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Gilwell_1919 last won the day on December 29 2018

Gilwell_1919 had the most liked content!

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About Gilwell_1919

  • Rank
    Junior Member

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Omaha, Nebraska (USA)
  • Occupation
    President/CEO of a Software Development Company
  • Interests
    Scouting, family activities, camping, traveling, RV'ing, cooking writing, great conversations around a campfire or on a hike, teaching scout skills and outdoorsmanship.
  • Biography
    I started scouting in 1985 as a Cub Scout; I made Eagle Scout in 1997. I joined the U.S. Navy in 1997, I traveled the world (42 states and 38 countries), made great friends from all over, and learned to speak 11 languages in the process. After 10-years of service and 6-tours to Afghanistan, I left the military and started my family. When my triplet boys were old enough, we joined Cub Scouts and I became their Den Leader. In February 2018, we bridged over into Boy Scouts and became members of the oldest Troop in Nebraska (est. 1913). In August 2018, I took over as Scoutmaster, and in September/October 2018, I completed Wood Badge. I love my family, I love traveling and meeting new people, and I love scouting.

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  1. Definitely sticker shock! We just lost 6 scouts because of this and, because we've already collected dues for the second part of the year, we are scrambling to cover the additional $3200+ we need for recharter (we have a large troop... 68 youth and 28 adult volunteers). Not optimal, but a couple of us are thinking about pooling our resources to just cover the cost increase this year, and then adjust our dues for next year. We don't want any scout to leave the program so our normal ICC contributions will be going to cover the membership fee increase, which stinks because that will hurt the local council and we don't want to do that. Any sage advice out there?
  2. @ham_solo Here is an instructional video I made on how to do that. https://youtu.be/bWdN0jjrnj8
  3. @dkurtenbach The OneNote SOP is what I created for my Troop. I created a standardized version to share online for anyone who wants to use something similar... that way they can take what I have done and create one for their troops. Since the public OneNote version is just a public template... if people want to add to it... they are more than welcome to add to it. If people add in new tabs and pages... I can snag them to incorporate into my Troop's OneNote.
  4. @dkurtenbach Thank you! We use scoutlander for our calendar, internal communications, sharing pictures, etc. We use Groups.IO for mass communications, and we use scoutbook for everything else. On Scoutlander, we have all of the information for new parents, our annual plan, and the calendar with all of that information. The goal of this digital troop book is more of a "how to"... as well as any other type of information we want to capture and pass along to future generations. But yes, I want to get everyone on-board. All of my scouts and their parents have complete access to this book, Scoutlander, and Scoutbook.... so they have as much info at their fingertips as the could possibly want. I only rolled this out a few months ago, so it is a "work in progress", but so far everyone seems to enjoy the transparency and flow of information. Maybe I am a bit idealistic... but I would like other leaders and scouts (across the world) to add information to this. Cooking recipes, camping tricks, etc. Little nuggets of info that can be passed down to future scouts. Thank you again for taking the time to look over it and give your input. I sincerely appreciate the effort! Happy New Year!
  5. @qwazse Great suggestions! Thank you. If you have some... would you be willing to add them to this book? That would be incredibly helpful. If not, I can create some. I work with the SPL and PLs at our monthly PLC, and we conduct training on OneNote. These young kids eat it up... they feel empowered and in control.
  6. Hello fellow Scouters and thank you for letting me join this forum! I wanted to share something with everyone that I recently created for a group of scoutmasters I met at a University of Scouting event here in the Omaha metro. When my boys bridged over from Webelos the former scoutmaster found out I was an Eagle Scout and military veteran, so he asked if I wanted to take the reins of troop since his sons had made Eagle scout years ago. While I have years of Scouting under my belt and years of experience utilizing my survival skills in Afghanistan, I was very nervous. Honestly, I didn't even know where to start. 1). I wasn't born in Nebraska and didn't grow up here, so I had no clue about the hidden-treasure campsites all of the others seem to know about. 2). Military experience does not somehow magically give someone the ability to train youth. 3). I was now responsible for the lives of 70+ boys during troop activities and campouts. All I can say is... wow! I was completely overwhelmed, so I went back to the basics. What makes the troop run? Answer... the Patrol Leaders' Council (PLC). How can I get 70+ boys on the same page? Answer... a strong Senior Patrol Leader (SPL) that has the Patrol Leaders (PLs) constantly using the Patrol Method. How can I ensure consistency? Answer... develop a Standard Operation Procedure (SOP) that acts as a sort of living-and-breathing pass down book of information. We had a closet of binders with all sorts of outdated information and, of course, there was the sea of online resources out there that was like trying to take a drink from a fire hydrant. That got me thinking about the next scoutmaster... the one after that... so on and so forth. I thought to myself... what is the most simple way to collect and share information? Answer... OneNote. It is a very basic, but very powerful (free) program management tool that is pre-loaded on all Microsoft machines, it is accessible online, and it can be accessed on all smartphones/tablets (it is available for Macs too). So, in keeping with the scouting spirit... I made a public version of the OneNote digital Troop Book I compiled for my Troop and I am wanting to share it with all of you. This is what the SPL uses to help run the show. Now, this is a public version that everyone can use to copy tabs and pages over to their troop's own OneNote file... but feel free to add tabs and information to this public version. https://1drv.ms/f/s!Alr8Y5Jfi-zJhJJB7gi6h9RKI_o-ug I know some folks aren't familiar with OneNote, or how to even copy pages from this public version to a private version for their own troop, so I created a sort of "how to" instructional video. Up front, I am not a professional narrator... and I was kind of just winging it... but here is the URL to the instructional video... https://youtu.be/bWdN0jjrnj8 Overall, there are a lot of changes happening in scouting... so our focus needs to be on delivering a quality training program to the scouts in our community. For those that are new to scouting and don't know where to start... I hope this helps get you on the right path.
  7. @fred8033 I think we are lucky in that regard. We have a senior leader that has been doing this for quite a few years and sometimes he'll step on toes, but he is aware when he does it and then corrects it very fast. Again, I think I am lucky with the amount of support I get from the committee and the other assistant scoutmasters. But, I think a lot of that has to do with confidence. I've seen a lot of parents that took leadership positions in Cub Scouts to be with their kid(s), but really didn't have outdoorsmanship skills when they bridged over. They bring energy to the troop for sure, but I think they feel kind of awkward because they don't have much camping experience. I target them and really encourage them to come camping with us. Generally, by the end of the weekend, they have a much better idea of what the "boy run" program looks like when it is applied in the outdoors. Other parents, unfortunately... as you are probably well aware... don't seem to get the concept. They hover and interject so much that their kid looks like a pinball bouncing around. This is why I encourage all of the new parents to take some of the online training BSA offers to at least get them familiar with what the program is supposed to look like in order to help influence their expectations. For the new leaders... I encourage Wood Badge!
  8. Spot on sir! My triplets and I recently bridged over from Cub Scouts this year, and the former Scoutmaster was grooming me to take over the Troop shortly after he found out I was an Eagle Scout and had 10-years of teaching/applying survival and combat triage skills in the military (*BTW teaching scouts is waaaaay different than teaching soldiers... thank you Wood Badge for pointing that out!). To your point, you are absolutely correct. A lot of the parents tend to "helicopter hover" over their boys and some of the new scout dads don't really know that their sons can't learn to do for themselves if they are not given an opportunity to make mistakes (little life lessons - if you will). "Wow, you're cold and wet because you didn't put the rainfly on correctly? I bet you won't do that again... go grab some wood and make a fire to warm up." "There was a raccoon in your tent last night? Yep, you probably shouldn't have been eating food in your tent and leaving crumbs/trash everywhere." (true story too). As a new Scoutmaster, I've been really emphasizing on the Patrol Method... and I use "esprit de corps" to introduce that little bit of friendly competition between the patrols. Quite honestly, teaching the boys the patrol method and having the troop be "boy run" is the easy part. But... teaching the parents to sit back and watch the boys operate as a cohesive unit... that is definitely much harder to accomplish. Obviously, this is my first year as a Scoutmaster, but I am definitely looking forward to this challenge! Thanks for the post!
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