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Webelos Advancement

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I have 7 boys in my Webelos den this year. For the past three years we have met as a den three times a month plus the pack meeting. I have been pouring over my resources for several months now trying to put together a fun and productive year. I understand that the den leader or whomever he appoints is supposed to sign off on the boys progress. Some of the requirements are very explicit requiring some type of performance or documentation. So if a boy builds something or makes a chart etc, he can bring it to a meeting for me or my asst to examine then approve his work. My question is how do I handle requirements that require the boys to talk about a subject or perform something like in the aqunaut badge at a pool. Can the parents sign off? Do I have to sign everything? Half and half? I want to do some things at meetings but not EVERYTHING. I do not like turning den meetings into activity badge factories. I believe they should do as much as they can on their own. Do I have to personally see everything or can I take a parents (Akela) word for it and signoff??

All thoughts on the matter would be greatly appreciated.


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In our Pack, when the webelos worked on the scholar pin, the Principal or teachers were authorized to signed in some of advancenments done in school. For communicator, my son participated in an oratory contest and won 2nd place, his project was shown to the leaders and the picture in the local newspaper was used as proof. For the handyman that they have to do things around the house I took pictures of him doing it and signed the book myself. Just make sure you ask for the evidence needed, it's not hard to take pictures and email them to the leaders and that should be proof. We also printed the workbook version of the webelos advancements for every boy(we had 12) and that's what they used to worked at home, leaders just checked the workbooks for the requirements made at home.

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For Webelos, you (Den Leader) can designate who an appropriate signatory would be. It can be a different person/group of people for each pin, or for specific requirements within a pin.


For example, we had a guy who was a forester. We "deputized" him to sign off on all forestry pin requirements. All of the boys needed his signature, not just his own boy. For the fitness pin, we designated each parent to sign for their boy. (If I were doing it again, I think I'd have the parents be responsible for signing off req 2-8 and reserve req. 1 for the Den Leader, but that's just me.)


For Aquanaut, there really isn't that much talking/telling. Depending on the optional requirements they choose, they may need to explain the 4 rescue methods, but they also need to DEMONSTRATE them. Those can be done concurrently. They may also need to explain safe swim defense (for the belt loop option), but that should take all of about 5 minutes and is probably a good precursor to getting a group of kids into the water anyway.


Regarding time, what we did was to have 10 minutes set aside at the start of a couple of den meetings each month (during the gathering time), where kids could seek signatures on things they had done away from the den. For example, a kid might have been working independently on an art project for the artist pin, and upon completion he might bring it (or a photo) in for us to see and talk about.


What we did NOT do was to just tell parents they could continue signing away on anything and everything in the books. We had one or two parents who would've signed everything the first week (whether the boys had done it or not, who cares). Also we wanted to accustom the boys to seeking out other individuals and asking for signatures, which they'll need to do in boy scouting.


Hope this helps. Have fun - webelos was my favorite part of being a cub leader!

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