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7 Months lurking, just now joining

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I've been lurking here for 7 months or so as part of my preparation to becoming an ASM with a new troop. I'll have my training complete in September. I've been an assistant den leader Wolf-Webelos.


I want to thank the frank conversationalists on this forum to help me get into the proper Boy Scout frame of mind.


Cub Scouts has been frustrating to me because the structured programming that seems to be pervasive in our area. No self initiative required. If the scout attended a badge was taught, he gets credit. I'm hoping the Boy Scouts will somewhat rid me of that frustration.


That's about as short and as sweet as I can make it for now.


Presently, I'm looking forward to camping without the kitchen sink, providing Scouts with the information they need to succeed in advancement and in life, and generally just having some fun.



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Koolaidman, welcome to the ecrackerbarrel.

Do you have a Scout in the mix, or no?


Depending on the Troop, you may or maynot be pleased with the transition. Some Troops are more "structured" than others, but then if you've been reading here awhile, you know that.Oh, wait, you said "new" Troop. Does that mean really new, as in a new charter, or just new as in I'm just joining it?

If a new charter, then you and your fellow Scouters and Scouts have the wonderful opportunity to establish traditions and precedents. Make them good ones.

If you are a new member in an established Troop, then sit back and understand the present culture and traditions and get accepted by the folks there before you start saying "hey, wait, this isn't what I thought Scoouting was supposed to be".


In any event, thank you for stepping up to help our kids grow up right.


Good Scouting to you!


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Welcome to the forums.


One of the biggest differences between the Cub Scout program and the Boy Scout program is the idea of the boy as the leader. The scouts are to run the troop, not the adults. The adults, including the Scoutmaster and assistants, are to be a support, but not the decision makers. The boys are to be given real responsibility to make decisions for the troop. This comes from the idea of citizenship. Citizens of a nation have a degree of decision making power when it comes to how they are governed. The scouts will learn this aspect of citizenship when they are given the responsibility.


Of course, being youths, they may lack the focus or problem solving ability to do what adults do. Meetings run by scouts seem a bit chaotic, and plans for campouts will look sketchy. That is where the Scoutmaster and assistants step in, more as coaches than leaders, to see that the boys learn and know how to lead something. Adults should not run meetings or camp outs, but should see that the boys to the job. In this, the best training tool an adult has is the leading question. Like asking the patrol leader, "Are you planning your breakfast menu? What are you going to use to grease your pan?" The only time a Scoutmaster steps in is when there is a question of the safety of the scouts.


Bill Hillcourt, who wrote one of the editions of the Scoutmaster Handbook, suggested that Scoutmasters use the easy chair test to see if their program was working. He said to put an easy chair at the back of the room, sit down in it at the beginning of the meeting, and if the scoutmaster could watch the scouts do all the work in the meeting, and he did not have to get up until needed to give the Scoutmaster Minute, then the Scoutmaster was a success.


Welcome to the job.


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Thank you for the warm welcomes!


I have one son, a Webelos, looking to crossover in December.

This is indeed a brand new charter. WE have a great committee so far, and I've had to remind them a couple of times that the boys will be incharge of programming/content. So I feel we've been able to somewhat nip WebIII in the bud a bit. The committee members are very advancement oriented, so it's been a delicate task, but they understand where I'm coming from, so I think it will work out.


The hardest part (while planning this over the spring and summer) has actually been holding back on the planning so that the boys will have input once we start.


Since our initial charter group of 5-7 scouts are young in rank and age (maybe one 2nd class), we have a plan to immerse them in ISLT and get them some Den Chief positions to practice leadership skills so they will be ready for the incoming scouts in December. This is about the only thing the Scoutmasters will gently push them on .


We're hoping to differenciate ourselves via a low impact/lightweight camping program. We think it should work well with our current budget (none), however funds most likely will not be an issue in our troop.


allangr1024: Thank you for the advice. I've been thinking about the leading questions I may be asking for some time now, and what may be asked of me.


I really can't wait to say "Have you asked your Patrol Leader?"



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Interesting idea.


In my experience, Cub Scout dens really need Den Chiefs, but they are hard to attract. It's a very considerable sacrifice of time by a young man.


I had an excellent Den Chief when I was leading a Tiger Cub Den. My aim was to make the Den Chief a partner in the program and to give him real leadership and teaching responsibilities. I hope that made it worthwhile for him.

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