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Posts posted by Treflienne

  1. I'd like to insert a new thought into this discussion.  You know the saying.  "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good".

    I'd also like to point out that when the first Boy Scout troops for boys started,  a hundred or so years ago,  none of the scouters had grown up in the program as youth.

    What if the choice is between a troop with inexperienced adults who at least think they want to learn,  and no troop at all?   (This may be the case for some of the new girls' troops.)  We have youth wanting to be in Scouting and use the BSA program.   Do we offer them a troop full of inexperienced scouts (them) and inexperienced adults?   Or do we offer them nothing at all?

    By the way,  this is one reason why I think that the linked troop idea is a good idea --- so that the experienced scouters in the boys' troop can mentor and help the scouters in the girls' troop.

    • Upvote 1

  2. 20 minutes ago, The Latin Scot said:

    They should have put the girls in uniforms like these, with yellow blouses/shirts or olive dresses and all the other options shown here.

    Class A's are a "field uniform".   Skirts and dresses are no good for such -- they would only be good as a dress uniform.     And yellow shows dirt stains a lot more than tan does.

    Actually I have been disappointed that scoutstuff.org is only showing the girls-fit shirt in the cotton blend.   How about a quick-dry Class A shirt for girls, so that it is actually suitable to wear on outings?  Has anyone heard if one will be forthcoming?      (We have told our girls to hold off on buying uniforms until it becomes clear what options will be available.)

    • Upvote 1

  3. 16 hours ago, RememberSchiff said:

    but it does have a dance  with neighboring girl camp.

    A dance?  Yikes!  I'd rather supervise scouts playing with fire than at a dance. :D

    As the wording goes in the 1st edition scout handbook: "A scout is friendly.  He is a friend to all and a brother to every other scout."  In line with that I'd rather have the (male) scouts viewing the (female) scouts as siblings than as potential dance partners.

    Stupid question here, but are dances common or uncommon features of Boy Scout camps?  

  4. Reviving this thread about recommended Massachusetts summer camps.    For a new Scouts BSA troop of girls new to Scouting (but not all new to camping) have you any recommendations of great camps readily accessible from the Boston suburbs or the middle of Massachusetts?   In particular any  comments on recent year's experiences at Resolute,  Treasure Valley, or Wanocksett?

  5. 28 minutes ago, MattR said:


    It took a while to find it. Kind of sad that the aims don't tend to make it on the front page of the website.



    A fourth aim of Scouting, Leadership Development, has been added to the other three (Character Development, Citizenship Training, and Physical and Mental Fitness). The fourth aim of Scouting will be included in all the Scouts BSA and Cub Scout modules.

    Does this mean that "Leadership Development" is no longer one of the Methods?

    • Haha 4

  6. 1 hour ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

    Like I mentioned, IMHO the Cross Over Ceremony seems to have replaced the Investiture Ceremony.

    I looked at some cross-over ceremonies on the web,  and they do seem to include the Oath and Law.   Also, since 2015, the cross-overs will already have been using the Scout Oath and Scout Law as cubs,  so they will already have subscribed to them as cubs.

    And the Scout Rank seems like it will take a little longer to earn than Scout did previously (or even than Tenderfoot did back in the 1911 handbook.)

    So the question really only comes up for new scouts who were never scouts or cubs before.

    I am looking for best practise for new scouts who were never scouts or cubs before.   How to encourage them to think carefully about the Oath and Law, and be aware that they pledging themselves to a way of life, and not just drift into saying the oath thoughtlessly.  While such new never-been-cubs scouts have probably been unsusual in recent yeats, we have on the order of a dozen (girls) who look like they will be joining Scouts BSA next month.   Decent chance the girls will do combined opening ceremonies (at least part of the time) with a boys troop with which we will be linked.  And the boys troop recites the oath and law at the beginning of each meeting.   My personal (completely uneducated) opinion would be to have these new scouts think carefully about the oath and law and (in some fashion) swear them in at their first meeting the first week of February.  But perhaps that is contrary to how things should be done in BSA.  (I am definitely influenced by my GSUSA background, so I have a lot to learn.)  Making them wait until they earn the Scout Rank to publically recite the Oath would seem like too long a wait -- and the boys who come up from cubs do not have that wait.

    Looking for opinions from opinionated people who find tradition meaningful, and who care about the Oath and Law.

  7. On 1/9/2019 at 11:45 PM, fred8033 said:

    I saw a BSA troop invest new scouts.  It was a very meaningful.  The lights were dimmed.  The new scouts stood in a crescent facing the SPL.  A candles were held by the new scouts and it was their first time saying oath and promise with the troop.  It was kept very short.  I'd be glad to see it done again.

    Was this done very soon after they registered and began attending meetings?   Or was this done after they had earned Scout rank?

  8. 35 minutes ago, shortridge said:

    I joined in 1990, when the berets had been retired but we loved them so much that we ordered military knockoff ones and sewed the BSA logo on.

    You loved the berets?   We Girl Scouts also had berets in the 1970s and they were awful.  Never stayed in place.   I think that GSUSA has gotten rid of many things it should not have gotten rid of,  but I don't mind the disappearance of the berets at all.

  9. 4 hours ago, Oldscout448 said:

    these three  red ' candles representing the three parts of the Scout Oath, and these twelve white candles which represent the points of the Scout Law"


    2 hours ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

    Also on the table are two log candelabras, one holding three candles, and the other twelve.

    So in GSUSA,  a generation back at least,  when we had an investiture for the new girl scouts we would sometimes also have what we called a "rededication ceremony" for the rest of the girl scouts (perhaps once a year).  A log candleholdle with three candles for the three point of the Scout Promise, and another log candleholder with ten candles for the ten points of the Girl Scout Law . . . (But we had no "spirit of scouting" candle.)

  10. 18 hours ago, Cambridgeskip said:

    It's certainly something we do in the UK.


    18 hours ago, Cambridgeskip said:

    ask them if they've enjoyed their time with us so far, if they are ready to become a scout and whether they know the scout law and promise.

    So I looked up the (UK) Scout Association web site and saw that in the UK the Cub Scout Promise is different from the Scout Promise. (In particular the cub promise refers to a different, briefer, Law).

    So your new scouts, at their investiture, are making a new promise that they did not make in cubs.

    How long, typically, from when they start attending the scout meetings until their investituture?   And during their time leading up to their investiture,  when the rest of the scouts are reciting the Scout Promise at the start of the meeting (which I am assuming they do) then do these new scouts-to-be recite the Scout Promise along with the scouts, or do they wait until their investiture?


  11. 20 minutes ago, Sniktaw said:

    I think I will just call them Boy Scouts.

    That would probably also work fine for any fifth grade girls crossing over from cubs to scouts this year also, and maybe for a few years.   Everyone currently knows the old name "Boy Scout" much better than the new name "Scouts BSA",  even the new girls.

    • Upvote 1

  12. 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


               Understand and agree to live by the Scout Oath, Scout Law, motto, and slogan and the Outdoor Code.

    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       


    1b. Explain what Scout spirit is. Describe some ways you have shown Scout spirit by practicing the Scout Oath, Scout Law, Scout motto, and Scout slogan.


    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?

  13. 2 minutes ago, fred8033 said:

    I'd be glad to see it done again.

    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.

  14. 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.)

  15. On 12/22/2018 at 2:53 PM, Eagledad said:

    Women leaders and gas stoves were two changes that stood out to me when I came back in 1990.

    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?



  16. 5 hours ago, Hawkwin said:

    I wish that was the case but at least locally, my daughter has no interaction with any other troop/"den" that would be part of the service unit. All troops operate in silos even more insular that BSA troops. I WISH that they could meet with other GS troops on a regular basis. Think of the things they (and we) could learn from one another.

    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.

  17. 23 hours ago, mashmaster said:

    You can camp in cabins but that might be a bad habit to start off with.

    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?

    4 hours ago, MattR said:

    The first campout, if there's snow about, can be a hike instead. 

    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.)

  18. 1 hour ago, JoeBob said:

    in case some of you wanted to suggest that we say 'Happy Holidays' instead of 'Merry Christmas'.

    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

    1 hour ago, JoeBob said:

    I wish that every girl scout troop finds enough female members and adult leaders to successfully  launch their own scouting adventure.


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