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Sir_Scoutalot

Technology ruining summer camp ?

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The times, they are a changin'.

 

I'm reminded of my 5th grade teacher. 30 years ago, she would not allow any sort of calculator in class. She said, and I'm not making this up, "When the bomb goes off you'll have to know how to do without an electric calculator." As recent as 10 years ago, she taught my friend's 5th grader, and she required they buy the kid a basic scientific calculator for her class.

 

These things are tools, and like any tool they must be used properly. Teach a Scout how to use a compass, then when he's older introduce him to GPS. Laptops and cell phones have their place as tools. My camp has WiFi in all the buildings. This DOES NOT mean the Scouts or even all the leaders can bring them. Heck, I find myself looking to buy a watch after years of not wearing one. I didn't need it so long as I had my Blackberry with me. Not for camp anymore. :)

 

Movies at summer camp, no probably not. Our lodge had a Fellowship Weekend that included Guitar Hero and movies among other more traditional activities. A Fellowship Weekend is fine for those things, just don't expect to see them on Ordeal weekends.

 

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Honestly I don't understand why a BSA camp reservation would provide electricity to its campsites, but if they are going to do that then troops bringing in big screens is soething I would predict as the next step. (electric fans are not far behind.)

 

Keep in mind not every SM is a born and raided devoted scouter. some of them sorta got roped into the deal and perfomr their duties out of a sense of responsibility.

 

While I certainly do not approve of big screen tv's at scout camp, I try not to judge such scoutmasters hashly.

 

They are actually giving up MORE because they are "stuck" in a world (the world of scouting) they don't particularly like and don't particularly understand.

 

 

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I have actually observed extension cords extended hundreds of feet from the nearest bath facility, with adapter in a light fixture, to large fans (and in one case an AC) blowing on the adult scouters in their campsite. Power wasn't supplied at the campsite...the scouters improvised. The camp, on the other hand, did nothing about it. If what I'm reading here is typical, it might be a trend.

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Most I have brought was something to charge my cell phone. I only used it to call home and see how my 3 year old was doing with my mom. Other than that I didn't have any technology. Other scouters had their blow up mattresses w/ electric pumps and battery powered fans, but nothing more high tech than that (not counting digital cameras). The year before that we did have someone with a laptop, but the kids didn't mess with it and it was just to download the pictures from the camera to. Most of the time you didn't even see it out.

 

I personally don't like to see too much technology. Sure I think the staff should have walkie-talkies, but that's a safety thing not a leisure thing (for the most part).

 

We did have a staffer using a cell phone app at Cub Scout camp. It was a space theme and it was his "scanner". It was used more as a prop than anything else. To me that wasn't too bad. It was useful because right after that they had the kids looking for rocks the old fashioned way. I wouldn't want to see stuff like that at Boy Scout camp. They should be able to get away from that stuff there. Unless they're doing something for a GPS course I guess.

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I've never seen a movie at our summer camp and the PLC still does not want cell phone at summer camp. And yes they do play cards until about 11:30 each night. So maybe we are a throw back troop or something.

 

We did joke about having the "pimp my ride" (or whatever that show is called) trick out our trailer with a flatscreen but it was just a joke. Hard to believe someone actually did it.

 

We do allow cell phones and Ipods in the cars if the driver gives the okay. In my car they usually are talking and joking and the ipods never even come out on the way to a campout. On the way home they all fall asleep.(This message has been edited by knot head)

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I would be all for movie night at Scout camps, presuming that they're showing Scout-related movies. For instance, that "Follow Me, Boys!" movie? I think a lot of people would like to see it. I've never seen it and I'd like to sometime. I think some sort of Scout gathering is about the only place that I could expect to ever see it.

 

Then there's Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. Ok, so they aren't "Boy Scouts of America" but they're basically the same thing (without the licensing fee) and it's the kids who pull through and win the day to support "Scoutmaster" Smith.

 

Otherwise, you may end up doing what I did when I was a scout and the sun had set -- hours of playing cards before you all crawled into the sleeping bag around midnight.

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Our troop has its own camp each summer. It is primarily intended for new scouts but more and more keep coming back each year. We have movies. Originally we would watch the "A Time to Tell" broken up over a couple of nights. The first year they watched "Follow Me, Boys!" in the van on the way home. Since then they have elected to watch it for our Wednesday night campfire. It doesn't seem to have any adverse affects and is something they all look forward to.

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