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Eagledad last won the day on September 19

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About Eagledad

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  1. Eagledad

    YPT2 deadline

    A Webelos leader that doesn't like to camp is not unusual. You have heard me say it a lot, the BSA looses almost 50% of Webelos IIs because their program is boring. Burnout and unhappy leaders are the main cause. When I was a Webelos, males leaders were expected to take over the scouts for the Webelos experience. But times have changed, moms who take on Tigers is expected to continue through Webelos II. We tried to get packs to plan a head for Webelos with leaders who are comfortable outdoors. But, finding leaders willing to take over at Webelos is challenging enough without finding one with outdoors experienced. Our district tried to match up these boring dens with troop leaders who would come in and assist the leader in the program. Works pretty good. A Den Chief can help a lot too, but a troop leaders is still good to have in the back ground because some of these Webelos leaders just aren't into planning den meetings. I wouldn't worry about the scouts not camping. It's nice, but boys join troops for the expectations of adventure. The SM just needs to take care of these guys during their first couple of campouts. I once had a den of 8 Webelos who had never camped join and earn eagle. We had another den of Webelos that had camped every month for the last two years join and they all quit in three months. They were better at scout skills than some of our third year scouts, so they were bored on campouts. The key to these scouts is get them excited about the troop program so they are looking forward to it. And, take them on a couple of Saturday visits to troop campouts. Barry
  2. Eagledad

    New girls in Scouting

    Wow, I like your style. A little pointed, but I understand. I actually created a couple of classes that were intended to answer your question. We can get into as much details as you want, but I will keep it short as I can. First, learn the BSA Mission and Vision. Preparing young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetime by instilling in them the value of the scout oath and law are the adult leaders primary task. Aims and Methods is how the troop leaders get work toward that goal. The adults measure each scout's growth of making ethical and moral choices within the categories of character, fitness and citizenship. The adults build growth in character, fitness and citizenship by giving the scouts the independence of making moral and ethical choices in the environment of patrols, ideals, outdoors activities, advancement, adult association, personal growth, leadership development and uniform. The adults are to measure and encourage continued practice of making decisions within these program applications so that the scout continues growth toward ethical and moral choices. The more choices a scout makes during his scouting experiences (bad choices are good, the more the better), the more the scout grows and matures toward their preparation of lifelong decisions instilled by the oath and law. If the adults would consider their every decision and action with the scouts to progressing toward preparing ethical and moral decision makers, the program would simplify itself around the very basic requirements of Aims and Methods. Adult Training would be learning mentoring skills to push scout growth instead of scout skills to be a better adult age boy scout. That is a quick list of what I feel new adults need to learn. It seems too simplistic to some and too idealistic to others. Scouting is a values program that uses the outdoors as the tool for practice. Adult led troops are led by adults who want the outdoor experience without focusing on the values. . If adults could learn to build the program toward the mission and vision, they would find many of their questions answered and a much simpler program to maintain. They would be giving the scouts a real world experience scaled down to a boys size. Their scouts would be more prepared for the challenges of the future than almost all of their nonscout friends. I hope that isn't too much. I wish my writing skills had the elegance of my passion. Barry
  3. Eagledad

    New girls in Scouting

    Good question. Let me explain by starting with a my life lesson based from our experience of expanding the troop program. Over the years of crossing new scouts into the program, we learned that two new scouts was the maximum number a patrol of 8 scouts could handle without negatively effecting the patrol culture. The goal is to assimilate the new scouts into the patrol culture, not change the culture as a result of the new scouts. So, we learned that 25% was the maximum number of new scouts we could add to the patrol without effecting it too much. In truth, I preferred 20% or less. I have no idea statistically how much new blood an organization can bring in without directly effecting the whole organization. But, our district once calculated that the percentage of new scouters without a scouting background joining the BSA before 1990 (Women could become troop leaders) was less than 25% in our area. After 1990, that number shot up considerably to over 40% and grew. Now these numbers have a great deal of guess because anyone who has worked with BSA membership numbers learns that they change constantly. Districts set their own annual renewal schedules and inflate the numbers with membership drives like Webelos IIs in the winter. Drove me crazy because the number of crossover scouts can't be calculate accurately for at least a year when Webelos who signed up with a troop are resigned at the troop's next signup. A huge number of Webelos who sign up with troops never show up, but are officially registered active with the troop. Anyway, I was listening to very experienced volunteers around 1995 complaining that the new training staffs didn't really understand the program they were teaching. One Council Trainer said that he was watching Wood Badge course change from a leadership skills course to a scout skills for adults before his eyes and there was nothing he could do about it. His trainers needed training because they were hung up on scout skills basics. He was feeling a lot of pressure from Council to shut up about his observation because our Council volunteers weren't the only ones speaking up. He was gone a year later. A whole new training program from bottom to top came out 5 years later. So, your question is how does and organization expand without bringing in new blood? You are right, simple math shows growth requires some new blood. So the bigger question is how much new blood can an organization handle without changing the dynamics of the organization? Based from my limited experience in my very small world, less than 20%. The program has been changing for the last 25 years to adjust with the large influx of inexperienced adults. Now that number is about to jump again. As, NJ points out, how the organization adjust depends on the training. But a lot also depends on how much of the program the organization management wants to maintain. I was shocked and deeply hurt to learn of the new derogatory term "Conditional Scouters" coming from the top end of the organization. I think that says a lot because the Conditional Scouters are today's experienced teachers. Barry
  4. That is exactly what we do. The adults enjoy it, but they do require some training because most of our adults are under the CC, not the SM who does that kind of adult training. But once the adults understand their role, they take it very seriously and have fun with it. And it works very well in keeping the program at a very basic level. Barry
  5. Eagledad

    New girls in Scouting

    I know, but I'm basing my concern completely from the observation of bringing in female troop leaders. If one doesn't know, how can one get there? Observations show that one doesn't get there. I guess this is considered pessimism in your business. We call it planning a head in mine business. Barry
  6. Really! We created the parents guide because we got so many calls about troop meeting times, campouts, annual dues, summer camps and other common questions. But maybe Web Sites are the go-to guides for that information now. A word of warning from our experience with troop strong "chairs" in a boy run troop. Their natural adult efficiency will tend to push more bureaucracy into the program than a boy run program requires, which tends to take away the scouts practice of initiating the actions and contacts for their needs in the patrol method program. We countered the problem by recruiting a scout to assist each position. Except for the treasure, the older scouts enjoyed the roles as well as the adults enjoying assisting the scouts. Watch out for the advancement chair in the Spring, they have some pretty cleaver ideas toward streamlining the Summer Camp MB signup process. Barry
  7. Eagledad

    New girls in Scouting

    Yep, and it supports my deepest concerns of inexperienced adults leading the program. I can't see it going any direction other than Advancement based Eagle Mill camping programs. Barry
  8. Many troops do this with a new parents guide. Our troop does a required adult leader training course twice a year after each SPL election which identified the official BSA documents used to guide the troop policies and program. We also scheduled an advancement training class once a year originally intended specifically for MB Counselors, which most of the active adults attend. But, even with all that training, 80% of adults don't pay much attention until they have a specific need because that kind information makes for a good sleeping pill. Which is why the burden of knowing and understanding BSA policies lays so heavily on the SM and CC. Barry
  9. Wow, I couldn't get through it either. I had to pause at the uniform instructions. I've said before that the two most discussed subjects in my adult leader training classes were "uniform" and "scout discipline". I understand "scout discipline" because adults are challenged with controlling behavior in a so called "boy run" program. BUT UNIFORM? "Uniform policy is set by the Scout Handbook. Anything else must be approved by the PLC and SM." The uniform guidelines kind of represent the adult frame of mind in that they are making scouting too hard. Youth of the scouting age like to take the path of least resistance. Why would any kid want to endure the complexity of the scout program today when they could be playing video games? Barry
  10. Eagledad

    Webelos Dad wants a fast track for scout

    Some scouts do mature faster but this is a little unusual because they like to stick with their friends. Are these scouts not his friends? 10 is a funny age, seems like there’s a huge maturity gap between them and 9 year olds. Typically the problem is opposite, the more mature scouts drag the less mature scouts along. If this is a parent pushing, I would not suggest battling to make a point. And while unusual, I wouldn’t worry that it sets a bad message. If they aren’t tight group, the other shouldn’t care much. Qwazse has a good suggestion. Barry
  11. Mostly the adventure outdoor themes including rappelling, shooting sports and water sports. The PLC once did a space theme where they did some pretty cool physics and space ship stuff. That was 20 years ago, so I dont remember specifics. But I was super impressed because the Scouts did it all, research and activities. We also did a few troop night camporees and a Trooporee with 3 other troops. Those are a lot of work for a boy run program because the boys are in-charge with adults assisting. Be creative and bring ideas to the table. As I said, we included adult suggestions to push out the envelope of fun ideas. Also, merit badges can give ideas. The PLC planned an auto mechanics theme one year. The boys are to young to drive, but they all like cars. They found enough classic car owners to have a classic car show at one meeting. Barry
  12. Eagledad

    Parents not getting it

    At first I was surprised that some parents take their son to another troop. I got used to it, but I was always disappointed. I improved my visitor talks to give parents a clearer understanding of how our program worked. And it helped, but some parents have their own vision of scouting. Barry
  13. Eagledad

    Scouting Magazine - betting the farm on girls

    Here is the way it would have happened in our boy run troop. The boy run PLC plans a program for dens in the district just like they have been doing for the last 20 years and sends the same invite they have been sending to packs for the last 20 years to their program that the previous PLC planned a year ago. Only this time National made a recent major policy with complicated details That few adults, much less Scouts, understand. And the pack adults are offended. As a SM, I would suggest to the SPL that they disinvite that pack because if those adults can’t handle this error, they won’t tolerate our boy run program. Scouting was fun until the adults got involved. Barry
  14. Eagledad

    BSA: The POLARIS Method

    Exactly! Because I was the Council JLT Chairman, I was asked to join a National sponsored forum with other Council Youth Training Chairman to discuss and pass along suggestions for the new NYLT course. Very few, if any suggestions by the list ended up in the course. I’m not quite sure why National wasted our time. Barry
  15. Eagledad

    Travois competition

    You will find a lot of information and videos under Boy Scout chariot race. This was a common patrol competition when I was a scout. The only difference was we used 6 eight foot poles. Four were lashed in a square with the other two lashed to the four corners in a cross. Im not sure I understand your question of using fewer lashings since tying lashings is the point of the race. Barry