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karunamom3

Camp info packet

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Do you give your scouts an information packet about camp upon arrival?

I have never been to Scouts BSA camp before, only on a cub level. I went to a leaders meeting for the summer camp we will be attending and they mentioned we should give a map to the kids in their 'packets' when they get settled in camp on the first day.

I will say that I am not the one organizing the trip, but I will be there half of the week. I know they are not planning on giving the scouts anything. What do you do?

 

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Upon arrival? How about three months in advance upon registration!

It's a little ridiculous. The boys are pretty good at finding kindling on their own.

At least last year the camp handed out square neckerchiefs with the map printed on it.

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Seriously?

The parents were given some info, but not the boys.

It's even more than info I have discovered. The organizer is not bringing flags, no gateway or anything related to the theme at all.  Zero scout spirit. 

(We are leaving the troop after camp)

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If the boys want to build gateways etc, they can usually get all the materials they need from the camp Quartermaster.  They don't need to wait for adults to give them stuff.

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Interesting that the question is what do we give versus what information is available.  For our troop on the troop website there are links to all the needed detail.  If a Scout needs or wants some detail, it is there.

At camp we have an information board with camp map, the schedule the scout signed up for, troop activities, the overall camp schedule etc etc etc.  If a Scout has a question, we say "check the board"

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Posted (edited)

For an organization that supposedly prides itself on the outdoors, including being knowledgeable and respectful of the environment, we have a weird habit of producing way too many printed materials and unnecessary junk. I'm fighting this battle in my own Pack often, trying to eliminate the 20-page Welcome packet we print out for new families.

At the troop level, scouts are good at finding whatever info they need, especially around camp. I don't think they need a map, camp info, packet, etc.

And I agree with the previous comments about the gateway, if the scouts want to participate, they can and will. I remember a summer as a youth where my troop didn't plan ahead for the gateway, we decided upon arrival to make one (the scouts decided, not the leaders), and we ended up winning the camp contest for best gateway. Let the scouts work it out, if they want to do it, they will find a way to make it happen.

Edited by FireStone

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12 minutes ago, Jameson76 said:

Interesting that the question is what do we give versus what information is available.  For our troop on the troop website there are links to all the needed detail.  If a Scout needs or wants some detail, it is there.

At camp we have an information board with camp map, the schedule the scout signed up for, troop activities, the overall camp schedule etc etc etc.  If a Scout has a question, we say "check the board"

I posed the question that way because that is how the camp staff phrased it. They said 'the packet you give to the scouts when they get here'. 

Love your 'check the board' method!

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22 hours ago, Jameson76 said:

...  If a Scout has a question, we say "check the board"

Son #2's SM was so fed up with scouts asking him the time that next year he built a window box with straps, put a wall clock in it, and strapped it to a tree trunk at the center of camp about 8 feet up. Took about a day of every scout being answered with a finger pointed to the tree, and the scouts stopped asking.

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Posted (edited)

We had one scout who transferred to our troop who was extremely grateful that our troop's first day of camp didn't involve the time consuming construction of a gateway. Evidently that was an entirely adult-driven activity of his previous troop.

Edited by qwazse

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I’m currently staffing a summer camp so I’ve seen different things this week. I see some campers with a map and everything, but the best approach is using the bulletin board each campsite commonly has with all of the information they may need.

If you have scouts that are in a first year scout program (I work in one), there isn’t a big need for them to have every bit of information since usually they will be with their instructors for the entire day.

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I've seen some troops give their kids a printout of the MB schedule they had determined for themselves and a copy of the general summer camp rules (presumably given to them at the last troop meeting before the camp week).  I'd be shocked if 75% of those kids actually remembered to bring it with them ( and I'd drop that percentage for the kids vs parents that packed it), and I'd bet by day 2 if 1/3 still had it or knew where it was.  Having a general printout posted to a bulletin board is by the far the best option.  One troop I saw brought an easel with a white board they kept under their rain fly.  Allowed the SM to make changes for the kids when needed, and have the SPL put the duty roster of the day on it (and make changes as needed).

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Okay, Troop.  Dump your gear in your tents and come back here to the table in five minutes....

Great. Is everyone here?  Okay. On the count of three, everyone point to the campsite bulletin board.1,2,3....   uh huh.  good. Now, put your hands down, on three, point to YOUR Patrol Leader... 1, 2, 3...   Uh huh, you sure about that, Stan?  Uh huh....   Alright, now on three, point to the SPL... 1, 2, 3. POINT     awright then.    Yep, that's Jake...   Jake?  I'll see you later. I have a Scoutmaster meeting at the Camp Office.   Get the camp ready. Bye....

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I give the Scouts a copy of their MB schedule, that they had picked out & signed up for.  We also post the MB schedule, Camp Daily Schedule & a camp map on our Troop bulletin board.  I do recommend that they look at their schedule to make sure they know where their MBs are, and if they don't know, that they should ask (SPL) so show them before the classes begin.  Other than their MB schedule, we don't directly give them any kind of packet or map.  

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Thanks for all of the new comments.

Yesterday we took a tour of the camp and asked a ton of questions. Saw our campsite & the provided bulletin board area 😉. We asked a bunch more questions and the guide gave us some great ideas. And helped the 5 scouts with some 'gateway' & decorating ideas since we only just learned what a gateway was last week. These guys want to go all out so let's see what they can come up with in 6 days with no hands on experience, no PL, SPL, uninvolved SM/ASM. Scout Spirit is strong with them.

We are insisting the troop brings the flags and if not, I have some in my Amazon cart. Flags will be there. The new scouts wouldn't have it any other way.

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14 hours ago, karunamom3 said:

we only just learned what a gateway was last week

What is a gateway?   Maybe we should know before we go to camp?

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