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Frequency of Den Meetings

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I've been the Cubmaster for two different packs. My first pack had dens meeting every week barring holidays and the week of the pack meeting. When I came to this new pack I was told they meet once, maybe twice a month as dens and once as a pack. I know BSA recommends meeting every week, but the JTE requirement is only to meet twice a month plus the pack meeting.

 

How often does your den meet outside of the monthly pack meeting? What is the total time spent in den meetings monthly? Do you meet every week for one hour. Every other week for two hours? Some other combination of days and times?

 

Next year will be my second year in this new pack and I personally feel meeting weekly is important for both engagement and routine establishment. I want to set expectations for den leads, but I want to see how others do it before I start putting out my 2015-16 Program Year planning document.

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Our dens are usually scheduled to meet twice a month, plus either a Pack meeting or activity.

 

When I was building up the pack from pretty much nothing, we had two den meetings per month.

 

 

Personally, I don't think quantity is especially important --- quality of meeting is a lot more important, in my view.

 

 

Den leaders have huge demands on them. Cutting down to twice a month seems very reasonable to me.

 

 

And I'd look at rates of participation by boys and parents too. With more meetings to attend, you may be promoting more absenteeism.

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Once a week is the norm around here. Special trips to the zoo or dad's workplace or the police helicopter base count as a meeting. I really recommend aiming for, desiring , once a week (at the Den leaders' and parents consensual convenience) and one or two hikes/tours/trips that take the place of a meeting. Cover requirements at meetings, have fun, make things, just hang out. Utilize your Den Chief......

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Two Den Meetings, then a Go-See-it and a Pack Meeting. It is hard to meet once a week. Hopefully the baseball/soccer coach could do the same schedule.... Once a week on a Saturday for a game. That should be ok...

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in my Pack, it's up to the individual Den leader to decide how to best schedule a successful Den year... most of us meet twice a month. We do have one DL who meets every week barring holidays etc., but most are every other. Some are an hour, some are 90 min. Making weekly meetings mandatory would drive many DLs right out the door IMO.

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Twice a month for meetings (grew from 1:15 hour to 2:15- as the boys aged). Included afterschool snack and active games or outside time. One field trip a month, often using school half days which then would have lunch time and mini-meeting added in. Our pack met less frequently 3-4 meetings a year and some activities (scouting for food, PWD, fall and spring campouts).

 

I was advised by a first grade teacher (in her classroom met lot of brownies and tiger dens) to meet more often than once a month. She said they just couldn't learn once a month. My dens went better I switched to a really regular twice a month schedule. I found that the boys need more time together to learn and to form relationships.

 

I think the solution to DLs with "not enough time" is really good assistant DLs.

 

I do not advise once a month den meetings. If a boy misses one he has missed big part of the program and the social goings on of the den.

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My pack meets weekly through the school year, all in the same building. Den meetings are the first three Tuesday nights and last one hour. Pack meetings are the fourth Tuesday and are scheduled for an hour and a half. A consistent and reliable meeting schedule is a strength for our pack, it is a selling point for recruitment and the primary reason we retain so many transfers from other units. Den leaders are free to schedule Go-see-its and the like as needed, of course, but most find that doing so on 'scout night' gives a better turn-out.

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Dens are supposed to be the "Gang" that all boys love to be in. It was no mistake that the original Cub Scouting program was so heavily owing to Rudyard Kipling and the Jungle Book. Wolf Packs, Dens, animal imaging, etc. With a little "in loco parentis" of the Den Leader, you have a good chance to really guide and influence these little guys. Even influence the "ex-loco parentis". A thoughtful Den Leader can even get the parent to appreciate being a parent!

Once a week is needed to allow the boys to advance and get into the Scout Spirit. Twice a month in the rec room or kitchen, one "field trip", one Pack meeting is a minimum, really. Without the regularity of expecting a good time with his pals, how's a Cub to find out what Scouting can be about? I knew that my competition was TV, and sports, and videogames. But human Cub buddies was a draw. It is worth the effort. I still see some of the Cubs I worked with every so often in the community and Scout world. It is worth the effort.

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Our Pack never mandated/required the place/time/frequency of it's dens meetings. That was left up to the individual den.

 

Generally we all met weekly for 1 hour. That would be 3 den meetings of some kind (reg/outing), and 1 Pack meeting, per month. Sometimes the Webelos would meet for 1.5 to 2 hours less times monthly, but again, that was up to the specific den.

 

I never was bothered with weekly meetings. You get to know your boys, and their families. They are less likely to forget what day to show up (do we meet this week or next week or ?). They stay connected to Scouting as an integral part of their life.

 

There are also more opportunities for flexibility with the boys. If they miss one meeting there are still 2 more den meetings they can attend that month. If there are only 2 den meetings, and they miss one, they will have missed a lot more.

 

 

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We meet the first and third Monday of every month, along with a pack meet the last Monday of the month. It works perfectly for us and if we have a special trip to make, we usually schedule it on a non-Monday date.

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When I was a WDL, we met weekly plus the monthly pack meeting. We also did 1 outing away from the meeting each month. This is pretty much what the troops do and it was a good pattern to get the boy accustomed to Boy Scouts.

 

Stosh

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Thank you all for the input. I really appreciate it. I'll take all of this information into consideration as I get next year's program information out to the den leads.

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