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Everything posted by Treflienne

  1. Thanks so much for sharing that video. Apart from the setting (the high ropes course) and from the mention of the queen is the promise, it is very similar to what I am familiar with from GSUSA.
  2. So it seems like there were a couple of related changes in 2015 that are significant for the idea of an investiture: 1) Cub Scouts started using the same Scout Oath and Scout Law as Boy Scouts 2) "Scout" turned into a rank, rather than a joining badge, ( https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2015/10/19/scout-currently-joining-badge-become-rank/ ) So back when cubs didn't have the same oath, then in order to get the scout "joining badge" they needed to as well as a few other things which look like they could mostly have been done the first week the boy began attending the troop meetings. After the 2015 changes, most boys were coming into scouts from cubs already familiar with and subscribing to the Scout Oath. The new scout rank requirements are a little more involved, including So it looks like the current scout rank assumes that the boy has been trying for some time to put into practise the Scout Oath and Scout Law, rather than making an initial agreement to being trying to do so. (Which should certainly be true of any boy coming up from cubs.) So the Scout rank looks like a great time to recieve the custom troop neckerchief and woggle, after having demonstrated some committment to Boy Scouting, for boys coming up from cubs. But what about those kids who were never cub scouts. It will likely take most of them a few weeks to achieve scout rank. In the meantime they are attending the scout meeting each week. Do they just drift into saying the Scout Oath along with the other boys. Or is there some way to emphasize that what they are doing is a significant new undertaking for them? Might their be some form of investiture separate from and prior to the attainment of the Scout Rank, to signify that they are commencing to subscribe to the Scout Oath and Scout law?
  3. If it is acceptable practise in BSA, I'd like to do something of the sort with the new Scout BSA girls --- to emphasize the significance of their vow. Since scouting is not an activity that one attends, it is the undertaking of a way of life. But I'd like to do it the BSA way, if there is such a thing.
  4. Apparently also done in Scouts Canada https://scoutdocs.ca/Documents/Scout_Investiture.php
  5. When a kid joins scouting and formally makes the Scout Oath for the first time, is there any recognition of this as a formal and solemn promise that the scout is henceforth undertaking to obey? I only know how it is done in Girl Scouts. There, there is an "investiture" ceremony. The new scout is recognized and, in front of the whole group, recites the Scout Promise and recieves her Girl Scout pin. Usually this also includes someone shaking the new scout's hand with the Scout handshake and telling her congratulations upon becoming a Girl Scout. (For traditionalists, it also includes pinning the pin on upside down, until the scout has done "three good turns", after which the pin can be turned rightside up.) Sometimes the ceremony is very brief. I've seen new girl scout leaders, who were not scouts as kids, being invested in a 2-minute ceremony at the begining of a service unit meeting (adult leader meeting.) Sometime it is a little more elaborate, and the whole troop will sing, as a four part round, "Whene'r you make a promise, consider well its importance, and when made, engrave it upon your heart." If a whole cohort is being invested together, such as an entire troop of kindergarten Daisy Girl Scouts, then troop may invite the parents to come and watch the event. What do Boy Scouts do? (Less than one month till we have a whole batch of new scouts.)
  6. Do you mean this sort? https://scoutmastercg.com/ecozoom-stove-review/ Have any of you used them as patrol stoves?
  7. How many of you guys (your boy scout troops that is) normally cook over a fire rather than over a camping stove these days? As I have been getting acquainted with BSA in my area, I was surprised by how much of the cooking was on a camp stove rather than over a fire. And if you don't normally cook over a camp fire is it because (a) you don't have a good place to build a campfire or (b) building a fire and cooking over it takes too much time and the boys want to do other things or (c) problems with availability of firewood or (d) some other reason?
  8. In a good year, our service unit has 2 or three activitites to which all the troops are invitied to attend. In a bad year, fewer. In a good year, our service unit has a meeting of all interested adults (troop leaders mostly, but interested parents also) every month or two. In a bad year, the service unit might meet only twice. It all come down to the energy level and availability of the volunteers -- who are also trying to keep things going in their own troops.
  9. I'm a little concerned about that. Either 1) that they will scorn cabin camping as not being real camping or that 2) they will decide that cabin camping is close enough to camping and not want more. Besides, I have bad memories (both as a kid and as an adult) of being in a cabin with a whole bunch of Brownies and no one getting any sleep. Divide them up into tents of not more than 4 girls and everyone sleeps better. Or does this problem go away when the kids are older? There might be a certain appeal to this. Do a day outing quite early (before the end of February). Cook lunch over a campfire and hike in the snow. Then the girls might be better ready for tents in late March / early April weather. (Even in late April it can still drop down to freezing at night.)
  10. If we want to nit-pick about language -- are you sure you mean "girl scout troop"? Or do you mean "scout troop for girls"? Either way, I agree with you that
  11. Girl Scout troops are encouraged (by the council) not to carry money forward from year to year unless it is earmarked for a specific purpose.
  12. A good service unit, if you have one, is valuable. The service unit is simply the troop leaders and other registered adult volunteers in a given geographical area (such as a town or school district). If the older girls' troops have experienced energetic troop leaders they can do a lot to help the younger troops and newer leaders. But if the leaders of the older troops are fully busy with their own troops, they might not have time or energy for helping out the younger troops. Occasionally our service unit has organized a service-unit-wide encampment or Thinking Day observance -- but some years it has done neither. The more I learn about BSA it seems to me that the single-grade small girl scout troops are to the service unit a little like dens are to the pack.
  13. The GSUSA troop leader is responsible for finding a meeting space for her troop. It should be handicapped-accessible. It should preferably be in some kind of a public building (church, school, business, not a private home). And it should not cost anything to meet there. If you are lucky a sympathetic school or church will let you meet. Other troops end up meeting in the leaders homes (though this is discouraged) which of course serves to limit the troop size.
  14. I like your plan. I think it looks like a great plan. But . . . I'm concerned about the season of the year. Our new troop will be starting beginning of February. Late February and early March we still ususally have snow on the ground. I think that some of the prospective new scouts have little or no camping experience. I want the first weekend outing to be a positive experience for all. We will not have a lot of scouts to start with. I don't want to lose any after the first camping trip if the camping trip is something they are not yet ready for. ) Anybody have good suggestions for a good type of first weekend or overnight trip for winter for a new or inexperienced troop not yet ready for camping in the snow? Cabin with a wood stove, but cook over a fire outdoors and do day hikes in the snow? Other ideas?
  15. Winter? What climate? Did you take a bunch of new scouts winter camping within the first month or so of the troop restarting?
  16. How do you handle the case of boys that are not U.S. citizens? Hardly seems appropiate to compel them to pledge allegience to the U.S. (The scout oath in BSA is no problem since the wording is "my country". I found @Cambridgeskip's link interesting about the alternative Scout Promise in the UK for kids who are not British subjects are don't have a duty to the Queen)
  17. I'd love to have a thriving all girls troop. Several patrols. Scouts ranging from new cross-overs up to experience eagle scouts. Plenty of experience adults (SM/ASM/committee) able to provide the support the girls need to do what they want to do. But the reality is: We have no older experienced girls. (Girl eagle scouts don't even exist yet.) Of the three parents who have volunteered (without being pressed) to step up: None has been a SM, none has been an ASM, and none has been on a troop commitee. I went and did the online SM training and I went to IOLS. It's looking like I may be scoutmaster. If so, I will need all the help I can get. That sounds great. Except we are so inexperienced that "trying to fit the girls troop into the boys troop way of doing things" may actually in the near term work better than trying to figure it out on our own. The good side is that the several boys troops are encouraging the girls to visit all the troops, see what they like, and then collectively pick which troop to link with. So the girls may get to pick between several different boys-troops-ways-of-doing-things.
  18. So it seems that at first the girls troop will be a single patrol. So it seems to me the girls troop, on its own, will initially need a PL and APL, but will be too small to need a SPL or PLC. (I admit to being influenced by this post: https://www.scouter.com/topic/27493-pl-spl-for-small-troop/?tab=comments#comment-422519 and other posts in that thread.) For the sake of communication between the girls and boys troops, and for planning on whether (or not) to do any joint activities or meetings, I could see the girl PL attending the boys PLC as an observer (rather than a voting member) to be able to give input to the boys on whether the girls might want to participate (if invited) in trips the boys are planning, and carry info back to girls troop (the single-patrol troop) about possible opportunities to do things jointly. The girls as a patrol (a single-patrol troop) would also plan on their own activities that they wanted to do by themselves. And if they were to plan something to which they wished to invite the boys, that could be communicated at the boys PLC meeting by the girl observer. And some year, once the girls reach three patrols, they would be ready to have their own PLC. Or is this all nonsense? I have no experience, and am trying to imagine how things might work. What think y'all?
  19. Sounds like a great idea. I wonder if having an "expiration date" would make it easier to persuade an experienced former ASM/SM to help out directly with the girls troop, even without having a daughter in the troop. (I don't know of any parents of the girls who already have had ASM/SM experience.)
  20. If only it were so simple. For each of the several boys troops, one or two girls have a family connection with that troop. (And all the troops are in the same school district which has only one jr high school and only one high school, so there are the oppotunities for friendships to overlap between scouts and school with all the troops.)
  21. GSUSA seems to believe that it has improved its program (by making camping merely peripheral to the program) to meet the needs of the girls (the large number of girls that don't want to camp). After all, even in BSA, the outdoor program is only a method, not an aim. It seems that GSUSA thinks that other methods work better for most girls most of the time. It is great that the (probably minority) of girls who don't view GSUSA's improvements as improvement now have a second option of scouting organization.
  22. My daughter also had that situation in two of the GSUSA troops she was in over the years. I think so, at least for Daisies, Brownies, Juniors. In our area, very very few girls continue past Juniors (5th grade.) But that is not what is happening. None of the other girls from daughter's GSUSA troop are planning to join BSA. I think that at least half of the interested girls in our prospective girls troops were never in GSUSA. I think that only a few currently are in GSUSA. We have yet to see. Under BSA rules all but one of the adults can be men. And it being BSA maybe the dads will feel welcome (unlike sometimes happens in GSUSA). So a bunch of enthusiastic dads just need to find a couple of moms/much-older-sisters/older-girl-cousins of the girls who want to take turns going along on the outings.
  23. That is the other important question. I would much appreciate any advice on what you think would work well and what would not work well. I've been talking with scoutmasters/committee-chairs of these troops (several different troops), asking each about what he thought the linkage would look like in practise if our newly forming girls troop were to link with his troop. I've gotten some ideas from each troop, but they don't yet have a fully formed idea of what they would like, just as I don't yet know what the girls troop would like. One consistent idea is that they think that the girls troop and the boys troop should have joint PLC meetings. Essentially the girls troop will be the size of a single patrol. Planning would be done together, with the boys and girls deciding which outings/activities would be done together, and which would be done separately. Their idea would be to aspire to progressive indepedence in future years as the girls troop increased in size and experience. The smallest troop's scoutmaster seems to vision an almost completely integrated troop, at least for the first years. Joint committee, joint fundraisers, joint PLC. Girls would use equipment belonging to the existing troop, at least until they get equipment they like of their own. PLC would determine how many of the meetings/outings are joint and how many separate, but scoutmaster thinks that mostly joint stuff would be good. You are right, there would be less self-determination. But that troop is small enough that the girls would be a sizeable enough proportion (1/4 to begin with?) to have a decent amount of say. This is the troop in which the PLC seemed quite happy with the idea. The largest, very well resourced, troop pictures it as the girls having separate meetings (same building, same time, different room). Some shared outings. They have lots of equipment and no problem if the girls use it. Committee members are generously offering to help with the new girls troop paperwork, since they are experienced at doing it. With this troop, I don't think that the girls troop would have very much influence on the boys troop at all (due to the size difference). But there would be a lot of opportunities the girls could choose to participate in (or choose not to participate in.) By the way, any of these troops would be willing to lend the girls equipment, even if the girls are a completely independent troop. Reactions? What sounds good? What sounds bad? What do you think are best practises for linking trops? None of this is set in stone yet. I realize that. But "give a man enough rope and he'll hang himself". I think that given the inexperience of the girls and the adults, that giving up some self-determination might worthwhile for the advice, mentoring, and support. But don't want to give up too much self-determination.
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