Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by Hedgehog

  1. In our Troop the SM signs off on Star, Life and Scout. This is just verification of something that was done, not teaching and testing a new skill. Those requirements lead to a nice discussion. What did you teach for this requirement. What did you find interesting about each merit badge? What did you learn about leadership in your POR? Why add another step when the same discussion is part of the SM conference? I don't like the idea of testing the teacher by testing the scout at the BoR. TRUST them. Ultimately, the boys learn to be proficient at the skill. After 3 years my son knows his
  2. Your points are spot on. Three thoughts. First, the youth will never learn the skills, the ability to teach or how to be responsible if they are not given the chance. Second, our PLs / APLs / TGs sign off in the boys book and it is recorded in Troopmaster when the boy attains the next rank. So it's not complicated. Just test and sign. Third, it works in other Troops. Enough said.
  3. We went to Camp Tuscarora in New York. On check in my son asked about the sheath knives, throwing knives and throwing tomahawks we had packed. The ranger said, "if they are legal for the BSA, they are legal here." I typically carry a Ontario RD-7 and my son carries a Becker BK-9 when we go backpacking. The cool factor more than compensates for the extra weight.
  4. @@David CO., Thank you for your response. I understand what you are saying and appreciate you clearing up any confusion. I apologize for misinterpreting your comments. I guess it ultimately does come down to words. I use the word Christian to denote someone who believes in the Christ as the son of God. I don't think that Christian is a religion but more of a descriptive term for a group of religions with a common element of faith.
  5. Each incident, on its own, may not be that unusual as @@Beavah says. Taken together, it indicates that the troop is adult-run and run poorly at that. As others have said, scouts should be signing off on Scout through First Class advancement. In some Troops, adults take it over because it is being done poorly by the scouts. That isn't the solution. The solution is to teach the scouts how to do it correctly. The confusion on Blue Cards indicates that the ASM your son talked though doesn't understand the advancement process. The failure of get the awards at Courts of Honor, reflec
  6. I've banned the use of workbooks and worksheets in for the Merit Badges I'm a counselor for. I like when the boys do the "active" part of the merit badge - the hiking, the backpacking and the camping - and then discuss the "learning" requirements. It provides them with the ability to think about the answers and to put any learning into a context. When we have merit badge seminars, I've stopped giving them the requirement list and we just talk about and do things related to the topic. At the end of the seminar (which may take place at meetings over several weeks), they have covered everythi
  7. I'd be fine with a snow cave or quinzie, but he choose his warm bed in the heated house. As far as I can tell from my research, the main difference in the 4 season tent is that the poles and design are stronger to support the weight of heavy snow on the tent. I forgot to add the lightweight $14 that my son and I used to sleep on for our Order of the Arrow Ordeal (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01DUKKVR8) - nothing like sleeping under the stars.
  8. I'm not interested in playing word games either. Your statements strongly infer that you think Catholic doctrine teaches that Protestans are not Christians. You have have multiple opportunities to correct any misinterpretation but at each opportunity you have doubled down on your position rather than provided any clarification. Your response is: Now I agree you never came out and "said that" but it seems to be inferred from your statements. The statement you disagreed with is as follows: by stating: So logically, that can mean one of two things - either Catholi
  9. Here is what @@David CO has said: Then, in response to a statement asking: @@David CO replied: My reading of his statement is that If the Catholic Church is Christian and the Catholic Church's doctrine precludes the possibility of denominations, then Protestant churches cannot be Christinan. @@davidcO has not at any point corrected that understanding and stated that he believes that Protestant churches are also Christian. If I've misread what he has said, he can let us know and I will apologize for jumping to the wrong conclusion. @ David CO, I am a
  10. I know you know, but I'm going to say it anyway.... First off, there should be a limited number of adults in the room. At our PLCs, we have the SM and me. Second, the adults shouldn't talk. Our rule is that we only respond to questions. Until you get the adults to agree to run meetings that way, boy-led will never take hold. Second, there needs to be a meeting or discussion before the meeting. As you transition to boy-led, the boys need to be coached and mentored to develop leadership skills. Your SPL doesn't have a clue as to what he is supposed to do. He hasn't seen boy-led in
  11. So far, my REI Quarterdome had held up great (except for one spot where it looks like embers from the fire hit the side of the tent - but that is covered in repair tape and is good as new). I also love my Big Agnes Fly Creek 2 for backpacking. You can't go wrong with a 2 pound tent. It has held up well for two years with the exceptions of some small pinholes in the fly (which let through a total of five drops of water during a torrential rain storm) and a rip in the stuff sack (which also is covered with tape). My ENO hammock with Atlas straps and a rainfly weighs about as much as
  12. It makes all the difference in the world if an adult can say and mean three simple words: "YOU CAN LEAD." Thank for the great story. Gives me food for thought. More on that later.
  13. I'm surprised about the Wilderness Survival. The knowledge base doesn't cover much more than you would need to know for Hiking, Camping and Backpacking MBs and there should be a lot of people who have experience in those areas that would qualify as a counselor. If you are anywhere near New Jersey and your son's troop wants to do a Wilderness Survival campout, I'd be glad to help organize it and sign off on Merit Badges. You could even check your local camping store to see if someone there would be interested in signing up to be a counselor for the merit badge. For nature and soil and wa
  14. I think the Meet the Troop night is a bad substitute for visiting the Troop. My sense is the best information would be contained in some open-ended paragraph response type questions. 1. How does your Troop implement a boy-led Scouting program? 2. What did your Troop do last year in its outdoor program? There are a lot of questions you can ask the SPL / PLs or even SMs that will tell you the nature of the Troop, but none of those would be able to be answered in writing: 1. Who runs the PLC meetings? How many adults are there vs. scouts? 2. Who plans the outdoor program?
  15. In life, religion and politics, we can focus on what we have in common or what divides us. I prefer the first option.
  16. Leadership is hard. I'll admit that I've pushed my son to similarly lead. For the first year, I pushed him to be responsible for himself and to be responsible for his advancement. OK, I probably pushed him too much with advancement. He made first class within 15 months. For the second year, I pushed him to participate in the outdoor program and to be a good Den Chief. For his third year, I coached him as an APL who frequently had to do a lot of things himself because his PL wasn't organized or effective. I also coached him to lead in the outdoors - being an APL or PL on every outing. H
  17. It doesn't sound like it was done right. Our COR is truly behind this and he understands how the program operates and how it won't hurt the troop. I'm going to be the Advisor and I"m the incoming SM for the Troop next June. We have one SM of another neighboring Troop who has signed on as an Associate Advisor, the current SM of our Troop is likely to take an adult leadershp position and a current ASM of the troop as another Associate Advisor. So many of the adults recognize the importance of having the older Scouts participate in the Troop. As a result, this is being pitched as something i
  18. I like the introductions and will suggest. My recommendation is to have the core group explain the program by focusing on the possibilities -- Adventure, Activities, Group Identity, Service, Advancement and Personal Growth. Leaving the best for last - Leadership. Then I will tell them the most important thing - they are in charge and the program is theirs to decide.
  19. Clicked there, read that. I also found the guide to Crew Officer's Leadership Training, the spreadsheet for tracking the ranks, the description of the Ranger, Trust and Quest awards, the Crew Officer Orientation videos (awful), the Personal Saftey videos (really awful), the GTA sections related to Venturing; the Venturing BoR guidelines (very cool in that it is run by the youth) and the Venturing uniform guidelines.
  20. Exactly. Although the camp doesn't publicize it, the movie was filmed at the camp. The Camp Crystal Lake sign is in a display case at the Trading Post. Looking forward to 2018 when our Troop will be there on Friday the 13th.
  21. UPDATE: Our COR for the Troop and Pack is on board and very enthusastic about this. He has obtained approval from the CO and has talked to Council about what we need to do to proceed. We are up to 5 young woman and 5 young men that are interested just through word of mouth. We have 2 female adults and 3 male adults volunteering. The next step is for the three catalysts - my son and the two young woman who are his co-conspirators - to meet to plan for the introductory meeting of the potential Venturers. The planning meeting will probably be at the end of the month due to vacations an
  22. He is an Eagle as of the date of his Eagle Board of Review. He can wear the patch. And tell them CONGRATULATIONS!
  23. Have you ever seen the movie "Friday the 13th"? That's our summer camp. Except it really isn't called Camp Crystal Lake. The camp is on the edge of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area and a mile and a half off the Appalachian Trail. Some of our guys have backpacked into camp the last three years (going in around 18 miles down from the North, canoeing on the Delaware and then hiking in around 10 miles and coming up 21 miles from the South). The camp is in the woods and has a lake for swimming and boating. Each Troop has its own campsite. We sleep in platform canvas tent
  24. Our sequence is SPL and PL elections are in June. SM and ASM meet with SPL and ASPLs (and a couple of other scouts) in August to plan leadership training campout. Leadership training campout is weekend before first scout meeting. As part of that campout the plan the montly themes for the years meetings and begin the process of thinking about outings. Our first two outings are already planned, so they plan the rest of the year at the September and October PLC meetings (which gives them time to do research and meet with the boys in their patrols). When they have decided the outdoor program,
  • Create New...