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Posts posted by Treflienne

  1. 1 minute ago, SSScout said:

    We were initially told the new girl Troop number could be A) any number at all,

    And the papers were signed and sealed and turned in . Congratulations !  Later, we were told the first instruction was incorrect, that the charters and records would note XYZG(for Girl) and  XYZB ( for boy) Troop.   *sigh*   SO we still are the proud Scouters of Troops  XYZ  and XYZ2  . 

    We were told by the council that the girls could pick any number they wanted.   They picked one. 

    As we were turning in the charter paperwork we were told by the council that, actually, they had decided that all girl troops would have a number beginning in 7, that is, instead of being troop XY we would be troop 70XY.   They did say we could still call ourselves XY, and wear XY on our uniforms, but it would be 70XY in the computer system.  

    Fortunately, I figured out how to use the alternate unit description on the beascout pin, so that beascout now says XY for us.   Scoutbook is still saying 70XY. (grrr.)

  2. 9 hours ago, 5thGenTexan said:

    What else should we try to cover?

    If someone can front the cost for a few Scouts BSA Handbooks for Girls,  then you can have them on hand to hand out to any girl who fills in the application and pays the registration fee.  

    Reading the handbook has been very motivational for some of my scouts.

  3. I want the scouts to do as much as they can for themselves   But also, with young and inexperienced scouts,  I feel like the adults need to give them enough support that they can actually get out-of-doors and do something.   (Because if scouting is not fun they will not stick with the program and benefit from it.)   It is hard to know exactly how much support is the right amount of support,  not too little, and not too much. 

  4. 6 hours ago, Liz said:

    I'm doing my homework to see which camps in the region still have space for the summer and what the cost will be (I think our local council camps are full) but that's only going to come out if the girls say "we think we want to attend a Council camp."

    Do your scouts actually know that summer Council camp is an option?   Sometimes we need to let them know what the possibilities are -- not to force them to do something, but to let them know that they could decide to do something.

  5. 8 hours ago, qwazse said:

    Electing a PL. Coming up with a name, yell, flag, etc ... on their own and within a month of starting.

    Our small troop elected a PL rather than an SPL. Initial elections were right as the troop formed up and initial length of office was only three months -- which was a good thing.  The girls didn't really know what the jobs were like or what they likely doing.   By three months into the patrol's existance, it was much clearer what needed to be done and who would be a good patrol leader.

    I would not force them to quickly settle on the name and flag.     Get them started thinking about it,  even before the troop is chartered.  But you want them to have time to pick a good name,  and name with some meaning to them,  a name that they will want to keep for years.    Once they realize that they cannot reach Scout rank until they have a patrol name, that will motivate them to finish deciding.  


  6. On 6/7/2019 at 1:47 PM, mrkstvns said:

    Do you miss the innocent animal patrol names of yore?  Think Wood Badge should update their patrol for 21st century scouting?

    I leaned on my scouts a little here.   I told them to pick a good patrol name,  a name that meant something to them,  a name that they would be happy to keep for a long time (years).   I told them that they could design the artwork for their own patrol patch so that they could have a good patrol patch.  (I also made fun of some of the existing patrol patches available from Class B and elsewhere:  the flaming nuclear biohazard something-or-others.)

    Then I watched to see what they would come up with.  (They had had a couple of months to think over their patrol name before the decision time.  Though some scouts had started thinking of patrol name ideas before the troop was formed.)

    They ended up (with no prodding by me)  choosing a very traditional patrol name.  They, collectively, came up with many reasons why it was a great name -- including that it was the name of one of the patrols of girls that showed up at the Crystal Palace boy scout rally in 1909.    



    • Thanks 1

  7. Why not do the same projects you do with Boy Scouts or Cub Scouts the same age as the girls?  Probably all of them are suitable.

    The one additional thing I can think of that some girls might like that boys wouldn't do is a small purse.   So many girls' clothes have no pockets at all, or an almost useless pocket barely big enough for a kleenex.   Size the purse about the size of a pocket,  big enough to hold a phone or a wallet, interior size about 6" x 4".  Make sure it closes securely  (button or toggle?).  And give it a strap long enough to wear diagonally across the body.

    Of course, if girls' clothing had decent pockets then such a thing would be unecessary.   (Even the new BSA uniform pants for girls are somewhat skimpy on the pockets compared to the boys' uniform pants.  They do have two cargo pockets, but they are tiny cargo pockets.)

  8. 28 minutes ago, TAHAWK said:

    not to steal his or her property.

    What do you think the camp does with the confiscated phones?

    Another Girl Scout camp,  same council, has the same phone policy but words it a little more gently


    No cell phones will be permitted at camp.  If a camper brings a cell phone to camp, we will safely store the phone and return it directly to the parent at the end of the session.


    28 minutes ago, TAHAWK said:

    The remedy is to send the offender home,

    Which is more drastic?  Which is more trouble for the parents who are paying for a week at camp? Having the camper's phone spend a few days locked in the camp office?  Or requiring the parents to fetch a kid from camp, at short notice, and find alternative things for them to do the rest of that week?


  9. 40 minutes ago, TAHAWK said:

    What is your authority in your state to seize a "device" because a kid broke YOUR rule

    I'll switch to a Girl Scout camp example.  The camp my daughter attended gave parents an information packet explaining the camp rules and policies.  (And if you did not like them, you did not need to attend that camp.)  The camp clearly told families that


    The following items are not allowed at camp and should be left at home: cell phones and other electronic devices, candy, gum, food, alcohol, illegal drugs, weapons, pets and animals.  If found at camp, they will be confiscated.



  10. 10 minutes ago, DuctTape said:

    Would I be correct to assume it has changed a lot?

    That is an extreme understatment.   

    Do you have "How Girls Can Help Their Country?"  or "Scouting for Girls?"

    In October 2017, my daughter picked up a boy scout hand book from a few years ago,  read it, and said "This is like what Girl Scouting used to be" -- and her point of reference for "what Girl Scouting used to be" was a late 20's handbook which was a slight revision of the original 1920  "Scouting for Girls".      In other words "Scouting for Girls was (in my daughter's opinion) more like the recent Boy Scout handbooks that it was like the recent "Girls Guide to Girl Scouting".

  11. 5 hours ago, Eagledad said:

    But, the new Tiger program in the 1980s highlighted their greed. IMHO, the added burden of toddlers to an already full program teetered the scales negatively all they way to Venturing.

    What I saw with GSUSA was that starting the girls as "girl scouts" in kindergarten set the expectation that scouting would be a light & fluffy extra-curricular.  The littlest kids did not do much because they could not do much.   And by the time they got a little older, and could do more,  their opinion/expectation (and for the new-to-girl-scouts families, the parents' expectation) of "Girl Scouts" had already been set.  Not good.

  12. 3 hours ago, DuctTape said:

    This is why the handbooks aren't really used except as "sign-offs" BECAUSE THEY ARE OTHERWISE BASICALLY USELESS. 

    I assume you are using "BASICALLY USELESS" as a relative term?    Have you ever looked at the "Girls' Guide to Girl Scouting" which is the closest thing GSUSA currently has to a handbook?

  13. The leaders' guide, for the camp we will be attending, says


    Mobile Phones are NOT allowed in camp. The use of mobile phones by Scouts in camp is strictly prohibited.
    Adults that need to use them are requested to use them out of sight of the Scouts and down in the parking lot
    area. Mobile phones that are used by Scouts will be confiscated. Mobile phones detract from the outdoor
    experience of Scouting and can complicate issues of homesickness.

    I have been told, by those who have been to the camp previously, that the camp is strict about its phone policy.

    I am quite happy with that.

  14. I took a few scout staves (the standard scout-shop kind) on a camping trip and the scouts had fun with them:   used them to haul their gear,  used them as poles for their dining fly, actually carried them hiking . . .

    Now at least one of the scouts is saying that we should give a scout staff to every new scout joining the troop.

    Thing is,  those scout-shop staffs seems rather heavy.   Has anyone tried using bamboo poles for scout staves (including using for dining fly poles)?  They have the merit of being lightweight, inexpensive, and readily available: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01MPXVSHO/

  15. 9 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

    As someone who was responsible for the Council Junior Leadership Development and NYLT (JLTC), the average 14 year old doesn’t have the maturity for the advanced course. Maybe the girls do, but not the boys.

    I agree that they would probably get more out of the course if they were older.   But my troop just elected a 13-year-old PL as the top youth leader in the one patrol troop (and she is, I think, the best choice they could have made) and she appointed a 13-year-old QM to help her who again I think was a good choice.   From my troop's point of view, I would rather they get the NYLT training this summer, instead of waiting until next year.   (And once 2020 rolls around they would have to be first class, and I am not encouraging a race to first class in a year.)     Why do we not have older scouts in top leadership positions?  Because the couple of 14-year-olds we have are terribly shy, and one is not fluent in English yet.  

    21 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

    Ideally, adult troop leaders observing the course would bring back more value to their troop. 

    Is this typically allowed?   Is this encouraged?   I would probably learn a lot if I could observe the course.


  16. Apparently there is a further change to age requirements as of 1 March. According to https://www.scouting.org/programs/scouts-bsa/resources/nylt/


    As of March 1, 2019, Scouts BSA members (male and female) must be at least 13. They must have completed Introduction to Leadership Skills for Troops. For 2019 only, an exception will be granted for girls registered in Scouts BSA to attend NYLT without first achieving the First Class rank. Boys registered in Scouts BSA will still be required to earn the First Class rank before attending NYLT.

    This is very good news for my troop, as our top youth leaders are 13-year-olds.

  17. 1 hour ago, MattR said:

    Scout 1). How about starting with a duty roster?

    I agree.   It's not nearly so hard for her to say "Have you checked the duty roster?" as it is for her to say "Please do X".     If the other scouts are good-natured about helping when needed, but simply not paying attention to when they need to do something, the PL making and posting a duty roster that fairly distributes the jobs might help.

  18. 3 hours ago, Kudu said:

    What would be the pros and cons of joining a "Troop," if you are a Lone Patrol of kids encouraged by your parents to seek adventure on your own?

    Not quite the question you are asking -- but one benefit to a kid of seeking out a troop is to find that patrol of kids with common interests -- if he hasn't already found one on his own. 

    • Like 1

  19. 12 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

    I asked about having the patrols vote for their own leaders and the reaction of was mixed.  One parent in particular was not a fan (“we don’t want this to be a popularity contest and the boys never asked for this anyway”).

    Our new troop, after a short initial term of office for its first PL,  just held an election for the new PL to take over beginning of the summer.   Any scout who wanted to could put her name in as a candidate (no minimum rank requirments or any such thing).  Then the troop (a single patrol) voted on who they wanted.   I in no way tried to influence their choice of which scout was appropriate for the job.   (Though I did use a preceeding week's scoutmaster minute to emphasize the importance of servant leadership.)

    Interesting to me was that the scouts who put their names forward as candidates were all scouts that I felt would be good candidates.   And the scouts elected the girl that I personally thought was most ready to be Patrol Leader.

    This is just to say that if you let the scouts vote for their own leaders,  they may very well make an extremely sensible choice.

  20. 13 hours ago, qwazse said:

    Assemble PLC regularly

    • We actually opted for 10-15 minutes after the troop meeting closes.


    The troop leader guidebook (p 37) talks about the regular monthly PLC meeting.  Also about "Patrol Leaders' Council Huddles" before each meeting and a brief PLC meeting at the end of each troop meeting. 

    Our small new one-patrol troop has been holding an all-interested-troop-members-invited "PLC" meeting once a month for the scouts to plan the upcoming activities.  Typically about half the scouts in the troop (including the PL/APL) attend.   We have not been having the brief PLC meeting at the end of each troop meeting.   However I am starting to feel that something of the sort is needed -- that is, remote means of communication (email, phone) between troop meetings are not quite enough.  

    So,  in your experience, especially in your small-troop experience:   do you do these post-troop-meeting huddles?  Whose attendance is critical?  Whose attendance is optional? 

  21. 3 hours ago, malraux said:

    Woggles in general are fine, but the stiff 2 strand, 4 lobed leather woggle (item 2173) is restricted to wood badge participants only to be worn with the wb necker. It’s distinctive in appearance and a violation of the insignia guide. 

    So that is a 3-lead 4-bight turk's head in leather (with each strand doubled). https://www.scoutshop.org/wood-badge-woggle-neckerchief-slide-2173.html

    But would a different turk's head knot (say 4-lead 5-bight ) be okay for scouts?  in leather? in paracord?  only if it is a color that looks very different from brown leather?

  22. 54 minutes ago, scoutldr said:

    Is that a Wood Badge woggle?

    I've got a scout who would like to talk her troop-mates into making turks-head woggles (and custom square larger neckechiefs) once they have a chance to get around to the issue of neckerchiefs.   Are there some restrictions on what is allowed for scouts?   (Like no leather or brown-leather-look-paracord?)

  23. 1 hour ago, willray said:

    So... Who else wants to show off what their cross-over patrol(s) do for cooking, with no senior scouts or adult help, on their first campout, and first time cooking outdoors?

    After hearing what meals the girls had planned for our first overnight,  the other mom and I decided to ask if they would be willing to cook enough so that we adults could eat as their guests rather than us two cooking separately.  (If we had cooked for ourselves, we would not have put in as much effort and would not have eaten as well.)

    Of course, a couple of our girls already had a good bit of camp cooking experience, and a number had cooking-at-home experience.