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Everything posted by dedkad

  1. dedkad

    Late Fees

    Can you imagine going through the headache of collecting fees not just once a year, but every week or month? No way.
  2. dedkad

    Tough Choices to be made for BOR

    I'm concerned that Cub Scouts are on Facebook.
  3. dedkad

    Blue&Gold Advancement.. Need a better answer..

    I would tell the parents that rank advancement typically happens at the B&G because if a den is meeting weekly and following the program laid out in the Leader Guides, then February or March is when they should have completed all of their requirements for rank. The dens in our pack only meet once or twice a month, so we don't have our rank advancement until our end-of-year campout in early June. That's what works for us. In any case, I agree that it is good to set goals, otherwise people get lazy and put off for too long the things that need to get done.
  4. dedkad

    scouts at the kitchen table

    None of the above. Offer to plan a specific meeting and show them how it should be done.
  5. dedkad

    Eagle Scout. Idealist. Drug Trafficker?

    I bet he posted some pretty amazing popcorn sales numbers.
  6. Now that smoking marijuana is legal in Colorado, let's just say I am glad I am not a unit leader in Colorado.
  7. dedkad

    anyone NOT selling popcorn?

    Our council provides a fair amount of training too. Although the training is run by volunteers, someone needs to coordinate it. The council has expenses, so we all need to contribute our share, but the majority of funds should definitely be kept at the unit level because that is where it best serves the boys.
  8. A couple things to think about. You are dealing with nine 1st graders, so expecting them all to sit, listen, and behave during an entire meeting is unrealistic. Your goal in Cub Scouts should be to engage the boys and teach them things while having fun. At this age, every boy should have an opportunity to be denner or assistant denner. If the responsibilities are too much for some of the boys, then don't ask as much from them as you would the others, but don't deny them the opportunity.
  9. My son is bridging to Boy Scouts in February. We visited several troops and they are all good choices for different reasons, but I was really hoping my son would choose a different troop. Our pack recently lost our Charter organization, so one of the local troops lobbied to have their Charter organization pick us up. The Charter troop was looking for a feeder pack to help with membership. As Committee Chair and Webelos den leader, I started working hard to develop a relationship with this troop. My work wasn't really successful because the troop didn't reciprocate in terms of reaching out to the boys in my den and building relationships with them. I tried to get the troop to offer an outdoor activity for my Webelos to attend. No luck. I tried to get them to give us a den chief. No luck. I knew my Webelos were leaning toward the other troop, and I tried to warn the Charter troop that we needed to work on getting their boys to connect with my boys, but still no luck. I saw a huge need and envisioned this great opportunity for myself as a scouter to improve this relationship between the pack and Charter troop once my son bridged over. I had grand plans to encourage the troop to offer joint outdoor activities with the pack, provide den chiefs, and even stop by and visit at the pack meetings since the pack and troop meet on the same night at the same location. However, now that my son (and his entire den) have decided to join a different troop, I think my scouter career is over. The troop my son is joining is not very welcoming to women in leadership roles or on outings. I can't see how I can implement my grand ideas of developing a better relationship between the pack and Charter troop when I am dealing with competing troops. Although my son will be happy in his new troop, it is my own disappointment over a failed opportunity for myself and the Charter troop that I am trying to deal with.
  10. dedkad

    anyone NOT selling popcorn?

    Popcorn is the main fundraiser for my son's Cub Scout pack. The troop that he is joining lets boys sell popcorn if they want, but doesn't push it. I don't think there are any rules about non-sanctioned fundraisers, but you are supposed to submit a form to your Council for approval to do any type of fundraiser. I suppose if you weren't selling popcorn and weren't participating in Friends of Scouting, the Council may not look too kindly on your fundraiser request if they are not getting any funds from your unit.
  11. Last night my son went to his 3rd meeting for the troop that he will be joining. I am now convinced that he made the right choice. The meeting was boy-led, organized, fun, and they included my son and made him feel welcome. Although it would have been nice to have had a hand in trying to improve the CO troop, it would have been a long haul. The boys in the CO troop aren't respectful to each other, several adults hover and interrupt during the meeting, and I just get the feeling that some of these adults are there trying to relive their youth through Boy Scouts. Their troop is set up to attract a certain kind of boy, and unfortunately for the troop, I have to say that most of the boys in our pack aren't those kind of boys, so I don't think the pack will be a very good feeder pack for them as it currently stands. Although I do agree with Fred that there are some fundamental issues that arise with troop-shopping, I do think that different troops meet different needs. The 5 boys in my den are joining 3 different troops because there was something in each troop that sparked an interest for them. Unfortunately, none of the troops is the CO troop.
  12. dedkad

    Summer camp pricing

    Yes, that is the camp.
  13. dedkad

    Summer camp pricing

    My son is bridging over to Boy Scouts in February, and he is looking at going to camp with the troop. I had a bit of sticker shock. I'm used to the $100 Cub Scout Day Camp cost. The camp his troop is going to is $700 for the week. Is that typical for Boy Scout camps?
  14. dedkad

    We made it!

  15. dedkad

    Summer camp pricing

    Even though we haven't bridged over yet, I took my son to the Boy Scout meeting last night so we could learn more about this expensive camp on Catalina Island. Turns out it is actually a Council-owned camp, not a private camp. The people we talked to all raved about how fun the camp was, so my son and his friend decided to go but I told my son that he had to raise $300 of the cost himself.
  16. There was an ad in the back of Scouting magazine for a Florida company that offers sailing trips for Boy Scouts.
  17. dedkad


    Many Webelos activities I have treated with more of a checklist attitude. You heard it, did it, saw it? Then good, you're done. I have been taking a different approach with Readyman because I think it is so important to reinforce it over and over, so the boys will be able to act calmly and correctly in a real emergency. For this reason, I have been dedicating many many meetings to doing the Readyman requirements, and am trying a different approach at each meeting. For the first meeting, I had the boys read the Readyman section ahead of time, then we played Readyman basketball where I would ask questions and for each correct answer, the boy got to step closer to the basket. When all the questions were done, they would shoot baskets. They got points for correct answers and baskets, so whoever had the most points at the end was the winner. For another meeting, I put the boys on the spot with "real-life" scenarios. I cut out pictures of bloody noses, cuts, scrapes, frostbite, burns, ticks, etc.. The boys took turns being a "victim" or a "responder". The responder would step outside while I prepped the victim. Then the responder would have to come in, evaluate the injury based on what he saw and what little the victim told him, and then would have to demonstrate how to treat it. I had first-aid supplies on hand so they could do a "real" treatment, not just tell me about it. I even had a picture of a garter snake to try to fool them into treating a snakebite that wasn't poisonous. For another meeting, I assigned each boy a particular injury, and they had to make a presentation to the den on how to recognize the injury and how to treat it. I gave them free reign on how to do their presentation and encouraged them to make it informative, while still holding the boys' interests. Most importantly, it had to be accurate. For another meeting, we had an EMT come speak to the boys about the "hurry" cases. Then we practiced making stretchers out of a sheet and two long sticks and did stretcher races. The stretchers were not a Readyman requirement, but fun. For another meeting, we did a bike ride and made several stops along the way to talk about bicycle safety. At another meeting, I handed out a drawing where the boys needed to find and circle the things that were unsafe in the kitchen, in order to talk about where accidents are most likely to happen in the home. They also took a brief written true/false first-aid quiz at that meeting. We haven't talked about safe swim yet. Would have liked to have done that with an actual den meeting at a public pool, but I don't think we will have time to get that field trip together in time for our AOL ceremony. We'll just have to talk about it instead. So you can see that it has been a long drawn-out process for me to teach the boys Readyman. How much they are actually learning and retaining is still questionable, but at least we are having fun doing it.
  18. When our pack lost its CO, the District Executive found us a new CO. Does the DE or the Council have the authority to discontinue their relationship with a CO and move the troop to a new CO?
  19. dedkad

    Hello to all!!

    You might want to contact the District and find out who charters the various Scout troops in your area. Then you could consider becoming active in those charter organizations and get your foot in the door that way.
  20. I'm curious to know if you are in favor of families being able to transfer schools if their neighborhood school is an underperforming school, or if you think the families should just tough it out and attend their neighborhood school.
  21. We encourage families to look at other packs if ours doesn't fit their needs. In our case, all the packs in our town are pretty good, so the pack shopping consists mainly of just finding out what days and times the pack and dens meet, so they can choose one that best fits the family schedule. Personally, I think when families are looking at packs, they should be taking a closer look at the dens. You can have an awesome pack, but there may be a weak den leader at your son's grade level. If the pack structure is that the den leader progresses through the ranks with their son, then you could be stuck with that weak den leader for your son's entire CS career. New CS families don't really know about how the packs and dens are operated, so they are not savvy enough to ask those kinds of questions.
  22. dedkad

    Combining packs/dens different ways of doing things

    Because Webelos is supposed to be the transition from adult-led Cubs to boy-led Scouts, the two of you should really be sitting down with the boys asking them which badges they want to work on, and then the two of you work together to facilitate that. In several instances, what I thought the boys would want to do was not what they chose.
  23. I kept all of my opinions to myself, which is why I posted here so I could vent a little. I did not put any pressure on my son one way or the other. I didn't want him to doubt his choice and end up being not fully committed to the troop that he did end up choosing, whichever that would be. As to your other comment about loyalty. When a troop does not provide a Webelos outdoor activity for your boys to earn their AOL, you have no choice but to reach out to a troop that does. You may call that troop shopping, but I call it doing what is best and necessary for the boys to finish and enjoy their Cub Scouting experience. If it had been my choice, I would have chosen the CO troop out of loyalty because the leaders did a good job of building a relationship with me. However, the CO troop leaders and their Scouts did not develop a relationship with my boys, so there was no loyalty there.