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Eamonn

Wood Badge - A Secret ?

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An added thought. My wife is taking Wood Badge this year. She is so excited about it and there is not a week that goes by that she does not ask me about the course. My only response is, you'll find out. She gets mad that I won't help her by giving her info. I tell her that nobody gave me information, and now I am glad they did not. She is drooling now and I actually cannot wait for her to go to the training. Knwoing what I know from my experience, I am so happy for her because she will be blown away like I was by the course.

 

ASM514

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"The mark of the Elite in Scouting"??? I don't think of myself as one of the Elite, I'm just a lowly (insert position title here) so I guess I'm not worthy of being "invited" to attend and I won't even ask about it.

 

(Do you get my point, guys?...how does this sound to a new Scouter who knows nothing about the program? Think this sounds inviting and inclusionary enough for someone to want to plunk down 200 bucks and a week of vacation time? I think all this "mystery" and hyperbole is excluding a lot of otherwise willing participants.)

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"It is the mark of the Elite in Scout leadership." I certainly do not wish to negate anyone's personal feelings or enthusiasm, and each person is certainly welcome to describe how WB has affected them personally. But to make a general statement such as this is not an accurate reflection of what the course teaches, or what the program intends to accomplish.

 

Having served on a few WB staffs and been involved in the formulation of WB for the 21st Century, the word "elite" has never been in my mind, my heart or my vocabulary.

 

I agree with ASM514 that Wood Badge has been an important training in my life, but to consider myself elite would rob me of some of the most important values that WB has helped to develop.

 

I am grateful for the skills I gained through WB and for the opportunity to use those skills to benefit scouts and scouting. I would hope others who have participated in WB would feel the same.

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Please remember:

the Eagle Scout is the "Elite of Scouting."

Wood Badge is not the "Phd of Scouting"...it is a means to an end.

As in all BSA Leader training, the end is to better deliver the program to the kids.

 

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ASM514

I have just looked at the time that I posted that. It was late and ....

Please forgive me.

All the staff have earned their Wood Badge.

And I have completed both the Scout and Cub Scout Wood Badge.

The four with past experiance, are people who have staffed before.

It was (and Boy, I expect to get heck for this !!) when we had the old course, common to have a bunch/ group of staffers who did little else but staff Wood Badge courses. We have one chap in our Council, who has staffed over twenty times. ( Don't tell anyone but he is now our area president.)At times and over time, some of these Staffers, started to add all sorts of "Stuff and Nonsence" To the course: I have seen a Scoutmasters Chair toted from place to place. Everyone watching what the Scoutmaster was wearing, and then quickly changing, in order to be dressed the same way. The addition of all sorts of Gilwell patches, to uniforms. Scout staves and thumb sticks, along with other tomfoolery, which they thought added something to the course and may have at the time been a lot of fun.

The fact is that it did little to enhance the learning experiance of the participants. Sad to say some even came away with the idea that this stuff was Wood Badge.

Much as I kind of like the idea of being elite, the nearest that I have managed so far in almost 50 years was in reaching the rank of Queens Scout,and maybe for a while the Scouts in my troop thought of me that way, sad to say it didn't take them very long to see that, while we were doing everything possible, to be the elite troop, so was every other troop, and their Scout Leaders were every bit as good as I ever was. In fact at that time some of the other Scout Leaders were my heros.

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A misunderstanding. I did not mean that I, or anyone who has taken WB is "Elite", I meant that the training itself is the "Elite" of leadership training and produces fine leadership skills. I know some WB's that I would never call "Elite" myself included.

 

As far as the garbage about putting down $200 and a week of vacation, well, that does not fly with me. Scouting is not about your $200 or your vacation time. It is about how well we can prepare ourselves to teach our youth. And in closing, I was never invited to take WB. I seen the application at a training session and signed up on the spot. What is the invitation deal?

 

ASM514

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Well, it has taken about a month to find this information. All of the web sites I've visited had the same canned description that was printed on the flier from my council. I kept looking and looking and finally found one council web site that actually listed an outline of what is in Wood Badge. Would it be so hard for others to share this information too?

 

21st Century Wood Badge will cover these themes:

 

Living the Values

Values, Mission and Vision

Aims and Methods

 

Bringing the Vision to Life

Listening to learn

Communicating

Giving and receiving feedback

Valuing people and leveraging diversity

Coaching and mentoring

 

Models for Success

Team development tool

Situational Leadership

 

Tools of the Trade

Project planning and problem solving

Managing conflict

Assessing team performance

Managing change

Celebrating team success

 

Learning to Make a Difference

Leaving a legacy

Learning the greatest leadership secret

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kwc57

Yeah, that's the course

It is not sold as a "Elite" but "Premiere" scout training.

I was excited to go and left very disappointed (see other thread)

WB is very organized, very time consuming (vacation will never be compared to WB, it is a lot of work), etc.

As for the secrecy thing, Eliminate it. A better course description could be made out for distribution.

Even knowing what the syllabus is, should not detract from an optimally presented woodbadge.

As for each course being different that is because each course has a change of staff and new attendees. Each course has to have 1/3 new staff (Correct me if I am wrong), You can only serve as a course SM once, (does that apply to any other positions, like course advisor, SPL etc?).

 

All training courses are different experiences depending on the trainor/trainee, it is a topic that gives rise to many threads in this forum concerning methods of presenting.

 

 

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jbroganjr, like I said before, I know a lot of WB's that do not deserve the honor because they mised the training in the biginning, or just never got the program. What did you learn in NLE, ODLS training that made you decide to take WB? Did you take NLE, or ODLS?

 

Maybe your program was lacking. I am sorry for that. But, a vacation? Best time I have ever spent, and never have I injoyed my time more than in my WB training. I would do it again if I could. I think maybe you are looking at what YOU got out of it and YOUR pleasure, instead of what you could learn and pass to our youth.

 

WB has installed in me a new drive to recruit and lead new leaders into the training. Every new adult I recruit to take NLE, or ODLS, I attend with them. During this training, I promote WB with all my heart. It has to be. You must see that WB is the future of our program by educataing our leaders.

 

In Indiana, they are running "White Stag" JLTC. It is the same course as the old WB with a 6 day program. My son is attending next year and we live in Maryland. We HAVE to share this training in order for BSA to survive. I feel that is carved in granite.

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ASM514

Give a guy a break, I thought that my last post was actually the most positive one yet on woodbadge. I am not indicted WB, but in honesty, I am not hesitant to tell my story. I realize that this is my story, my side my version etc.

 

"jbroganjr, like I said before, I know a lot of WB's that do not deserve the honor because they mised the training in the biginning, or just never got the program. What did you learn in NLE, ODLS training that made you decide to take WB? Did you take NLE, or ODLS?"

 

Why did I take WB - to seek out new life and new adventure, to boldly go where no one has gone before...ooops wrong forum. At the suggestion of some close scouters who had taken the old course (and sound as enthusiastic as you did...must have been a great course, the old one), to seek and learn different ways of coaching and mentoring and presenting,etc. I try to live each day with the goals of learning something new.

 

Maybe your program was lacking. I am sorry for that. But, a vacation? Best time I have ever spent, and never have I injoyed my time more than in my WB training. I would do it again if I could. I think maybe you are looking at what YOU got out of it and YOUR pleasure, instead of what you could learn and pass to our youth.

As to what I got out of it, the first order for a happy soul is for the soul to happy with ones self. My story w/WB - run by a cult of personality, folks who glorified hazing and the fact that there was no "adult protection", folks who went beyond the "confusion" training module, the "i've got a secret folks" who cannot or would not desiminate information. The same folks who never missed an opportunity to chide or dismiss the attendees. The same folks who never did get that cheerful, kind, brave nor reverent part of the law.

If this it your idea of fun, they are running this course again this fall with the same 3 guys in the top places, they just rotated a spot, want me to send you the invitation?

 

WB has installed in me a new drive to recruit and lead new leaders into the training. Every new adult I recruit to take NLE, or ODLS, I attend with them. During this training, I promote WB with all my heart. It has to be. You must see that WB is the future of our program by educataing our leaders.

WB served to beat the compassion out of me and left me a bitter taste. However, I know that the program that I love is not the same program that put on my woodbadge course, that it had been corrupted. AS for my positive post, I see things in the course that are beneficial and helpful. I have never said don't go to woodbadge, but I would suggest taking it somewhere else. There are many folks in my district who took the new WB out of council and rave about it. That is where I direct folks to go.

 

In Indiana, they are running "White Stag" JLTC. It is the same course as the old WB with a 6 day program. My son is attending next year and we live in Maryland. We HAVE to share this training in order for BSA to survive. I feel that is carved in granite.

 

The white stag sounds cool.

Now, how about being a good scouter, and you walk in my shoes in woodbadge and I in yours...I know I;ll get the better deal.

 

And as a last line on this subject, I do like this program, I do like the training, I love to see young men realize their potential and develop life skills learned in scouting. I believe scouting is fun with a purpose. And in this great country of ours, you are allowed to complain when the goods received are not the goods promised. WB promised things that it did not honor. My dissatisfaction is not a wholesale denigration of the entire program, but it is my right, my view, etc. I do not post to spread discord, and I find it ironic (not pointing fingers at ASM514) that as soon as a diverse opinion as mine is posted, leverage or acknowledgement of that diversity is quantified by the posters own view. Am I not entitled to that right also?

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FYI

As of January 1, 2005, a 21st Century Wood Badge Course Director has to have staffed at least two 21st Century courses. One as a Troop Guide and the other in any of the other positions. It is true that once a course director, you can not staff another course. You can be a mentor to a course director once. I think what National has done with the course is great. It is truly a course with no additions.

Dancin

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i had a hard time finding out about wood badge in my council too, at first. and they do have a veil of secrecy over it - mostly it seems you have to commit to it 6 - 8 months in advance, without being told enough details to plan for it.

 

I actually signed up for it once - and had to cancel, because i lost my job and am not sure I will be able to get the necessary friday's off for the two weekends. That's another confusing thing - some people told me that the friday of the weekends starts AFTER working hours - others told me it was three FULL days - starting Friday AM both weekends. makes it a little tough for a single working parent.

 

Our council also requires that you have taken LST for your position (not a problem) AND outdoor leader training - which IS a problem, as they only offer it once a year.

 

Plus, I spend a week of my vacation each year going to camp with our boys - and yes - it IS my vacation - I have a good time, too. I take time in the evenings and weekends for campouts and training, roundtable, service projects, badge counseling and paperwork - I am also our troops activities coordinator. I basically have a second (unpaid) job in scouting.

 

I WANT to take Woodbadge, for the troop and for myself, but is it really necessary to require someone to take off two days of work for it? AND Outdoor leader training - another commitment of time for a training I could probably teach?

 

I dunno - seems like they do try to make it mysterious and elitist.

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Laura,yes it is necessary if you want to do it !!

Why ?

Because that is how long it takes !!

Not all courses have to start on a Friday, in fact if I was starting to plan one again, I would opt to start on Saturday and go on till Monday.

You could opt for the six day course, many of these are now planned so they do not conflict with religious obligations, that might be prevalant in certain areas.

In other parts of the World (Not Here is the USA.) Some Scouting Organizations have put a time limit on how long you can continue as an untrained adult leader. They go so far as to say that if you are not willing to take the training, maybe you are not cut out to be a leader.

Here we go so far as to say "Every Boy Deserves A Trained Leader."

This is more then a cute little catchphrase, it has meaning. It in no way is trying to make any one group elitist,it is there so that, we who opt to serve in this organization can perform this service with all the tools that are available, and deliver the best program.

Is this necessary?

I would hope that it would be essential.

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Laura,

 

I'm signed up to go to WB this September. Yes, you have to have LST and OST to take WB if you are with a troop. OST is optional as a requirement for WB for people in a pack. It does start early on Friday. In fact, for my course they request that you arrive on Thurday evening to get situated before Friday morning. Every minute of the day is planned and they want you fresh on Friday morning instead of having driven 3 hours to get there and then spend ALL day sitting thru sessions. It is a big committment and a big sacrifice for many people. I'm trusting all of those "tail twisters" in my council to be correct on how worthwhile it will be.

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