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RainShine last won the day on August 19

RainShine had the most liked content!

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About RainShine

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  1. RainShine

    Scouts BSA Troop Resources Website

    Its a great site, so many ideas for fun troop meetings. I'm enthusiastic about it but when I mentioned it to PLC they were not so much. I mean they were interested but I very much doubt any of them went home and explored the site. I brought it up at PLC months ago and it appears to be forgotten now. Lots of our troop meetings are boring, sit and listen type stuff, uhg. I'm convinced this site has programming gold, but the boys are in charge. Any suggestions on how to nudge the PLC on this?
  2. RainShine

    Patrol Method not so much

    I don't think that would happen in our situation though. We have our problems, and our patrol method got off track, but the Scoutmaster and ASMs are terrific people and I think they would welcome a recurring review. It's a great idea. The quality of our people at the local level here is top notch.
  3. RainShine

    Patrol Method not so much

    We do, and I can. I like very much the advice of committee regularly discussing state of troop. Its not happening now.
  4. RainShine

    Patrol Method not so much

    If you like good news, I have some to report. The patrols in our unit are much stronger now. I nudged a little, and the SM and ASMs were quite open to the changes. There was a reforming of the patrols along the lines of natural gangs I spoke of in my original post. The patrol with the older boys chose to keep their old patrol name. The patrol of younger guys created a new patrol with its own new identity. There is now no question who is in what patrol. No more going to the list at the back of the room to check. There is now a patrol meeting during each troop meeting. These are not very productive, perhaps, but the patrols meet separately during the troop meeting. We held a pioneering event with a competition, and the two patrols were 'against' each other. They used to create ad hoc teams for that. When planning for outings, each patrol does meal planning and tent arrangements separately. This used to be done as a troop. On Troop outings, the patrols are next to each other but separate. They used to be all mixed where-ever. The younger Scout patrol has met twice outside of troop events; once a service project, once to design a flag. Plus they have a patrol hike coming up. Its far from done. For instance, the other patrol has not yet had a patrol gathering outside a troop meeting or troop outing. Its too early to tell if this will help with the aims of Scouting, or if the boys are happier, or if its made anything easier. In fact it seems a little more work. But certainly the younger patrol fellows are more engaged in their own Scout destiny. As far as Scout-led, I don't know, there is still some adults taking over the meeting, and one of them was me. But there is less of adults planning for the Scouts outings. I think we're on the right path.
  5. RainShine

    divvying up costs for meals

    Well after I sent this I thought to do a search on this site on the topic. Found some advice. Some folks eat the costs, others have Scouts chip in $3 up front to cover meals. Chipping in up front seems like a good simple approach.
  6. How do your patrols divvy up the cost of meals? Our Scouts parse the meal into ingredients and send Scouts to the store and hope it comes out about right. For instance, for dutch oven apple cobbler, one guy goes to buy cake mix. Another guy supplies butter. Another guy gets a can of pie filling. This cant be right. Come to think of it, this is probably done to distribute the responsibility, not the cost. In our adult patrol, if the duty roster has me making apple cobbler, I buy all that stuff in one go. And, in a collegial manner, I simply incur the cost knowing another adult will get it next time. Perhaps one Scout should buy the stuff and do the math, then get reimbursed later by the Scouts that participated. The cooking merit badge requires the Scout to create a shopping list and calculate the cost of the meal, but it doesn't appear to require or advise about getting reimbursed. What do others do? Please advise.
  7. The Scouts BSA literature says the annual planning conference is attended by the youth leadership (PLC). But we have elections twice a year. So the youth leaders that comprise the PLC when the conference occurs create the annual program, but then months later another election happens and now a new PLC executes the plan. Seems best that the PLC that creates the program execute the entire thing. Then if it stinks its their fault (eating their own dog food, as the saying goes). If the next PLC executes it, they may disagree w it and undermine the plan, or perhaps be overwhelmed by the plan and resent the prior PLC for putting them on the spot. Perhaps this is a good reason to have elections only once a year. But then we cut in half the opportunities for patrol leadership. Or we could have semi-annual planning conferences. What to do?
  8. Our patrols elect patrol leaders every six months. But we offer ILST only once a year, in winter. So the guys elected in summer get no training which seems like this is an unfair situation. I suppose we could get busy and offer ILST in summer. What do others do?
  9. RainShine

    Campout planning...who does it?

    The troop leader guidebook, vol 2, p 60, says this.
  10. RainShine

    Camps Where SCOUTS Cook Meals

    Returned from Camp Baldwin, OR couple weeks ago. I am sold on patrol cooking at summer camp. Okay yes it is harder but its better. Our troop is on the path from being 'troop method' to being patrol method. I'm certain patrol cooking at summer camp accelerated the improvement. The older patrol needed no assistance whatsoever and we received no complaints from them. The younger patrol was consistently 'in the weeds'. From cooking and KP to making their merit badge classes on time, talking over each other and giving contradictory orders. Always just shy of disaster. The older scouts swooped in a couple times to help them. The adults did too. How many times did we tell them to read the instructions? Read. They're called instructions. They instruct. Even on Thursday it was better but still rough. On Friday they rallied and did great. It was hard but they did it. Smiles all around at the end. I'm certain they developed a sense of esprit de corp in the effort. We are looking forward to keeping it up at September troop outing.
  11. RainShine

    Scout canoeing, how far in a day

    Good stuff folks, thanks. There's no rush on this - its a 2020 project - so if the boys choose to pursue it we have time to investigate and get prepared. If there are any more ideas, please keep them coming.
  12. RainShine

    Scout canoeing, how far in a day

    most definitely
  13. RainShine

    Scout canoeing, how far in a day

    Okay I can see I don't even know what questions to ask. I'm the worst kind of dreamer, the kind that doesn't know what he's talking about. I'm considering proposing to the boys a canoe trek. This is on the Hood Canal in Washington state. Salt water. Drive to Belfair State Park, camp. Canoe to Twanoh state park, five direct miles, and camp there. Then on to Potlatch state park, another ten miles as the fish swims. A dad in a truck could participate by delivering the patrol boxes to each camp so the Scouts don't have to canoe w all their stuff. I realize those are direct measurements (by google maps) so dont include drifting, etc. Following shore would add more also. I might be crazy. You can call me crazy. I've been called worse.
  14. Typically, with a mixed age group of Scouts 11-15yo, how far could a group comfortably canoe on a fair weather day?
  15. Second class nature requirement First class nature requirement So I'm kinda new to Scouting but I'm all trained up and now I'm a position to sign off requirements. When I first read the Second Class requirement I read it like the boys could see or hear an animal, record it in the handbook, and when they get ten animals I would sign the requirement. And I think that's what they said at IOLS. Great. But now I'm reading First Class. 'you may show evidence by..' Hmmm... So, for Second Class, does this mean they have to show me the evidence? Like a plaster cast of a track or a photo of a deer? If they hear a call of a bald eagle and can identify it by sound, does that count? Or do they have to record the sound and play it back to me? In spring we heard hundreds of frogs in the marsh near camp and the boys busily wrote it down. But no-one recorded the sound of it. (wish I had, that would be cool, but I digress). I might be making this too hard but its just that I want to get this stuff right.