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About AltadenaCraig

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  • Birthday May 13

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  • Location
    San Gabriel Valley, CA
  • Occupation
  • Interests
    Continuing to learn about Scouting in general and the Patrol Method in particular.
  • Biography
    Feb '15-present, Scoutmaster, Troop 1, Altadena, CA
    Feb '15, Vigil Honor, Order of the Arrow, Lodge 33
    Jul '13, Adult Participant, 6-1/2 day, 72mi trek along Southern 1/3 of JMT including 14,500ft summit of Mt. Whitney
    Feb '08-'15, ASM, Troop 1, Altadena, CA
    Feb '06-'08, Cubmaster, Pack 1, Altadena, CA
    Feb '04-'06, Den Leader, Pack 1, Altadena, CA
    Life Scout, Troop 401, Claremont, CA
    Arrow of Light, Pack 434, Claremont, CA

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  1. AltadenaCraig

    National Meeting: Affirmation of DRP

    I think they do, too, which is what scares me. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a closet atheist - far from it - but I do agree with the earlier posts that Duty to God is redundant given our other values. Moreover, singling that duty out from the others (and without providing additional training or strict limitations on how to discuss that duty), is an invitation to our more fervent scouters to infuse their beliefs into other aspects of the program. My District has already had to remove one Eagle BOR chair for his grilling of candidates' beliefs. With National's doubling-down on the policy I expect other Councils will find themselves wrestling similar problems.
  2. AltadenaCraig

    Transition from Scouter-lead to Scout-lead

    Queue Clarke Green at Scoutmastercg.com https://scoutmastercg.com/category/patrol-method/
  3. AltadenaCraig

    Minimum time to achieve Eagle Scout rank

    I heard it at our last Commissioner's meeting and I about blew a gasket - for all of the reasons stated earlier. Any Council with any sense will try do what the service academies did when they graduated the first females in 1980: They'll bundle all of those with eligibility (based on a range of birthdays) into a "class". There won't be any "first" individuals, just the first class.
  4. AltadenaCraig

    National, Religion, Membership, Oath and Law

    Bingo. I've enjoyed - and hope to continue to enjoy - the camaraderie of my LDS Scouter friends (they can still enjoy scouting independent of their church - if they can't, that's another problem). But I've long felt the "LDS Scouting" publications and special classes at Commissioner College made me feel not only that the "tail was wagging the dog", but frankly I felt a tad resentful at the apparent exclusivity.
  5. AltadenaCraig

    1971 - "Scouting/USA"....2018 "Scouts USA"

    Well that’s what I get for relying on my memory; nice catch NJCubScouter (I’ll swear that strip read Cub Scouts BSA in my day ... but that was 50 years ago!)
  6. AltadenaCraig

    1971 - "Scouting/USA"....2018 "Scouts USA"

    More likely the ribbon above the uniform right breast pocket, which for Cubs and Venturers says "Cub Scouts BSA" and "Venturing BSA". Seems reasonable that "Scouts BSA" would be a logical fit between the other two programs.
  7. No kidding. Note that nowhere in this thread do we see "Camp Fire Girls" or "Campfire". Mark my words, GSUSA, you're about to become similarly irrelevant ... and you've brought it all on yourselves. My goodness, with the NY chapter of NOW thumping on us on the one hand and apparently genuine appeals from young ladies seeking "Eagle Scout" on the other, the BSA was straining credulity to ignore the situation. Talk about a gift horse. If the GSUSA had promoted their Gold Award half as effectively as they've marketed Thin Mints and Do-Si-Do's we wouldn't be having this conversation.
  8. AltadenaCraig

    Looking for Advice on Which Bugle Calls to Use

    LOVE this! Dorsey, Miller ... and Slide Hampton!! Our Troop meets near the Rose Bowl and annually attends the parade. Big-10 bands are ALWAYS the best - hands down (something to do with the weather, maybe?) I remember Purdue at the '67 Rose Bowl; later that month your school lost two great alums in Gus Grissom and Roger Chaffee. I made a fuss about the beauty of 'To the Color' followed by 'Retreat', IMHO. But Tatoo beats them all. Though not a MB required piece (likely because its too long) it's lovely nevertheless: http://www.music.army.mil/music/buglecalls/tattoo.asp
  9. Wonderful stuff, TAHAWK; thank you so much for the scan and the share. I'm reading it carefully and notice that pages 14 & 15 appear to be missing from the scan, above. If you have access to those pages, would you be so kind as to include them as well? Thanks again for your kindness - - Craig
  10. AltadenaCraig

    Looking for Advice on Which Bugle Calls to Use

    Wow, congratulations to Bugleson ... and to your Troop for having a Bugler - super! I'll risk being nit-picky (just because I'm bored right now) and suggest a few modifications to SSScout's wonderful post, above. Note, all of the bugle calls in the links below are required per the Bugling Merit Badge: https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/Merit_Badge_ReqandRes/Bugling.pdf 1. I like the idea of alerting the Troop with "First Call", but as it's officially a "warning that personnel will prepare to assemble for a formation", perhaps the SPL could announce the call with "Ladies & Gentlemen, please find your seats as we'll be starting in a moment". http://www.music.army.mil/music/buglecalls/firstcall.asp 2. I'm not in favor of the bugler blowing "To the Color" as the colors advance, as officially the call is to "render honors to the nation" and "commands all the same courtesies as the National Anthem." Instead, following on the "First Call" warning, I might suggest the SPL invite the audience to "Please rise for the Presentation of the Colors and the Pledge of Allegiance" followed immediately by the Bugler blowing "Assembly" http://www.music.army.mil/music/buglecalls/assembly.asp 3. Upon the SPL (or Honor Patrol Leader) commanding the colors to "...Advance!" (to the front of the audience), "...Halt!" and finally, "...Present the Colors!" at which point the Honor Patrol either presents the colors at the audience front or goes directly to the flag-stands - your choice - and upon "Scouts, Salute! Guests please honor our flag." the bugler plays "To the Color" in full (the most beautiful call there is, IMHO): http://www.music.army.mil/music/buglecalls/tothecolor.asp 4. "Ruffles & Flourishes" for the Scoutmaster? - first, that's not a required call; and second, we're supposed to be Scout-lead. Blowing "Attention" for the awarding of ranks might have the scouts jumping to their feet (and confuse the audience as to whether or not to stand). Instead, the SPL might use "Attention" to get everyone on their feet in preparation for Retreat (as noted, it's an exceptionally brief call): http://www.music.army.mil/music/buglecalls/attention.asp 5. I agree that "Taps" is a tad melancholy and doubly agree "Retreat" is the proper call with which to end the ceremony (the next most beautiful call, after To the Color, IMHO): http://www.music.army.mil/music/buglecalls/retreat.asp Hope this is helpful and once again I'll add my congratulations to Bugleson and the tip of my hat to SSScout's post - - Craig
  11. AltadenaCraig

    If you were a committee member,

    I don't suppose you have drafts available that you would be able to share on this thread? Would make a wonderful Christmas present to us!
  12. AltadenaCraig

    What is quality control in Scouting

    We're a "Thorns & Roses (& Buds)" Troop as well. Yep, a great way to clear the air around the final-night campfire; each scout gets to contribute and be heard. At the following troop meeting we pull from another old-school (JLT ?) tradition: the "Par-18" evaluation. After the opening ceremony, the SPL calls for a voice-vote on each of the previous weekend's activities, requiring consensus on each question (from one to three ... you know it was really awful if they yell "zero!"): Was the job completed? Was it completed On Time? Was it completed correctly? Did everyone in the group participate? Was everyone in the group pleased with the effort? Is everyone in the group eager for the next job? Activities receiving "all 3's" results in 18 (thus the name). The last question usually results in some scouts shouting "what IS the next job?!"" at which point the Scribe points to the calendar.
  13. AltadenaCraig

    What is quality control in Scouting

    I had a similar experience. One year our Troop sent a critical mass of scouts to NYLT who came back all fired-up, etc. That was the last time our troop sent any scouts to NYLT until I took over as Scoutmaster four years later. Thus the need to promote attendance and in include that as part of the "grade". Potential "gaming"? No doubt. I expect that happens across all organizations and industries. But it shouldn't stop us from trying.
  14. AltadenaCraig

    What is quality control in Scouting

    I'm actually rather fond of the JTE as a balanced scorecard. At a high level it emphasizes a sustainable, fiscally responsible organization with a program providing overnight camping and service projects. All good metrics at the organizational level. But an organizational scorecard provides only one view. Nearly all of the concerns expressed in this thread are with operations (Scout-lead vs. Adult-lead) ... for which the JTE can't measure, nor was it designed to measure. I strongly agree the BSA should take longer strides at QA of the operational component, along the lines of "the view of the scout". As a strawman, I propose the following: a) Infuse NYLT with a stronger dose of the Patrol Method. Run scenarios with scouts & staff role-playing the right-way vs. wrong-way to run Patrol meetings, Troop meetings, PLC's, Campouts, Day-outings, Service Projects, and Annual Planning. Emphasize that Scout-lead is the only way to run these activities and "a troop is posing if it's not being run accordingly". Next b) measure Districts by percentage of 1st Class scouts who attend the bolstered NYLT. Really push attendance. After all, Sec. Robert Gates claims NYLT (or JLT, whatever back in the day) was "the only formal management training [he] ever had." Finally c) subsequently eMail each attendee an online survey against which he compares the operations of his troop with what he'd learned in NYLT. The questionnaire should measure all of the scout-lead suggestions provided by TAHAWK and others herein on this thread - grade the actions of Scoutmasters, PLC's, ASM's, meetings, outings; etc.. Provide Districts with feedback on each of their Troops. If anonymity is compromised because enough of a Troop's scouts didn't attend NYLT, return some kind of "no grade" until they do. Publicize/Promote those troops with high grades and I'll bet not only will the strong survive and flourish, the weak organizations will either improve or perish. Perhaps provide such a questionnaire to ASM's for a 360 view of each Troop. As Scouts & Scouters are expected to be Trustworthy, etc., I'd expect legitimate responses - else some kind of link allowing whistle-blowing of any manipulation etc. Expensive? Probably. Worthwhile? Absolutely. My $.02
  15. AltadenaCraig

    POR review

    I'm more sympathetic to mentorship. I agree we should avoid "checklists" and "policies", etc., which in my experience result in tying my hands as Scoutmaster more than they compel performance in a POR. On the other hand I do see value in the mentor idea in order to "set a scout up for success" when refocusing or starting a troop anew. At the risk of taking some quotes on this thread out of context, here are a couple of examples: In providing logistical and administrative support, a fully staffed Troop Committee typically has an Equipment Coordinator and a Chaplain. Isn't it reasonable to expect these adults to have some interaction - mentor, if you will - the scout Quartermaster and Chaplain's Aide? I agree in a fully operational troop the prior holders of POR's would guide and mentor the incumbents. But for those troops just starting out, or for established units undergoing a major shift (I can't imagine how a major equipment purchase, e.g., wouldn't require coordination between the adult Equipment Coordinator and the scout Quartermaster) I think temporary mentorship is a worthwhile idea. With a little creativity, I would expect other adult and scout roles could be lined up as well. Not for evaluation, simply for guidance. Respectfully - Craig