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Everything posted by dedkad

  1. dedkad

    Wolf Electives and Belt Loop Question

    I love it when I get a parent who says their boy earned a certain belt loop, and when I look at the requirements for that belt loop, it says they have to present something to the pack or den, which they never did. I wonder if the parents even bother to read the requirements. For our pack, they can only earn belt loops for things they have done since becoming a cub scout, so anything prior to him joining would not count.
  2. dedkad

    parent/cub master going over my head

    If the parent likes to do things at home with the boy, you might give them these worksheets: http://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Webelos_Activity_Badge_Worksheets That way he can bring you some proof that he actually did the required items.
  3. dedkad

    Cub Scout Promise and Law going away

    I wonder if they'll change the two finger salute to three fingers to be consistent also.
  4. dedkad

    No Tiger den this year?

    We are having some trouble recruiting Tigers this year. I've always felt that if we don't get a Tiger den each year, then not only do we have a gap in rank, but we could also be considered a dying pack. We had a huge recruitment in the upper grades this year and are adding a brand new Bear den of 8 boys, so I guess we are not really "dying," but should I be concerned if we don't have a Tiger den this year?
  5. dedkad

    Went to roundtable for the first time

    I try not to count one activity for two requirements, but I think the floor plan is fine for both Engineer and Readyman because there are two distinct activities you are doing with that plan. In Engineer you are drawing a floor plan of your house. Period. In Readyman, you are evaluating that floor plan and deciding which is the best escape route. The boys will decide if it is best to make their way through their house or just head out the window.
  6. dedkad

    No Tiger den this year?

    We did have five 1st graders who came to our recruitment meeting, which is plenty for a den. Unfortunately, they go to two different schools and since our dens meet right after school, it doesn't work too well to have a combined den. None of the parents volunteered to be a leader either. I already did what you suggested, telling them to find some more schoolmates to join Cub Scouts with them. Not a single one responded. Don't know if they don't have any friends, don't care, or just aren't willing to make the effort. I figure if the boys and parents aren't willing to make the effort to recruit a few friends, then how can I expect them to make the effort to complete the requirements or even to get a parent to step up to be leader. I told them all to meet with me after our pack meeting next week, and we'll see what they all want to do, but I am not optimistic.
  7. I would like to get the outgoing Cubmaster a gift thanking him for his two years of service to our pack. As always seems to be the case, he stepped up to be a leader when no one else would do it, and he has done a great job of supporting the den leaders and the scouts. However, he is not a die-hard Scouter, so a gift that is solely scout-related would probably just go in the closet. A gift card is too impersonal. What have your packs or troops given as gifts to outgoing leaders?
  8. dedkad

    No Tiger den this year?

    Thanks, everyone. You are making me feel better.
  9. dedkad

    Gift for outgoing Cubmaster

    Found one after doing search. I'm ordering it to check it out.
  10. dedkad

    What to do about "Cub Book Work"

    Being able to do things on the school grounds that they can't normally do at school is exciting for the kids.
  11. dedkad

    What to do about "Cub Book Work"

    I gave the boys a bunch of food magazines and grocery ads and had them cut out pictures of food that went into each food group and have them put those on their plate or pyramid. Not super exciting, but any hands-on activity is better than just talking about it.
  12. dedkad

    No Tiger den this year?

    That's what I'm hoping. And I'm also thinking that maybe not doing Tigers will help prevent burnout in the later years. It's just that the Tiger Cub year is so fun, I hate for boys to miss out.
  13. dedkad

    Cub Scout Promise and Law going away

    I know they are starting to push Lions for kindergartners. What else have you heard they are changing? I think the Wolf level could use some improvement to make it a better transition from Tiger to Bear. Make it a little more fun and less book work.
  14. dedkad

    Customized cub uniforms....possible?

    I can't imagine purchasing a custom neckerchief is going to be cheaper than just buying the proper rank necker off the rack at the Scout store. Also, our pack has decided this year to not automatically buy the Boys Life subscription for every boy. We are going to ask families to seriously think about whether or not their son actually reads the magazine, and only then check the box if they do. We are also going to put up a magazine table at the pack meeting check-in table to pass on magazines to those who don't have the subscription.
  15. dedkad

    Gift for outgoing Cubmaster

    From the picture it looks like it is just a USB drive that is shaped like a Swiss Army knife. I don't actually see that there is any knife associated with this. Is that true?
  16. We have around 50 boys in our pack, but it seems like only about 60% show up on a regular basis. Since I don't know all of the boys personally, I leave it up to the den leaders to keep track of the boys in attendance. I think we have some boys who didn't attend a single pack meeting all year. I'd like to get a better handle on who's coming and who's not coming because the den leaders don't seem to be stressing the importance of attendance at pack meetings. Does your pack take attendance at your meetings?
  17. dedkad

    Inspiring kids to be sharp

    Have you seen these Webelos Activity Badge worksheets? http://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Webelos_Activity_Badge_Worksheets They tend to lean too much toward homework for my taste, but they are useful for sending home to a boy who misses a meeting, or for things that have to be done at home anyway like tracking your meals for the Fitness badge.
  18. dedkad

    Do you take attendance at pack meetings?

    We already do a check-in table and door prizes, so should be an easy transition to having a sign-in sheet. I was thinking about doing some kind of reward for the den with best attendance too, but I figured it would be for the whole year's attendance. I like your 3-month idea instead.
  19. Our RT meetings last an hour. Cub Scout leaders sit at one table, Boy Scout leaders at another. We start with introductions (sometimes) and announcements, which never last very long. Then the Cub Scout leaders and Boy Scout leaders have their own breakout session with a topic to discuss. The topic is usually led by an assigned person and then discussion ensues. The RTC asks for ideas for upcoming topics from the leaders. This is only my 2nd year of attending RT's regularly. The topics are usually of interest to me, and I like finding out what other packs are up to, so I enjoy going. The information and ideas that come out at the meetings have made me a better leader.
  20. I was kind of leaning toward first aid too. If you're out backpacking in the wilderness, would you rather be with a scout who can tie 10 different knots or one who knows how to treat 10 different injuries.
  21. dedkad

    Inspiring kids to be sharp

    Can you offer something other than a treat as a reward to the best-dressed scout? Something fun from the Dollar Store, Michaels or from a garage sale? One year I decided to make it my goal to have all my scouts in full uniform. When they arrived at the meeting, I would have them all stand up. Then I would start asking a series of questions and the boys had to sit down if they didn't meet that uniform requirement. I'd ask things like "If your shirt is buttoned up, remaining standing, otherwise sit down." "If you're wearing your necker..." "If you have a hat on, is it the correct Cub Scout hat..." and so on until only one boy was standing. That boy would get a reward. The boys got so serious about it, that I had to have multiple rewards because several starting passing the whole uniform requirement. Some didn't care and ended up sitting down on the first question every time. Reward those who meet your expectations and don't stress over the ones who don't. If a reward won't motivate them, or their parents, then there is probably nothing you can do to get them to wear their uniform properly. One other thing just came to mind. Maybe you can have a fully-dressed police officer or military person come in to speak to the boys about the importance of being in uniform and what it represents.
  22. dedkad

    What can pack funds be spent on.

    We also keep about $1000 to $1500 in the bank each year as reserves. We spend 100% of what we earn on the boys every year. That reserve money has been hanging around for years and years. We have a fundraiser in the spring where we have to front the costs to buy some tickets, then we turn around and sell them at a profit. Without the reserves, we would not have enough money to cover the tickets we need to buy. It would seem silly to hold a fundraiser just to have a fundraiser.
  23. dedkad

    Fundraising, Grants & all

    #4 on the Unit Fundraising application rules. http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/34427.pdf I wonder what your Council will think about receiving revenue from a gambling operation. Our Council rejected a request from our Charter Organization to give their proceeds from one night of bingo to Boy Scouts. We managed to make it work by earmarking the money towards one of the Boy Scout camps instead, which was marketed as a "youth camp" with no mention of Boy Scouts. I'm sure with a little creative thought, you could wash the money clean and get it to your unit, but it is not as straightforward as just "here you go".
  24. dedkad

    Christmas Trees

    Great idea, but do you have the manpower to staff the lot for 10 hours a day every day from Thanksgiving to Christmas? Price would be dependent on the type of tree you're selling.
  25. dedkad

    What can pack funds be spent on.

    BD, we both agree that they shouldn't be spending pack money for these meeting expenses. I gave some good suggestions on how they might be able to avoid those expenses, you on the other hand just like to argue. You choose to spend your own money to help the boys. Good for you! That is your choice and you apparently have the means to do so. For someone whose troop serves low-income boys, I am surprised that you are so cavalier about spending $10 here for babysitting and $9 there for increased national dues. These expenses add up for those who are just getting by. Sounds to me like you are saying that poor people don't deserve to be leaders because they can't afford to spend that little extra here and there. I am appreciative of anyone who is willing to volunteer, whether they can afford to spend extra money or not.