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qwazse

Wanted: Scholarly Articles on EDGE

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I am not sure where this will go, but I must attempt:

 

One of the Troop Instructors has been tasked with teaching how to build a fire. And apparently for no particular reason, other than for this example. The first thing the instructor will do is explain what tinder, kindling, and fuel is, and why they are needed. He then demonstrates how to makes a fire demonstrating the differences in a Teepee, log cabin, or lean to fire. He then asks the youth to gather the needed materials and make a fire of their own. Each boy that is. The instructor watches, with help of other instructors and they guide the youth through aranging and lighting the fires

 

The group is then tasked with building the troop Campfire for the evening where the patrols will lead songs, skits, cheers, etc.

 

OK, the guide explained, demonstrated, guided and enabled the youth in the manner of fire building. How is this detrimental to the scouting program?

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OGE,

 

My thoughts exactly.

 

John-in-KC,

 

Exactly.

 

EDGE, (as a training paradigm), is nothing but generally accepted instructional practices rebadged.

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Perdidochas said, "I'm in the field of Instructional Design (ABD (all but dissertation (meaning I've done all the requirements for a Ph.D. in the area, with the exception of the dissertation."

 

Of all the folks I know on here aside from our professional educators, I'd say Perd is as close to an expert as we can get for something like the usefulness of EDGE. I'd certainly take his word on it over say an attorney. ;)

 

I'm amused at all the philisophical hand wringing over EDGE. We aren't discussing teaching brain surgery or rocket science here. We're teaching a simple physical camping skill. As an ASM for new scouts, we had our Troop Guides using this method before BSA came up with a name. It is a natural way of teaching that has gone on forever. My dad used Edge when he taught me how to fish, mow the yard, comb my hair and shave many decades ago.

 

Anybody remember this? If you look, you'll easily see EDGE.

 

Four steps of Boy Scout advancement

 

A Boy Scout advances from Tenderfoot to Eagle by doing things with his patrol and his troop, with his leaders, and on his own. Its easy for him to advance if the following four opportunities are provided for him.

 

1. THE BOY SCOUT LEARNS - A Scout learns by doing. As he learns, he grows in ability to his part as a member of the patrol and the troop. As he develops knowledge and skill, he is asked to teach others: and in this way he begins to develop leadership.

 

2. THE BOY SCOUT IS TESTED - A Scout may be tested on rank requirements by his patrol leader, Scoutmaster, assistant Scoutmaster, a troop committee member, or a member of his troop. The Scoutmaster maintains a list of those qualified to give tests and to pass candidates. The Scouts merit badge counselor teaches and test on the requirements for merit badges.

 

3. THE BOY SCOUT IS REVIEWED - After a Scout has completed all requirements for a rank, he has a board of review. For Tenderfoot, Second Class, First Class, Star, Life, and Eagle Palms, the review is conducted by members of the troop committee. The Eagle Scout board of review is conducted in accordance with local council procedures.

 

4. THE BOY SCOUT IS RECOGNIZED - When the board of review has certified a boys advancement, he derives to receive recognition as soon as possible. This should be done at a ceremony at the next troop meeting. The certificate for his new rank may be presented later at a formal court of honor.

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JiKC, OGE, peri,Sr540 -

 

You have provided some really great examples. I'm not entirely sold that packaging them in an acronym like EDGE get's our boys up to speed any faster.

 

To all of them, I would have added, "have the boys read the relevant section of the handbook ..." Or because tents vary so much, "look for instructions in the tent bag, find a language you can understand, read it."

 

Why? Because because our learners need to have resources for when the teacher isn't there! Shoot, our teachers need to have resources to peek at on a good day!

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perdidochas writes:

 

Please explain how that is not using their hands and eyes to learn how to set up a tent?

 

Perhaps naively, qwazse assumed that "experts" in "Instructional Design" tested EDGE scientifically before forcing our very youngest Boy Scouts to learn it for Tenderfoot.

 

I hope that qwazse has learned that professional educators do not understand the scientific method.

 

I propose the UNSINKABLE RUBBER DUCKY TEST:

 

1. Form a circle on a local field comprised of the nation's best 100 Wood Badge Staffers with advanced degrees in education.

 

2. Inside the circle, divide 16 new Scouts into two Patrols, and tell them they will sleep in the tents they set up.

 

Patrol A will have setting up tents "Explained" and "Demonstrated" and then be "Guided" through and "Enabled" by the nation's foremost Wood Badge Instructional Design expert.

 

Patrol B will just set up a bunch of tents while working with a hard-core camper French mime who does not speak a word of English and has never heard of EDGE.

 

3. After they have spent an equal amount of time, the two Patrols of new Scouts then test their ability to set up their own tents for the night without the presence of either of the two adult clowns.

 

4. I submit that Patrol B will set up their tents faster than Patrol A because EDGE is a bad thing.

 

5. The interesting part of the test comes next: After 100 Wood Badge Staffers witnessed the French mime trounce the national Wood Badge expert, every one of the 100 Wood Badge Staffers must write down which Patrol was faster, the EDGE Patrol or the French mime Patrol.

 

6. Then we allow the 100 Wood Badge Staffers do what Wood Badge Staffers do best, drink coffee and sit around talking about their unsinkable rubber duckies.

 

7. I submit that within a few hours, all 100 Wood Badge Staffers will agree that the French mime used the EDGE method.

 

That is what Beavah means by "Our brains are wired to find patterns and fill in da blanks."

 

Rubber Duckies at 300 feet,

 

Kudu

 

http://kudu.net

 

 

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One of the Troop Instructors has been tasked with teaching how to build a fire. And apparently for no particular reason, other than for this example. The first thing the instructor will do is explain what tinder, kindling, and fuel is, and why they are needed. He then demonstrates how to makes a fire demonstrating the differences in a Teepee, log cabin, or lean to fire. He then asks the youth to gather the needed materials and make a fire of their own. Each boy that is. The instructor watches, with help of other instructors and they guide the youth through aranging and lighting the fires

 

The group is then tasked with building the troop Campfire for the evening where the patrols will lead songs, skits, cheers, etc.

 

And odds are the group fails. Because it takes longer than that and more hands-on experience to develop that skill. Leastways, unless the wood is really, really dry ;).

 

I think da reason it can be detrimental to da program is that it's school. Sit while I talk. Watch while I do. OK, now here's your assignment while I walk around the room. Now here's your homework. Perd might be an instructional designer (though he oddly seems unfamiliar with da research in his area that even an old furry critter can find ;)), but they work in schools with desks and 35+ kids in a classroom, and built-in rule and classroom management and detentions and grades. That's quite a bit different from what a patrol leader or troop instructor is workin' with in trying to teach the younger fellows in his patrol how to build a fire in the woods.

 

Personally, I'd never teach firebuildin' the way OGE describes. I don't think it's natural for youth to either teach or learn that way. I'd get some fellows who were interested in building a fire and we'd gather some wood and we'd just play. Try this and that. Try this wood or that lay. Try wet or dry. Build together, see what works. Have fun, and in da process learn the fundamentals. Boys are curious, adventurous souls, not sit-still, listen-and-watch types. Then maybe to push it we'd compete to see who could be quickest or most efficient, if they needed more motivation beyond natural curiosity.

 

And in the end, the kids I was playin' with would be able to build that fire, eh? ;) Da knowledge that's real is the knowledge we engage with and acquire for ourselves, not the knowledge that is pushed in our direction by someone.

 

Beavah

(This message has been edited by Beavah)

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Nice dodge Kudu, but you didn't answer the question other than with silly remarks.

 

Again:

 

Below is how I would use EDGE to teach putting up a tent:

 

First, explain the basics of putting up a tent. (Explain)

Second, show how to do it. (i.e. the scouts learning with their eyes) (Demonstrate)

Third, have the scouts put up tents (i.e. the scouts learning with their hands).

(Guide)

 

Fourth, have several campouts where the scouts put up tents. (Enable)

 

Please explain how that is not using their hands and eyes to learn how to set up a tent?

 

How would you teach the new scouts how to put up a tent?

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Beavah I am sure there are many things I do that you wouldn't, we will just have to put this on that list

 

BTW, just a thought, do you think I mean one follows the EDGE model 1-2-3-4? As in you first Explain, then Demonstrate and then Guide and finally Enable? That I would never mix it up to DEGE? I am not sure that when EDGE is used, the formula is so rigid that it must be done explain, demonstrate, guide and enable in that order all the time

 

Some situations lend themselves to doing two things at once, (yes it can be done)

 

I see it as a mneumonic so those not comfortable with teaching have a quick reference tool.

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I have the solution to Kudu's 100 Wood Badger dilemma. It doesn't matter who or what method is used in his scenario as long as you seperate the two patrols being tested by 300 feet. That is the pixie dust that will overcome the evil Wood Badgers ruining Scouting.

 

Seriously guys........it is a little foolish to be arguing over something as small and insignificant as a simple, easy to remember teaching tool and the acronym used for it. How in the world can people get tied up in knots over Explain, Demonstrate, Guide and Enable? Is EDGE really the downfall of Scouting as we know it? If you're going to slay "dragons", go big.

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Yah, SR540, it's not my usual topic, eh? But yeh have to remember, for Kudu, anything with an acronym is just another scale in the hide of da Management Theory Dragon. :)

 

BTW, just a thought, do you think I mean one follows the EDGE model 1-2-3-4? As in you first Explain, then Demonstrate and then Guide and finally Enable? That I would never mix it up to DEGE?

 

What you would do doesn't really matter, eh? I'm sure you'd operate from many years of experience with youth and would do somethin' that worked. So I'm sure you'd break the EDGE model in the way you describe and then some.

 

Da question is, if you and I and other experienced folks are constantly breaking the EDGE model in order to help kids learn, how good is the model?

 

Remember, we're teachin' this to beginners, eh? They're not goin' to have the experience to break it when they need to. They're not goin' to have the wisdom to add a half dozen additional concepts to "Enable" da way perdidochas did earlier. They're goin' to go right down the line E - D - G - E.

 

Honestly, in my experience with beginners, both youth and adult, when they try to use EDGE they mostly get caught up in Explain and Demonstrate. Guiding and Enabling take longer and are much more ambiguous, eh? They don't "get" it. So they spend more time on E & D and nowhere near enough on G & E. That's what your example felt like to me, too.

 

So I'd never teach a PL to do what perdidochas describes above, because I'd never do it myself. "Explaining" how to put up a tent is ridiculous, and "Demonstrating" is almost as bad. You grab a young fellow and you put up a tent together. He learns because he's engaged with a problem, not because he's listenin' to us jaw. It's fun. It's quick. It's hands-on.

 

It's scouting, not school.

 

Beavah

(This message has been edited by Beavah)

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I got to watch some Scouts do the EDGE requirement. They mostly just bleep over 'EDGE' and see 'teach someone a square knot.'

 

I think the EDGE stuff is useful as a situational leadership model - saying that when groups are in different stages, then different styles of leadership are appropriate. As a teaching model I don't see the point of using it. But for the Scouts, it's just one more requirement to do in a long line of requirements that may or may not make any sense to them. They don't worry about whether it's stupid to teach them internet safety yet again, they just sit through it and get it checked off. They don't worry about EDGE - they just know that they should understand the square knot well enough to teach it.

 

Yes, it's a tempest in a teapot. But we have to argue about something :-)

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So, Beavah,

 

While you are teaching how to put up the tents, aren't you talking about what you are doing--maybe explaining/questioning about where to put the tent, etc.? In terms of claiming that you don't explain, of course you do. The thing is EDGE tells you that you need to tell why you are doing something, show how to do it, guide in doing it and giving them a chance to do it. The EDGE model per the Trainer's EDGE training says that it's not a linear model. You can explain while you are demonstrating and guiding. You can explain a part, then demonstrate, then guide then back to explain, and do the Enable the next campout. The strawman version of EDGE is that you do it in that order exactly, etc. Besides very simple skills, it shouldn't be done exactly as EDGE. Also, as the guide explains, the Explanation should be no more than 10% of the time spent in teaching the skill.

 

The thing is, using the EDGE model is a good idea for teaching the scouts to teach a skill. It reminds them that they have to Guide and Enable, with Enable probably being the most important thing for long term skill retention. As you said, otherwise the scouts would tend to basically demonstrate and do little else.

 

My basic statement on this is that I think you use the EDGE model whether you consider it to be that or not. It doesn't fit the textbook EDGE, but the text of EDGE says that there is no real problem with doing DEDGE or DEDEDGEG, the important thing is that all four steps are done.

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I still think we are over thinking this. Where and when you teach is individual to each troop.

 

We're a larger troop with about 60 on the roster and our new scout class ranges in size from 12 to 24 any given year with the majority crossing over in February. We typically have 3 Troop Guides who work with them. We split the new scouts out during the skill session portion of the troop meeting. The new scout patrol(s) are learning basic skills and the other patrols are working on more advanced skills. We are blessed with a large meetig space and we will actually get 2 or 3 tents out and let them learn how to set them up in the comfort of a room with no wind and plenty of light. The TG's whether they realize it or not use EDGE to teach setting up the tents. There is information they need to know which is part of the Explain portion. Hey guys, we sometimes take our tents into bear country, so there is no food ever allowed in tents. We unzip the doors completely when entering or exiting the tent, we do not open them a foot and dive into them. Then they Demonstrate the correct way to set up a Eureka Timberline tent, some of which date back to the 80's because of the care and maintenance they receive. As they Demonstrate, they continue to Explain. You stretch the tent out on the ground, locate the door and point it in the direction it needs to go. You assemble the poles. You take the "cheese" to connect the poles to the ridge pole. The cheese has to be turned the right direction to set the tent up properly. Once you have the frame put together, you start snapping the tent body to the poles and ridge pole. Etc., etc.. etc. until the tent is erected. Then it is taken down with Explanation and Demonstration on how it is packed and rolled and placed back inside the bag. OK, now you guys have heard and seen how to set up and take down our tents. Divide into teams of three (the number of boys per tent) and work on setting it up. We will be here with you in case you have any questions or run into problems (Guide). Hey you did great. This time, lets try it without us assisting (Enable). Great job guys. It is important that you see and do this now so that when we go on your first troop campout in a few weeks, you aren't trying to figure out how to do this in the dark and cold. Don't worry, we will be right there with you at camp (using EDGE to reinforce the skill session) and we'll get the tents set up. It might take a while the first time, but the next campout it will go faster and better and by the third campout, you guys will be pros and will be able to teach someone how to do it.

 

I watch this happen year after year and we are successful with it. It sure beats trying to teach them how to set up a tent at 10:00 on Friday night when the wind chill is 28 and sleeting sideways. Is it going to be mass chaos? Of course, but at least they have had instruction and hands on in a controlled environment to help keep them from freaking out. WE want to set them up for success instead of failure.

 

EDGE is that simple and I've seen it work for every T21C skill required for advancement. The time and location depends on what you are working on. If people are going to get hung up on the term EDGE because someone sitting at a desk in Irving thought it up, then don't call it EDGE if you don't want to. But truth be told, if you have a boy run program using the patrol method, this is what is naturally happening anyway. Throwing a tent at a kid and bark at him to set it up and set it up now just doesn't cut it. I've seen that method and it doesn't work.

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Just for grins, I did a Google search on "see one do one teach one", and this link popped up:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Experiential_education

 

The first time I recall hearing that phrase was from Steve Thomas on "This Old House" (gratuitous name drop: the videographer on TOH is one of our troop dads), many years ago, where he said something like "oh, the old 'see one, do one, teach one' method..."

 

So while the acronym EDGE may be primarily used by the BSA, the "experiential education" idea goes way back. The Wikipedia page even lists connections to outdoor education (and if you go to that page, it defines outdoor education as experiential education that takes place in, or about, the outdoors).

 

For the record, I'm a byproduct of yet another experiential education variation: cooperative education.

 

Guy

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It doesn't fit the textbook EDGE, but the text of EDGE says that there is no real problem with doing DEDGE or DEDEDGEG, the important thing is that all four steps are done.

 

Yah, again, if an experienced instructor has to always be fiddlin' with it then it's not a very good model, is it? Probably why this model isn't given any credence in the real world. The Experiential Education folks GKlose mentions wouldn't buy into EDGE, and as diverse as they are I reckon you'd be hard pressed to find anything like it in their materials.

 

And how is a fellow supposed to know which step to choose in this non-linear dance, eh? When that young PL steps up to the plate, should he start explaining? Or go direct to coaching? Under what conditions, like SR540 implies? Indoors with lights? Outdoors in the dark? For a timid boy? For a bold lad who can't sit still? For a boy who has camped with his family a lot? For a boy who has never been outdoors?

 

Which step in da EDGE model teaches yeh to evaluate the conditions and where your learner is at before you choose? How do yeh decide when to switch between steps? How much time should each step take, on average?

 

It's just balderdash and snake oil. It relies on the instructor fillin' in all these missing pieces, rearranging the order, and adding a half-dozen or more different concepts to each step. What makes for a good explanation? How does one guide different learners effectively? And then there's the ever-expanding "catch all" of "Enable."

 

Like I said, go set up a tent with a kid and do it in mime, without a word of explanation. Or do like qwazse suggests and just have a lad who learns well that way read da tent instructions or the Handbook and try it out on his own or with a buddy. Either way, I'll bet in the end the boy will know more about setting up a tent than if yeh wasted his time with an explanation and a demo.

 

CLASSROOMS can't do this of course. Not enough time. Too many kids. So in schools yeh have to make compromises. Put 500 students in an intro course and you're goin' to see explanations and demonstrations. Can't be avoided. Same if yeh run your troop like a classroom.

 

But this is Scouting. Scouting is a game. Think more Mario Brother and less Biology 101.

 

Beavah

 

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