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Everything posted by diogenes

  1. The campaign hat is Scouts. My dad wore one, and was part of why I wanted to be a Scout growing up. Shortly after my son was born, my dad bought him a campaign hat to wear when he was old enough. I wear a campaign hat. I found a surplus store that sells them for $10. Add the band and the Scout emblem and you're set. I was able to outfit my entire troop, and believe me, we were noticed at camp. I also like that with the campaign hat, 1st Class Scouts can wear the old 1st Class pin on the hat instead of the usual emblem. Every one of my scouts that earned 1st Class and got the pin wore it w
  2. I hope no one started these yet. USSCOUTS is reporting that the historical merit badges weren't ready for prime-time yet and had to pull the requirements down until BSA is ready to launch them. http://www.scoutleaderknots.com/usscouts/mb/Tracking.asp I was going to do Pathfinding with my troop tonight. Time to adapt, overcome, and achieve...
  3. While I can understand the concern over access and cost for swimming pools, it is no different than other aspects of the program. I did not advance past Tenderfoot because I couldn't pass the swim test. Darn near drowned a couple of times trying. I just never got it. My parents could swim, so that wasn't the problem. They tried teaching me; it just never took. My brother eventually figured it out and was able to advance. I didn't quit Scouting because of that; I was having too much fun doing the camping and other stuff. The lack of swimming ability didn't stop me from saving a C
  4. Sounds like some of the boys are embracing their consequences as a means of defiance, trying to get a rise out of the adults. They don't want to admit that having Dad along to babysit him will be embarassing, so they use their bravado. It's like the delinquents in my security unit who claim that OC Spray "aint't nothing" to them... until they get sprayed and have to get decontaminated. I'm not saying we should OC the scouts, but just be aware that the consequences may be just fine, it's just the boy trying to look "tuff". Of course, if they have found a way to manipulate the system as oth
  5. If you dig through the forums, you'll see plenty of good advice has been given on this topic. You need to look at this as a long range goal, and get the boys to buy in from the beginning. Work with them to lay out a plan with goals and expectations, step by step, and work it. If an established troop that currently uses the kind of leadership you want is operational, perhaps they can send over some Troop Guides to help for the first little bit, or let you come visit and learn from them a few times. Keep the goals reasonable for the age and capabilities of the boys, but don't underestimate
  6. My (former) troop had summer camp plans for a combined week of COPES and the aquatic base (two separate camps about a dozen miles apart). The program got yanked on them about two months ago, so they made other plans. I know the paperwork and payments were straight because that was the last thing i did before I got a job transfer. Maybe the same thing happened; I'll have to check back with them.
  7. moxieman Our council supported an all LDS campout week at BTSR last year. It was huge as we had church leaders coming in from Salt Lake to do training. They are usually supportive of LDs units. I can only guess if this law affected the unit in Lubbock. This law was on the books when I was a youth herer in Texas and we did our own summer camp just fine. My dad was one of the leaders and he never said anything about having to deal with this. Maybe it was because we did the campout on a training range of Fort Hood (which was also an established BSA/GSA campsite).
  8. Just wanted to report back in. A job transfer to northern Texas has taken me from active participation with the troop but I've stayed in touch. They are at Scout camp this week in New Mexico. They were signed up for camp at the local council aquatics base and COPES course, but they were told about 2 months ago that the camp was cancelled. They quickly put together a plan at the new location for cheaper, plus they are getting to do as we originally planned.
  9. LDS units are open to non LDS members (leaders and boys), but interest is usually limited because of the integration of the religious program. My small troop in west Texas doubled in size with some non-LDS friends of one of our boys and they were just fine. We also picked up a few when the other troop in town fell apart last summer. I can't say for sure but I think it may be roughly the same way with a number of other churches that charter a unit. I can see a purpose for targeting units when the target groups has needs that require operational adaptations away from the "default" troo
  10. Not every boy is a leader, just as not every boy is a genius or a jock or a musician. However, they can still learn leadership skills and benefit from the experience. If nothing else, they become better followers by understanding what leaders have to deal with. There is enough variety in the PORs for a boy to gain leadership experience in a way that suits them best. This may take some trial and error, but they'll find a spot. They may even find that they can do it once they try it and gain some confidence. That's exactly what happened with me in Scouts, band, and JROTC. Started off shy, a
  11. For the sake of arguement, let's flip the question: little Johnny was allowed to skip a grade, so can he skip a level of Cubs (to be with his classmates)? If Billy is a genius and is in 7th grade at age 6, can he join the local Boy Scout Troop? Age and grade requirements both exist. Sound advice has been given so far, so I won't say much more than I agree that the boy shouldn't be held back in Cubs just because of school. As a criminologist, the potential harm in holding him back far outweighs any possible benefits. Will holding him back make him a criminal? Not in and of itself, but it s
  12. The first I heard of PPL was last Saturday when I got my beads. Someone asked who it was for my patrol and everyone around me (classmates from the course) all said "Huh?" Our patrol flag hangs in the dining hall of the local Scout ranch. I got to point it out to my Scouts when we were there for camp. Then I pointed out the Buffalo patrol flag that had some Beaver in it due to a branding "accident". We had leather flags and after my Antelope buddy showed some initiative and branded his patrol's flag, others wanted to copy the idea, but that quickly stopped after the accident and the staff
  13. Where to start... I did band and JROTC and excelled in both because I put in the time and made sacrifices. I stopped doing Scouts with my church troop because all they did was play basketball. I wanted to do outdoor stuff. I managed to get that with my JROTC Recon Company/High Adventure Explorer Post (which would probably be Venturing nowadays). I was ranked 13 out of 540 in my graduating class. Band and JROTC sucked the GPA down, as well as not taking honors classes because I did summer classes to have room in my schedule. My grades overall helped me get a full ROTC scholarship and
  14. If you can put together a basic SOP booklet for the troop, plus a page for contact info, it would not only help your new scouts and parents, but everyone else as well. If they do a crossover ceremony for them, the receiving troop usually sends someone to welcome them into the new troop. Usually a Patrol Leader for new scouts, the Senior Patrol Leader, or the Scoutmaster. When the boy bridges over, the troop member will present them with things like a troop neckerchief or a Scout handbook.
  15. SctDad wrote "But some of the parents would rather run to McD's instead of trying to learn to cook. Bad part is, when we go to the campground this spring, the nearest eatery is about 30 minutes away, and you had better know your way back." Sounds to me like you solve that problem all by itself. Maybe the boys will get hungry while the parents are lost.
  16. Call me a stickler, but unless a person did 5 years, they don't get the 5 year pin. I have yet to see any employer say "Aw heck, you can have the 5 year longevity pay raise at 4 years and some change, close enough!". For the boys, I might be persuaded to round up if they were shy by a few weeks, or in a really generous mood, a few months (they still must be at least over 4 years, 6 months). But 4 years 1 month is not 5 years by any stretch of logic. If the boys wanted to hang around and get a 5 year Cub pin, they could have not crossed over already. I'm personally more impressed that they
  17. These kinds of things are supposed to come up in the check, but actual results probably vary by jurisdiction. BSA has issued new adult application forms that all adults must fill out this year which includes a signature block authorizing a background check. Failure to sign the block will result in non-admission or dismissal from Scouting. In this particular case, I'd take the accusation with a grain of salt. Divorces tend to bring out the worst in people, and false accusations of abuse are not uncommon as part of a power play for custody, alimony, and other reasons. If the guy does have t
  18. Buffalo Trail Council is planning to run a local centennial jambo simultaneous with the national one. The people who don't make the cut for the council's national jambo troop get to go to the local one of something like that.
  19. Singing with CNYScouter... ...plus I'm getting my beads on Jan. 17th! It'll be at the beginning of a MB academy due to issues of distance and time, but that also means we can use it as a big recruiting tool (lots of un-badged leaders will be there).
  20. Do you know which unit was turned away last year? I'd give them a call now, explain that you're the new pd, and ask if they plan to attend this year so you can get a rough count of how many will show up. You can even include a gentle reminder about the need to register on time, even though you just contacted them. A bit of extra work, but you can probably soothe any sore feelings from last year and boost attendance for this year and future cub camps. Otherwise, you (they) may have lost this unit for a while, if not permanently. Heck, calling all the units in your area might be a good inve
  21. "A case in point LDS scouting, while it uses the basic concepts of the BSA their focus/program is different from non LDS units, their units are much smaller in size and the boys are registered by the church even though many do not attend meetings, the leaders are appointed, not volunteers, by church leaders for a one year committment and as a result many do not get properly trained. While they do use the BSA program the main focus is to prepare the boys to go on missions and to become church leaders." Not to sidetrack the thread too far, but just to clarify that LDS Scout leaders aren't a
  22. I think the reference is to when red berets were available as a headgear option for BSA uniforms. Apparently it didn't go over so well from what I hear.
  23. Class of 1994, so I guess that's technically last century. They were expensive then as well, but my issue is that most Scouters I know would rather spend that kind of money on scouting in some way rather than a chunk of gaudy metal.
  24. You could outfit a small startup troop for the price of some of those. A Scout is Thrifty? Not here!
  25. diogenes

    AOL ceremony?

    Doing challenges based on the Scout Law would be good. It'd also take a long bridge (and/or small steps) to get all 12 points in there, but the idea is good. I figure the main point is in using the challenges to help make the transition feel real, and become real. Boys like to feel that they've really earned something, especially if it involves feeling like an (young) adult instead of a "little boy". All the better if he can be publicly recognized for this. Make sure the lad really knows the Oath and the Law before the ceremony if you plan to include them. Mine gave it his best shot but e
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