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STEM Scout pilot program

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Or is it they just hope the question doesn't come up?

That would be my guess.

 

And we all know how well that strategy has worked for the BSA in the past.

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Stosh,

 

Many share those sentiments but some of us enjoyed school. Learning is a challenge and fun just like outdoor activities. Some of us were glad for school to start each year and excited by the new textbooks and things to master.

Not everyone has the same motivators or interests. Seems like STEM Scouts might attract those youth.

My Eagle was earned many years ago but the values have lasted a lifetime. That is the purpose of the program. Maybe STEM Scouts will do the same.

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Mozartbrau, This was just announced last week.  They still have to get the staff in place, and if they do it like they did in the Great Smoky Mountain Council they will have to build out a "Vortex", a mobile lab, though I believe national is going to help with that.  IMHO they still have months before the program will be up an running in these new councils.

 

 

https://stemscouts.org/stem-mobile-lab/

 

Bzg39HdIQAABWWo.jpg

 

STEM-097-_AP_6032.jpg

 

 

So THAT's where the money is going in my council. Instead of having decent latrines that don't make you vomit to enter them, they're spending a few hundred grand on some rolling coach to teach sub-par science that the kids get more in-depth at school!

 

Yeah!

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Mozart,

 

As an EB member in the GSMC, I can assure you that no local council funds re used in the STEM Scouts pilot.

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Judging from what I'm reading and the content of those photos, Mozartbrau has the evaluation about right...unless someone can convince me that STEM is best communicated (I hesitate to use the term 'taught') using a computer lab. Fancy hardware is no substitute for- and not really needed to hone- THINKING skills.

I could be wrong about this program and how effective it's going to be but for now I'm skeptical (sorry, Skeptic).

 

Note to the website: It's 'adaptation' not 'adaption'. 3-D modeling, fingerprint analysis, for example, are applications not experiments. I wonder what the hypotheses are for all the experiments. It's the hypotheses that are most important. Make each of those topics a 'hot' button and put more detail underneath so people like me can become more convinced. "5 and 10 and 30-minute modules"? ..."from animation to web graphics"? I'm searching for the science in all this.

 

Edit: One more thing: has anyone noticed that the description of Program 2 is identical for elementary, middle school, and high school?

Edited by packsaddle

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Mozart,

 

As an EB member in the GSMC, I can assure you that no local council funds re used in the STEM Scouts pilot.

When my council discussed it, the cost to the council was $300,000. That was for one full time professional, and equipment. Maybe as GSMC was the initial pilot, all costs were born by National (it would make sense for a brand new program like this), but for the expanded pilot some of the costs are being born by the councils?

 

Or perhaps what I was told was incorrect.

Edited by Rick_in_CA

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So are the  (scouts) learning to push buttons to get results or are they learning why the buttons get the results?

 

When I subtaught science, talking to the regular teachers, that is where the kids fall down.  The old time science teachers were about getting the  (old time) kids to experiment, and see the results.  The new kids have very little patience for WAITING for results.  They EXPECT the results first.  

We have google, but somebody , somewhere, created and collected all that information and invention. 

 

Here is where Scoutson considers himself ahead of the game.  He is/was the only one in his auto-mechanics class that knew why an engine must be timed, either by computer or distributor, because his old man taught him to try changing the timing on the old man's pick-up and see what happens.

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Keep in mind it's not just science. Technology and engineering involve a lot of button pushing. Animation and web graphics involve beaucoup math.

 

And, why scouting? Well, there is a sense that all of these fields need leadership and ethics. Not just in our nation, but worldwide.

 

Why the cross-talk about inclusiveness? Location. Most lab facilities are in schools or with companies that hold non-discrimination agreements.

 

Why the tricked-out mobile lab? Advertising. No different than those mobile climbing walls are pine wood derby tents.

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It would seem to me that since STEM Scouts is not part of Boy Scouts or Venturing, there is no issue as to the OA membership.  They would not meet any joining requirements.

Sorry, spent the weekend talking to folks who remembered when youth Explorers could join O/A, then it went co-ed, then the brotherhood became a "Boy Scouts only" kind of thing.

 

What I am saying is that these inclusive programs will generate first class scouts (i.e., kids with skills, frequent campers, admired by their peers) who will see themselves as excluded and those "joining requirements" as little more than "whites only" bathroom signs in their furtive little minds.

 

A little issue, to be sure. Unless arrowmen and eagles are picked for jobs for which these high ranking (in their respective domain) scouts are passed over. Then the nominal rank can no longer be a hallmark of excellence, and it loses value.

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Keep in mind it's not just science. Technology and engineering involve a lot of button pushing. Animation and web graphics involve beaucoup math.

 

 

Depends. Most design schools for gaming, graphics and animation do NOT require much math since the software does most of it. Mastery of the software is required and you learn a lot in the process, but the guys doing the design are hardly mathematicians. That's the reason they are in design rather than coding or engineering; they have less aptitude for math and more for the artsy side. I know this because my younger brother works in the gaming industry. 

 

I can see targeting this program in areas where STEM is in need due to poor public schools or under-served communities where there is ALSO a cross-section of likely members. But BSA rarely knows how to link such two different concepts effectively. Moreover, it is ironic that they spent that money on STEM when their national IT systems are the butt of many jokes.

 

I don't think it's too much to ask for BSA to think through their projects and spend money effectively. Rolling this transport through suburban Chicago or Dallas or DC -- where the school systems are better equipped to bring STEM to the kids -- is a waste. BSA would be better off updating the two year old NOVA info on their website.

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I don't think it's too much to ask for BSA to think through their projects and spend money effectively.  Why should they do things differently than our government?   :unsure: 

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It all fits under the same umbrella known as bureaucracy

 

The smaller the group the more efficient the funds.  Isn't that what we teach our boys when it comes to menu shopping?  On the other hand with other people's money rolling into a large group, it's not THEIR money, so Thrifty is the first to go. 

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Already can see the questions coming, we are in one of the councils that will roll it out this fall):

If my elementary age son & daughter can both be a STEM Scout does why can't my daughter can now join the pack with her brother? (Answer is it's a co-Ed program, cub packs are gender specific). I know several families that will ask loudly though.

 

I give up!

 

Also might have been nice to hear about thus from the council and what their plans are for rolling it out rather than seeing it on Bryan first.

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^Six pages of posts and no one has had a decent argument how or why STEM belongs in Scouting. Stem activities are already available with merit badges, and in cub scout advancement, but should not be the focal point or a side program of the BSA. Six troops in my council tried a STEM focused program last year and five went under and the sixth is down to 5 boys and will probably be gone before the end of May. My point, Scouting was never designed for couch potatoes who are afraid of the outdoors. The further away we get from the roots of scouting to cater to the needs of boys who really do not belong in scouts the continued decline in boy scout troops and boy scouts will only increase, as statistics have shown. Lets keep the Outing in Scouting as our program focus and we can help the troop numbers and boy scout numbers begin to grow and get stronger again. Otherwise we will witness the continued decline and eventual demise of what once was the greatest youth program, teaching self reliance, leadership, and a love of the outdoors and the urgent need to protect it. The troop connected with my church, like our crew, keeps growing every year  as we put the main emphasis on our outdoor program. Our troop now numbers over 60 active members and is the largest in the council, how many of you pro STEM oriented scoutmasters can claim the same?

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 My point, Scouting was never designed for couch potatoes who are afraid of the outdoors. 

 

Right! 

 

That's what being a Scouter is all about!!! ;)

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