutmaster Position-Specific Training (2018)(current ublication) at p. 20 [emphasis added]. Team The troop is not the primary team in Scouting; the patrol is. Every Scout needs not a duty but a job. in his/her patrol He or she needs to be trained to do that job and supported in that job. He or she also needs to be responsible for doing his/her best to perform. The Third-baseman is not to expect the Catcher to field ground balls hit towards Third Base. Not everyone wants to play, but those who have no desire to play a position, after counseling and encouragement of effort, have no place on the team. Life. "Mr. Smith, Johnny does not want to play the game. We are not in the business of forcing him to play. If he changes his mind, we would be happy to have him. if not, no good will come of trying to force him, and we are nor set up to do that." "To share responsibility – to be a 'team' – everyone needs a job within the patrol." B.S.A., Scouting.org (2017) The Patrol Leader appoints every other member to a patrol job, such as Assistant Patrol Leader, Scribe, Quartermaster, Grubmaster, Hikemaster, Cheermaster, Firemaster, Photographer, Webmaster . . . B.S.A., Scouting.org ( 2018 ) "Everyone has a position on our team. No one just sits on the bench. Everyone plays. Sue has agreed to the Assistant Patrol Leader, to back me up, to lead the Patrol in certain activities, and to and lead the Patrol if I am absent. Someone has to be Grubmaster, who does x,y,z. No Grubmaster; no food. Who will take that job so we can eat on campouts?" To share responsibility – to be a “team” – everyone needs a job within the patrol. B.S.A., Scouting.org (2017) To share responsibility – to be a “team” – everyone needs a job within the patrol. B.S.A., Scouting.org (2017)
  10. 1 point
    If you like good news, I have some to report. The patrols in our unit are much stronger now. I nudged a little, and the SM and ASMs were quite open to the changes. There was a reforming of the patrols along the lines of natural gangs I spoke of in my original post. The patrol with the older boys chose to keep their old patrol name. The patrol of younger guys created a new patrol with its own new identity. There is now no question who is in what patrol. No more going to the list at the back of the room to check. There is now a patrol meeting during each troop meeting. These are not very productive, perhaps, but the patrols meet separately during the troop meeting. We held a pioneering event with a competition, and the two patrols were 'against' each other. They used to create ad hoc teams for that. When planning for outings, each patrol does meal planning and tent arrangements separately. This used to be done as a troop. On Troop outings, the patrols are next to each other but separate. They used to be all mixed where-ever. The younger Scout patrol has met twice outside of troop events; once a service project, once to design a flag. Plus they have a patrol hike coming up. Its far from done. For instance, the other patrol has not yet had a patrol gathering outside a troop meeting or troop outing. Its too early to tell if this will help with the aims of Scouting, or if the boys are happier, or if its made anything easier. In fact it seems a little more work. But certainly the younger patrol fellows are more engaged in their own Scout destiny. As far as Scout-led, I don't know, there is still some adults taking over the meeting, and one of them was me. But there is less of adults planning for the Scouts outings. I think we're on the right path.
  11. 1 point
    A moment of silence for the starry-eyed young scouter who evidently didn't survive the game of life.
  12. 1 point
    Well then, this is one of the few times in my life when I've been glad I don't have any kids of my own yet. This is perchance a bit too complicated for a simple soul like me to fully grasp.
  13. 1 point
    Youth Protection and Adult Leadership Scouting’s Barriers to Abuse The BSA has adopted the following policies for the safety and well-being of its members. These policies primarily protect youth members; however, they also serve to protect adult leaders. All parents and caregivers should understand that our leaders are to abide by these safeguards. Parents and youth are strongly encouraged to use these safeguards outside the Scouting program. Registered leaders must follow these guidelines with all Scouting youth outside of Scouting activities. highlighted for emphasis BSA says otherwise. You cant make this stuff up.
  14. 1 point
    @Eagle94-A1, the organization dare not admit that this was a sanctioned part of the program lest 20 years from now a class of injured files for reparations. Far better to pay lawyers to delay discovery ....
  15. 1 point
    Oh gosh, you can't have a SOCK FIGHT? We had a cub scout indoor snowball fight, using brand new socks. Socks were then washed, packaged and donated to homeless shelter. We got over 800 pairs of socks and not a single person was injured by cub scouts throwing socks at each other.
  16. 1 point
    GREAT! Now can you remove the sentence that is incorrect fro the FAQ?
  17. 1 point
    I agree 100% of this with Mike Rowe. I've found myself guilty of some of the safe space stuff back when I was an ASM (primarily on backpacking trips, where I knew medical help was hours away), but tried my best to let the boys take risks and govern themselves. I had problems with a fellow ASM in our troop--an ASM who wasn't with the boys nearly as often as I was (I'm not sure I ever saw him on a campout with us), but his son was about to age out (and had completed all but his Eagle Scout project and one or two merit badges years earlier), and he had work circumstances that didn't allow him to be with us every week/campout. He criticized me and the other leaders for allowing the boys to play some field game (not sure which one) without direct adult supervision. My thoughts were at first, ok, if you're worried about them I'll go out there with you. Something felt wrong about doing it, but I didn't want to confront him. Over the next week, I thought about it, and realized his trouble with it. He didn't know and trust the older boys in the Troop as well as I did. I had no doubts that if there were some kind of accident (and there was more than once), that the older boys in the Troop would take care of it. They would do what they had been taught, and assess any injury as well as get help if it was beyond their abilities. I felt bad for caving into mistrust of them.
  18. 1 point
    You have a valid point there, almost all of the summer camps around here do indeed have permanent structures. But as I read the rules, in the case of a 10pm thunderstorm, we are required to get the scouts up,dressed, then march them 400 yards to the mess hall (that was the distance at last years camp) in the pouring rain. Then back to camp in an hour or two. Then quite probably repeat the process in another hour. I lost a good friend to a wayward lighting bolt at Philmont years ago. I've been 50 yards from a massive ground strike, the resulting shockwave knocked me right off my feet. My ears rang for an hour. Believe me I have a huge respect for these sparks of Thor. But I wonder if we all would not be safer from the slings and arrows of outrageous lawsuits if we just sent the scouters camping and had the scouts follow on Skype from the safety of their basements at home. [Sarcasm off] Here is the bottom line, when rules or laws appear to be arbitrary and capricious to those who are told to follow them, they begin to hold those rules in contempt and disregard them. And by association eventually those who make or enforce such rules are soon held in the same contempt. Which invariably leads to a clash of egos between the rulers and subjects. especially among young adults who believe they know everything. The result is either rebellion be it covert or open, or the subjects simply leave if they can to seek better prospects elsewhere. I've been a lifeguard, a RSO, I've been the guy who has pulled the plug on scouting events when conditions got too dangerous. My worst nightmare has always been having to call a parent who trusted me to keep their son or daughter safe and tell them I somehow failed. This fear has kept me up into the wee hours keeping an eye on things on more campouts than I can now remember. But if we in scouting are letting the lawyers make every safety judgement on everything, we may as well fold our tents and flags and go home.
  19. 1 point
    Hopefully, you're camping deep in the woods, and not in an exposed field with only scattered trees. In a forest, you're generally at fairly low risk of a lightning strike. Even still, you do best if you camp under a cluster of lower trees (not the tallest trees in the forest). The power of prayer should not be underestimated... The more secular technique I teach is this: 1. Crouch down as low as you can. 2. Put your head between your legs. 3. Kiss your butt good-bye.
  20. 1 point
    According to the Guide to Safe Scouting the pavilion was not a suitable safe building. "Safe Building—one that is fully enclosed with a roof, walls, and floor, and has plumbing or wiring." As far as I can tell the Guide to Safe Scouting only mentions the recommendations of the National Weather Service. It does not say it is a requirement of scout units. But I would not want to take chances with scouts. The Hazardous Weather Training would be something good to review as well.
  21. 1 point
    That would be nice. While I am concerned about Scout safety, some of the rules are getting out of hand. I have given up trying to get scouts excited about lashing since we can't make much that is exciting. When I was 10 I went to camp and helped make a 40 foot signal tower. It captured my imagination and drove me to learn knots which I had previously struggled with. I learned to deal with water because I had so much fun canoeing. They need to look at the hard reality that scouting is NOT seen as relevant to more and more youth and parents. The fact is that the world doesn't care what us cheerleaders say. They evaluate based on their criteria.
  22. 1 point
    Do we need to start telling National to stop making it more and more difficult to deliver a program that even resembles Scoutimg?
  23. 1 point
    Yup. We had a at least one outing when I was 18-20 that I counted as the second adult. Old enough to go die in war, work , but not old enough to count as an actual adult to supervise a group of teenagers camping with another trained adult. It's no wonder young adults don't continue on in American Scouting very much. There is no critical role they can do when they turn 18. Why stay doing something you aren't needed for?
  24. 1 point
    >Two registered adult leaders 21 years of age or over are required at all Scouting activities, including meetings. Hmm, that will be a problem for me as SM when the PLC has their meetings once a month an hour before one of the regular Troop meetings. Since no other adult leaders are really invited to the PLC meeting, usually I show up and open the door to the church for them to have their PLC meeting, and sit over in the corner of the room while they have their meeting, unless I am asked a question, or feel the need to ask a question, and then I say a few things at the end. This all happens before any of the rest of the troop shows up and no parents or other adult leaders show up until about the time their PLC meeting is wrapping up. In a Troop with only a SM, 2 ASMs and a CC this will be a challenge to get another registered leader to show up as well. I have always followed the old YPT rules and no one-on-one contact, always have at least multiple youth present at all times etc. But sometimes there are just not other adults present. Heck, I can even think of a few meetings where for a little while I was the only adult in the building while the only parent there had to run out or something. We have so many adults that just drop and go these days. There are times at summer camp where all the other adults are away and I will wander back to our campsite and be the only adult present when some group of boys is there playing cards or something. Do the adults now need a buddy system at summer camp to make sure there will never be just one of us anywhere there are scouts in addition to making sure there are multiple youth? This creates more questions such as: Do I need to start telling the boys they can't have their PLC meeting if no other adults will attend? Do I tell them to call their parents to pick them up if the CC is working 2nd shift and one ASM is sick and the other is out of town?
  25. 1 point
    One of the first times my SM volunteered to come to a crew event with me, he volunteered to transport ... thinking that he'd wind up with a car full of the boys ... since they basically knew the drill and he was, after all, their SM. (As you might guess already, I'm not to map out these details in advance.) Well, sure enough, come departure time (which involved the complexity of roof-top carriers, etc ...), the boys piled in my car and the girls in his! The terrified look on his face was one of those precious crew advisor moments that will stay with me forever. It wound up being one of his better four hour drives to camp. The young women were truly great, as I knew they would be. I would never let YPT hype rob us of what is right and good in the world.