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Everything posted by allangr1024

  1. This is not good. Scouting in the US is fragmenting into pieces. Along religious lines we will have evangelical scouting (Trail Life), catholic scouting (troops of St George), LDS scouting (whatever they are going to call it), Scouting BSA (whatever), and who knows how many other separate scouting organizations. What would it take to bring all of these divergent pieces of the old BSA back together again?
  2. LegacyLost, I am a Christian believer, but I am not prepared to say that the BSA going coed is akin to violating the law of God. Scouting has always been a tool to help boys grow into men. As such, its purpose is noble and good, and I can use it to help my sons grow into men as well. But the allowing of girls into the BSA does not concern me because it violates scripture. Rather it is unwise, as it brings both girls and boys together at a time when their sense of their distinctiveness is being learned by both sides. Boys need to be around men to learn how to be a man. And I assume that
  3. If memory serves, when BP found out that girls wanted to do scouting, he set up a separate organization, the Girl Guides, and had his wife run it separately from the Boy Scouts. This all girls organization is still in business, and by some accounts, is prospering more than the current Scout Association in Britain. How could BP to be so unfriendly, to forsake being a brother to every other scout. He must have been a heartless, bigoted individual who hated females and treated them like crap. I wonder what would happen if the BSA followed BP's example, and set up something like the Girl
  4. Sorry, AVTech. I have to correct you. The copy of the Scoutmasters Handbook I got when I became a Scoutmaster in 2007 (copyright 1999) had this quote in the section called "The Aims of Scouting" on page 7, "A goal of the Boy Scouts of America is to help boys develop into honorable men. Scouting's values can be incorporated into a boy's home, school, and religious community, adding to all three and, in some cases, filling in where family, school, or religious support is lacking." They started replacing the gender term "boy" with the work "youth" when they started contemplating the ch
  5. It looks like this page has been taken down. Does anyone have a copy of what it said?
  6. I have thought of doing this in my troop as well. We have some older boys who use hammocks in spring weather, but no one seriously camps with hammocks. I use one at every camping trip. I have thought of doing a Saturday morning seminar for whoever wants to come, and maybe use the UNofficial Hammock Camping merit badge requirements (Look on HammockForums.com) I would definitely cover the following topics: 1. Use of tree straps to protect the trees. 2. Different types of suspension, along with a demonstration of at least 3. 3. How to stay warm in a hammock (pads or u
  7. He said that he was traveling a lot this summer. I think he said he was going on a trek to Canada, and I bet he is leading a tour or two to the Scouting facility in Switzerland, Kanderstag. I would have expected him back by now, but yea, not active online.
  8. The leave at 15 and return at 17 to finish Eagle requirements happened to my son. I was an ASM, and committed to the program. But my son just did not want to go to meetings any more, and went on few outings. I asked him "What gives?" He said that when he looks around at the troop meetings, all he sees are the little kids (11 and 12 year olds) and that doing Merit Badges as a life scout is just not fun. As a 16 year old life scout, he had "been there, done that", and it did not interest him any more. I can see that. The advancement program is geared for a 13 year old. It is ch
  9. When we got a new scoutmaster, I bought the two volume set of the 1940 Scoutmasters Handbook, written by Green Bar Bill. I told him that a lot of the program had changed, but the stuff in the first volume, especially the four chapters on the Patrol Method, were golden. I considered a good foundation in the philosophy of the Patrol Method to be invaluable to any SM. Otherwise, I don't think the current literature would give him the appreciation of this almost unique feature of the Scouting program. Our new SM got this, and has mentioned in planning meetings how old time troops from the p
  10. From what I understand, the SM did not want anyone to take this badge at camp, since he wants the scouts to actually learn to cook. The SM lead a high adventure trip this summer, so an ASM lead up the normal summer camp trip. The scout got one of the adults to change his class list. The camp generates a blue card on their computer for each badge earned and sends them as a packet with the adult leader. Are you suggesting that the scout has not earned the badge because he did not follow the normal blue card procedure? if he did not get SM approval, does the MB have to be awarded?
  11. Ok, this one is a puzzler. A first class scout goes to summer camp where the merit badge Cooking is offered. After five days of instruction, he is awarded the badge by the camp. The camp has a computer generated blue card that shows all the requirements checked off. The card is given to the troop advancement coordinator, who enters the earned merit badge into the Troopmaster software. The badge is earned, right? The Scoutmaster sees the merit badge earned on a list from summer camp, and realizes that there is no way the scout did the cooking requirements described in the book. He ask
  12. Excuse me, but this kind of physical contact between the SM and the scout borders on a criminal assault, and could even be actionable in a civil court. I have heard of teachers and coaches being fired for this kind of thing. In my council they tell us to call the police or sheriff, as well as the council executive. I think you should file a charge of assault with the police, and a formal complaint of a youth protection violation against this guy. If he has done something like this with this particular scout, then I bet he has done it to others as well. I might even call National and us
  13. I am from this council. I thought they were raising money for a new summer camp site. Our current summer camp (Hale Scout Reservation) is used mostly by Texas troops who want to get out of the 105 degree summer heat, in favor of our 95 degree summer heat. The current Zink Ranch scout camp is used mainly by Cub Scouts and Webelos for their resident camps. The Boy Scout section has not been improved in 40 years. We use it for Wilderness Survival camp outs. There is just nothing there. I wonder if local troops will be able to use these facilities. Or will they be so expensive t
  14. There are a few discussion items here. The first is the fact that Merit Badge Councilors are chartered not by the troop but by the district or council. The are supposed to be independent from the troop, to allow the scouts to have a broader experience in interacting with adults. The SM should get a list of district vetted councilors for each MB and give the scout the name and phone number of the councilor. The scout then contacts the councilor and they set up meetings and activities to work on the MB, outside of the troop setting. It sounds like this particular scout did this. I
  15. When backpacking I have heard the advice that you get a small backpack and fill it with just the stuff you really need. If you get the 70 gallon backpacks you will fill it with all kinds of stuff you don't need and that weight you down. It is the same thing with a meeting. Set a time that will let you get the business done, and then finish the meeting. I think for the average scout's advancement, 15 minutes is adequate. You are not testing the scout on his skills, you are trying to find out if his scout spirit is developing and you are trying to encourage him to continue on his scou
  16. I went through Woodbadge for the 20th Century, the last one before the new curriculum. We did all this stuff as a patrol. I thought the training was brilliant, because we got to do the stuff scouts do and experience scouting on their level, while learning stuff that could help our units when we returned. It was in this setting that I learned and appreciated the Patrol Method, and was determined to bring it to our very adult lead troop.
  17. I have open on my desk a book from the BSA called "Troop Committee Guidebook", printed 2006 (If this has been updated, I can find out.) On Page 13 the book lists the troop committee organization and responsibilities. There are 12 points of responsibility, and they all talk about filling a support role. They are to support the scoutmaster in working with inidividual boys and problems that may affect the overall troop program. Not a word about writing troop bylaws or requirements. The committee "Ensures that quality adult leadership is recruited and trained. In case the Scoutmaster is abse
  18. I met a scouter once at Fort Levensworth, KS, whose troop was chartered by some sort of officers club. When that troop got too big, they chartered another separate troop and sent half the boys there. They needed the other troop due to the number of soldiers boys who wanted to join scouting. Of course, an army base is like a small town, so several units makes sense in that setting.
  19. At our annual planning meeting in August a few years ago, our boys were telling us they did not want to go to summer camp the next year. When I asked why, they said that they had been to our council camp every year for years, and they had done everything the camp had to offer, and they did not want to go again. I asked them if it would be different if they went to a different camp for the next year. A gleam came to the older boys eyes, and they said "mayby....". So I asked where they wanted to go. They conferred, and told me they wanted to go to Colorado for summer camp (two states away.)
  20. I think you need to read the "Guide to Advancement, 2013 edition". It says that identifying at least one counselor is the responsibility of the unit leader. " The Scout, the Blue Card, and the Unit Leader A few merit badges have certain restrictions, but otherwise any registered Boy Scout, Varsity Scout, or qualified Venturer or Sea Scout may work on any of them at any time. Before he begins working with a merit badge counselor, however, he is to have a discussion with his unit leader. That a discussion has been held is indicated by the unit leader’s signat
  21. At this past summer camp, we had five scouts, and did not know how to decide on who should tent alone. (cabin tents designed for two cots.) (Yes, very small troop, sigh.) The boys came up with the unique solution of moving two tents together and tying the openings up so that it was a long cabin tent. Three boys in that, and two in a standard cabin tent. I liked it. We had plenty of unused tents in our campsite. The boys had it set up before I knew they had solved the problem. Boy led solutions are good for me.
  22. Eliminating merit badge classes in troop meetings was the first thing I did as Scoutmaster. But we do have adult scouters offer to do merit badge counciling outside of a meeting or on camping trips. Amazingly, not many badges are earned, as many boys do not follow through and do the work. I council wilderness survival, and yearly the boys choose to have a Wilderness survival campout where we do all the activity and skills described in the MB book. But I have the boys schedule a time to do the requirements where they discuss this and that. Only a few take the initiative and prepare to do t
  23. I am also getting a syntax error when I try to post a message. it says, "syntax error: json.parse: invalid character". When I got this, it logged me out, and I had to log back in. I hope this helps.
  24. It takes some getting used to it, but this should be a positive move. One preference I have is this. When I go to the latest topics page at http://www.scouter.com/LatestTopics, I see the list of new posts, the time they are posted, and the title of the post. I would like to see the forum it came from. So, for example, if I am interested in finding new messages in the Patrol Method forum, I can quickly identify messages from that forum. Is it possible to do this? Thanks.
  25. I would say now is the perfect time of year. In our district, second year Webelos scouts are finishing up their Arrow of Light award, and as soon as they do that, they can cross over to a troop. If a troop put together a good recruiting plan, they could recruit a patrols worth of these cross over Webelos. A new scoutmaster would be wise to call up the pack leaders of the two packs in his town, take them out to lunch, and discuss with them the possibility of speaking to the scouts and their parents about the new troop. In addition, you would get 11 year olds and up if you could advertise you
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