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Everything posted by Treflienne

  1. Treflienne

    Has anyone had their uniform shirt tailored?

    Don't forget ebay. That gives more options of shirts available a few years ago -- such as nylon. People in my troop tell me that the polyester-microfiber shirt snags too easily. Of course these particular scouts, who are telling me this, would be capable of snagging almost anything.
  2. Treflienne

    Recommendations for off-brand Scout pants

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07RP1B2TD (“6055 Army Green”) Good color. Big pockets. Zip off. Quick dry. Haven't had them long enough yet to check durability.
  3. Treflienne

    LDS Youth Program for 2020

    This is a complete aside. But one of the things that really struck me, coming from GSUSA into BSA was how much more the boy scouts had in the way of resources that the girls scouts. Money? Local BSA troops seem to be sitting on back accounts with thousands of dollars in them. The GSUSA troops start and end each year with no money. Resources: The BSA camp has motorboats, kayaks, canoes, new-looking life jackets, bicyles, rifle range, a fancy archery range, etc, etc, etc. The GSUSA camp has battered aluminum canoes, faded old orange life jackets, and a small shed containing a few bows for archery -- and this is one of the premier camps in the council. I have just been astonished at much money boy scouts appears to have.
  4. Treflienne

    Three Sisters Pottage

    I guess that in your part of the country, the schoolkids don't all take field trips to Plimoth Plantation. Around here its hard *not* to know what the "Three Sisters" and "pottage" are: Plimoth Plantation's explanation (for kids) of how the three sisters were grown: https://www.plimoth.org/learn/just-kids/homework-help/growing-food And see the sobaheg recipe: https://www.plimoth.org/learn/just-kids/recipes
  5. Treflienne

    on the trail to ... Scout?

    For us the sticking points were a) patrol identity stuff (name, yell, etc). When a new patrol is formed it takes the patrol collectively a while to reach consensus on a good name. So for a number of our scouts this was the sticking point. (But scouts who joined later had this really easy -- the flag was already made, the current scouts were really enthusiastic about their yell . . .) b) the cyber chip -- scheduling the opporunity to teach other scouts c) the cyber chip -- the contract with one's parents about electronics usage.
  6. Treflienne

    on the trail to ... Scout?

    One could wish. But IOLS certainly did not do that.
  7. Treflienne

    on the trail to ... Scout?

    I'd like our troop to make the transition to youth doing the sign-offs. The question is which scouts and how soon? None of our scouts are first class yet, but different scouts have different skills. Could the scout who did the Pioneering Merit Badge be approved to sign off on the knots? Could the scout who did the Lifesaving Merit Badge be approved to sign off on the swimming? Could the scout who completed the LNT trainer course be approved to sign off the LNT-related requriments? Could scouts who have done the First Aid Merit Badge (or WRFA) be approved to sign off on the first aid requirements? Could the patrol leader sign off on Scout Rank steps 1-5? Or does this sound crazy, since none of these scouts are first class yet?
  8. Treflienne

    What are the BSA priorities??

    But the "Tenderfoot" rank of the 1960s is, in content, more similar to the "Scout" rank of today than it is to the "Tenderfoot" rank of today. That is, today significantly more is required for the Tenderfoot rank that in former years. Actually, one can argue that today's "Scout" rank is a marginally more difficult rank than the 1960s "Tenderfoot" rank. The only things in the 1960s Tenderfoot rank that are not in today's Scout Rank are the requirments about the uniform, the flag, and the clove hitch. And today's scout rank has a number of things not in the 1960s Tenderfoot rank. From the history of rank requirments, http://www.troop97.net/pdfbin/bsa_ranks.pdf helpfully brought to our attentions by @HashTagScoutswe have the 1965-1970 Tenderfoot
  9. Treflienne

    What are the BSA priorities??

    I don't know that the name "Scout" is the best choice. But the content is a helpful preliminary orientation. The focus is on understanding how being a scout works: (scout oath, scout law, "four steps of Scout advancement", what ranks are, what merit badges are, how scouts provide leadership in the troop, the types of patrols in your troop, etc, etc. And of course going throught the YPT pamphlet with ones parents.) There is very little in the way of outdoor skills. (3 knots, whip and fuse rope, "tell" about pocketknife safety.) So later on when the scout wants to be signed off the very first time they, with help, stumble through a skill activity, one can ask them whether they remember the "four steps of Scout advancment" in which "You learn" and "You are tesed" are separate steps.
  10. Treflienne

    What are the BSA priorities??

    So I have a scout who hates the name "Tenderfoot". This scout had a lot of camping experience before joining BSA and does not feel like "Tenderfoot" is an appropriate term -- since using the broader meaning of the term, a "tenderfoot" is someone who is inexperienced in the out-of-doors. Thanks to @HashTagScouts for that ready reference to the history of rank requirements. Back in BSA early days, 1910-1911, "Tenderfoot" was a very basic rank: Scout Law, signs, salute; a little flag knowledge.; four knots. If you go further back, Baden-Powell in Scouting for Boys in 1908 said that “A Tenderfoot is a boy who is not yet a scout”. It seems odd, indeed, that first one becomes a member of BSA, then one becomes a "Scout", and only after that does one become a "Tenderfoot". So I would propose (not that there is any chance in the world that BSA will change) the following: Upon paying the registration fee and turning in the required paperwork, the kid becomes a "Tenderfoot", that is someone who has not yet learned those things that even the lowest ranked "Scout" should be expected to know. No rank badge. The first rank to be earned is, as now, "Scout". All the same requirements and same rank badge as current "Scout" rank. The next rank up, while retaining the its requirments and rank badge is renamed to be "3rd class scout", instead of "Tenderfoot" This would restore the sense of the tenderfoot being a kid who is not yet a scout, and the tenderfoot being the least knowledgeable kid in the troop.
  11. Treflienne

    The Lost Art of the Tarp....

    Well, my scouts are not quite at that point yet, but they are definitely getting practise with knot tying and shear lashings.
  12. Treflienne

    The Lost Art of the Tarp....

    Spare tarp from someone's garage that they had used a few times for raking leaves. Spare tent stakes from someone's basement. Someone else donated some ropes. All the troop needed to buy was four scout staves -- two lashed together for the front pole and two lashed together for the rear pole. And when you don't need the dining fly, the scout staves can be used for other purposes.
  13. Treflienne

    "Good" Groups vs. "Bad" Groups

    I think that one big difference is the attitude towards newcomers or outsiders. The term "clique" is often used of groups that exclude or heap scorn on outsiders or on those who do not measure up to their standards. (For girls it might be: not stylish enough, not thin enough, not rich enough, haven't lived in town long enough . . .) A group of close friends who is friendly and welcoming to newcomers would not merit the derrogatory term "clique". For a patrols, the practical question is how well do they treat new patrol members. Are the scouts truly being "A friend to all, and a brother to every other scout"? (Or "sibling", if the girls prefer that terminology.)
  14. Treflienne

    Supporting the Patrol Method - as Unit Commissioner

    P.S. I expect that by age 11 kids ought to have learned at home not to do "cutting tomatoes right after cutting raw chicken" and the importance of handwashing after using the facilities. However, since most of our families have dishwashers that do the santizing for you, they may not have learned how to wash dishes by hand.
  15. Treflienne

    Supporting the Patrol Method - as Unit Commissioner

    Yup. It's that raw chicken that I am concerned about. Even if you keep the raw chicken well isolated during food prep, you still have raw chicken on the cutting board and the knife. That meal, when you wash dishes, you make sure you wash the chicken-contaminated stuff last, so that no one's personal dishes are contaminated with raw chicken. But by the end of the dishwashing, all the dishpans are contaminated with salmonella (if you ignore the sanitizing rinse.) So after meal #2, when you wash dishes, all the scouts personal dishes become contaminated with salmonella. So at meal #3, everyone has salmonella to eat. As much as I believe in letting the scouts figure things out, the point at which the raw chicken seemed to be on the verge of spreading was the point at which I stepped in to give some specific directions. I agree. But still, failure to properly wash dishes (and properly sanitize your dishpans) is also a source of trouble.
  16. Treflienne

    Supporting the Patrol Method - as Unit Commissioner

    How I learned to wash dishes as a kid was camping with the Girl Scouts: the three dishpan method, third pot containing a bit of bleach. GS reinforced this when I took their leader training earlier this decade. Then I joined BSA, and bought the latest fieldbook being sold at the scout shop, and saw that it had (5th edition, p92) the bleach (or other sanitizer) in the second pot, not the third pot. It seemed a little odd, but I thought that I had better do things the BSA way now . . . So my troop did this on their first outing. Then I saw that the BSA handbook (14th edition p308) puts the sanitizer in the third pot. Makes much more sense, and I'd much rather the scouts do this. Trouble is, my scouts aren't convinced and having conflicting literature does not help. See, for example, Bryan on Scouting in 2017 https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2017/03/30/how-to-wash-dishes-at-campsite/ Do you a good reference to a public health department that mandates the sanitizer in the third and final pot? Or to you have any BSA literature repudiating the former sanitzer-in-second-not-third-pot practise? I'd like it to seem to my scouts more than just my arbitrary say-so in directing the scouts to follow one piece of scout literature versus another and put the sanitizer in the final rinse.
  17. Treflienne

    Limit for Cub Scout nights of camping

    Imaginary conversation between two girl scout parents: Mom A: My daughter is doing a week of scout camp this summer. Mom B: Is she doing day camp or overnight camp? Mom A: She'll be doing overnight camp. It will be the first time she's been away from family for a whole week.
  18. That's because BSA was an innovator back around 1911, and added extra badges (Life Scout, Star Scout, Eagle Scout) that were innovations not in Baden-Powell's Scouting for Boys. The GSUSA did not add these extras. Not sure when "First Class" when from being a "rank" to being an "award" in GSUSA. But by the time I was the appropriate age, it was the highest award in GSUSA. It was definitely annoying how little those boy scouts at the time were aware of the girl scout program -- I definitely got reaction from boy scouts "You've ONLY reached first class?". Of course, changing the name of the highest award to "Gold Award" didn't actually help when it came to recognition value.
  19. Treflienne

    Where would you go?

    Let's say you really have a kid who wants to do scouting, and you think scouting is valuable, "Scouting" as in the whole broad Scout Movement. Choice comes down to do we quit scouting entirely? (I hope not) or do we see which scouting organization will best help us provide a good scouting experience for the youth? Depending on where you are, and who, locally, is involved with what scouting organization, it might be: the Hungarian scouts (there are some around here), BPSA, AHG, GSUSA, BSA, Trail Life, Campfire, . . .
  20. Treflienne

    Where would you go?

    "Where would you go?" I actually thought about this a good bit, pre-2017, in relation to where would I go if I left GSUSA. And I read about BPSA and AHG. These organizations had, in my mind, two or three very very big drawbacks. (1) lack of good camps in the vicinity of where I live -- this area is rather built up and the scouts (both BSA and GSUSA) have owned properties for years which have remained relatively undeveloped and available for nearby camping, while suburbia has swallowed up a lot of land. (2) lack of existing units in the area. While the program material and/or the fees might be appealing, the lack of infrastructure (not just camps, but also nearby units for mentoring purposes, for interaction, for a summer camp program) seemed like a problem. (3) AHG also lacked the international scouting connection. I decided that the best option was to stay put with GSUSA. Then in 2017 BSA announced it would be admitting girls, and my daughter starting reading a BSA handbook . . . .
  21. Absolutely. We did what we could, when we could. Some things we had to wait on that were beyond our control - for example, one potential CO was not be able to consider the idea of taking on a new troop until after they had completed a change of institutional head. So we did what we could, when we could, while hoping that the other things would eventually work out. For much of 2018 we did not know whether we would really get a troop up and running.
  22. Of the newly added scouters (the parents of the girls) only one dad had been a scouter before (but with cub scouts, not boy scouts). We have a lot to learn. Sharing a committee with the boys, and learning from them, has been extremely helpful.
  23. We, and the troop we were linking with, assumed that the boys troop and the girls troop would have the same committee. When it came time to turn in the paperwork we learned from the council that the committee members of the boys troop would only be committee members of the girls troop if they turned in an additional paper form. The COR, CC, and a few boys troop committee members did so. So now we have some people on both committees, some offficially only on the boys committee, and some officially only on the girls committee. (It is a bit of a mess.) The whole committtee meets all together. I suppose if there were ever a contentious vote, it would matter who was registered on which committee. As it is, some people are more focussed on the boys, some more on the girls, and some foccussed on both.
  24. Well, . . . we got a troop started February 1st, and the girls could start being scouts. (Highly important to the girls who were eager to start.) From that point of view it was successful. I felt like that all spring and summer. I'm just about feeling like we have caught up. I'm not really sure how we could have done it in a different order. To recruit adults to work with the troop, we first needed to recruit their daughters to want to be scouts. A non-linked troop might have been a very different situation. But we were hoping to link with one of several boy scout troops in our school district. So while we (and by "we" I mean the interested girls families) were busy recruiting more girls (and their families), we were also talking with existing boy scout troops about the possibility of helping us get started.
  25. Nope. The best way is for the already enthusiatic scouts (or scouts-to-be) to invite their friends and sisters. We started with 2 interested girls. Six more joined because they were invited by friends (the orginal two or scouts recuited by the original two). Three found us via the web (beascout or our own website). Two girls found us because the local boys' troop advertised among their families. We took part in two scouts/cubs recruiting sign-up events. ZERO SCOUTS found us through sign-up events.