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Daddy_O

Seeking guidance

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You've gotten a lot of advice, I hope you take it.

 

It is so true that CS and new scouts do NOT know what it takes to be Eagle, even if they have Eagles in the family. I had two: an uncle and a cousin and heard some of their stories and ribbing (They had to take away the Silver Award for my generation ;) ).

 

While I had a copy of the BS handbook from before I joined CS and read the Eagle requirements, I did not know exactly that entailed. I didn't know about all the hard work, like going through troop leader training, and later the council's advanced junior leader course at the time. I did not know the hours of work involved in earning the necessary merit badges to get Eagle. I did not know the difficulty in planning, organizing, and executing a service project for my community that involved me leading folks to do it. I did not know the difficulty in coordinating three different school schedules for my patrol. I didn't know the difficulties in coordinating 7 different HS schedules, and a bunch more middle and elementary schools schedules for a troop calendar. While the requirements are there for everyone to see, you don't know the difficulty and challenges those simple words entails until you do them.

 

I also did not know in reading those Eagle requirements the fun of learning wilderness survival skills (and ensnaring your SM so that he is upside down in a tree ;) ). I did not know about the beauty of nature I would encounter in the sunsets at my sumnmer camp, the sunsets of my first Fifty Miler in tee Canadian wilderness, or the sunsets of my second Fifty Miler in the Gulf of Mexico ( Ok that last one was while a Sea Scout after my eagle, but those were beautiful sites. I didn't know the satisfaction of teaching first aid skills to my patrol, or later helping the new scouts in learning how to camp properly. I did not know about the pride of being selected to be a member of the Order of the Arrow, and then testing myself at the Ordeal. I did not know the camaraderie and friendships I would make, not only with scouts in my troop, but from my council, from Canada, and Japan.

 

I also did not know in reading those requirements over 27 years ago that I would remain involve after getting Eagle as an 18 y.o. ( I had my EBOR a month after my birthday so it took me SEVEN years to get Eagle) I did not know that I would stay on and make a positive influence on those still on the Trail to Eagle. I did not know that i would have the opportunity to go to another country and work ata scout camp there as part of the European Camp Staff Program. I did know that I would I would become a professional scouter, making sure that other kids would have the opportunity to join the greatest youth program in the world. I did not know that I would volunteer again, as a training chairman to make sure that the leaders of these youth know their stuff and CAN provide the quality program I had. I also did not know that 27 years after joining Scouting as a CS, I would be signing up my oldest as a TC and hoping to make sure he has the same opprotunites and adventures I has growing up.

 

While those Eagle requirements are a few simple words, there is so much more behind them. Scouting has so much to offer, literally a world of opportunities. Take heed of the advice you've been given and let your son decide. It is his life to live, and his responsibility to make the most of it. Support him in his endeavors.(This message has been edited by eagle92)

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Daddy_O, the BSA has as a goal that every scout become a First Class scout, anything past that is up to the scout.

 

Have him join a troop, let him find out if he likes it, if he does, great if not you tried what else can a father do?

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while I agree with almost all that is stated about eagle not being the main goal... and that boy scouts is an outdoor program... etc... etc... *and that's why my son loves it!!!

 

if the biggest hang up is your son's allergy's and the camping for a long time... check with SM and check with your son's doctor... there are medical passes when health is concerned. I know of 1 boy who wasn't allowed in a pool because of major ear issues and surgery's and he was given other requirements to fullfil the swimming requirements for 2nd and 1st class

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Daddy'o

 

With each new post from you I become more skeptical of your sincerity. Your explanations are ever more unbelievable. Your eagerness to force ever more pages of discussion are symptoms of a person whose only real intent is to see the post count go up. I suspect you are a troll.

 

That aside, you are a caricature of a parent with whom I believe shops for the very best of everything, while missing out on the content. What's the best karate school? Regardless of how the instructor achieves these means. Where is the best little league? Who cares if it is across town and none of Juniors friends on the team. This team won State's last year.

 

This parent systematically designs their kid's childhood like a horse trainer develops a stallion. But a child is not a domesticated beast to be trained.

 

His childhood is not to be charted and graphed as if he were a purchased investment. Its dehumanizing.

 

In the end you either get my skepticism or my pity. Either way I am fairly certain of one thing, all this advice has been for naught.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I can believe his son has wanted to be an Eagle Scout since he was a Tiger Cub. I may have wanted to be an Eagle Scout since before I joined Cubs -- there was once a mystique and an aura about the status of "Eagle Scout". Enough of one that boys could desire it before knowing what it entailed.

 

On the other hand, Daddy_O's statement, is there a website, or a spreadsheet which shows data, such as:

 

*troops that graduate the most Eagle Scouts

*Highest percent of Scouts earning the Eagle rank

 

Or something like that, by region, which I can study and figure where my son has the best shot? bugged me.

 

That statement is symptomatic of people who really only care about the destination rather than the journey. There ARE troops that are merit badge mills and Eagle mills -- and I wouldn't wish them on any boys.

 

My experience has been most of those boys earn a lot of badges but don't really know their material. It drives me nuts to see a 14 year old Eagle who really doesn't know the patrol method, needs to check the handbook to "refresh his memory" on basic first aid, knots or other material he was supposed to have learned by First Class, etc.

 

They're like the kids in college who score high on exams, get a 3.5+ GPA and haven't really absorbed any of it or don't know how to think critically, just regurgitate what the professor told them.

 

Having said all that, the fact his boy wants it is the largest factor. All the troops can do is offer different opportunities and if he wants it as much as he seems to, he'll find the opportunities he needs. Some of my best Scouts never made it to Eagle because they just didn't want it enough; some will need a little kick in the pants to finish up (I did) but if they really want it, they'll do it.

 

In closing, I would suggest you not focus so much on the Eagle matriculation stats and look more at the character of the troop and its leadership. Is their program the kind of program your boy wants -- if so, he'll thrive in it. Do the troop committee and SM share YOUR philosophies on how to raise the boys? I've had some parents who wanted their boys catered to and mollycoddled (thankfully not many) -- I directed them to another troop that was more "nurturing" as I tend to teach using the Socratic method. The boys that stuck with me seemed to like it -- in fact, I just saw one of them today who is a proud father and has been Packmaster and Scoutmaster himself. Him telling me that was probably the best thing I could have heard from him.

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Mafaking:

 

 

"whose only real intent is to see the post count go up. I suspect you are a troll"

 

You got me! This is my 9th post (I believe) and after one more I get a $100 bonus!

 

No, really Goofy, to what end?

 

Be thankful for cartoon parents like me; my boy is the one yours hides behind when some tough kid wants his lunch money! Be thankful. You're welcome.

 

--Daddy_O

 

 

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Mafaking, bogus or not,I do not find fault with this thread. Many items discussed are relevant to many people. Remember, there are lurkers who may be afraid to post their troubles, so the read what others do in hopes to find an answer. Zdon't be so quick to judge.  I have incountered many of the troubles in this thread and would have been glad to have the help in how  to deal with  a parent like this before they tried to turn a troop into webelos III just so their kid can get eagle.

Also, who says "But a child is not a domesticated beast to be trained" ? If anything, most parents will tell you they are wild animals needing to be domesticated! Makes me wonder if you have any. My oldest got married young, he called me up when first turned 2 to ask when they get out of the 'terrible twos'. I told him that mabe when they are 21. He was only 20 at the time. You can guess at the reaction to that. Kids do need training but it must be done with love.

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Daddy_o said

 

"Be thankful for cartoon parents like me; my boy is the one yours hides behind when some tough kid wants his lunch money! Be thankful. You're welcome. "

 

Actually growing up I've seen the sports kids being the bullies and the scouts defending those who were being taken advantage of. Scouting gives a sense of responsibility and tells us "To help other people." While the sports concentrate on winning, sometimes at any cost.

 

So maybe you should thank us Scouters for instilling the values in your son to stand up to the weak, even if it may be unpopular with your son's team mates.

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Eagle92 - no doubt. Scouting has been very good for him already.

 

He's back, and last night I asked him why he wanted to be an Eagle Scout. He said, "because it feels so good"... I tried repeatedly to follow up on that: "Accomplishment feels good?" Finishing things feels good?" "Being the best feels good?" and he got irritated with me asking too many questions and shut me down. No adult-type meaningful or profound answers were not forthcoming.

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I'm not sure if DaddyO is a troll, but he sure is pushing all the hot buttons.

We had a daddyO in our unit once. His son was very motivated to advance and was well on his way to 1st Class. But he just couldn't seem to make time to come camp with us. Always had something else to do. We designed our program to do advancement at campouts mostly. Our meetings are planning meetings for the campouts. We attempt to be boy led and the resulting chaos really grated on him. He (dad) wanted us to do more merit badges and T21 requirement signoffs at meetings instead so his son could quickly earn Eagle. You could tell his growing frustration when we wouldn't capitulate. Finally, in a blaze of glory, he quit the troop. He claimed we camped too much and his son got enough camping with his family and we failed his son. Oh well. I guess our vision of scouting didn't align with his or his son's.

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Daddy_O

One of the hardest things I've seen, and am slowly experiencing as a parent with small children, is learning to let go and let your son decide on his own. Yes you can influence them, but it will get to a point that the parent, while still influencing, mentoring, and parenting the child, needs to slowly step back and let them make their own decisions, hopefully for the better, but sometimes for the worst. They have to learn to accept responsibility and the consequences of their actions.

 

Your son may not be interested in playing basketball in HS or college. He may not want to got to UConn, but another school. Or he may decide he has a calling to serve his country and enlist, skipping college for a later date. You need to support him when that time calls.

 

I didn't have the greatest childhood as my father was a real jerk who left. I looked up to my uncle and cousin, both eagles and the uncle receicing the Silver Award (hence his reference to being a Double Eagle). However they did not approve of the university I went, and neither showed up to my ECOH, despite being told they had speaking parts in it. Them not showing did Hurt, and the relatiosnhip I have with them, while still there, has suffered as a result.

 

But in the end it all worked out. My old SM, who was not only a role model but a father figure did show up, despite some challenges he was having. Also my first SPL, who I consider the epitome of being an Eagle, had just come back from Iraq to attend the ECOH. Those two folks ended up taking those roles I had planed for my uncle and cousin.

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Daddy_O writes:

 

So, is there a website, or a spreadsheet which shows data, such as:

*troops that graduate the most Eagle Scouts

*Highest percent of Scouts earning the Eagle rank

 

Yes, in a perfect world you could plug into ScoutNet (perhaps a prototype of SkyNet) and plot the highest ratio of Scouts earning Eagle against the least number of filed tour permits.

 

That last statistic is very important because it is the proper definition of an Eagle Mill.

 

The last thing you want to do is blunder into a Troop with a very high ratio of Eagle Scouts only to discover that they do it by camping twice a month!

 

You did not comment on my advice to go to a Roundtable and ask the District Executives and/or Commissioners in your Council. Was it because I neglected to explain the words "Roundtable," "District Executives," and "Commissioners"?

 

Basically, Roundtables are big monthly "informational" meetings. District Executives and Commissioners are the ones who run around with silver tabs on their shoulders. These are the "official" people who know where the Eagle Mills in your area are hidden.

 

Consider a custom T-shirt for Roundtable that reads "The BSA is NOT a Camping Club!" as a conversation starter. To double the impact, print the "Mission Statement" on the back. And how about a nice "A Game with a Purpose" baseball hat? Believe me, such "values-based" Scouting slogans will make you very popular, despite your reception here.

 

And did you watch the Chief Scout Executive's (CSE) anti-camping video, Daddy_O? Honestly it is only a few minutes long, and not all of the "Silver Tabs" you will talk to have gotten the word from Robert Mazzuca's office that it is OK to hate camping again.

 

So, you can try to phone or Email your District Executive and/or the local District Commissioners. But if that does not work, try the next Roundtable. Really. You know exactly what you want, Daddy_O, and this is where you can network with the most people.

 

Lisabob means well but don't let her discourage you. It is obvious from her description of how much camping is involved in earning Eagle that she has never served under an actual Eagle Scout Scoutmaster who hates camping.

 

I hate to brag, but I have served under not one, but two such role models! Plus a third mega-Troop which was very similar. That makes me an expert on Scouting for the 21st century under our new "Camping...I think the answer to that is fairly obvious" CSE Eagle Scout Robert Mazzuca.

 

If you play your cards right, you will find a Troop like the first one I served. The Eagle Scout Scoutmaster had an extensive list of cabins used by the Girl Scouts and Scouts Canada, all with central heating, microwave ovens, and television. One suburban cabin, the "Red Jacket" (built and maintained by Wood Badgers) even had cable TV! This was way back in the days of VCRs, but we always had plenty of G-rated movies on campouts (Family values are very important to adult Eagle Scouts who hate camping). When he wrote his "20 nights of camping" notes for Scouts earning Camping Merit Badge, he did not have to lie: No counselor ever asked if it was in tents.

 

Perfect for you, huh?

 

Both Eagle Scout SMs were outspoken authorities on "not adding to the requirements." I learned a great deal about Advancement in the Boy Scouts of America from them. Lisabob reads the requirements the way they are understood in her Troop, but what YOU want, Daddy_O, is a Troop that parses them for their "Utah Meaning." :)

 

Google:

 

"Lost" "Utah" "Boy Scout"

 

For an example of the "Utah Meaning," let us go right to the belly of the beast, shall we Daddy_O?

 

Take a minute and carefully read the Camping Merit Badge backpacking requirement. All it says is "Backpack, snowshoe, or cross-country ski for at least 4 miles." Sounds dreadful, doesn't it? Not to worry! To meet that requirement my second Eagle Scout Scoutmaster simply had the boys pitch their tents in his back yard for a pizza party. Then on Saturday they walked around a wooded lot with their empty packs for "4 miles."

 

If camping in a backyard was too much for your son's allergies, I'm sure an arrangement could have been made for the two of you to have slept inside. You can do that for Tenderfoot requirement number 2 as well. The "Utah Meaning" does not specify that you sleep in a tent that you have pitched outdoors now does it?

 

Likewise for Lisabob's big deal over "show" or "demonstrate." In all three of the Troops in which I was not the Scoutmaster, a Scout can "show" or "demonstrate" an idea with his hands as he describes it while sitting at a table. Having every boy actually chop wood with an ax or light a backpacking camp stove would take forever, and it is downright dangerous!

 

In fact I once got called on the carpet regarding 2nd Class requirement 2f. For eight Scouts in a mega-Troop I had circled the words "light a fire" with the date and my initials. I was asked to explain why I hadn't signed off in the "yellow column."

 

Well, each of them had built their own individual campfire from natural materials (no paper). I own four backpacking stoves, so I would sign the whole requirement off for each boy after he himself actually set up and lit a lightweight stove.

 

Well, you guessed it: By the next campout they had all been signed off by adults who themselves had never lit a backpacking stove in their life.

 

Read the requirement for its Utah Meaning, Daddy_O, it does NOT say "LIGHT a fire" or "LIGHT a lightweight stove." It says "Demonstrate how to" (Demonstrate = a: to prove or make clear by reasoning, b: to illustrate and explain).

 

Understand, Daddy_O, that you would absolutely hate me as a Scoutmaster. I am your very worst nightmare. For me there is only one (1) Method of Scouting: The Patrol Method!

 

When we follow Baden-Powell's simple advice to separate Patrols by 300 feet in the great outdoors, all the other so-called "Methods of Scouting" follow naturally through the forces of nature and personal example.

 

Scouting really is that simple, as long as your Patrol Leaders are the Troop's very best natural leaders.

 

I know you hate that stuff, Daddy_O. So what does it mean for you?

 

You know exactly what you want: A Troop that will get you son to Eagle Scout with a minimal amount of camping.

 

Think about it.

 

Despite my own radical outdoor ways, one hundred percent (100%) of the Troops that I served (in which I was not the Scoutmaster) are exactly what you are looking for!

 

100%!

 

So what do you suppose the chances are that you will find such a Troop if at a Roundtable you diplomatically describe exactly what you want?

 

I'd say somewhere around, um, 100%

 

Kudu

 

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If an Eagle mill is what you want then simply get a list of Troops in your area from your cuncil office. Visit each one. Ask them how many Eagles there troop has.

 

Those that brag about their Eagles and not much else will be the ones you want to go with.

 

Those that may or may not brag about their eagles but tell you about their quality program are the ones you want to avoid.

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Hi group,

 

Heres the latest.

 

As the old song says, "If you choose not to decide - you still have made a choice"...

 

*We already missed a couple of events because of baseball.

 

*His friends in the other patrol have moved on, I guess they already have tenderfoot, mine still just has his AOL.

 

*The SM put a new kid from another feeder pack into my kid's patrol. This boy is in my kids class at school, and my kid loathes him. This is the class pariah who picks his nose. My kid is not a snob, but there are limits.

 

*Even his mom, who was always VERY supportive of his scouting activities, is burned out.

 

*I guess what we needed was "Webelos III" as some of you have suggested.

 

*Were accustomed to summers off. We need this down time. Camping every other week, 52 weeks a year for the WHOLE weekend is out of our reach.

 

Thanks to all for all your help. We may return in the Fall, but as some of you said, in less-than-friendly terms, this may not be for us.

 

Very best regards

 

--Daddy_O

 

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Sorry to hear that. As for most troops I've been with, the camping is usually once a month. Grant you psychotic leaders like myself will also do OA activities, conduct training, staff district and council events, and even help another unit out, but mostly the troops do one campout a month.

 

As for the scout your son doesn't like, well he will work with people throughout life that he doesn't like. Might as well get use to it. Also if your troop is following procedure, patrol realignment will occur in about 6 months or less, depending when unit elections are, so he can join another patrol with out the individual.

 

As for a Webelos III program, trust me they do not work, and are more adult intensive that a boy-run troop. Usually you will only need drivers for events with a boy run unit, whearas adult run want more adutls involved b/c they youth are not doign things for themselves.

 

Finally if your son is really into Scouting, and you and your wife are truly supportive, you will allow yous son to go to summercamp instead of waiting to fall. Summercamp is truly where scouting happens and most advancement occurs. That's b/c you eat, sleep, and breath scouting that one week a year. depending upon the camp and the quality of the first year camper program, , you son can get 90% of the T-2-1 requirements completed. If he doesn't go, he will eb further behind than his friends. TRUST ME I was oen of those scouts who didn't go my first hear, and it took me a year to get where my friends got by goign through the First year camper.

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