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On my recent Wood Badge Course there was a ceremony for the Course Instructors where they received their third bead. The Course Director /Scout Master was wearing 4 beads. We hod only WBer's on the course as Staff except the Venturer Leader, and the Scribe. But all Staff Instructors were Beaded. I am invite to Staff the next course coming up next year. But I will be beaded before then.

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A Wood Badge course I understand, as there are requirements laid out. (The Scribe thing you mention is not appropriate. That's considered a key position, and needs to be a Wood Badger. There's some wiggle room on the Venturing.)

Idle curiosity ... did you view the beading ceremony for the staff?

I'm interested in the "rules" regarding beads for the Leadership Challenge. Who made them? What are they?

Thanks, BDPT00


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I only saw the beading ceremony for the Staff who were not at the Ceremony the day before. They were given a second bead, and the SM took each persons leather bead thong, and untied it, and placed a third bead on it. I know that our SM and Our SPL had four beads. The SPL was the SM for the Course before. As for the Scribe, I can only assume she wasn't beaded, because I never saw her wearing here regalia. same for the Venturer Adviser. I know that this next course that both will be Beaded, as I've gotten to see the names of many of the people serving next year.

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  • 3 weeks later...



Receiving a 3rd bead for staffing Wood Badge is understood, and it's been that way for decades. My question is specifically for PLC. I've seen bead requirements for NYLT, and I know that NAYLE was thrown in on that, too. When and how (mostly who) did the PLC become part of this arrangement? I'm interested in how it came about. Are there requirements out there somewhere, or did a course director just decide it was appropriate, and therefor awarded beads?


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Having staffed the old Boy Scout, the old Cub Scout, the 21st Century course and been the CD for the 21st Century course, I can and do wear a Wood Badge with four beads.

But I'd be just as happy to wear my original set with the two beads.

I have enjoyed each and every course I have attended and have always come away having learned something, if not from the course itself then from some of the participants.


Back when I was first asked to join a WB staff, I will admit that I thought the idea of having a third bead was something really special.

I allowed myself to think that the course was going to be put on for me, just so I'd get this bead!

Thankfully the SM was able to provide a much needed kick in the pants and really brought home the idea that the Staff was there to serve the participants.

I'm not against awarding knots and medals.

I'm happy to let those who choose to wear them go ahead and do so, I'm just as happy for those who choose not, to do their own thing. (So long as they don't become sanctimonious about it.)


Many years back I was on a Service Team (Kinda like a group of Camp Masters.) For a National Camp Site in the UK. When I first joined there were a few "Overage Rover Scouts" On the Team. They took great joy in knocking any and everything that they deemed to be new or different.

For some reason they disliked Wood Badge and were happy to poke fun at people who had taken WB.

These guys did really know their stuff, about camping and Scout Craft. It was such a shame that when it came to WB they acted so un-scout-like.

I hope I never fall into their way of thinking, but a Wood Badge is a Wood Badge and as I see it two beads is just great.


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