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I'm tired.  Forgive me if I babble.  "First Class First Year" ... It's about program planning.   The stats may be self-fulfilling stats.  Motivated scouts rank up quick and stay in.  Scou

Regarding your final statement ... let me reassure you as calmly as possible: First Class First Year is a lie. Tell your crossovers and their parents the truth: it is hard to obtain First

So very, very true.  So much of Scouting today -- rank requirements and merit badges -- is presented in school format. A large part of that is due to how requirements are written. It is wrong, it is s

3 hours ago, TAHAWK said:

"I like to disperse new scouts to established patrols"   


I too experienced the mixed-age patrol as a Scout, and that's fine so long as the Scouts decide who goes where and no one is forced away from friends against their will. Adult ideas of "balance" are irrelevant to friendship.

 

CDcw7ys.png

“Again, although the Scoutmaster may often

  advise with the Patrol leader …concerning new recruits, the admission of a

   new [Scout] … to the Patrol should be with the  approval of the Patrol members.”

 

                        Hillcourt, William

I believe friendship is part of balance.

Barry

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17 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

Just explain the value of balance, and they will usually get where you want to go. 

Barry

This will be a learning experience for them, and surprisingly enough was  their own idea, both to reset the patrols and the method they came up with.

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3 hours ago, MikeS72 said:

Not like a sports draft, but our PLC has decided to reorganize and form multi-age patrols.  The initial breakdown they decided to use involves drawing names from two hats, then tinkering where necessary. 

This will happen tonight, so I will post how it goes. 

We have done similar. I was wondering about more like a sports draft. It could include some pomp and circumstance which coupd add to patrol spirit.

Raven PL: "The Raven Patrol selects John Q Smith from pack 86".

*applause*

JQSmith is presented the Raven Patrol emblem by the SPL.

Patrols might even be encouraged to have den chiefs among their ranks to "scout" future patrol mates.

Just thinking aloud here...

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  • 6 months later...
On 3/3/2020 at 9:35 AM, qwazse said:

...

Last night our latest batch of crossovers started their NSP. They are very anxious to be assigned to their "real" patrols within a month. When the SPL suggested it might be a little more than that, they were displeased. Sitting in a room with their TG for much longer than a few weeks is not on their radar!

Thanks to @HICO_Eagle’s nods, I just realized, we were just two weeks to lockdown when I wrote this. The moral of the story: if your 1st years ask to mix, let them do so ASAP. You never know when the next wave will come.

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  • 1 year later...

So, since my last reply, we have had two more AoL classes cross over. Last year was small den of boys who integrated with patrols fairly well, although I haven’t seen half of them for a while. This year, we absorbed another troop (officially, but they’ve been collaborating with us long before that), and last 12 AoL’s crossed over. Most of them just spent their 1st weekend with us, and it was a good time. We went over thorns and roses last night:

Some of their thorns:

  • weather (typical western PA: all four seasons each day)
  • cabins on opposite ends of camp
  • the other cabin had all the food
  • my bunk was too cold in the night
  • my bunk was too hot in the night

Some of their roses:

  • everyone was really nice
  • playing football (perfect weather for it, really)
  • the hike was awesome because not everyone was on it and I learned a lot about reading a map. [Trust me, that’s the short version!]
  • Mr. Q teaching us knots and stuff
  • life lessons from Mr. Q

Needless to say, the other scouters looked at me and asked, “What are we going to have to undo?”

First-years are the best!

still no clue if they will stay their own patrol or split into the existing ones.

 

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It seemed our first year first campouts were rainy the first night, forcing them to set up camp in the rain. Their thorns on that campout was the rain. Two years later the rain was their best memory. I never told them that I always prayed for rain on those campouts.

Barry

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42 minutes ago, Eagledad said:

It seemed our first year first campouts were rainy the first night, forcing them to set up camp in the rain. Their thorns on that campout was the rain. Two years later the rain was their best memory. I never told them that I always prayed for rain on those campouts.

Barry

If it ain't raining, it ain't training!

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@Eagledad and @InquisitiveScouter are so cute ...

4 hours ago, Eagledad said:

It seemed our first year first campouts were rainy the first night, forcing them to set up camp in the rain. Their thorns on that campout was the rain. Two years later the rain was their best memory. I never told them that I always prayed for rain on those campouts. ...

4 hours ago, InquisitiveScouter said:

If it ain't raining, it ain't training!

'round here if it's before Easter (sometimes just after), the precipitation tilts toward solid state and back.

We had rain, hail, snow, sun, wind, calm ... lather rinse repeat ... about six times over the weekend. The winds never approached 50 mph, and there was no lightning so I chalked up to a good day.

The land navigation exercise was to send the boys to things on the map that aren't there anymore. It was generally cold and sloppy and hilly (only 200' change in elevation, over 1000',  but slippery). But one 11 year old was begging to know how soon we can do this again.

I slept outside the cabin on a picnic table. Sunday, a robin was foraging through the snow next to my bunk. I didn't have any leavings, but I'm pretty sure lots of goodies from previous campers were wedged between the gravel.

In other news, there's been a lot of trees fallen. One very large dead-fall had just missed the latrine I helped roof 40 years ago. I think the porcupines will enjoy continuing to nibble a way at it for a couple more years.

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4 hours ago, qwazse said:

The land navigation exercise was to send the boys to things on the map that aren't there anymore.

I love this lesson for our Scouts:  "The truth has a date and time stamp on it...especially for maps."

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  • 1 month later...

Our troop basically has an endless cycle of new patrols.  New kids are put into new kid patrols.  As they grow up, they stay with their patrol, and new patrols are created for the next incoming class of kids.

The immediate effect of this is you have kids who don't know anything struggle to achieve anything.  I think there are supposed to be "troop guides" but I don't recall ever seeing them in action.  Mostly the new patrols just seem to flounder about.  Watching them try to start a campfire without being able to interfere makes me want to chew my hands off.

When I was a kid, new kids were just distributed among the existing patrols.  This enabled them to learn from more experienced scouts.

Of course part of the reason for age segregation today is the fear of child-on-child abuse.

Another problem is this "Boy Led" stuff.  This ends up feeling like the blind leading the blind.  I feel like it should be boy-led, adult-taught.  There's not much adult teaching going on, except when there are real safety concerns (shooting, rafting, etc).  The adults are pretty much supposed to stay out of the way and only make sure people don't get hurt.  I quit as an ASM in no small part because I felt like I was wasting my time if I can't teach from my experience as an Eagle Scout.

They often have patrol meetings that center around teaching, where a scout gets up and presents a powerpoint on whatever the topic is.  My son is bored to tears and I usually see him with his head down asleep on the table.

I feel like if wasn't able to teach my son at home what he needed to know to execute in Scouting he would not know much about scouting.  At least when they were starting out.

As far as the First Class First Year thing, my son has been in 2 years and just finished Tenderfoot.  If it wasn't for me pestering him about it the last few months he wouldn't have done that.  He enjoys going on scout activities but has zero motivation to earn awards or ranks.  LaaaayZzzzz.  However, pointing out that all his patrol mates were well beyond Tenderfoot did seem to spark a tiny bit of motivation.

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Yes, we worked with mixed age patrols and same age patrols and same age patrols don't work near as well for developing character growth. Age based patrols are basically setting the scouts up to fail because they don't have a good example for how to succeed. I did not know that mixed age patrols or older scouts are not recommended to prevent abuse. Is that local or national? Honestly, that kind of kills the patrol method objective. I will have to think about this one.

Barry

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My troop does things a little differently, patrol leaders are limited to one year. We have a semi training program which generally lasts 1 month. The program teaches new scouts some of the most basic skills ie... knot tying, flag folding, basic knife safety. Basic skills for any scouts. After that one patrol leader gets all of the newest scouts in their patrol, generally the most responsible PL. This is how my troop has done it for 80 years and it worked great.

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3 minutes ago, jscouter1 said:

My troop does things a little differently, patrol leaders are limited to one year. We have a semi training program which generally lasts 1 month. The program teaches new scouts some of the most basic skills ie... knot tying, flag folding, basic knife safety. Basic skills for any scouts. After that one patrol leader gets all of the newest scouts in their patrol, generally the most responsible PL. This is how my troop has done it for 80 years and it worked great.

my troop also requires a leadership camp for all scouts getting First Class. Most of our troops scouts get first class in their 8th grade year, they are then PL for their 9th grade year completing the Star req, after the PL year the scout is inducted into our troops "staff" which completes the Life leadership req.

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