Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
jamist649

Tiger Parents! Grrrrrrr

Recommended Posts

I know this has come up about a thousand times on this board, but I am at the end of my rope as to how to handle this.

 

I just took over as CM of our Pack. I entered our Pack 3 years as a Tiger parent myself and assumed that all parents (even if at varying degrees) felt the same way I did/do: "If it's important to my son, it's important to me". Uhh, no. I signed up 9 new Tigers this year which is a HUGE number considering we are in a small County with WAY too many Packs (long, different story there). Last year we signed up a grand total of 2 Tigers.

 

After the Roundup, I was REALLY excited about the prospect of a vibrant Tiger Den full of excited boys and parents. Until I started looking for a Den Leader. Ya'll, I have heard every excuse in the book. "Well, I've never done this before" (Hello!! It's a TIGER DEN, NOBODY HAS!), "Uhh, I'm really busy with my job and other kids", "I'll think about it and talk it over with my wife/husband etc" (Still waiting on that one...2 weeks after the fact).

 

I finally had one parent to agree (reluctantly) to be Den Leader. Problem is, she is in College full time, has 2 other kids (smaller), and is basically overwhelmed (kind of young too, only 25). I've had contact with all of my Den Leaders this week EXCEPT this one. Last time I called her to get an update she sounded like she wanted to quit...already. I appreciate her volunteering, but I need a focused leader who WANTS to be there. I'm to the point of telling them all to just go home. BUT, I think about the excited faces I see everyday at school when I pick MY kids up ("Hey, Mr. Cubmaster!!") and immediately "soften" my stance. :( I can't do that to the kids.

 

Any advice on how I can handle this? I feel like just taking over the Den myself, but I CANNOT handle a dual role at this point. I work 40 hours a week on swing shift so I'm not exactly loaded with free time myself. Plus, I want to be active in MY son's Den (Bears) and I cannot imagine how I can be CM, DL, and an active Scout Parent for my son in an entirely different Den!

 

Thanks

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have you thought about the parent's taking turns leading the first few months? Since Tigers have to have a parent why can't each parent take a month. Provide the parents with the program helps for their month and offer them any assistance they may need. You might even offer to do them for the first month ONLY to show them how it's done. When we first started up as a pack, a great guy who was the pack trainer for another pack ran our first 2 meetings. He showed us how it's done and got us over our nervousness. It's kind of hard to jump right in if you have zero scouting background and no idea what you are supposed to do. It's also a lot easier to get some one to volunteer if its a short term commitment. If you make tigers seem easy and fun you might have several willing to go it alone. They just need to get comfortable with the idea. You'll also introduce the idea to other parents who may think on it a while and be ready to be DL's next year.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

As a CM its part of the job to develop your den leaders and staff. So accept this responsibility early and then develop your strategy on how you will develop your talent.

 

Since you were den leader you know what it takes. Divide up these task among the parents there. Plan to nurse this den along until Thanksgiving or so and expect that by then they will be able to more or less self manage.

 

Help develop the calendar for this den. For instance, October is fire safety, create the den meeting plan then look someone in the eye and ask, "can you do, x?"

 

Do the same for November and December. Outline each meeting for this den and start assigning and getting names of people who will do what. Then copy the list to every email address you have for that den.

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just re-read my post and I think I may have sounded a little harsh, let me explain. I didn't just give her the material and throw her to the wolves...err Tigers. I spoke with her, at legnth, about the position. I told her I would attend EVERY Den Meeting, if needed, and help with planning and delivery of the program. I'm doing my best do develop our Pack's leaders, however I had to find, appoint, register, and train TWO new Den Leaders this year (Tiger and Wolf) so it's been a little daunting for me too! :) Even with my constant offers of help I still have heard nothing from this leader in over 7 days and we have BIG things coming up on a Pack level!

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Tiger den is SUPPOSED to be run using SHARED LEADERSHIP. See rrelaljrksw's post above. The Tiger Partner attends everything and does everything with their Tiger Scout. Including RUNNING TIGER DEN MEETINGS! For the Tiger year, the den leader is mainly a coordinator, and a fill-in.

 

You stated that you intend to be at every Tiger den meeting. If so, then why pressure the college mom into taking it all on right now?

 

Make sure no one bails on the next Tiger den meeting. Then have each Tiger Team sign up to run one of the next 9 meetings. Have them also put down which one of the Den Requirements, or Go-See-It's, they will be doing - no electives unless as a secondary activity. The Tiger Team in charge also does the opening den flag ceremony (you can demonstrate one the first meeting). You can provide a game or a song, and also a Bobcat requirement or 3-4, for them to do each week.

 

Put together a Tiger Den Calendar showing all of the den meetings, who is in charge of the meeting, and what they will be covering so that everyone knows. At the end of the 9 meetings, the Tigers should have all earned their Totem, Bobcat, be just about finished with their Tiger, be much more comfortable with the whole Scouting process, and you should have a REAL good idea of who you can talk into taking over the den as leader.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First things first, they do all realize that they have to be there for the meetings, RIGHT????

 

I have had that very same problem with recruiting leaders. Of course the only response that I EVER get is (you will ALWAYS get a tiger leader, the parents have to be there anyway)

 

I wonder when she last tried getting den leadership.

 

Keep at it. Use the parent talent surveys. I found a leader that way one time.

 

I know what you are going through, I am going through it again this year. We added 33 boys to our pack, total now 60, and we have to get more than the 5 leaders that we already have. That includes CM and ACM.

 

We are holding a mandatory parents meeting this week to try to recruit leaders. Although mandatory I see many of the parents treating it like any other mandatory orientation. They think that it is not mandatory for them.

 

Yes I know I can't force them to a parents meeting, but I need leaders and parent help, and that seems to be the only way that I am going to get it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just contact your CO to provide a leader, it's their responsibility, right?

 

OK, seriously...

 

How about a parent from another Den? The TC DL does not have to be a TC parent. It is intimidating to hear you are responsible for planning a program year in a program you are only vaguely familiar with. A Wolf, Bear, or Webelos parent is (probably) familiar with the TC program and may be willing to plan and coordinate events where the TC parents are responsible for pulling it off even if they are not willing to be a Wolf, Bear, Webelos DL.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ntrog8r has a good idea. The only thing that I would say is that have that other parent be a Tiger Leader Coach. Advise the new tiger leader and assist them along the way. That way you still have a leader but they are getting the guidance that they could all use.

 

Or if you are fortunate to have a parent that wants to be a leader then let them do it. Either way it still works out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Jamist, I suspect your timeline and expectation might be a little too ambitious. You really don't have a Big Thing coming up in the pack, at least not from the parent's perspective.

 

I think you are doing all the right things but you may have overwhelmed your lead parent. Ease up some, its not a business obligation its a youth group organization for first graders. Getting the den to have regular meetings is important. These parents have to build relationships among themselves to figure out who can and will do what.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi jamist649,

 

As CM, one thing I always tried to stress is that Cub Scouting (at all levels, not just Tigers) is Family or a Cub+Parent oriented. That Cubbing is really a great opportunity for a parent to do things with THEIR son, in a framework that provides a lot of ideas of things to do & things to talk about together. And, that their son ISN'T going to get as much out of Cub Scouts unless they're involved too.

 

NC

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Part of how the Tiger program is set up is using host families. When the den meeting is at their house they help plan the program. No one get out of program planning entirely but the CPA can schedule their host time to not be tax season.

 

As CC I emphasized that to my Tiger DL who promptly said "Would you like to host next month?" Yep. But it gives me a chance to help her get some momentum and set the tone for parents. (My son is a tiger.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×