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Everything posted by InquisitiveScouter

  1. David, Are you really comparing finger-painting to the skills, service, and leadership you must learn and demonstrate on your way to Eagle? Facetious. Bigger and better things? Isn't that what Scouting promises? We come up with bigger and better things for our Scouts all along their path. And the adults who accompany on the outings and activities we do with our older Scouts often find great challenge in what they are doing, and are satisfied with their accomplishments. Many of them have never done them before. Why not recognize their efforts and progress as well? Part of
  2. Not just you...my circumstances for staying in fit your description to a tee...and most of my friends in Scouting as a youth simply left the program when they "aged out." It is sad that we even have this phrase... Scouting should have no age restrictions. How many men out there are full of regret at not earning their Eagle? I know at least a dozen who would come back in a heartbeat to finish their goal. As an Eagle Scout, I would welcome the accomplishment from any person, regardless of age. What would your unit look like if there were patrols of different ages...or lifelong pat
  3. Can't imagine how much Camp Pouch on Staten Island is worth....
  4. You aren't overthinking it, brother ...that is the purpose of open, non-attribution discussion. Discussion gives us the chance to work out our own thinking, articulate our ideas, get input from others, and modify the framework of our thinking to strengthen it, or get rid of it for new thinking. Enjoy!
  5. Thanks! I learned something new today! Didn't know this had "changed." I find this a bit disturbing...all assets should belong to the CO, period. It is their program, and they get to decide what to do with the stuff. This also has tax implications...for example...Scout unit does a fundraiser (..."in the name of Scouting?") to buy, say, a trailer to haul gear...if someone donates to that cause, it is the CO's EIN that records the donation. That is, if the donor asks for a receipt for tax purposes, it is the CO's EIN (federal IRS Employer Identification Number) that is listed as
  6. Hmmm...not quite. What I have seen is SM's doing jobs outside their lane (including me!!) because of lack of support from the Committee. The huge job of putting on a good program for the Troop is not the Scoutmaster's job. It is the job of the Troop Committee and the Scoutmaster corps, in toto. Too often I run up against the mentality that I, as the Scoutmaster, am THE leader of the Troop. People want to look to one person on whom to "stop the buck." It is not the Scoutmaster. It is the triumvirate, the Key 3. As a Scoutmaster, I identify critical needs and timelines to the Committee C
  7. Concur, but that is why they call it the "Introduction to..." Is there a BSA course for adults to learn these skills in any depth? Not in my experience...even went to National Camp School twice for Scoutcraft (back in the day). It was better, but still didn't hit the mark. It wasn't until I started reading my Scout Handbook and the merit badge pamphlets, putting together the materials and skills so I could teach them at Scout camp...(served on 15 camp staffs in various disciplines.) I have taught many IOLS classes...and too many people are looking for the "easy" answer or some
  8. Not years...perhaps a few hours, maybe even days... But your thinking, and behavior, is wrong, friend. The facts (stubborn things) and statistics don't support you. https://www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/speeding Plan ahead, far right lane, cruise control on the speed limit...let the real hazardous drivers pass you on the left.
  9. 7. Don't hike alone in cougar / bear country. 8. After the encounter, wipe.
  10. There are a great deal of rules in flying. It is an extremely complex activity. That is also one of the complaints you hear from volunteers as they peel the curtain back on Scouting...the rule set is complex. But that is as it should be...it, also, is a complex activity (or should we say a collection of complex activities) with OPK (other people's kids) Unfortunately, in both flying and Scouting, breaking the rules, intentionally or not, can have catastrophic consequences. https://www.scouting.org/health-and-safety/safety-moments/ The best pilots, and Scouters, first know the
  11. That's another one that brings out the legalists...and you wouldn't believe the discussions I have heard on this (actually, you probably would)... Scouter 1: "12 years, 364 days old cannot tent with 15 years, zero days old. 15 minus 12 is 3! But on his birthday tomorrow, he can! (15 minus 13 is 2)" Scouter 2: "Oh no, tomorrow, he is 15 plus one day, minus 13 plus zero days is 2 years and a day...no tenting together!" Me: "What about Leap Years?" and run away smh...
  12. That'll be $590, plus tax, please http://www.durabletoys.com/speedway-express-series-860-six-wheel-tandem-wagon/
  13. It is also important to note the confusing verbiage in many of BSA's publications... For example, the Age Guidelines for Tool Use... https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/healthsafety/pdf/680-028.pdf National goes through all kinds of contortions here...it names these as "guidelines", and then says they are "recommendations", but, rightly defers to manufacturer literature... "Manufacturers’ literature and age and skill restrictions shall supersede the recommendations on the chart below." But then does a detour and uses the word "shall", which is prescriptive, rather
  14. Our last COR is a Law Professor at a nearby university. He enlightened me on this...it is by design
  15. I addressed concerns to our council...FOS heavy-handed tactics, FOS presenters not being able to answer questions about where the money goes, lack of council transparency about where the money goes, poor camp facilities, etc. After our Key 3 meeting with council reps concerning why we, each of the Key 3, did not wish to have an FOS presentation in our unit, I was removed from District and Council Committees by the SE. Without a phone call or any coherent explanation to date...had to find that out from other volunteers who run those committees... Not authentic P.S. Our council now
  16. Sorry, not the case...if you have a legitimate question, and you know your SE/local staff isn't giving a coherent answer, and you email National, it will bite you right in the keister. National views you as being solely under the authority of your local SE. So, when you conduct events in surrounding councils, you still fall under the interpretation of rules/policies as issued by your local SE, not the hosting council...unless that council is MORE restrictive. If you point out the disconnect, you get skewered. They shoot the messenger... I have experienced this personally. And
  17. This is my perception of how this works in many Troops. Most of the time, a new parent (probably one who was a DL) takes on ASM, and continues the Cub Scout model...this is not good... For us, we assign an ASM (who knows how to back off), and let the TG show them the ropes from Crossover (Feb/March) through their first few camping trips, PLCs, and a Summer Camp. Once the NSP "gets the program," usually around August/September, we have the TG back off and let the NSP operate independently. In October, they have their first Patrol-only camping trip (scheduled in two weeks, hooray!!)
  18. I do appreciate the fact that BSA announced they will not recognize a "First to Earn." Even so, there is a good deal of the "She is the First!!" syndrome this going around...here, and in articles I have seen. BSA cannot control what the media writes. My daughter has delayed a bit, for various reasons...she might make the Inaugural Class cut-off date, but we don't care about that. As long as she gets it, that's all that matters to her. She is at college now, and with all the Covid-19 restrictions, she has some extra time for merit badge work via Zoom. And she is one of the best Scouts I
  19. Not yet...but that is the goal/vision...currently, we do camp less frequently as a Troop so the Patrols can camp more as a Patrol. We are currently at one Patrol camping event per quarter. It is usually the adult support that is the limiting factor. The older Scouts really enjoy this, as they get a break from "supervisory" duties and get a chance to just hang out with their buddies. It seems to refresh them so they are more engaged on the Troop camping trips when the younger Patrols (yes, we use age-based patrols) need their guidance.
  20. I hate "one and done." It is a cancer eating away at the outdoor program... for the youth and the adults... Our long-standing Troop policy (since before we joined) was that Scouts over First Class could sign off requirements up to First Class. When reviewing some Scouts recently, we discovered widespread pencil-whipping of requirements by a few older Scouts. I questioned them individually, and they admitted it. All had been signing off one or more requirements that they had no current working knowledge of...first aid, navigation, woods tools and knots, etc... So, moratorium on th
  21. @TMcL you are on target...effects of almost any conservation initiative can be expanded to a planet level... "common to more than one country" is fluff to make it more "World Conservation"-y Flip the question...what conservation projects' affects could not be extended to be common to more than one country?? I can't think of any. Perhaps the purpose of this is to get the Scout to see small local efforts as having a far-reaching impact. (Think globally, act locally?)
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