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Its Me

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Everything posted by Its Me

  1. Our troop currently uses personal tents meaning that the parents/ scouts are left to supply their own tents. The benefits are cost to the troop and all the drying and cleaning are left to up to dad/mom to do on Sunday afternoon. The con to this is, none of the tents are uniform and some are the size of garages while some are the size a pup tent. There is also the "this is my tent and I want X and Y with me." The garage style tents also increase the number of scouts to a small crowd. And we all know crowds don''t go to sleep. With troop tents the "the way I see it" is that the troop can have tents that are practical for backpacking (kids divide up the load) and there is no "this is my tent" I am looking for comments on who is using troop owned tents. What tents they purchased? How has it fared? Are they maintained properly? (This message has been edited by Its Me)
  2. Its Me

    Knot Me

    I have no knots on my shirt. I am sure I could find some way to get some but I am not sure why I need knots. I founded a troop so I guess I could have one for that. I am sure their are others I could qualify for having served as a leader for more than five years. But why? This is a youth program not an adult association club. Adult knots seem childish. Why do adults get all tied up in knots?
  3. Its Me

    Campsite Gateways

    Gateways are the Pink Flamingos of the camping world, unnecessary, out of place and out of fashion.
  4. How in the world do you hold troop meeting that provide time nd opportunities for scouts to work on the 11 require MB's? It seem like the whole thing can become a jumbled mess. Earn a total of 21 merit badges (10 more than you already have), including the following: First Aid Citizenship in the Community Citizenship in the Nation Citizenship in the World Communications Personal Fitness Emergency Preparedness OR Lifesaving Environmental Science Personal Management Swimming OR Hiking OR Cycling Camping, and Family Life *
  5. Its Me

    Do away with advancement?

    Somewhere in the woodbadge and training forum is my post on my Powder Horn training experience. Powder horn is the training for venture crew leaders. From what I gather, Venturing is all about the outing. Advancement is a much lower priority. Youth led seemed even lower. In venturing BSA has recognized that in order to complete with well developed church youth groups, they had to diminish the emphasis on advancement. Make just fun and they well come. Character development and adult association still occur but its less structured. To be Fair venturing has its advancement program but I can't say that my daughter's venture crew is concerned with advancements. If we were to draw a conclusion from this it could be that BSA recognizes that as the scout ages and parental control is replaced with personal independence the youth chooses to not seek Rank badges.
  6. Why do so many of you want to demonize Woodbadge? Its a training program to assist adults in delivering a fun-filled youth oriented outdoor program. My post above was an attempt to demonstrate that a good Boy Scout program is more than just Pioneering skills. Scouting is a complicated program. It has advancements (customized to meet the interests of individual scouts), boy leadership balanced with adult association, off-site campouts, meal planning community service, "ideals of character" and religious involvement. A lot must be understood to deliver a solid program. (staying on topic) Wood badge is a training event to help the adult deliver a complete program. (This message has been edited by Its Me)
  7. You all have much stronger opinions on what Wood badge is and is not than I do. It is training for adults leaders who are implementing a youth group program. Nothing more or less. The training tries to help adults deliver a better program to the youths. I have seen first hand the very ideal scoutmaster many speak of. We were in a troop where the scoutmasters skills were extremely impressive. There wasn't a knot, plant on insect that he couldn't identify. Yet he couldn't delivery the program. He couldn't teach. He couldn't stop just showing off skills he knew. His campout plans were boring. His troop meetings were boring. He lost whole patrols for three years in a row as soon as they completed first class. Our first cub-master was the opposite. She was never a boy scout but the program worked very well under her stewardship. Her pack meetings and campouts were fun. She was fun to be around. She recruited leaders very well. She communicated very well. I have no idea if she knew a square lashing from a diagonal lashing. It didn't matter. She delivered a great program and the kids thrived under her. (This message has been edited by Its Me)
  8. I am running a leadership program this weekend for First Class scouts and above. The focus will be the Patrol Leaders Handbook. I need two 30-45 minutes games. Ideally one should be a team building game and the other a leadership game. What have you seen work well and Why?
  9. I have an MBA and the 15 week Dale Carnegie mangement course training/ All completed prior to Woddbadge. I have 20 years of industry experience and numerous 1 day, 1 hour and 2 day courses on management skills. WB21 is not a management course. They do work on some public speaking skills only because this shows up on so high on many personal fears. They are also teaching you to be a trainer for youths who will do public speaking. The communications skills, public speaking, note taking and listening techniquies are straight out of the Patrol Leaders handbook. All this is a small part of the course. Its not a lashing, tracking and wilderness survival training program. Ist focus is on the eight methods which have been consistant fo 60 years.
  10. Thanks Here is my program based off a PL's training pamphlet from the 1970's. I am using this old resource because I did not find the current troop training manuals sufficient in detail. Opening game / assemble game (from old book) A stake is planted in the ground. A scout about 75 from stake, takes a compass baring on the stake and then a paper bag goes over his head. He is spun three time and told to look down on his compass and find his way to the stake. Second game (from Link above) All boys are blindfolded and told to grab each others arm / hand. Now they must form a circle, triangle and square. After each shape rview their success. Now I pull out the SPL and he is is the only one not blindfolded. The process is repeated. Did they perform better with a leader or without. Review PL's Handbook. I had to re-write all the contents of an old quiz as they did not match the current PL's handbook. Lunch Pioneer tower project. Real team work project. Optional (low Rope course) two rope bridge, Cross once, one at a time without falling off. Cross again only this time the SPL, and a few of the better crossing scouts are blindfolded. Maybe seeing scout can't talk. OK, what happened. How did the team react? Did you use the full resources of the group? Was everyone heard? Did the group stay in control? Who stepped up when the SPL was blindfolded, Why?
  11. Its Me

    When I disagree with PLC decisions

    Take earplugs. Next year fix the calendar at the annual planning event. If you don't and allow changes at every PLC meeting then you have a month-month calendar. You can't plan meetings and advancements oportunities at campouts on a month to month basis. At least they are planning for an event 5 months down the road. That shows initiative.
  12. I see that Camp Woodruff offers a troop canoe overnighter. This looks interesting to me. I was wondering if I could get some comments on troops who have done this specific overnighter or troops who have done their own overnighter at summer camp.
  13. Its Me

    How many parents do we need?

    As a generalization from my youth. Kids whose parents were involved in their sports and activities seemed more successful. Those kids whose parents showed up for little games played better. Kids whose parents went to watch them in the marching band at half time went to better colleges. Kids whose parents were involved in their lives seemed to get into less trouble. I don't see an inconsistency in a program that aims for good character, uses advancement and adults association as two pillar of its program and parents being involved. The child's parent is his principle teacher. All others are just specialist to one degree or another.
  14. Its Me

    The ManScout & WB

    Did some one mention the obvious? Posting hundreds of times on a public forum about scouting. Checking forum daily the for new posts or replies. Discussing the minutia of what is meant by ----- in the handbook. Yes, Scouters as much we have all written and pushed into the Man-scout and woman-scout all the attributes we don't like in an adult leader, most of the posters on these forums would fall into the category of adult-scout. The threshold for man-scout move depending on the eyes looking at it. Example, the pack I just visited the cub master and assistant cub master wore blue genes. To them any adult in full uniform is a man-scout. Posters, you wanna see a man-scout go look in the mirror.
  15. Its Me

    Who should attend NYLT

    Its November and NYLT is in July. I have to begin planning and preparing a scout for the week long commitment. Do I plan to send the current SPL? Do I send the SPL and ASPL assuming that one will follow the other? Our SPL was elected in October. I can see him getting re-elected in March. He will be half way through his second term by the time he gets into NYLT. Is he too late? Do I hedge and and send two? Three?
  16. Training would be similar to what it is now: I would break out the training program into four areas Cubs Webelos & First Class PLC / Patrol Training Venturers / Older Scouts The cub training would be a weekend event think Baloo on caffeine. This training module would focus on getting the kids and their parents into tents and into the outdoors. Outdoor skills that are too often assumed as being taught by the pack aren't. The Pack may have a few experienced camper but too often they aren't in a position where they can train parents. (sneaking this in "allow den camping") Next would be a weekend event or more on forming patrols and getting to first class. To a casual observer the webelos program is prep for first class. I combined Webelos with first class training because I think a fourth grade and a sixth grader have more in common than an eighth grader and sixth grader. This is all about tribal bounding and patrol spirit. PLC and Patrol running would come next. Teaching these skills to first years I would say is a reach for most. This one and the prior one break out wood badge into separate training modules. The patrol forming gets put into the Outdoor webelos program and the troop/patrol running gets put into separate module. One thing I don't really remember from Woodbadge is program planning and using the porgram features to design an annual program. This IMHO is less intuitive for most adults leaders than running a meeting or speaking to a small group. Finally grand adventure training for the upper scouts. With my recent Powder horn training I can tell you that national believes that keeping the older scouts needs to model youth group style organization. Structure and leadership take a backseat to trip planning. Actually what I am doing is pushing more training earlier into the program. Camping skills developed at the bear and wolf level with mom and dad will pay off handsomely in the patrol years.
  17. That menu looks OK to me for backpacking. Kids don't crave flavor like adults so variety is not important to them. Maybe it's a little light on calories so they may want to review and see if they have a minimum of 2500 calories per day per scout (consult book for recommended value for age and weight). With all the hiking they will likely go calorie negative for a few days but if its a short trip of less than five days they will be OK. Most of my young scouts 12 and under won't even eat a beef stew. My own second class scout orders pasta with no sauce. Highly seasoned food is avoided at all cost. The peanut butter sandwich is the base back-up food for all scouts. I wouldn't burden the scouts with overly challenging menus that they don't want and won't eat. Backpacking meals are different, they are sustenance eating as the wilderness experience is the center stage. Also big fancy meals means more food, more pots, more fuel and more clean-up. This all adds to more weight and expanded meal times. (This message has been edited by Its Me)
  18. As many may know, several parents and I formed a new troop after six months in one troop. During those six months we paid annual dues of $50, fully participated in a $750 fundraiser. One of the my kid's dad even donated $1,000 for the troop to buy a trailer. The new trailer was purchased and the small trailer was considered for sale. [Drama fill-in] Well when we announced that we were forming our own troop and would leave the troop after the court of honor in three weeks, the scoutmaster kicked us out. He said all the departing scouts should not return to any troop events and should not attend the court of honor. It gets worse in that the scoutmaster then delivered scathing speech to the remaining scouts on loyalty. He said all the scouts that left were unloyal and did not follow the scout law. As a result of that speech a kid from the old troop is in class with a kid from my troop and guess what? The next time they met the old troop scout called the departing scout disloyal and unscout like. [end drama fill] My question; are my scouts entitled to any of the money that we paid, helped raise, or donated on our behalf? PS we asked for the old trailer and scoutmaster said no. They were using it now since they are a samller troop. The CC has not returned our emails. (This message has been edited by Its Me)
  19. Its Me

    Troop Money and Troop Split

    I can see that this could consume many hours of effort and thoughts of my committee members. And it seems it would all be for naught. The old troop did have a practice of giving kids money they ~earned. One year, I am told they even passed out cash to the kids. This past year they allowed individual popcorn sales to pay off individual summer camps. One kid raised $200 in donations and this went directly to his summer camp expenses.
  20. I know what the book says should occur. I have read Kudo's Court of Honor Patrol. I know what we did in Woodbadge. But our PLC looked nothing like those. The PLC meeting is set to take place 30 minutes before the troop meeting, once a month. It took 15 minutes to track down all those believed to be on the PLC. Then the Scout master chided all the scouts for not having pencils. No meeting minutes were read let alone signed. What happened next was that all the scouts were given a blank paper by the scout master and told to make a two column 4 row chart to create a set-up amd clean-up duty roster. All while this is occuring boys and parents kept entering and leaving the small room. After 20 minutes it was over. No votes, no reports, no opening, no closing.
  21. Its Me

    Which "evil" to choose?

    Neither is following the program if hazing is allowed. Between the two evils I would choose Troop 1. Hazing seems the lesser of the evils and IMHO can be more easily corrected in a troop that has trained leaders. What to tell the parents? I would have a hard time even recommending that a scout go to troop 2 as they seem too far off the mark. Chances are that troop 2 is also far off the mark in advancement and leadership development. I would describe more as kid run than boy lead.
  22. Its Me

    Am I Over-reacting?

    Am I over-reacting in expecting more out of an eagle scout? No
  23. Its Me

    Knot Me

    I like Beavah's teacher analogy the best. Other parables I will dispute. In the military they save their medals for their dress blues. Professors don't feel the need to wear their resumes on their shoulder. Sure, Professors wear the robes and colors at commencement and they have meaning but that's only twice a year. By some analogies I should pursue every knot there is to show the kids what a go getter I am, and they should follow. FScouter wrote That's one I never heard of. And I thought I had the Insignia Guide memorized. With all do respect. That' just scary! I will yield a bit. A few colored knots on your shoulder for the adults to think you have been around a while. Fine suit yourself. Two rows and then some and you are starting to look like a Chilean general.
  24. Its Me

    3 years as SM - what a ride

    Thanks for the post and thank you for serving as the SM. It sounds like the boys are really growing under your leadership.
  25. Its Me

    New Troop

    Last night eight Boy Scouts walked into an American Legion hall and a new troop was born. The old hall with faded pictures of our country''s heroes, a bingo machine on stage and a bunch of wobbly ceiling fans came alive. The boys over-talked each other picking a summer camp, scrambled for markers to create a flag, said their oath and their law and played manhunt all before I gave my first scoutmaster''s minute. In other words a normal meeting. The senior patrol leader did a great job for his first day on the job. I have great friends who make up the parents of the troop and sometimes I feel like I am just hanging on more than leading. The story of how we got here is an interesting one, but I hope it pales in comparison to the story we are about to write.
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