Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Beagles

When is it OK for an ASM to raise their voice and yell at a Scout?

Recommended Posts

Let's not read more into this than necessary, or we wind up as bad as the ASM's we're complaining about.

ear olds push their buttons.

 

If a boy gets lost on an activity and everyone goes into a tizzy, and the troop goes into panic search and rescue, does anyone bother to ask a few questions like:

 

1) why was he alone?  It might be good to know what direction he headed and why his buddy didn't go with him.  Oh??? now that you mention it, where is his buddy, maybe we have 2 lost boys.... ???

 

2) has he done this before?  Only when he wants to go to the latrine.... Did anyone check the latrine?  Did he fall in?

 

3) Where's his PL?  He should know where his boys are.  If the PL's aren't taking care of their boys, maybe it's time for someone to step into that role that does.

 ...

The OP never said the scout was alone. Two boys were off turning in MB homework. No indication that this is any sort of repeat behavior. No indication that the other scouts didn't know where these two boys were. Heck, one of the boys might have been a PL!

 

Roll call is never done during open program in any group that I know. Missing scouts are a big deal ... I've seen an entire reservation shut down on their account. There's nothing in the OP's description that indicates that was an issue.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You have issues. Sorry that your faith and experience in Scouting tells you yelling at someone in front of others is okay. Not sure what church or faith you are but I am pretty sure they don't teach that. I've been nice but I'm done responding to you. Go put your hate and issues on someone else.

 

This is the second time you have brought religion into this conversation.  I didn't speculate on or criticize your religion, so I ask that you don't criticize mine. No, that is not being nice. It is very definitely not being nice.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am not an expert on comparative religion. I only study my own.

 

I do believe that there are differences in the ways that different religions practice chastisement and repentance. I am told that some religions have public confessions. I don't know if their members feel degraded and humiliated by the experience, or if they feel uplifted and renewed. I don't know. I really don't know.

 

Either way, I am not going to criticize them.

 

My religion doesn't tell parents how to discipline their children. It neither requires or forbids spanking, for example. So, I don't think of this debate regarding the public chastisement of children as being a religion issue.

 

I do understand that this may not be the same for people of other religions. One religion might require something, while another religion might forbid it. Others might say nothing at all.

 

I think it is wrong to assume that all religious people must share the same viewpoint on public chastisement, so I am going to leave religion out of it. 

Edited by David CO

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Let's try to keep this discussion in "Working with Kids".

 

I find the present day conventional wisdom regarding disciplining kids in front of others somewhat odd, as this was standard procedure when I was young.  Sure you would take it personal and it would hurt, but the rest of group was reminded your transgression would not be tolerated - a lesson for all present.  It was also a double incentive not to screw-up again as you did not want the punishment and worse the group humiliation.

 

Times change.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is the second time you have brought religion into this conversation.  I didn't speculate on or criticize your religion, so I ask that you don't criticize mine. No, that is not being nice. It is very definitely not being nice.

I actually removed his post that you replied to. 

 

I agree with Schiff, lets redirect back to the original topic at hand if there is anything constructive still to say about it. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is an old axiom that says that silence implies consent.

 

If a transgression is committed publicly, and the entire unit is already aware of it, I see very little purpose in keeping the chastisement private. Likewise, if the transgression is done privately, and the unit is not already aware of it, I see little purpose in making the chastisement public. 

 

It is the transgressor who chooses to make his actions public. He has only himself to blame if his chastisement is made equally public. 

 

My main concern is that remaining silent in front of the other boys might lead some of them to believe that the transgressor has our ambivalence, if not our actual consent, for his transgression. 

 

Even so, I think the public remarks should always remain focused on the transgression, not on the boy. 

Edited by David CO

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Let's not read more into this than necessary, or we wind up as bad as the ASM's we're complaining about.

The OP never said the scout was alone. Two boys were off turning in MB homework. No indication that this is any sort of repeat behavior. No indication that the other scouts didn't know where these two boys were. Heck, one of the boys might have been a PL!

Roll call is never done during open program in any group that I know. Missing scouts are a big deal ... I've seen an entire reservation shut down on their account. There's nothing in the OP's description that indicates that was an issue.

It was mentioned in a previous post how a boy went missing. It all tied into the necessity of vigilance when it comes to leadership. How can one take care of you buddies when you don't even know where they are.

 

Roll call? I do it all the time. Safety first! I know where they told me they were going to be. "Hey guys, heading to the waterfront?" "Yep" Roll call for those 2 is done.. when their PL comes looking for them, I just offer up the suggestion, try the waterfront. Now I know where the PL & buddy are too. I keep a running tab of the boys all the time. If one is missiNguyen I am usually the first to say something.

 

If the 2 boys doing MB homework, why didn't the ASM know This? Definitely a poor job of leadership demonstration going on here.

Edited by Lurking...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

From the sound of it, they weren't yelling at the kids, but about them. Which is probably worse. Something I would expect to correct a scout for not an adult. But as the op has pointed out there might be something missing.

 

But really, with 38 scouts working how hard could it be to have setup the bon fire? If the work was so short that there wasn't time for a scout to turn in their homework and get over to help, then how big a project is it anyway? I think the scout leadership should have dealt with the issue. And with 40 scouts, that works out to at least 5 youth. (4 patrol leaders and the aspl.) 

 

For that matter, the adults shouldn't have obligated the troop without the input of the youth leadership. The interesting thing is that I find my youth leaders make the helpful choice on their own very consistently. Perhaps it has something to do with them agreeing the the principles they recite at the start of every meeting.

 

I won't claim that I have never yelled at a scout. But I can tell you it wasn't in front of the troop and it was when I found said scout on my way to report a missing scout to the camp director. Even at that, I publicly apologized to him later. Yelling is simply not the best choice of action.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As a range instructor i would only need to yell at someone in the case of an emergency. I would never yell at someone escpecually being in a leadership position. That just shows poor leadership if that’s all you have to deal with the situation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Often kids will use the phrase "yelled at" for a wide range of actions. Few involve actually "yelling" or even a raised voice. Of course, sometimes real yelling does occur. Not having been witness to the OPs incident I do not know if actual yelling occurred, or the group was chastised, or... But my experience tells me to ask the kids more clarifying questions to discern what he meant by "yelled at". More often than not, there was no yelling, not even a raised voice. Usually a stern statement of expectations.

  • Upvote 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Let's try to keep this discussion in "Working with Kids".

 

I find the present day conventional wisdom regarding disciplining kids in front of others somewhat odd, as this was standard procedure when I was young.  Sure you would take it personal and it would hurt, but the rest of group was reminded your transgression would not be tolerated - a lesson for all present.  It was also a double incentive not to screw-up again as you did not want the punishment and worse the group humiliation.

 

Times change.

 

Yep, times change.

 

If we were scolded at school or scouts, we hoped that our parents wouldn't find out about it. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've built bonfires for the end of camp campfire before - it takes 2 people, 3 at the most - any more than 3 and you're in each other's way.  It should take those 2 people (3 at the most) no more than 30 minutes to build the structure of the fire. 

 

You never raise your voice at a Scout unless its to prevent imminent harm.  It is far more effective to speak quietly to the individual. 

 

In this particular case, the adults were in the wrong right from the start by volunteering the Troop to do a task without any input from the youth - and I would say that about the PLC making such a decision without getting input from their Scouts.

 

If the Scouts have chosen to do this "service project" (it's not - building a bonfire is just not a service project - it may be a service to the camp staff who now don't need to spend the time they're paid for to build the bonfire, but it is not a service project.  Painting the boathouse is a service project, removing obstacles from a trail is a service project - building a bonfire that's going to burn for 90 minutes is not), then the only folks I would excuse from it are Scouts who need to finish up a little work for their merit badges because that's actually a major part of the reason that parents spend their money to send their sons to Boy Scout Summer Camp.

 

As for anyone who feels that yelling at Scouts as a disciplinary tool is just peachy, I'd suggest you spend some time looking inward to try to find out why you feel so powerless that yelling at boys is one of the ways you get to feel powerful.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would suggest that some people on this forum look inward to figure out why they feel the need to ascribe negative psychological traits to those who disagree with them. 

 

Is there really any difference between this sort of thing and making a direct personal insult?

Edited by David CO

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, it is Friday afternoon at summer camp so people are tired of a week with each other. We don't know what the whole week was like or generally what the relationships are between the various characters. So maybe asking whether it's okay isn't as appropriate as asking whether it's likely and what should happen afterward. I mean, from the face of it it sounds a bit unreasonable but who's always reasonable? Maybe the best scenario is that this is an opportunity for a scout to see a bit of reality after he graduates into the real world.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×