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packsaddle

Why Wood Badge?

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Over the years I've read various criticisms, especially from Kudu, regarding the BSA program and woodbadge in particular. And I thought I understood the different 'sides' who advocate or cast a critical eye. But the recent thread by Khaliela in which she was denied membership because either 1) she was pagan or 2) her religious convictions would not allow her to wear some hat at Woodbadge....made me wonder again: Why does anyone want to do Woodbadge? Is this some kind of fraternity thing or is there really some benefit to it? And if there is, please describe what those benefits are. Just curious.

 

(and don't worry, I've already been told plenty of times it would not be good for me to do Woodbadge, lol)

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Why did I take Wood Badge? Good question. Reasons: Curiosity about the course, peer pressure at RT from WB staffers, to bring back better leadership/program ideas to my unit, to see how I stack up against other scouter and to facilitate networking. It was a lot of fun and stress rolled up into 2 weekends of adult camping. Of course, the stress was self-induced as I am a classic over-achiever. As a Cub Scouter, I have a better understanding of troop dynamics. As CC, I am better at getting the committee through brainstorming and decision making.

 

That being said, a scouter friend of mine jokingly asked me if he should go through the course. He has been a scouter for 10+ years. He is an active volunteer at the District and Council level. He doesn't think he will benefit from WB at this point. I agreed with him.

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In my opinion, Wood Badge is fine, but is oversold and over promoted.

 

MOST council assemblies of Scouters will feature an overly long promotion of Wood Badge in my experience, when 90% of the people in the audience have already taken it. I find that WASTE OF TIME to be annoying.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Two reasons: 1. Light a fire under your butt to meet some goals for you and your unit in the next year or so. My ticket was not earh-shattering, but it helped me set the tone for other things I was trying to accomplish. 2. Meet other leaders in your area, and get to know them far better than the limited time at camporees and roundtables would allow. This paid off for my crew because one December, they wanted to go backpacking, and I needed a female adult. I had met another advisor who was not intimidated by snow and she had a couple of youth who wanted to join us. Our course doled our some pretty nice swag, and I have used some of the materials with my youth, so it wasn't all misery. There was also instruction on a lot of items we discussed in recent posts (remote fire starters, uniforms, advancement, what is venturing, team development, non-sectarianism, etc ...). Would I have liked to harm more wood and watched fewer videos in the process? Sure. But me and the other old Crows got a lot out of it.

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In my opinion, Wood Badge is fine, but is oversold and over promoted.

 

MOST council assemblies of Scouters will feature an overly long promotion of Wood Badge in my experience, when 90% of the people in the audience have already taken it. I find that WASTE OF TIME to be annoying.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

90% of the time 90% of the Roundtable is a waste of time. But the networking part can be helpful. I just wish it ours were at church that served beer. :) No such luck.

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Pack are you trolling....

 

There is an incredible amount of peer pressure,,,,,,,

 

I was forced to take woodbadge by the Districts Good old boys club......New scouter, what did I know, heck I was trying to fit in....You need woodbadge to put on District level cub events......Ok I will do it....Well I did and they still told me know......Well 5 years later they are all gone, no longer active in scouting. Wellyou come back having completed woodbadge....they just pulled out another hurtle......and another and another.....Ok, I get it you don't want me to volunteer. You have zero District level cub programs and your ok with it.

 

Woodbadge was a complete waste of two weekends.....I understand that my course may not be the norm.......But from speaking with other folks, I don't think so......

 

Did I benefit for woodbadge, naw..... Our patrol never bonded, we were spread out over 200 miles separating us....Country hicks that don't own computers and barely have a house phone, with no answering machine...and the hicks won't drive half way to meet the rest of us for a patrol meeting.....

 

Did my unit benefit....naw....My ticket was stuff I was going to do anyhow....

 

The things that happened in my course.....All of the councils key volunteers were on staff, IOLS course director, training director, Council Commisioner....just about everyone. Many of staff members held court during lunch or during down times, most of my patrol was busy kissing ass.......I love the inside jokes, not so much.... The announcement song over and over and over again at gillwell. When I was PL I was caught in a fight between the female SPL and her adult son who was in my patrol and very obviously didn't want to be there......I could go on and on and on...

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It's not so much that the course wasn't good. It was really good at what it did. Great enthusiasm. But it didn't have what I was looking for. I had a Troop-method troop with a couple of scouts doing everything and I wanted a patrol method troop where everyone had a job to do. Culture in a troop is really hard to change and getting from one to the other is a common problem that in hind sight is not so hard, but is really hard to figure out the first time. I guess my point is there's need for something that complements the course. Something you can take before you write your ticket so your ticket items are useful. 4 of my 5 items were a bust. The last was good.

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I had the honor to attend NYLT in 2009. I don't feel the need to pay a considerable amount of money out of pocket to relearn what I've already been taught. My first Scoutmaster went to Wood Badge and really enjoyed it. I've seen some get quite a bit out of it, and some get very little. Since I became an Adult I started fixing what I felt like needed to be fixed, and I highly doubt I could come up with 5 meaningful tickets in my unit currently. Perhaps when I get a little older, I'll do Wood Badge, but for now, at 19 years old, I'm not feeling it. Especially after attending NYLT only 4 years ago.

 

 

 

Sentinel947

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Pack are you trolling....

 

There is an incredible amount of peer pressure,,,,,,,

 

I was forced to take woodbadge by the Districts Good old boys club......New scouter, what did I know, heck I was trying to fit in....You need woodbadge to put on District level cub events......Ok I will do it....Well I did and they still told me know......Well 5 years later they are all gone, no longer active in scouting. Wellyou come back having completed woodbadge....they just pulled out another hurtle......and another and another.....Ok, I get it you don't want me to volunteer. You have zero District level cub programs and your ok with it.

 

Woodbadge was a complete waste of two weekends.....I understand that my course may not be the norm.......But from speaking with other folks, I don't think so......

 

Did I benefit for woodbadge, naw..... Our patrol never bonded, we were spread out over 200 miles separating us....Country hicks that don't own computers and barely have a house phone, with no answering machine...and the hicks won't drive half way to meet the rest of us for a patrol meeting.....

 

Did my unit benefit....naw....My ticket was stuff I was going to do anyhow....

 

The things that happened in my course.....All of the councils key volunteers were on staff, IOLS course director, training director, Council Commisioner....just about everyone. Many of staff members held court during lunch or during down times, most of my patrol was busy kissing ass.......I love the inside jokes, not so much.... The announcement song over and over and over again at gillwell. When I was PL I was caught in a fight between the female SPL and her adult son who was in my patrol and very obviously didn't want to be there......I could go on and on and on...

Not trolling. I asked something similar about 4 years ago and intended to try to reopen that old thread but couldn't get to it yet...hence the new one. I have been reading some comments and discussions lately about woodbadge and it looked like the new crop of forum members were plowing the same field so I wanted to see what they think about it in general. My intent wasn't to read why NOT woodbadge but rather the positive side.

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Where some of us 'see' benefits to woodbadge, they seem to be intangible benefits and often applied to other woodbadgers rather than to oursleves. If you have taken woodbadge or plan to, what is the reason? If it's peer pressure, like Basementdweller says, that's fine. But if you have definite needs that you think woodbadge can help with I'd like to know what those are...and if woodbadge accomplished what you thought it would.

 

I'm still open to reading the complaints but what I really want to read is the 'good stuff', and how it was of benefit to you and your unit, the success stories.

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Packsaddle,

 

Woodbadge 21st Century is in essence a "Leadership" course designed for business structures. The "Scouting" is crammed in between lessons on group dynamics and such. It used to be the "Pinnacle" of Scouting training but now you can be a first year Tiger Cub Leader and come out of the course with a GREAT desire and hardly any knowledge of the scouting program. I had looked forward to attending for decades. Once I attended the "New" WB, I was slightly disappointed, I had some good tickets but I would have done them anyhow. I thought maybe my 20+ years as adult scouting had caused me to see things differently so I volunteered to staff WB. No change, still have the same feeling about the course.

 

​It is a GREAT leadership/group dynamics course. I just wish BSA would bring us a course on SCOUTING, regs, requirements, where to find info, rather than leadership without guidance. Vague references to certain "rules" allowing different rules in different areas, allowing Councils/Districts to set rules and state they are BSA vice local regs....

 

Still leaves adult leaders questioning what they are doing vice what they should be doing or even where to find the information on it.

 

My $0.02

 

Rick

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We have so many adults involved who were not scouts.....I believe if the BSA truly wants Boy Led Patrol method troops it warrants a course dedicated to such.......

 

How many posts are folks asking how to do it???????

 

 

 

 

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We have so many adults involved who were not scouts.....I believe if the BSA truly wants Boy Led Patrol method troops it warrants a course dedicated to such.......

 

How many posts are folks asking how to do it???????

 

 

 

Here, here. IOLS was a brief survey of Scoutcraft, and intro to the patrol method, but not much on Boy Led. I will continue to take as much training as I can through Pow Pow, U of scouting, pioneering kit, etc. But this forum is the best source I have found for Boy Led.

 

I found out Thursday the troop is hoping I become SM next spring. SURPRISE. I am so not ready for that. Scoutcraft wise, patience wise, leadership skill wise, health wise, fitness wise, relating to teenagers wise and just about every other wise you can think of. Plus I still have a son in cubs.

 

I need to start preparing for this possible outcome. We have Woodbadge in the fall and spring. So any suggestions on if it is worth my time are welcome.

 

Another thing has been nagging at me recently and may be better as a new topic. Am I doing a disservice to my son (s) by being a direct contact leader ? Especially my oldest who really needs to learn independence. My plan was to start backing off over the next year, not become SM.

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I have 35+ years in Scouting. WB trained in 1993 so I didn't get the 21st Century stuff. Was WB worth it? Don't remember much of it. It wasn't very memorable even at the time. However, now that the 21st Century stuff came out they don't ask me to staff it, they don't ask me to do hold district/council positions, and I'm okay with that. I didn't spend a lot of time schmoozing the Good Old Boys network. I was in scouting 25 years before I was awarded the District Award of Merit. I guess I'm just too interested in working with the scouts to be all that concerned about peer pressure. Trained? Sure, Cub Scouts through Venturing and UC as well. I'm currently too busy starting a new troop, to worry about what the course du jour is. Of course the troop will be the old fashioned Green Bar Bill patrol-method, boy-led all the way. When you start a troop from scratch, you don't have to worry about traditions and councils getting in the way.

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We have so many adults involved who were not scouts.....I believe if the BSA truly wants Boy Led Patrol method troops it warrants a course dedicated to such.......

 

How many posts are folks asking how to do it???????

 

 

 

I am my son's scout master, as was I his Tiger wolf bear, webelos and Cubmaster........

 

A couple of years ago, My son and I were cleaning and drying troop tents and he said that it stinks he has to do it.....

 

So I will caution don't ask him to do significantly more than the other boys in the troop......Guilty.....

 

Make sure you do not sign off on his advancement, peoples, boys will talk. Special treatment, he needs to do it better than any other boy in the troop with out your help.

 

I have an ASM do his SMC's and as SM I do not participate in BOR.........

 

Other than that I don't really interact with him at meetings or outings.....He is under his PL and the SPL....They hold him accountable not me.....He is on the duty roster just like everyone else...... He hangs with his scouting brothers........just as it should be.

 

But my son was in the troop for two years with out dad being around....I was ASM and second adult. on outings.....But he integrated with the troop with out dad there.

 

So advise to you.......I would stop attending meetings and outings for a bit.......Your scout will never find his feet if your there to catch him everytime he stumbles and falls.

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