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MattR

Grow Up!

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I liked to old marketing campaign of "Prepared for Life" 

Agreed mashmaster. I can't think of anything better off the top of my head. But there's a significant difference between what you typed and "Prepared. For Life."

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Would you rather have your child "play to win" or "Play to be better"?    That is what I asked my team parents when I coached daughter's local soccer team.

 

Scouting may, indeed, be a "Game with a Purpose".    What do folks see as the purpose (for THEIR child) of the game of football?  Soccer?  Traveling Baseball? 

 

I often speak of the "soccer syndrome", meaning the parent wants to drop the kid off, and come back in 2 hours , having trusted the coach to teach the kid How To Be an Adult. 

  I guess I also would include the schools, too.   Teachers and coaches are often seen as the "professional" that can do the job of child raising ( not just knowledge relating)  better than the parent. Perhaps that is too simplistic. It also includes the role of "sitter" (as in baby?).  Here is a place, situation that will devolve me of the need to watch, care for, teach, example my child.  

I see a Scout unit , properly done, as allowing  the child to observe, be instructed in hand skills, and learn from his/her mistakes in cooperating with others in obtaining a goal.  Living in camp, traveling by foot, building a tower or catapult or just setting up a dining fly.

 

Maybe a good sports team does that.  Maybe we both set unobtainable ideas (pro sports?  Eagle leading to college? ).   Is just being the Scout Law (recite it here to yourself) is sufficient?  

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"Building Citizens of Character and Leaders of Integrity".

 

Hmm, doesn't exactly grab me.

 

Try again!

 

I will teach you to fail? :) I knew someone was going to bring up sports is more than just winning, but competition, at it's very basic level, is about winning. I agree that good coaches at the secondary school level don't focus on winning. And yet, at higher levels it is all about winning and big money.

 

We want everyone to be 1st class scouts, the concept, not the patch.

 

The pinnacle scouting experience: hiking and camping independently with your mates.

 

I know what that means, you know what that means, but your average parent can't relate to it.

 

SvEuxaR.png

 

A picture is worth a thousand words, so this fails my brevity test :) As David CO would say, try again.

 

Well if the sports angle is "We'll teach your kid how to win," I think a comparable slogan for scouts would be "We'll teach your kid how to lead."

 

How about: We'll teach your kid to lead, starting with himself.

 

I liked to old marketing campaign of "Prepared for Life"

 

Just change the tense: Preparing your son for life. That's a lot better than grow up, but it's still vague. What does it mean to be prepared for life?

 

 Is just being the Scout Law (recite it here to yourself) is sufficient?

 

 

You're right. You're all right. Being the Scout law should be enough. As should Integrity, Being Prepared, Leadership, Character, and Independence. I wonder how many parents really respond to that.

 

It reminds of a quote I found from Heraclitus. Character is destiny.

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The New England Patriots' motivation phrase "Do your job" has been in the media and given the current world affairs, maybe a hook that leads to further explanation of our mission and program.

 

Together we have a job to do.

 

and yes, its a bear.

 

 

My $0.01

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The Raiders used to be "Just Win Baby". 

 

Oh, how I miss the days of those guys winning. Memories.

 

[cue music]

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my kid does a lot of stuff.  scouts, soccer, baseball, band, church.

 

we refer to Scouts as our Alamo.  if we need to cut back for $$$ or time, Scouts will be the last activity to go.  why?   the only one were you are allowed to try, to challenge, and to possibly fail, and then go again.  no loss of playing time, no drop in the lineup, no cuts, no one giving you crap for striking out or missing the goal.  and the right balance of organized and disorganized--structure when the even calls but plenty of room for boys to be boys and just play/have fun.  I have never seen my son smile/laugh on the sports field/band concert like he does kayaking, rafting, climbing, camping, on the range, etc  generally, the character quality of boys he is associating with I have found to be higher than with his teams.  YMMV of course depending on troop and team, but I think committed special kids do scouts, any jerk can excel at sports and we have known plenty.  and generally encouraging parents, no yapping at umps or complaints about playing time.

 

I volunteer to facilitate the above.

 

sorry, no bumper sticker for part 1

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I always go back to the line in my 1911 Handbook, "Scouts is where boys learn to do things for themselves".

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The actual line from the 1911 handbook is (in part), "to promote the ability in boys to do things for themselves and others."

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Well, I guess I'm glad that everyone has a different view on how to describe scouts. Maybe that just means it's worthwhile.
 
@@Col. Flagg, After rereading your original post about different types of statements I thought some more about what I'm trying to do. It's really about rewriting the aims and methods to both better explain what scouts is about and also explain the why behind the how my troop does things. I guess that would be a values statement.

 

Trying to boil down the aim of scouting into a phrase is not just a sales pitch so much as just trying to get it down to the essence of scouting. When there are multiple options that are competing but only one is allowed to go forward it's the essence of what scouting is that will make the decision. In sports, benching good players when they're a bad sport points to sportsmanship having more importance than winning. Scouts has it's own version of this. The worst is when a parent calls wondering why their son is not advancing. To them, the aim is advancement. To me it's something involving doing and good.

 

Anyway, thank you all. I will muddle on.

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@@Col. Flagg, After rereading your original post about different types of statements I thought some more about what I'm trying to do. It's really about rewriting the aims and methods to both better explain what scouts is about and also explain the why behind the how my troop does things. I guess that would be a values statement.

 

It would still, IMHO, be a Values Statement, Mission Statement and Vision. One says what you are, one says how you do things, the latter says what you will be in the future. Or better yet, what you hope the Scouts will be in the future.

 

Trying to boil down the aim of scouting into a phrase is not just a sales pitch so much as just trying to get it down to the essence of scouting. When there are multiple options that are competing but only one is allowed to go forward it's the essence of what scouting is that will make the decision. In sports, benching good players when they're a bad sport points to sportsmanship having more importance than winning. Scouts has it's own version of this. The worst is when a parent calls wondering why their son is not advancing. To them, the aim is advancement. To me it's something involving doing and good.

Maybe I am missing something, but I think BSA already has -- for lack of better words -- "catch phrases" that encompass the spirit of your intent...I think. "Character Counts" comes to mind. The Oath and Law, to me, say it all...the Oath especially. That boils down Scouting to its essence IMHO. That's why most Eagle ceremonies I have been to give the Eagle Charge an ask the candidate recite the Oath.

 

Maybe this will help. My PLC did a t-shirt fundraiser once. They were trying to think of a shirt that anyone would buy, not just people involved in Scouting. They asked everyone in the troop to think of words that brought to mind Scouting's ideals. If they couldn't think of anything except "reverence", let's say, they asked for synonyms. They collected this all on a Google Form so that they could parse the data on a Google Spreadsheet to de-dup" the data. They got over 500 words. Maybe such an exercise would help you boil down what you are looking for if you cannot find it in the Oath, Law and other BSA catch phrases.

Edited by Col. Flagg

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@@MattR I still don't understand why you're agonizing over this.  It's a Scout Troop, not a corporation.  You're a volunteer, not a CEO.

 

Get a copy of The Scoutmaster's Handbook, The Boy Scout Handbook, and The Troop Committee Guidebook and place them on the table.

 

"Ladies & Gentlemen, all you need to know about our Troop can be found here.  There are additional training opportunities available, and I'll be happy to assist you in exploring them.  Will there be anything else?"

 

Boy Scout Troops do not need Mission Statements, Philosophies,  Visions, Aims and Goals Statements, Revelations,  Prognostications, etc.

 

I don't know why you are submitting to this silly request.  If you ruffle some feathers, you've succeeded in making your point. You're in it for the boys.

 

My Scoutmaster taught me two important things when I became an adult leader:

 

1.  Always go "by the book" and no one can ever "call you out".

2.  KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid)

Edited by frankpalazzi
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Boy Scout Troops do not need Mission Statements, Philosophies,  Visions, Revelations,  Prognostications, etc.

 

I don't know why you are submitting to this silly request.  If you ruffle some feathers, you've succeeded in making your point. You're in it for the boys.

 

I disagree to a point. 

 

While he doesn't need to boil the ocean to get some slick slogan or vision statement or something, forward long-term planning using some of these tools is helpful in keeping a unit (adults, not Scouts) robust and successful.

 

For example, our unit has done a rolling five year plan for recruiting every year. We take in to account kids aging out, the health of other Packs (e.g., how many kids they have at each level) and forward plan how many kids we can take each year. This allows us to set our target for recruitment and adjust accordingly. The outcome? A unit which never has to worry about how many guys we have. This allows us to focus on delivering a quality program.

 

All that takes surprisingly little time. We are one of a few units that never has to worry if we are getting 5 boys, 15 boys or 25 boys. We already know.  :D

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Then let them work on their time-wasting silliness as a TEAM, then.  Why dump it on one person?  I would take that as a question of my methods and abilities. A direct affront.

 

Now that I think about it, "Grow Up" is a perfect title for this thread! :)

Edited by frankpalazzi

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