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  1. 8 points
    At our school we have this poster which helps distinguish rude vs mean vs bullying.
  2. 7 points
    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.
  3. 6 points
    While I appreciate your optimism I think this is simply naive. First, no matter what settlement comes out of the bankruptcy, it will be belittled in the MSM and progressive media as insufficient. The BSA will be portrayed as a greedy organization trying to short-change the victims by declaring bankruptcy. Second, I can think of at least 4 additional membership fights to come (in no particular order): Local option for fully co-ed packs and troops because separate but equal isn't working Mandatory fully co-ed packs and troops because nobody should be allowed to discriminate Removal of the DRP, changing of the Oath/Law local option to allow atheists, because it's already happening anyway Mandatory allowance of atheists and changes to Oath/Law because nobody should be allowed to discriminate One can imagine all sorts of additional issues the "cause" will take up: BSA isn't doing enough to recruit girls (or insert your favorite intersectional group here) BSA advancement structure is a remnant of the hierarchical male power structure and has to change BSA is still utilizing the Catholic Church (or Baptists or whatever) to deliver their programs, they haven't really changed at all BSA discriminates against "trans" by having boy/girl handbooks rather than using truly neutral pronouns language BSA discriminates against urban youth by having outdoor requirements (stop me if you've heard this one before) etc. The problem with "cause" movements is once they've met their initial goals, they have to seek out new targets or cease to exist. As long as the BSA is standing, it will be a target, no matter how many concessions it makes to the postmodern mob. Why do I believe the BSA will continue to be a target you ask? Here's why. Your discussion is a BSA redemption story, but, redemption is a two-part processes. The "sinner" has to sincerely repent, and, the aggrieved/offended has to sincerely forgive. An by forgive I'm not talking about "that's ok but hold a grudge" forgiveness. It's a "thank you for acknowledging the hurt, I believe you are sincere, let's rebuild our relationship without reference to the previous sin(s)" forgiveness. The current zeitgeist, progressive and populist, isn't exactly overflowing with that kind of forgiveness. Until that kind of forgiveness is available, donors aren't coming back, nor is membership, nor is "societal opinion" of the BSA. The BSA will probably survive, but, it will be unrecognizable.
  4. 5 points
    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...
  5. 5 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.
  6. 5 points
    Here's my take on why. Back in the 60s most organizations were very top down. The Japanese took advantage of it using an American's idea, and started making better quality cars and electronics. They were hungry and more amenable to trying something new, like a more bottom up problem solving culture. The US auto industry eventually caught up. The BSA, however, hasn't. They haven't been hungry because there were always people around to make donations. Case in point: the failed idea that one can get eagle without camping. They had to bring Hillcourt out of retirement to fix that mess. There are no more Hillcourts. Scouting is still a good idea. It's the BSA that needs fixing. They have not adapted to anything other than push eagle and push membership, which is really just about money. While there are challenges there will always be kids that enjoy camping with their friends and parents that want them to learn responsibility.
  7. 5 points
  8. 5 points
    My son took Citizenship in the Community at summer camp, and ... sadly ... they "fulfilled" this requirement by showing the boys a video of a town hall meeting. One of the prerequisites was to do the public meeting visit in advance, so before camp my son and I attended a county school board meeting with him in full Class A uniform. A lot of the boys in the merit badge class at summer camp didn't do that pre-req, but were signed off after watching the video. I was pretty irritated about it. Watching a video is NOT the same as taking the time to go to the meeting and sit through all of the discussion. Not only is it lazy to just watch the video, going to a meeting in YOUR community is much more meaningful because the discussion will be about local issues.
  9. 5 points
    Several years ago, I sat in the leatherwork merit badge class at summer camp (as a Scouter). I had recently started leatherworking myself and wanted to see what they were teaching. The counselor was a Scout (not unusual at summer camps) and based on his knowledge, I'm not sure he did the merit badge himself. After camp I went to our council office and had a discussion with the director. I explained what I witnessed at the camp and this what he said. With some merit badge classes, the counselor is chosen by the process of, "whoever is not doing anything else at the time". That was even more disappointing. We then got into a deeper conversation about merit badges in general. I brought up the issue of the "Merit Badge" events and whether the kids were able to learn anything in the 3 hour classes. He said that kids today have a shorter attention spans and that most kids wouldn't go through the same process, I did as a scout, of finding a MBC and scheduling a time and actually reading the MB book before seeing the MBC. So they have to provide these opportunities for them. Fast forward a year and my son had turned 18 but I still wanted to stay involved. I decided to become a MBC for Leatherwork so I went to one of these events and assisted the MBC that was teaching the class. He actually had taught the class several times so I was looking forward to learning from someone that knew what they were doing. I was excited. The class started and after introductions he said, "I know what I'm doing because last night, I read the Leatherworking MB book 3 times". What? Sure he knew some of the basics but when asked some questions, he got them wrong. Then, on top of all that, they didn't even have any projects to work on. The had some suede mystery bracelets and leather lace. Nothing they could stamp on. So I went to the person in charge of merit badges at the event and told her the situation. She said, "there is nothing we can do about it now, so we have to use what we have". I explained that what they had was not enough to complete the merit badge and she said that the blue cards had to be signed. So I offered to run home and get some projects for the next class. I got back just in time for the class and offered to teach it while he observed and did all the paperwork. We were able to get all the requirements done but a few had to stay late to do it. So I've worked my way to be the "go to" person for any leatherworking. I've done some Cub Scout Day Camps and more MB classes. I did get them to change some things. We order the MB kits that come with everything they need to complete the class. Now the LW MB classes are 4 hours long instead of 3. I'm trying to get a helper in every class. Is it perfect? No. But we do manage to get all the requirements completed. Yes. Ideally, I'd like to spread the class over 2 days. This way the leather can have enough time to dry after dying. We can assemble the next day plus give them some extra time to stamp on some leather scraps just to have fun.
  10. 4 points
    I would take it one step further in why the ethical decision making will be tossed onto the scrap heap, and @Eagledad nailed it with the note of "challenging a scout". If we as leaders (adults, youth troop, youth patrol) challenge a youth on his decisions; not only ethical but practical ones on an outing; are we not potentially bullying the Scout into our way of thinking. The concept of bullying has evolved into one being made uncomfortable by someone else. I would also say that this statement while optimistic, is rose colored glasses. As BSA morphs from what is was to what it may become, it will be vastly different. The family camping aspect and recruiting of the family will be the end of traditional Boy Scouts Scouts BSA. As the expectation of the families that they will be all part of campouts moves into Scouts BSA the Webelos 3 concept will become less an anomaly and more of commonplace I would respectfully disagree with this. Membership is down and is about to be 20% down. Camps are being sold, staff is being laid off, fees are looking to double or treble, councils are adding fees on top of fees, marketing is non-existent, the main focus is on many things and NOT the core If you reference back to the October 2017 announcements, when they talk about adding Girls to the traditional programs Surbaugh basically states that BSA needs to expand and they are out of ideas, that the move is the hail Mary. Sadly I feel he is way out of touch with what successful units are doing to be successful, and is trying to be the socially aware organization that literally will not satisfy anyone. We have lost focus of the outdoor classroom concept, let youth work as a group and explore how to succeed, and possibly fail in relatively safe environment
  11. 4 points
    I am more of an optimist and I take longer view. Surbaugh is doing exactly what is needed and the BSA is succeeding. We will be much better-off. Over the past 25 years the BSA has faced increasing market competition in the form of the explosion of athletic and other options for youth and high-paying parents to choose. Simultaneous with that time, the BSA was made into a cultural punching bag when an internal group forced adoption of "don't ask don't tell" (DADT). For the first time in our history the religious dogma of certain entities was being mandated on many units which, until then, had no particular views on the social issues at stake. Overnight we went from be a society-wide organization thought to welcome everyone into something different. Our brand popularity plummeted and we began to lose significant numbers of units and membership. This was not the sole cause of the losses, but it changed our image across society just as younger and more socially-inclusive generations were starting to determine if their children would become affiliated with the BSA. So, what to do? It was clear that we were going to continue to rapidly shrink into a more specialized organization serving an increasingly single-minded and socially conservative population in the suburban areas. Or, organization-sustaining changes could be made, which changes would require breaking some eggs. Continuing our DADT policy for Scouts and adults was causing more-rapid shrinkage and increasing legal blockades to the formation and maintenance of units and council programming. We were just about to face local human rights agency administrative proceedings that would have laid waste to our operations. Eliminating DADT was the first action of what has become a multi-year work-out of the BSA. The second and much smaller step was dealing with the "trans" issues. Not much of a ripple happened when that was done. Incorporated into these decisions was the entirely-unstated recognition that we would lose numbers of our most socially and religiously conservative membership, and some of that is occurring right now. If you want to be in a boy-exclusive environment that excludes all but triune-believing Christian adult leaders, you can do so and that is fine if that is want you are looking for. In fact, those kinds of church-specific organizations have been around for decades and I applaud them for filling those youth service markets. These departing elements no longer exercised veto power over establishing all-girl dens and troops. So, the long awaited encouragement to form all-girl dens and Troop was announced to great success. We have credible numbers of these girl units already formed and forming, and now are concentrating on growing them from single-patrol appendages of existing boy troops into truly stand-alone (even if linked) and high-quality units. I am a Scoutmaster of a new Scouts BSA Troop for Girls and understand first-hand just how successful this is going to turn out. Now we are about to undergo the final "big step" in the work-out. We will file our financial reorganizational bankruptcy and get beyond the legal perils overwhelmingly caused by the Youth Protection fails of the 70's, 60's and before. That should be the final step and will be a difficult one for many of us. Why? Because it will offer detractors on the left and right an easy opportunity to tear at us to promote agendas. These detractors are generally not members or supporters of our organization but they have giant-sized and simplistic opinions about how we should teach ethical decision-making to young people. Why is this? Because we indeed are very good at teaching ethical decision-making through BSA programs to millions of children and these people are angry because we might not be doing their particularized bidding. The BSA is important because what it achieves is important and highly-valued. I look forward to getting past the bankruptcy because it will, finally, provide clear ground in front of us. We will be a bit smaller at first and will have shed some of our unneeded assets. Those who were harmed will have received a sense of justice. Our numbers will begin to swell as our then-new circumstances are recognized as a wonderful and open invitation. We will be … just fine. In fact … much better-off. We will continue to provide the ethical decision making education in our outdoor classroom that is in demand by families of boys and girls. We will once again be the large cross-society organization that welcomes everyone and is not perceived to harbor a political agenda. We will be Scouts and Scouters and can totally focus on what we have chosen as our avocation.
  12. 4 points
    The challenge may not be stay or quit, but get started. For current Scouts, if it gets North of $50 many will reconsider. For NEW members, especially Cubs, you need to sign up little youth PLUS yourself. Fee is $50, to sign up you, your kid is $100, plus uniforms, books, possible pack dues; you could be looking at $250 - $300 to get involved
  13. 4 points
    Sounds fair. I think there's another issue. Where does this drive for efficiency come from? Scouts are busy. Parents are busy. Everyone is trying to cram more into a week. Asking for more volunteer hours is like squeezing water from a rock. Unfortunately, scouting growth is kind of like a good loaf of bread, it takes time to rise. The longer it takes the better it tastes, and using yeast can really wreck it, not to mention make it less nutritious. (Can you tell I'm hungry?) I was surprised the first time a scout told me one of the best things about scouts is you can just hang out with your friends and get away from the rush. Not anymore. Yesterday I was talking to some random, older scout, at a camporee I was helping with and heard something similar. I regularly ask scouts what kind of events they want to see and this scout said, whatever, it didn't matter. And I asked him if he'd still have fun if the job was shoveling manure from a barn and he thought about it for a bit and said that if his friends were with him and there was music, he'd have fun doing that as well. Efficiency kills that motivation. Friendships don't happen in a time stressed environment. It might be better to focus on developing friendships rather than getting eagle quickly. I think most scouts get eagle because of external motivation but the reason they stay in scouts is internally motivated and friendships are most of that. I don't think many adults understand this. I say that fun is an important method in scouting. This past summer I saw a great example of leadership and now that I think about it it was really a case of one scout making it fun and friendly for all. He didn't even think of it as leadership. There might be some lessons in there. It's not servant leadership so much as just making things fun. Fun with a challenge, fun with a skill, ... fun with a purpose.
  14. 4 points
    When marshmallows are outlawed, only outlaws will have marshmallows.
  15. 3 points
    I started doing a Webelos/Troops acquaintance coffee gathering each Fall just to get the troops to themselves to the Webelos leaders. We gave everyone calling sheets so the Webelos leaders had number for when they were ready to visit. But, the visit was really intended to get the lesser experienced mostly female Webelos leaders comfortable with the more experienced mostly male intimidating Troop leaders. It was very successful. Leave it to free cookies, donuts and coffee to get adults standing around for an hour to talk. Barry
  16. 3 points
    Our Webelos Den of 13 scouts took over a dying troop of 7 scouts. The SM took us on his last camp out as a scoutmaster to kind of give us an easy start. Sunday morning at 8:00am, the SM opens the flaps on the tent and tells us to start breaking camp so we can get back to the church parking before church service ended, thus preventing chaos in the church parking lot. I ask, "Breakfast?". He throws, THROWS I tell you, a box of Pop Tarts at us and said, snack on them as we pack. That was the first thing we were going to change. I'm shocked at how many troops don't ask their scouts to cook and how many troops do hurry-up breakfast on Sundays for expediency. It's like saying Saturday is Patrol Method, Sunday is adult method day. Ture, it's a boy run program, but the adults are also responsible for developing fitness. We adults started insisting the scouts cook all meals except lunch. We encourage cooking lunch also, but it wasn't required. Meal preparation is the most challenging activity of the average Patrol Method program. The more complex, the more challenging. How can scouts make bad decisions if they don't have choices? And, the troop has to make time for Patrol Method. An expert once told me that a group needs a minimum of 36 hours to even start to bond, so shutting down Sunday for Patrol Method risk loosing everything that we are trying to do in the first place. Our PLC had to plan around a 1:30 pm pickup time for parents after a campout. That gave the Patrols enough time to for breakfast, Scouts Own, Troop activities (usually some advancement time and capture the flag, lunch, break camp, drive home. One thing I really miss about the old days is cooking on a fire. A fire requires skills to start, maintain a temperature, and careful consideration to making it safe. Cooking on a fire is more complex, not only in cooking, but cleaning as well. Just as soon as the cooked food is taken off the fire, the scouts in charge of kp are putting the hot wash bucket on the fire. The process of preparing a meal from a fire efficiently truly requires a discipline team working together. Todays easy method of lighting processed fuel from a canister and switching it off when finishes makes our job of building men of character much harder. Barry
  17. 3 points
    I guess part of what I'm getting at is that simple awareness of dietary restrictions is a skill I think Scouts should learn. Sometimes that's going to mean "Don't forget to wash your hands after a peanut butter sandwich, but the allergic kid cooks his or her own food," and sometimes it will mean "Maybe we could make quesedillas on corn tortillas instead of grilled cheese sandwiches so the wheat-allergic kid can eat the same thing as the rest of us." It's shocking how few people have even a basic understanding of allergens and cross-contact. In a Facebook recipe group I'm in, someone asked for alternatives to corn bread to go with chili because her son is allergic to corn. Most people answered with "Fritos" or "Tortilla chips." Nobody I know is allergic to corn but I dang well know that Fritos and Tortilla chips are primarily made from corn. Once I went to a mandatory office party and one of the executives wandered by my table where I was sitting alone and asked why I was eating the table decorations (they were all made out of tropical fruit, still in the skins and stuck together with bamboo skewers in goofy shapes). I said I had Celiac and nothing they were serving was safe for me to eat. She said Oh, we made sure there were lots of gluten free options, did you see the table of fruit and cheese and meats? I asked her if anybody had given any thought to the fact that they'd used breadsticks as table decorations interspersed throughout the food table. She looked at me like a deer in the headlights, asked for my name, and asked if she could contact me before the next event for advice on how to better serve employees with Celiac and other food allergies (this was a big company with LOTS of employees). I said sure... and never heard from her again, not even after I emailed her to ask if I could help with food planning for another upcoming function. This was just one example - pretty much all our functions were like that. At another function everything they had on the buffet line was marked with a sign that said gluten free... except the buns which were at the front of the table and were the first thing every person put on their plate before going through the line risking cross contact with everything else on the table. They even had gluten free buns available, and an empty serving table they could have used with the gluten free buns in order to avoid cross contact, but nobody stopped to think about it. Sometimes it really is just one small change you can make, which will make a HUGE difference when you want to be inclusive. This applies to food and other disabilities as well.
  18. 3 points
    Staying warm in the tent....Hmmm. Not sure I have a "game" in mind, but I love being out in the snow on a beautiful winter day, and so I do have a few tips: * Remember to dress in layers when going out: wicking base layer, breathable insulation layer, waterproof/windproof outer shell but in the tent, remember that wicking is still important if you're too hot/sweating, and you really want adequate insulation (fleece and down feel warmest) * Pull clothes, hat, jacket into the sleeping bag a half hour or so before you get dressed and it won't feel like such a cold shock * Pack some of those Hot Pack hand warmers, they're good in a pinch if your gloves and/or clothing choices aren't serving you well * Hats On! Remember that much of your body heat loss happens through your head. Hats are important --- even while sleeping. Maybe especially when sleeping since nights are colder than days * Eat more fat. Your body's furnace needs fuel. * Carry spare socks and spare gloves and a spare hat: wetness is the enemy as much as the cold
  19. 3 points
    Hmm, that is a complex question because their are so many dynamics of setting goals and developing skills, toward, or as a result of those goals. It might be easier to define the differences as a result of scout choices. And many of these things come by accident. For example we had to take a scout to the emergency room during summer camp because the he subbed his toes while running through camp. The adults camp at a separate campsite across the road from the scouts, so I have to walk over to talk the SPL. And in short, the SPL saw the whole thing happen. He knew the rules of shoes being required and no running in camp and even confessed that he didn't try to stop the scout. In fact, at least 20 scouts witness the scout running through camp without shoes and didn't try to stop him. Being a little frustrated, I had a SM Conference with all the scouts at once and pointed out that they were all as much at fault with the accident as the scout himself. When comparing their choices to the law, they all failed and someone got hurt. That was a red flag to emphasis that taking care of each other often means telling your brother scout that they are doing it wrong. I coached the PLC to watch and help each other. I started having conferences with all the scout involved with a scout's bad decisions. If a PL is having trouble with one scout, don't wait for the call of help, wander over and offer your help. Don't yell across the room as a distraction, just quietly wander over. What I didn't know at the time of summer camp but came to learn was the scouts needed permission to call their friends on some of their bad decisions. They didn't want to be a bad guy acting like police on their friends bad decisions. I gave them reason and an excuse to be that bad guy. I turned the bad guy image into being a good guy. It was like letting air out of a balloon, all of a sudden calling each other on their bad decision was a good character action. The result at the troop level was that incidences of bad decisions brought to the SM dropped to almost zero in 6 months. If an incidence did get to the SM, it was usually a new scout that wasn't respecting the youth leadership. The scouts starting being proactive in dealing with the discipline of bad decisions. Simply telling your tent mate to put on shoes nips something worse down the road. That has nothing to do with the Methods, but very much to do with Character and fitness at the Aims level. And probably citizenship if we discussed the subject in details. That is one example of many. I just have to think of them. Barry
  20. 3 points
    In my opinion, popcorn encourages hucksterism in scouts. The product is of dubious quality and outrageously over priced and most scouts know it. They hear the feedback from people who say they can buy better product at a fraction of the price and yet National keeps exhorting them to peddle it. In any other youth organization my scouts have been involved with, the fundraisers offered something of value that didn't feel dishonorable to sell. Don't know why BSA can't find another fundraising partner.
  21. 3 points
    Our troop is at the 8-month mark in doing exactly what you are now beginning. We are not linked and have a very supportive CO. We are not perfect, but I would say the reason why we now have 15 adult leaders and 30 girls is that a group of us developed a vision for an unlinked girl-centered troop at an early stage. The program and standards for advancement are exactly the same, but we were especially mindful of the schedule and other structural preferences of girls and their families in designing our troop operation. You can visit our site at http://www.ScoutsBsaDcGirls.org if you want to see our take on this. For instance, in our particular area we determined after surveying parents that twice-monthly Saturday morning meetings were better for scheduling and safety reasons. We also determined that our meeting could be longer (we go 2 hours), given the longer attention spans of girls at the critical 11-13 year-old ages. Another item you will face is that when you start, you will have all inexperienced girls at the same time. Our solution for this was to elect Patrol leaders but have the Scoutmasters provide more direct leadership for the first 4-5 months. After all, you cannot expect an inexperience 11-year-old to be an SPL and lead planning of a year-long program. You also need to generally assure that the early meetings and weekend campouts will be reasonably successful, otherwise you could have a mass exodus as parents and girls are disappointed due to disorganization caused by over-reliance on girl leaders who are just not ready. We were harshly criticized by some for taking this approach, but on the back side I can tell you that it was a very successful start-up strategy. We just elected our first SPL and she has now appointed her full compliment of troop officers. Our campout this last weekend was a bit challenging for them because for the first time they were really "in-charge" and the Scoutmaster Staff is now appropriately "advising". However, the girls are thriving in their leadership activities as a result. Include in your vision a good means by which to encourage good summer damp attendance. We sent 23 to camp this last summer and are now very advantaged organizationally as a result. Another thing we were harshly criticized for is that we do not do product sale fundraising, such as popcorn with our Council. We wrap the total cost of the annual program (except for summer camp and weekend campouts that are paid individually) into flat dues payments made each semester. We subsidize the dues payments of under-resourced families by having an annual fundraising reception our CO will conduct between their early and late church services. WE are also going to make a bulk contribution to our Council from these proceeds. This was in reaction to the survey of parents saying they did not want their girls or themselves engaging in product sales. Rather, all want to concentrate on program. After 8 months, not a single parent or Scout has complained about either our dues or our not selling items. These organizing tactics may or may not be appropriate for families with girls in your area, but they are examples of organizing things that differ specifically because in our particular market this is what these families want in a girl Troop. I think our having done these things explains the difference in outcomes between our troop and most of the other all-girl linked troops in our area -- most of which are functioning as single-patrol appendages to existing Troops. A new Committee Chair and her/his core organizing group should first figure out what organizing template works well for families in your area/market and structure your approach accordingly. Good luck with this very worthwhile endeavor you are starting.
  22. 3 points
    Actually, parent pins shouldn't be worn on the uniform, and there's really nothing to be gained by doing so. Let your child represent him- or herself in the youth uniform. You best represent the Scouts by being properly uniformed yourself, and part of that means remembering that parents' pins are meant for non-uniform wear. Nowadays, there are nice parent ribbons available at the Scout Store on the which you may place your pins, but again, those are not to wear on the uniform. In our troop, when we present our parent pins we remind them that while they are lovely reminders of their child's accomplishments, there is a proper time and place to wear them - as with all things. As an Assistant Scoutmaster, you should be particularly conscious of the way you wear your uniform. You set the model for the rest of your troop, so be sure you read The Official Guide to Awards and Insignia carefully, and follow it to the letter. Believe me when I say that being perfectly uniformed will set you apart enough already, but beyond that, simply being a well-uniformed leader will represent your daughter far better than any extra pins ever will.
  23. 3 points
    The COH should be planned, developed, and executed by the Scouts. They run it, depending on the unit, CM's, ASM's and SM may hand out ranks and merit badges. Not sure what was covered under citations. If there was / is a concern with the COH, the TLC (formerly known as Greenbar) should address The separate ice cream social as a unit, that happened unbeknownst to the SM is a concern. Actually sort of rude. If there is a challenge with the SM and his actions (and he has been SM for what...6 months??) address with the COR and the committee, and the SM. Don't start a troop within a troop. It will not end well
  24. 3 points
    As I mentioned earlier, most of my MB's are for scouts in my own troop, so we have been associating with each other all along the way. I am also our district roundtable commissioner, and we offer MB's at most of our roundtables. Tonight was session #3 of 4 for a group working on Citizenship in the Community. The counselor has spent years developing the civics program taught in our state (I asked one of the scouts after session #1 how he liked it - he replied 'Man, that guy really knows his stuff!' He will end up not only earning the MB, but I am sure will benefit in the classroom as well. I had a group of scouts who spent the evening in a great discussion as a part of Scouting Heritage MB. Several were so into scouting history that they stayed for almost an extra hour going through the large collection of uniforms, insignia, and books that I brought with me. Plenty of adult association going on. Yes, there are the ones who feel that they have everything done ahead of time, and just want a signature, but I often find that they are not a 'complete' as they may think they are. In my Scouting Heritage group this evening, as we talked about the evolution of the BSA, I asked each of them how long we have had young ladies in scouting. Each of them had the same answer, less than a year. (Venturing is not big in our district, we currently have one chartered crew, and most folks do not realize they exist) Imagine the look on their faces to learn that girls have been a part of our program since Exploring went co-ed 50 years ago! Even the scout who does not think he needs more than a pen and blue card will usually leave having learned something new by the time we finish meeting.
  25. 3 points
    Perhaps CE will become a volunteer's position?