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Posts posted by Treflienne

  1. I should have said "But are far as managing to live with the rules requiring that adults be registered" . . . .

    I'd rather stay out of the argument about ages and genders of required BSA adults.

    In my area, the GSUSA elementary age troops are typically rather small and single grade.  (I suppose more like a den.)   For a typical year we had 13 girls.   Most of the moms were registered.  3 or 4 of the dads were registered.  GSUSA distinguishes between leaders ("01s" and "02s", the "leader" and "assistant leader") who are encouraged to have training and other registered adults who need not take leader training.   Depending on the type of event only one or perhaps two of the adults present need to be trained; the other adults required for the adult-to-kid ratio need only be registered and background checked.  So, no male "leaders",  but registered, background-checked dads who were available to help out when called on.

    My point was that it was not hard (in my experience) to get parents to register (and pay the registration fee, and do the background check) so as to be available to help.  Getting them to turn in permission slips on time was a completely different matter.

  2. 4 hours ago, DeanRx said:

    Do you hurry up and submit an adult application for one of the moms (that may or may not have a completed background check and current YPT by the campout?

    I leave it to you guys to hash out just how bad the new rules are.

    But are far as managing to live with the rules:  In GSUSA we were required to have two registered adults for every event. Also, any driver had to be a registered girl scout adult.   So,  proactively,  we asked all the moms to register themselves (and do the CORI check) at the beginning of the year when they registered their daughters.  Almost all did so. (They were all already used to CORI checks for school volunteering, etc, so they tought it was normal.)  Thus if we needed an additional driver or a substitute adult in a pinch, we had a pool we could draw on.

  3. On 7/6/2018 at 3:34 PM, MikeS72 said:

    Hand sewing needles do not do well with those heavy plastic backing either.  I broke countless needles trying to get them through the backing, which is one reason I bought the sewing machine.  I use a clear filament thread, so you do not see any stitching, and you can adjust the size of the stitch so it is easy to remove if and when needed.

    I just push straight throught the patch, using a rather skinny needle and also a thimble if needed.  If the needle starts to flex, back off and try to push straight.   I don't think I have ever broken an hand-sewing needle,  though I have broken lots of sewing machine needles.

  4. Each council sets its own policies.   Of the two councils nearest me:  one prohibits alcohol at all girl scout events.   The other permits alcohol at adult-only events (think wine-and-cheese fundraiser). 

    On 8/12/2018 at 6:59 AM, WisconsinMomma said:

    My friend who is a lifeguard and swim instructor decided to rent a cabin at the campground and take the rest of her family.  Her daughter in GSUSA tent camped with her troop

    So this mom supposedly wasn't actually part of the girl scout troop campout.    Not such a great way to get around the rules.

  5. It's only six months till girls in Scouts BSA.  Will you be ready to start up a girls' troop in February?

    I know that  @AVTech is planning to be scoutmaster for his daughter's troop. I know the @Hawkin's daughter is already planning her patrol name and patch. @Hedgehog was talking about a linked troop. My daughter is eager to start as well.

    So, for any of you planning to be associated with a girls' Scouts BSA troop, how close are you to ready?  

    Do you have the necessary five girls already planning to join as soon as possible?  How are you planning to recruit more girls?

    Do you have a scoutmaster and an ASM, at least one of which is a female-over-twenty-one-who-is-willing-to-go-camping?  (Willing to go backcountry camping as well as frontcountry camping? )

    Do you have a chartered organization lined up? Is the CO of the local boy's troop willing to sponsor a girls troop? opposed? undecided?

    Or have you found a different institution willing to be CO of the girls troop?

    Is the local boy's troop willing to share a troop committee with the girls troop? opposed? undecided?

    If being a linked troop is not an option for you,  do you have several troop committee members lined up?


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  6. 3 hours ago, 5thGenTexan said:

    If I were to step down I am not sure I could serve in another capacity.  The embarrassment of being labeled a quitter could prevent me from showing my face up there again. 

    I'm new to BSA.  But in other organizations I have volunteered in (church children's programs,  stuff at the school, girl scouts, etc)  volunteers typically sign up for the school year,  not in perpetuity.  Middle of the summer is the natural time to re-evaluate one's involvement.  Does one want to do the same thing?  Switch to a new role (more or less intense)?  Volunteer with a different organizaton?  Even scale back on volunteering to devote more time to other aspects of life?   Don't be embarassed by changing roles.  People do it all the time.  And don't think of changing roles as quitting,  think of it as finding the place you fit best. 

    • Upvote 1

  7. My experience has been with GUSUA badges/patches.   I always told the girls to sew on the patches.   If you iron them on they very quickly fall off,  even when the girls wear the vests/sashes infrequently.  

  8. On 7/3/2018 at 5:24 PM, MikeS72 said:

    even to the point of offering to run the patches on my sewing machine.


    On 7/4/2018 at 10:11 AM, thrifty said:

    Used troop shirts usually have sew marks from switching patches or stains on them anyway. 


    23 hours ago, Chadamus said:

    A Scout who has held multiple POR can have a rough looking left sleeve.

    Hand sew any patch that you think you might someday move or remove.   Comes off without leaving all the marks that machine-sewing does.   (Looks better, too.)   Best way to hold the patch in place while sewing is with masking tape -- since straight pins don't do well with the thick plastic-backed patches.

  9. 11 hours ago, Saltface said:

    This was replaced by a scavenger hunt to take selfies with various people and items around camp,


    4 hours ago, walk in the woods said:

    there was an activity to go around to scan QR/Bar Codes from VIP badges. 


    3 hours ago, shortridge said:

    The trend I’ve seen has been adding more and more technology to camp.

    So how common is this at boy scout camp?   I've always viewed (girl) scout camp as a good chance for kids to get away from technology for a week.   Back in my childhood it was transistor radios that were the banned item.   These days our local girl scout camp says "The following items are not allowed at camp and should be left at home: cell phones, radios, CD players, iPods or other MP3 players, handheld gaming devices, laptops, tablets, and other electronic devices, candy, gum, food, alcohol, illegal drugs, weapons, pets and animals. If found at camp, they will be confiscated."



  10. 21 minutes ago, NJCubScouter said:

    What they are based on is a perception  that pointing a weapon (paintball gun) or simulated weapon (laser tag gun) at another human being and pulling the trigger is not an appropriate Scouting activity, regardless of the absence of any risk of injury.  I happen to agree with that. 

    But who wants a water gun anyway?  They are so wimpy.   At my daughter's school's annual park outing the kids much prefer the water tubes (like a giant syringe) that send a large stream of water.   And the kids who don't have those find it effective to fill a bucket with lake water and simply dump it over the other kids' heads.

  11. 2 hours ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

    Siblings are a distraction and can hurt the program.

    My experience is in GSUSA where tagalongs are strictly discouraged.   But still, sometimes the only way a mom can volunteer is if she can bring her younger child along.   (And if she does not volunteer then there is no troop.)   So if the only way you can get enough volunteers for a GSUSA troop (or perhaps for a cub scout den) is to have tagalongs, then you cope the best you can.

    As far as who to recruit for being the tagalong watcher:   If there is a parent who always has a younger sibling with them at drop off and pick up,   especially if the family lives far enough away that the parent doesn't go home during the meeting but instead hangs out at a nearby playground,  then that parent would be a good one to recruit. 

  12. My kindergarten Daisy Girl Scout troop had a similar issue.   The other leader had a preschool daughter (too young to participate with the 5-6-year-olds) and our meetings were at a time of day when the dads were still at work.    Our solution:   recruit a third mom, who had a Daisy daughter and a 2-year-old daughter.   This third mom came to every meeting and looked after the two younger siblings. (She typically brought somthing crafty for them to do.  And they only occasionally joined in with the older girls when it was something they could do without being disruptive.)   And after a couple of years, when the younger siblings were old enough not to need so much extra attention, this mom was willing to  become a troop leader also. 

    Of course,  it may depend on the personalities of the particular preschoolers.


    • Upvote 1

  13. On 6/25/2018 at 10:48 AM, T2Eagle said:

    Dangers from wagons, none that I can think of.

    Surely some of you in your childhood must have done what I did:  Drag your radio-flyer wagon to the top of the hill.  Climb in.  Let gravity take you to the bottom.  Hopefully you picked an appropriate hill.

    But used as a tool,  rather than as a gravity-powered car,  wagons seem quite harmless.

    • Upvote 1

  14. 47 minutes ago, RememberSchiff said:

    According to the nbcnews article

          "Trained “playworkers” monitor the children, though they step in only if absolutely necessary — much like lifeguards."

    And according to https://govisland.com/things-to-do/activities/2018-playgroundnycs-yard

          "There are play:groundNYC playworkers in the Yard at all times."

    Not exactly free range.


  15. On 6/23/2018 at 8:15 AM, RememberSchiff said:

    We know how to create women leaders. When we look at our life results of our alumni, you know, three-fourths of our female senators were Girl Scouts. All three female secretaries of state, Girl Scouts.

    When I go to Silicon Valley, almost every female tech leader who was born in the US, she was a Girl Scout. Almost every female astronaut that's gone into space is a Girl Scout. So we know what works.

    Correlation is not causation.

    Causation could flow in a different direction.  The same families and communities that had the resources to provide ample educational opportunities for their girls may also have been the ones who had the resources (in money but especially in time) to get the girl scout troops organized. 

  16. 11 minutes ago, ParkMan said:

    All our talk about structure of troops is for nothing if there are no girls to join.

    That's my concern.

    So far my daughter doesn't know of any other girls in our town wanting to join Scouts BSA.   Maybe some will appear before February.   Or maybe we'll need to join with nearby towns.

  17. 14 hours ago, shortridge said:

    Whether a Girl Scout goes camping, and the quality of her experience doing so, is entirely in the hands of the adult leaders. My daughter was in it for three years and never even went day hiking. By contrast, you can’t advance in the future Scouts BSA without going camping.

    "entirely in the hands of the adult leaders"?  Actually no.   If the majority of the girls in a troop don't want to camp, then they can vote down any camping plans,  even if the adult leaders are willing to camp.  (Happened to my daughter.)

    However I basically agree with shortridge.  If the adults are unwilling to camp then the troop does not camp, no matter what the girls want.  

  18. 22 minutes ago, Jenn said:

    My son has dyslexia/dysgraphia so writing out the answers to these questions would be a challenge for him and this requirement would discourage him from advancing.  

    And some boys, even without dyslexia/dysgraphia, will decide that the goal is not worthwhile if too much writing is required.   I've seen this in non-scout settings.

    24 minutes ago, Jenn said:

    But making this an additional requirement really bothers me- especially because I asked specifically if they imposed any additional requirements before deciding to join this troop. 

    If they are used to working with kids who write easily and like writing,  they might not even be realizing that this would be viewed by some kids as an onerous extra requirement.   You can educate them here.

    25 minutes ago, Jenn said:

     I'm sure I could work with the SM to make an accommodation for him.  But I actually don't think they should be requiring these worksheets for any of the boys. 

    I've talked with school-teachers about somewhat similar issues in the past.   Sometimes a special agreement was reached for just my child.  At least once, because I raised the issue,  the policy was changed for all three classrooms in that grade --- not becuase I ask for that, but because my conversation with the teacher helped the teacher realize that there was a problem.

    So I would recommend:   educate as to why this is a problem.   only ask for an accomodation for your son.   If they fix it for everyone, great.   If not, you have at least set precedent and can tell (privately) the parents of other struggling boys about this precedent so that they too can ask.

    • Like 1

  19. 2 hours ago, gblotter said:

    His LDS granddaughter could always be a Scout. It's called Girl Scouts USA.

    I'd recommend that people with middle-school girls deciding between BSA and GSUSA might want to look at and compare the Boy Scout Handbook, with the Cadette Journeys Books: "Amaze", "Breathe", and "Media".  (And also the Cadette Girls' Guide to Girl Scouting.)   That will let them see the program materials that the troops have to work with.

    Of course,  national program materials aren't everything.  Enthusiastic and energetic local volunteers, and a group of like-minded girls, could work together to have a good scouting experience even if they don't like the official program materials.   But they might just want to compare and pick the program that appeals to them most.

    For some girls it might be GSUSA.  For some girls it might be BSA.   But the national program materials from the two organizations are VERY VERY different.

    • Upvote 1

  20. 53 minutes ago, Saltface said:

    Between the cost of the uniforms and superiority of other fabrics when it comes to outdoor performance,

    On scoutstuff.com it looks like there used to be a supplex nylon shirt that has been discontinued?   Am I guessing right?   (  https://www.scoutshop.org/new-uniforms/ladies-fit-supplex-nylon-ls-shirt-609302.html )  What is the story here?   (I am completely new to BSA.)

  21. 2 hours ago, Eagle94-A1 said:

    Long short short, she lamented the fact that the onl,y time you see girl scouts is during cookie sales, and then they do not l;ook like Girls Scouts as she remembered from her day.

    The Girl Scouts have gone down the path from practical uniform to (impractical) dress uniform to (today) no uniform at all.

    The early uniforms were sturdy cotton, in a color that did not show dirt, and with bloomers to wear under the skirts so that the girls could move freely without worrying about immodesty.  (May not sound practical by today's standards, but was much better for active and outdoor activities than the then-fashionable clothes for girls.)

    The uniforms stayed in sturdy fabric through the 1940s.

    By the 1960's, they had changed to being dress uniforms.  Still uniform in appearance, (and recognizably similar in appearance to earlier uniforms), but of lightweight fabric and much less practical for active and outdoor activities than what the girls would have normally been wearing as play clothes.

    In the 1970's GSUSA dropped the idea of a uniform having a uniform appearance.  It was now mix and match.  A junior girl scout could choose a forest green turtleneck OR a white (print) blouse, paired with shorts or trousers or a jumper, or with jumper over shorts, or with jumper over trousers.  Every girl looked different.  And totally unsuitable for active or outdoor use: fall down once and you had a gaping hole in the knee of the pants.

    By the time I was a senior girl scout (early 1980s) our uniforms looked nothing like scout uniforms.  In fact, we were mistaken for being flight attendants!  And the uniform was unsuitable for any active outdoor activity.  My troop made our own "activity uniform".  We could buy the plaid blouse material by the yard, and made for ourselves neckers (large, square neckers) and wore them.  Ironically, we were more readily recognized as scouts/guides when wearing our completely unofficial neckers than when wearing our official uniform. (Part of that was that we were GSUSA but living in Europe.)

    And today?  GSUSA has no uniforms for anyone grade 4 and higher.  Just a vest OR a sash (no uniformity here).  If one wants to look neat, (and few troops seem to encourage this) , one can wear the vest or sash with one's own white shirt and tan pants.  Girl Scout troops are barely identifiable as such by clothing, and look really sloppy even when identifiable.  And often they leave the vest/sashes behind when doing anything out-of-doors, because they are impractical.

    Having a scout uniform that is recognizable as a scout uniform is among the things about BSA that is appealing to my daughter.  Sure hope BSA doesn't start walking down the path to no uniforms.

    • Upvote 3

  22. 16 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

    Second, the infusion of adults without the youth scouting experience will naturally dilute the patrol method part of the program to the point that it won't be recognizable in 10 years (10 years is roughly two generations of scouts). That is because after working with dozens of units over the years, I don't believe patrol method can be implemented correctly without some patrol method experience.

    Well, once upon a time, long long ago,  Girl Scouts and Girl Guides did use the patrol system.   Some of us remember it and value it.   (Of course, the troop that I was in that implemented it best had two leaders who had both grown up in the Girl Guides (UK), not in GSUSA.)

    • Upvote 1

  23. 33 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

    I believe the BSA membership would have been better off if National hadn't done anything the last 10 years because there are other reasons besides morality to resist gays, transexuals and girls. However, we are witnessing that without any internal resistance, traditional conservative outdoor youth organizations in North American can be changed by just a few assertive adults.

    What about the girls who want a chance to join a "traditional conservative outdoor youth organization"?   BSA, even now,  fits that definition better than other options.

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