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Everything posted by jjlash

  1. jjlash

    Scouting Mentor: James McKellar, 1909-1998

    A nice remembrance. Thanks for sharing.
  2. It doesnt change your point, but WB is for all levels. Leadership and Mentoring skills are needed at every level of Scouting (and most every other organization). District and Council level volunteers (and professionals too) face the same challenges that unit leaders face: they need to build teams and get people working together to accomplish goals and complete projects. I agree with your feeling about the word "management" however I would not take offense unless it actually shows up in the syllabus and staff guide. Otherwise I chalk it up to @C7Scouterchoice of words rather than an official description.
  3. I sent a couple of folks to the Philmont pilot this spring. Since they had not been to WB before, they had nothing to compare with. Between conversations with them and other things Ive seen/read.... We know the Win All You Can is gone. I had heard that the movie was gone and not replaced. I had also heard that the patrol project was gone. And finally, that they were dropping an entire day from the course. In searching just now to see if I could confirm any of these, I ran across this page which has the Gilwell Gazettes from the Philmont pilot: http://centennialwoodbadge.com/philmont-scout-ranch-pilot/resources/ Notice right away that there are only 5 gazettes. Much of the content is the same as we all use but the daily schedules give some insight to what the new course has or doesnt have. I noticed some new/different presentation names. I especially noticed one called "Patrol Leadership Quest" on D4 and "Patrol Leadership Quest Presentations" on D5. Has the patrol project been replaced with something more like NYLT's quest?
  4. Ive heard from a friend who is there that they received a good amount of rain late last week and that NAYLE has been allowed to return to Rayado Ridge Leadership Camp. YEAH!
  5. jjlash

    Tent Numbering - Help

    Numbers on a tent are an adult construct - the kids have no need for a number. With that in mind, I would ask the purpose for numbering them to begin with? And why make it so complicated that it needs instruction? Yes, we number our tents. We do it it so that we (okay, I) can keep track of how long they last. This helps inform the decision of what kind to buy next time. Since we tend to buy them in batches and never more than a couple per year, I use a simple Year-Number format, i.e. "2018-1", "2018-2" etc. I write the number on the tent, fly and bag with a sharpie. My rule of thumb is to number them on the corner to the right of each door for the tent body, and adjacent to the manufacturer logo for the fly.
  6. Lots of good info about the course and its delivery. I'll add another perspective - I enjoyed my WB experience but (with much hindsight and additional perspective) I can say that I did not get much from WB in the way of real, tangible skills. What I did get is a "spark" - one of my ticket goals was to join the district training team. This led to lots more involvement at the district and council level, attending PTC, staffing WB / NYLT / PTC. In short Ive met a boatload of amazing people, and helped them become better leaders so they can in turn help more youth become better people.
  7. jjlash


    Spoke to a neighboring SM last night - he called to get suggestions for where else they could go on such short notice. I gave him some suggestions of places Ive been (and thus can provide info/research Ive already done) but they are not ideal. Big challenges that are outside of his control are weather and permits. In the west - northern locations and higher altitudes are still snowed in and permits may be very tough to get for places that are more open.
  8. jjlash


    There is very little overlap in IOLS and BALOO. Even if they teach the same outdoor skills they do so with different purpose. We usually run them at the same camp on the same weekend (because we have the facilities anyhow) but they are very different courses. BALOO is now a blended course (part online and part in person) with a required overnight. It is the only outdoor skills course for the Cub program. My read on the language is that it is actually required for all outdoor Cub activities, not just overnights. As mentioned, the focus is on very new campers and on campers that are new to Scouts - in addition to the camping skills there are also modules on group health/safety, BSA rules etc. IOLS is outdoor skills for Scouts BSA level folks. It teaches the same skills as a Scout will learn on the trail to first class. It is also meant to reinforce the patrol method - participants are grouped into patrols which must plan their meals and gear in advance. THe syllabus for both courses are available on scouting.org if you want to see what topics each cover.
  9. Another tidbit from my ASM Troop Guides time. This is what I told them at one of our TG meetings - I think it was about mid way through staff development, when they were probably going through some internal storming. Without a doubt, the Troop Guide has the toughest job on a Wood Badge staff. This is your first time on staff so you may be a little bit lost. You are probably a bit overwhelmed to as you begin to realize that you must be presenter, coach, mentor, teacher, facilitator, ticket counselor and all-around helper. You have more presentations than any other staffer and you will practice them until you can give them in your sleep. You will have long days and you will do a lot of walking. You are the “face” of Wood Badge for your patrol; all eyes are on you; you set the example. But – you also have the best job on the staff. You get to truly connect with those six people. You get to see their “ah ha” moments and watch as they come together as a team. You will be the difference between a “mountain top” experience and just another training session. You will also learn the Wood Badge material inside-out and may find things that you don’t remember covering as a participant (you did). And at the end, I hope you will be able to say that being on Wood Badge staff was one of the best things you have done in Scouting. I hope that you have enjoyed the friendship and fellowship of our Wood Badge team. That you have learned the leadership skills to a higher level; and that you see the value in helping yourself, and others, to be better leaders.
  10. Im going through some notes from a previous WB course and came across my lessons learned document. I always intended to post this info for others to learn from my experiences, so - here you go... Set expectations to read and understand the whole syllabus. Doing so provides context to each session and helps understand how all of the sessions fit together to deliver the overall message. Had one TG who only read portions of the syllabus that specifically said they were a TG presentation. i.e. problem solving round robin section says to understand the points of the problem solving session (just prior). This TG only studied his assigned problem solving station – he had not read the rest of the round robin section/material and had not read the problem solving presentation that setup the round robin Set expectations about preparation – had one who was constantly behind, by staff dev 3 she still had not given a presentation. CD and I discussed, based on registration numbers we were going to drop a patrol so the TG was told her services were no longer needed. Problem Solving round robin • Rotation order based on physical arrangement within camp grounds • Desire patrols to end with station that their TG facilitates so that they can go straight into the managing conflict presentation • To end with their TG, patrols will start at the station immediately following their TG’s station in the rotation • Patrols can be assigned starting stations in advance so that a map of the station locations (including which patrol starts at which station) can be printed in advance • Allowing TGs to choose their preferred station means that the list of patrol starting stations cannot be finalized until TGs have been assigned to a patrol. Be prepared – truly prepared – to be backup for your team. Give the TG presentations just as much time and effort as any others you have. If you still have slides/notes from when you were a TG, dust them off; update them for syllabus changes; practice them. Double check technology – we used a set of shared folders on a google drive for distributing things. I found out 3 days before the course began that the TGs did not have access to the folder where the updated schedule was being put. They had printed copies that were distributed at staff dev meetings but they did not have immediate access to the latest version. AND – they didn’t realize that they should have had access but didn’t. Remember – making sure the TGs are prepared to put on the course is only part of your job. The other part is to develop them as leaders; to help them gain a better overall understanding of the WB material; to help them grow so that they can take on bigger leadership roles in all aspects of their life. Some specific things I did toward this end: • have TG meetings before or after each staff dev meeting • have some “sharing time” at each TG meeting, let people get to know each other • encourage them to go to each other, not just to the ASM TG, for answers • remind them that their job is not just to deliver the material, but also to build/guide the patrol team and to develop the patrol members as leaders More TG meeting time – 30 minutes or so before/after the staff dev meetings was not enough time to review and practice everything. Would like to have been more prepared prior to Day 0 (the walk-through day before course starts) Make time to see at least one presentation practice session for each TG. Looking back, I realize that there were a couple of TGs who I didnt ever see present. This was partly because a couple were consistently not prepared and thus I spent my staff dev time working with them while admin staff listened to the other TGs. During day one TG had a last-minute work conflict and missed the first weekend so I was giving presentations and did not have opportunity to circulate and watch the other TGs. During staff dev, send TGs a ticket from past course and ask them to review it. Have a group discussion about the content of the ticket and what feedback they might give the writer. Lets you get a sense of what they are looking at, lets you coach them and should ease some of their anxiety about ticket reviews.
  11. THe "Unread Content" link and the "Show unread since last visit" dont seem to be working. Both show me no new messages, but if I set the filter for "last 3 days" it shows me messages with activity that is minutes/hours old - much more recent than my last true visit. It could be because I leave the tab open and Chrome does something to make the site think Im "visiting". If so - that is new behavior since the update.
  12. jjlash

    Is WFA worth it?

    The curriculum is standardized (available here: https://www.scouting.org/health-and-safety/training/wilderness-fa/). I have taken it through both ARC and ECSI and their courses both (mostly) follow that document. The delivery can vary significantly due to instructors though. One time we mostly sat at the table and talked through everything - very minimal hands-on practice. Another time it was put on by a Crew who specializes in wilderness medicine. Most everything was a hands-on scenario.
  13. jjlash

    You CAN Take it with you . . .

    Hardback copy of one of the Harry Potter novels - on a one-night backpacking trip.
  14. jjlash


    No - you're supposed to round up the whole Troop and get someplace safe. At our camp we now have concrete, wind-rated storm shelters near each campsite. Prior to building these, the rule was "hit the ditch". In fact, I would never go to our dining hall for a severe storm because it has high ceilings and lots of glass.
  15. jjlash

    High adventure photos

    Looks like an amazing trip. Thanks for sharing!
  16. jjlash

    Obsolete Parches/Belt Loops

    Maybe take them to a roundtable and let folks take what they want. There are likely some collectors in the council - probably someone at the office can put you in touch. Check with someone from the OA lodge. This also seems like a good opportunity to bump this thread:
  17. After SM minute and recap of upcoming dates, we say the outdoor code then retire flags and dismiss.
  18. jjlash

    Philmont Announcement - March 27

    Humor aside - maybe I should have elaborated for those who maybe dont understand the significance.... Traning center weeks 3 and 4 were scheduled for LDS leaders / sessions only. Late last year the church announced that they were discontinuing their annual conference on Scouting at PTC (https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900004968/lds-church-discontinues-its-annual-leadership-conferences-at-philmont-scout-ranch.html). This left the entire PTC empty for those two weeks except for a session of Leadership Challenge being held at Rayado Ridge Leadership Camp.
  19. jjlash

    Philmont Announcement - March 27

    I was only half listening but yes - it is through PTC, not through camping HQ, and it sounded like no training course is required. And did anyone notice the dates....June 23 - July 7. Weeks 3 and 4. The weeks that were traditionally LDS weeks but quite suddenly became empty weeks this year. No surprise that they are trying something to recoup that lost income.
  20. Paying it forward.... I've got a bunch of books accumulated over the years that are looking for a new home. Mix and match however you want. Im just looking for a couple bucks to cover shipping. https://photos.app.goo.gl/EthHY7Ql1Kr8fMEA3
  21. A buddy of mine also attended in Sept 2017. I attended in Sept 2015 - one of the best things Ive done in Scouting.
  22. Anyone going to PLC or SLC this year? I see there are two sessions at Philmont (July and Sept), one at Summit (July) this season. Has anyone attended recently? What was your impression?
  23. jjlash

    Supplemental Training for Youth Leaders

    I like that order better too - Simon Sinek would be proud ;-)
  24. jjlash

    Supplemental Training for Youth Leaders

    Along the lines of what @ParkMan said. Cover the "what" and "why" rather than the "how". Why do we put things online (several reasons) and what should be put online to accomplish the desired "why". The "how" will be different for different units and most youth can figure that out very quickly when they understand what they need to accomplish.
  25. Yep, that is the one. Done mostly at Rayado Ridge Leadership Camp with a hike and overnight at Zastrow. Uses geocaching, low COPE (challenge events), wilderness first aid and SAR activities as context to practice WB leadership skills.