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Everything posted by Eagledad

  1. Yep, don’t get me started. As I watch the challenges my adult kids are facing in today’s politically correct culture, I believe the Scout Oath will have to be heavily modified because it is the moral pillar of character building. I’ve seen it happen in other countries. Barry
  2. Great post SSScout. We also learned about making the birthday party less official and more fun. We moved our cross overs and Webelos/AOL ceremonies to other meetings. That gave more room for fun and made those ceremonies more special for the scouts. Families today struggle to find opportunities for fun family nights out. Give your families that opportunity. Barry
  3. Our troop wore the solid olive drab BDUs. The color was so close to the scout pants back then that one would have to look closely to see they weren’t the official scout pants. The BDUs were half the price of official scout pants, adjustable through 4 sizes for growing scouts and they were much more durable for rough scouting activities. Most surprisingly was the BDUs were popular at school. A scout wouldn’t be caught dead wearing official scout pants, but they wore the BDUs with pride. The PLC didn’t accept or push any official troop camo, but some of the patrols wore military camo boony
  4. The main skill I worked on with my SPLs is delegating. Sometimes I actually stood next to the SPL to keep him from moving to do something. You just haven’t practiced it yet. I know what you’re thinking, the scouts don’t know how to do it. Ok, teach it instead of doing it. It will feel awkward at first, but as the scouts start having fun doing that stuff you were doing, you can stand back and smile. Barry
  5. Loppers is probably my most used yard tool. Perfect for car camping. But, many of the saw injuries we tended to occur on back packing treks where minimal equipment weight is priority. Even hatchets are considered to Harvey, so the small backpacking saw is the tool of choice. Sadly, light backpacking saws are particularly difficult to use safely without much practice. Over the years we’ve come to depend on safety equipment to reduce accidents and have found one pair of heavy garden gloves are our equipment of choice for back woods treks. First off, they protect hands from the wildy saw. Bu
  6. A surgeon once re-attached two parts of my hand because I used a saw unsafely. Because of that experience, not taking wood-shop class wasn’t an option for my sons. I was counting on the Oldscout448’s to teach my sons how to use shop power tools safely. I started my adult leaders wood-tools training class by explaining that the worst damaging flesh injuries in scouts came from saws. Not from not knives, not hatchets, and not the really scary axe. When a scout runs the teeth of a saw across his knuckles, it leaves a scar for life. You’re not only afraid of the wrong tools; your fear i
  7. After the troop matured a couple of years, we didn't see anymore of the SPLs who just wanted the cool experience because the scouts saw how demanding the job was. Only the most ambitious scouts ran for it. In fact, the troop paid for the SPL's summer camp fees because he worked so hard. The SPL is the first into camp to sign the troop in, and the last to leave to sign the troop out. He attends all the adult meetings and makes all the decisions that don't require an 18 or older person. I learned that the other SPLs in the camp recognize maturity because our SPLs were typically picked as the ca
  8. This is so good. Thanks. In general, scouts who are placed in leadership for credit generally don't learn or grow at all. In fact, they will more likely dispise leadership. And, a lot of scouts who don't show any desire for leadership in their younger years will all of a sudden thirst for it in their older years. We all mature at different rates. We just need to let them choose when they are ready. Oh, in our troop, past SPLs took on the Troop Guide role. I think it is because while they were ready for break from the very demanding SPL responsibilities, they still needed to lead an
  9. I'm wondering how to use the grabber to clean up after my dogs during walks? Barry
  10. I agree with everything in elitts post. Still, there is also the risk of the SPL appoints a friend with no real desire to do the job. Giving young people the experience of responsibilities is tricky, and I found that whether they are elected, appointed or even volunteer, the real work of the SM is developing them to do the work. One of the reasons I don't like leadership as a requirement for advancement is that most people aren't leaders. That is my experience of life and Scoutmasting. So, what are we scouters to do? Well, I learned to encourage scouts to take the next step in their growth. If
  11. Not get elected can hurt feelings to, but that is another lesson I guess. I have no trouble with it. Barry
  12. In my mind, not a biggie if the process enhances the objective of growth. Many times however, these changes are done to make the program easier for the adults to manage. Meaning, more adult led. Also, following published guides tends to prevent confusion down the road with big leadership changes. I once observed a program where the SPL was elected every year instead of every six months. I found the SPL's more mature because they had six months to learn and six months to use what they learned. I proposed that idea to our PLC and I was voted down. Why change a good thing was their re
  13. I didn't know about the LDS units, That makes a lot of sense. And, may also be why one year is used as the time limit. What I mean is I learned over the years that the majority of scouts who leave the program in their first year quit being active after summer camp. I started teaching that new scouts who stay active after their first summer camp will likely stay active for at least 3 years. But, I believe summer camp caps off the scouts impression of his scouting experience determines his future in the program. Of course they aren't officially dropped until the signup a year later. B
  14. Thinking about the Chief Scout idea, I wonder if it should be a National authorization by an un-corruptible 3rd party. The scouter has to apply for it with a resume and proof of legitimacy. A national 3rd party could maintain quality control to hold the authorization's integrity. Maybe the authorization should only last while the scouter is registered. I would be interested in being part of something like that. Barry
  15. Wonderful. I could see either a good idea. But the adult should get a really cool hat. Barry
  16. One of my mentors ran into Bill Hillcourt on a Philmont trail. His crew invited Bill to stay with their crew for dinner and he told stories all night by the campfire. That experience motivated my mentor to become a SM at age 21 and he just retired in his 60s just a couple years ago. Pretty cool story. Barry
  17. Our camps are Cub and Troop friendly, so this is new to me. Thanks. Barry
  18. Hmm, well that seems like a ding against the idea of units running independently without the Council. Of course I come from a time of units required to use Tour Permits. The council has to approve all camp activities the units apply for. I liked liked Tour Permits because it provided a check list for units to verify they were prepared to travel and camp camp. I'm not sure what I think about a unit waiting for the approval of something they could do themselves. I'll have to think about that. Our pack and dens camped at many State Packs that met the criteria. Barry
  19. So, your saying, the camp may have all the requirements for cub camping, it's just hasn't been officially approved for Cub camping by the council. Is that right? Barry
  20. Your number one used camp doesn't have showers? Is that not your Boy Scout summer camp? Barry
  21. Seem pretty basic. What is not provided in your council? Barry
  22. I agree with every word of Jameson76's post. When our troop reached 100 scouts, 45 of the scouts were 14 and older. And the average age our scouts were awarded Eagle 16.5 years old. Barry
  23. My dad was a 15 year old SM during WWII because there weren't enough men around. His dad (my grandpa) didn't want the job, but said he would sign everything required by the adult if my dad was SM. And they made that work for 2 years. My dad enjoyed being a SM, but regretted doing it because he wanted to get his Eagle and didn't have the time. Jameson said what I was going to say. I want to add, that stating something in writing usually takes out flexibility. How many discussions have we had on this forum of why Unit level restrictions and requirements for discipline or attendance tend to
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