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Interesting Weeb visit...........

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Well, my saga continues. The Weeb Leader begged out of taking the Weeb 2's to visit the scout troop, well in a nut shell he didn't show up to the outing.


On to the story, we get to the troops meeting place. They start their opening, the pledge and announcements, that was all. hmmm. So I asked him about the oath and law. He lined the boys back up and had them attempt both. Interestingly enough they didn't know it. Now there was a mix of ranks so these weren't new scouts. Actually the Weeb den knew it and were whispering among themselves about it.


The meeting was so, so and the group really wasn't boy lead. Planning for an up coming camping trip, Boys were not even


But I was astonished They didn't know the most basic thing in scouting. I was curious to see if they had any other scouting skills.


Have you run into this much?????

Maybe my expectations were too high?

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Yah, sure. Who here hasn't had an Eagle candidate at some point fumble da Scout Oath? They always seem to skip "to obey the Scout Law". Sometimes it's nerves or surprise. If yeh really want to see an Eagle candidate's brain implode, ask him to recite da Scout Law backward startin' from Reverent.


Nah, too cruel. A BOR should be Kind. ;)


I know some units that don't do a lot of dress-up parlor meetings where the boys aren't as sharp on the Scout Oath and Law. So what yeh might be seeing in this unit is one that doesn't do a lot of dress-up parlor meetings. The parlor scouts are always good at recitin' memorized stuff.


Or what yeh might be seeing is a unit that's fairly sloppy all around. I wouldn't judge until you've seen 'em in the field. Units that are fairly sloppy all around are sometimes OK, and sometimes worth avoidin'. Sometimes "bullying" comes with "sloppy." If there's no bullying and the unit is fairly small and open to new ideas, it might be a good spot for a bunch of go-getter lads.


Only you can tell, though. Look long and carefully, and listen to the boys.




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If everyone went by first impressions, I would lose everytime. I use boy-led, patrol-method. No two patrols are doing the same thing, off in each corner some are playing a game, others are reading their books. It looks like chaos for the most of the evening. I had one older boy looking to transfer into a troop visit and head for the hills after one visit.


Well, this past weekend I just got back from a winter cabin campout. The one stove did service for 4 patrols. Each group took their shot at the kitchen, no hassles, real mess left by each group. The patrols bunked in separate areas of the huge cabin, clothes all over, a real mess.


Yet in spite of it all, the SPL stepped down Saturday a.m. and did nothing for the rest of the weekend. One patrol leader stepped down (SPL's buddy) and did nothing for the rest of the weekend. Yet the younger boys stepped it up, another boy stepped up and took over as PL in the patrol that lost their "leader", ASPL stepped up immediately and began to function correctly as SPL, advancement got done, plans were made, sledding was great and at 6:00 am this am I figured I was in big trouble with parents scheduled to begin picking up their boys at 9:00 am. Well, the breakfasts were made, (one patrol had bacon/eggs) and the place was immaculate by 8:15 and the boys sat around quietly playing cards, getting in a last minute slide down the hill or sitting on their bunks quietly talking. Was it chaos? Yep for 2 hours I would have placed a bet with anyone that these boys would never have been ready by 9:00.


Never judge a book by it's cover and never underestimate a Scout.



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Our troop open house for Webelos is coming up in a couple of weeks (that's kind of misleading, because a Webelos or a Webelos den could come and visit any time they want, and they'd get a pretty good picture of the troop -- but this particular meeting coming up is being specifically organized for recruiting). I think the troop committee realizes that last year was a little too low-key, there wasn't much thought put into recruiting, and my son was the only one out of 20-some Webelos in town that joined this troop. So this year, a little more focus is being placed on recruiting.


But -- last week we had a visitor. A young Star scout had moved into town from another council, and is shopping for a new troop. We didn't really have anything special going on at all. The SPL did an opening, and then everyone headed out for a dodgeball-like game (I stayed behind to talk to the Scout's mom for a bit, and even offered to help her contact the other troops in town). Then they came back inside for patrol corners, and then a closing. Not much of a plan, but kind of business as usual. At the end of the meeting, the mom told me that her son was happy and would be joining. Most of that came from recognizing a couple of kids from school (he had just started that day).



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Look, if you asked me to say either the oath and law backwards (or even the alphabet)I'd be sure you were messing with me, well maybe not sure but that's what I'd think. Talk about parlor tricks.


However, I don't know why any Tenderfoot or above Scout shouldn't be able to pop out the Scout Oath or Law anytime, on no notice, not just at BOR's.


But we don't use everything during the opening either, we usually open with the pledge and EITHER the oath or law and then close with either or both. We also don't mess around a lot due to the Scouts and their parents decision to hold our weeklies to an hour - so we really move pretty quickly on openings and announcements in order to provide any meeting/advancement time that isn't on an outing.


I also am amazed by the perceptions of others watching our Scouts - while I am slowly moving them towards running the meetings using the planning guide it still reminds ME of a royal furball most of the time - yet 80-90% of those who visit us, join us (perhaps our extensive outing calendar has something to do with the draw?). I've got to ensure I don't mess with that aspect because the Scouts must be doing something right for that to happen.

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In my old troop, it was also organized chaos at meeting and on trips. But when we did get visitors, 90% they stayed with the troop. This was vital as for the longest time, we had no feeder pack.


Once we got a feeder pack, we worked with the CS leaders to get a specific date. Yep we had an organized nite that night. Depending upon what the Green Bar wanted. We had everything from teaching basic camping skills in prep for their campout with us, to having the SWAT team put on a display, always popular. Key was the scouts decided via their elected leaders.


In conjunction with the visit, we also had a campout specifically for the CS. Usually it was a "wilderness survival" weekend in which they learnt lashings, build and slept in shelters, and did no utensil cooking. that trip was so popular with both the scouts and CS, ti becasme THE webelos oveniter for the troop.

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Hi All


My son's troop visits are the reason we decided to start our own troop. We ended up taking over a dead troop of six scouts, but it was for the reason that we didnt like the way troops we visited were running.


Most of the troops in our district have a CS campout as well, but our troop doesnt plan campouts or troop meetings specifically for recruiting. Our goal is every campout should be a great one and we tell the Webelos leaders that when they are ready, give us a shout. We just ask for one weeks notice so a Troop Guide will have time to help them prepare. Sometimes we ddidn't get it and we still did fine.


I know we were lucky, but we never had a bad experience with the Webelos and they got to go with us on fun campouts like Biking, Shooting Sports, Triathlon Camping, Rappelling and campouts I dont remember. I think part of it is Cubs just like being with older scouts. Still, I like the idea that the what the Webelos see is what the get for the rest of their scouting experience.


I love this scouting stuff.




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Thanks for the replies


Fumble the oath, they just didn't know it.


In thinking about the visit, it was lacking energy, enthusiasm. The Boys scouts were not in uniform, so I could not pick out a patrol or senior patrol leader by behavior of anyone. The complete lack of familiarity between the boys and the boys and Scout Master. What I mean by that is the general conversation/fun of having share a lot of mutual events. The teasing about burning dinner or falling in the lake or raccoons raiding a backpack.


The camp discussion lacked the "remember last time......." or "I hated that last time....." or anything that resemble the scouts looking forward to the event. It lacked laughter.


Chaos would have been a step up. That means the boys are enjoying themselves.


What do you use as indicators of a quality boy scout troop?


I would like to see a recognizable senior patrol leader and patrol leader, boys leading activity's.

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