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Showing content with the highest reputation on 12/21/19 in all areas

  1. 6 points
    I'm on something like my fourth retirement from various aspects of Scouting that I no longer found fulfilling. The first was Cub Scouting. When I first started, I loved the skits and dumb jokes and costumes and den meetings. But after about a dozen years or so of doing about every job in a couple of different packs, it just didn't hold my interest anymore. By that time I was Scoutmaster of my second troop, and Boy Scouts was my joy. The second was district work. I had been Boy Scout Roundtable Commissioner, Unit Commissioner, District Committee member and Vice Chair, and I was still a Scoutmaster, and I just wanted to focus on my troop. So I stepped back from the district stuff for four or five years. The third was Scoutmastering. More and more the parents and other leaders had become focused on doing advancement when I believed it was the natural consequence of doing the fun stuff. And I was tired of dealing with the adult issues. After that, I started re-engaging with district stuff and also got involved at the council level with our camps. After another six or seven years of that, I was tired of struggling against bureaucratic priorities, and my personal life was changing in good ways, which provided a good opportunity to step out of most roles. My main "official" role now is coordinating volunteer service days at one of our camps, mainly doing "handyman" work. And I pop in on some district meetings just to stay on top of things. Popping in on forums like this, only when I feel like it, helps keep me engaged in the Movement without meetings or bureaucracy. When I was Scoutmaster, I saw a need to provide more opportunities for Scouts to just play and work on basic skills which would involve real learning, not "one-and-done" signoffs. They weren't getting it at meetings, and campouts weren't always the best venues for working on skills one-on-one. So I started once-a-week 45 minute sessions at my house: Scouts could come by with a parent, and the parents were invited to bring a chair and watch, and I'd help the Scouts who came with whatever hands-on skills they were interested in: knots, fire building, wood tools, etc. I called it "Garage Scouting," since we were either in the garage or the yard next to it. It was a lot of fun, and I know Scouts and parents appreciated the extra attention.
  2. 2 points
    @skeptic now that I've had a few moments to think, I apologize if I came off as kind of snarky. I realize and you are trying to do what you think is best for scouting, it's just that what you seem to see as scouting and what I see as scouting are two entirely different animals called by the same name. And I must admit that I have an emotional response when I'm told to " check your privilege, get over yourself, stop speaking as a member of your class, etc. Mostly by the twentyish crowd when they cannot find a way to counter my points during a discussion. Again my apologies, Oldscout
  3. 2 points
    @skeptic, as you know well, Scouting is a youth development activity. Because it's a youth development activity, Scouting is designed to put youth into new and challenging situations in a safe environment. Because these situations are challenging, Scouts often try them, struggle, fail, and then try them again. Along the way, youth oftern have to assume more responsibility then they are accustomed to. This kind of challenging environment is often difficult for parents to watch. A great many parents cannot resist the temptation to intervene. That intervention can eliminate the benefit of the struggle. Further, because of normal pardnt/child dynamics, many Scouts are less comfortable extending themselves in front of parents. If the BSA continues to push this family camping angle, it looks to make it much harder to pursue that core goal. People are very hesitant about losing such. An important aspect of Scouting.
  4. 2 points
    December, 1910: Wilhelm Bjerregaard read "If you want to be a Scout, you go and make up a patrol and go out scouting.” from a book given to him by his brother that Christmas. In the new year , Wilhelm became a scout. Years later, he would restore Scouting by teaching scouts with his books how to make up a patrol. In the coming year, may all scouts make up their patrols and go out scouting. ~ The moderators of scouter.com https://www.nytimes.com/1979/02/04/archives/new-jersey-pages-a-work-of-love-for-boy-scout-78.html https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Hillcourt https://web.archive.org/web/20080225035616/http:/www.scouter.com/features/0290.asp
  5. 2 points
  6. 1 point
    @ParkMan you have more of the Christmas spirit than I this day. Thanks, thats more or less what I was thinking. My primary task on troop/ patrol campouts for the last year has been to try and keep the adults in their lane. This is going to make it all but impossible
  7. 1 point
    We could sling a little more mud ....
  8. 1 point
    Oh yeah - National sees this as the great untapped masses, sadly that is NOT what draws youth to Scouting I would agree. Most Scouts and teenagers will tell you that one of the great things about Scouts BSA is they get away from Mom and Dad That which can be monetized will be prioritized That is so true, a family can definitely go camping without the BSA, that will be a lesson learned no doubt Sadly we are seeing that in many Webelos and their families crossing over. We talk patrols, boy led, individual pace; and they want advancement outing, focus on keeping all at the same pace, and making sure all Scouts are monitored at all times. Basically how can they win / finish at Scouts and then go to the next thing.
  9. 1 point
    I'm sure there is calculated risk management afoot on National's part. Less legal risk for the BSA if mom/dad/guardian are/is present somewhere in the vicinity and Johnny/Suzy Scout gets hurt. Plus, for decades, the BSA has downplayed outdoor adventure and the patrol method. This is the unfortunate result of consistently recruiting pros and vols that have zero interest in such things. The ISP promoters of '72 are finally realizing their "dream." It's all part of National's big push to turn the BSA into One Big Tiger Cub Den.
  10. 1 point
    Yes, I'm searching for my fun. Sometimes the pressure is easy to avoid and sometimes not so much. Skipping meetings is getting surprisingly easy ;). Telling the SM I have no desire to "sign scouts off on requirements" causes friction. The thread about jte is a good example of how "stuff" gets in the way. Everyone gets caught up in the metrics and don't understand where I'm coming from. I need to find my niche. A happy place where I can help scouts learn while playing in the mud. What I'm not sure of is how being a moderator on this forum ties into that.
  11. 1 point
  12. 1 point
    Honestly do any actual Scouts (or Cubs / Venturers / Explorers ) really care if they are Bronze - Silver - Gold - Chartreuse?? Do they even know if they are Bronze - Silver - Gold - Chartreuse?? Do they even know what JTE is?? My point is that JTE seems to be (is??) adult leaders reporting things to other adults leaders who then report to other adult leaders who then report to more adult leaders. The intent is good and at it's heart there can be benefit. In practice it's a form that unit leaders fill out as another leader finalizes the recharter form(s). One more piece of paperwork.
  13. 1 point
    No remorse at all..... Is it bad for me to wish on unscoutly activities happen to him in prison?
  14. 1 point
    Because brutal honesty is so unseemly these days.
  15. 1 point
    My encouragement to you would be to find your fun. Don't feel pressured into the lie that you need to care about all this stuff. We are all different and have different interests. That's what makes this all so wonderful. There is a home in Scouting for all kinds of volunteers. Those who love helping a 7 year old build a Pinewood Derby Car, those who love helping a 12 year old discover that he can camp independently, those who love helping a 15 year old be a great Senior Patrol Leader, and many, many more things. We are all different and care about different things - and that's OK. Myself - I'm more the kind of person who enjoys the organizational aspects of what I do. I enjoy problem solving and the challenge of figuring out how to get stuff done. I get my fun in helping Scouters in our team to provide an outstanding program for the Scouts. I don't mind the bureaucratic challenges and recognize that someone needs to deal with them. One of my favorite Scouters is our troop's SM. He'd walk into the troop committee meeting when we were reviewing the budget, talking about the website, or some other administrative thing. He'd promptly turn around and go back to working with the boys. It's not that he didn't think they were important discussions - he just wasn't personally interested and didn't see any need to pretend he was. He knew we'd cover it - so why did he have to care? As the old saying goes - "don't sweat the small stuff." If "JTE, wood badge, roundtable, membership, popcorn, ILST, council, explain-describe-and-discuss requirements, complaints about SM's on this forum, fees, MB universities, Trainer's EDGE and summer camp school classes" bother you then ignore them. Let others worry about those things. Focus on the things that you care about.