As of today, about noon PST at Gilwell, on the coast of Oregon in a Boy Scout Camp called Camp Clark, a den of Cub Scouts were changed into a Boy Scout Patrol after the Blue & Gold. Their Den Chief, ME became their Troop Guide. I am the proud Troop Guide of BOBWHITES! I am very grateful and honored to be their Troop Guide.
Archive for April, 2011
Today starts Wood Badge Course W1-492-11. As part of the Staff, my fellow Troop Guides and I need to lead by example. The whole mood is set by the Troop Guide Presentation. Our theme for the course is “Catching the Leadership Dream.” There are no second chances, only First Impressions.
I was asked to lead off the presentation by our Scoutmaster after listening to our run through. Here is what I said:
My name is Adam Cox. Like you, I believe in Scouting and love wearing shirts with patches on them.I was a Tiger Den Leader, twice and am a Cubmaster.I believe in this program, and have a leadership dream.
My dream is that the Cubscouts get encouraged to have a lot of fun, creating great memories and getting them out of the gym and into the outdoors, while learning and developing skills they do not even know about.
My dream for the future of Scouting is that we as dedicated volunteers remember that Scouting is full of Fun, Excitement and it is for the Scouts. That we as Scouters remember the magic and work to create that again. That we keep the Spirit alive.
As a Cubmaster, it was my dream to get the Pack out more. Learn and do more. Because of Wood Badge, I was able to help the Pack earn the 100 Year Celebration Award, 100 Year CPC Council Strip and earn the Leave No Trace award. I was also able to create great experiences using the Summertime Pack Award program. Finally, I was able to help encourage the Cubscouts through Song and Ceremonies have more fun.
My dream for each of you here during this time at Wood Badge that your own Leadership Dreams are realized and encouraged. That you step outside of what you do meeting to meeting, Outing to Outing and year to year and Do something Different! I was encouraged to Sing, Do more Ceremonies and Play the Native American Flute.
In June the Bears will crossover into the Webelos I Den and start off on a completely new adventure.
When I was a Wolf Cub in 1976, these Webelos were cool. Their neckerchiefs were plaid and also had a three colored braided thing on their sleeve.
Fast forward to when I was a Tiger Den Leader I saw them and was transported back…Webelos. They are COOL! My desire was to be the Webelos Den Leader and help the boys earn and learn all the cool stuff. For the past few years I have been learning more and more about Cubscouts, Scouting and Webelos. Reliving my past? Maybe.
But, as I have learned I have found out several things that are needed to be passed on to those who are going to be the Webelos Den Leaders and Parents as well. Many people that I follow talk about the Webelos to Scout transition. It’s something that needs a voice. However, there is the Bears to Webelos transition as well. If done correctly, the Webelos III and Heliocopter syndrome can be less painful.
Much of what I first learned and read about the Cub Scout program came from the website “The Boy Scout Trail.” It is an excellent resource. It’s one of the go to spots for Scout info. The next place that I go for info as a Cubmaster and a Webelos Den Leader is on the Scouting.org site. Within the Webelos and Arrow of Light Den Meeting guide sections, I can figure out what to do when certain pins and activities. The BSA National Office really did a great job on the 2010 Den/Pack Meeting guides. If your a seasoned Den Leader, these might not be for you. However, its a great resource to get new ideas from. If your fresh into Scouting and you do not know what to do, these are perfect. One great thing is that if your son missed a meeting a parent can be given this and followed to completion. That is a win-win for the Parent and Webelos.
The other site that I use for Webelos (along with all other Cubscouts) is the Academic & Sport Beltloops and Pins section on Scouting.org. To me, this site is invaluable. In the spring the boys are generally wrapping up their ranks and still need to be challenged. These beltloops & pins are perfect. The one thing that I tell the boys and parents is that if your playing sports, you can earn one of these. If your into math, science, space, geology or things like that, there is a beltloop for you. I did a whole pack meeting last year about this very subject.
However, within the Webelos 20 or so month program, the boys are earning Webelos Pins for the Rank and Arrow of Light. I have begun to urge the boys to re-earn these beltloops to help them earn a Pin. For example. The Sportsman Pin.
- Show the signals used by officials in one of these sports: football, basketball, baseball, soccer, or hockey.
- Explain what good sportsmanship means.
- While you are a Webelos Scout, earn Cub Scout Sports belt loops for two individual sports ( badminton, bicycling, bowling, fishing, golf, gymnastics, ice skating, marbles, physical fitness, roller skating, snow ski and board sports, swimming, table tennis, or tennis).
- While you are a Webelos Scout, earn Cub Scout Sports belt loops for two team sports ( baseball, basketball, soccer, softball, volleyball, flag football, or ultimate).
While this Pin is not required for Rank, it’s a good one to earn. Even if the Webelos is not the worlds greatest at sports, they might enjoy bowling and bicycling. You can even get one for Ulitmate (Disc Golf) & Flag Football (or as one Webelos this last year used La Crosse for it)
Point being, if your Scouts are involved in sports, this pin is an easy one to earn. It might take a whole school year, but so might the Sports Merit Badge in Scouts.
My point is this, within the first full year of Webelos I, there is a lot going on. It can be daunting if planning is not worked out.
What has helped me greatly is the Packmaster Software. There are several great software packages out there. Even ones with MS Excel spreadsheets, for all programs as well. I am going to focus upon Packmaster since it’s what I know and use.
There are basically ten things that a Webelos has to do to earn the Webelos Rank. One is time based, which is just like the Arrow of Light Badge, but only twice as long. However, within these basic ten, there are multiple requirements to earn them.
Within the Activity Badges, our Pack has historically done the Traveler Pin in November to a Hockey Game with the Portland Winterhawks. Troop 41 has also done the Aquanaut in October with the Webelos I & II as well. So, working with the Troop and going to a sports event with the whole Pack the Webelos can knock out all their pins in pretty quick order.
In my next Blog about Webelos, I will dive into more Activity Badges , Beltloops & Pins as well as using Packmaster to keep track of everything.
Today, at the very early hour of “why am I up this early hour” of the day, I took off with Scoutmaster Jerry in the F150 Mobile Recording Studio towards Gilwell. Actually Camp Clark near Tillamook, OR on the coast. Until I get home late on Sunday, I will not be in range of cell phone signals. If I some how catch a signal, I most likely snug in my bunk sleeping.
I hope to catch you all up on the flipside of Week 1 of Gilwell. I have staged a few posts to keep you in the loop as to what I think we should be doing at that time. If I am able to get a signal, I might twitter a note and picture. However, it’s my belief that when Scouting, the only electronics needed are those for emergency and for photo taking. Hence, I more than likely won’t.
Take care. Yours in Scouting.
Tonight, was a good Pack Meeting. The Tigers got their Rank, Wolves are just almost there, Bears are on course and the Webelos I are now the “Fire Scout” Patrol. They have a Patrol Flag and Patch.
I handed out certificates for the Cub-O-Ree to the boys along with Beltloops & Segments. I even handed out about 12 goofy parent awards. My Unit Commissioner was on hand to officially give me my Cubmaster Knot and say a few words. Then, unbeknownst to myself, one of the Tiger Den Leaders got up and gave a couple of nice words about how I was as a Cubmaster and my dedication to the Pack. About 10 seconds in I blanked on what he was saying since it was someone saying something nice in front of the whole pack. But then I heard ” I got you this Wood Badge Patch” and I came too. he went on talking about what Wood Badge was and that i was a Troop Guide. Yeah, it was a good night.
It was a tad chaotic, but we went with it and it worked. We played in three different stations of Balloon Race, Unicylces and a team plank walk. All of these were related to being at team. Working together. Being friends and not being selfish.
What I was working up to was, bullying and how it is not part of Scouting. I explained that we are all brothers in Scouting. We look out for eachother. I explained the Cubscout Promist and Law of the Pack (which I read at the Flag) I explained that there is a Scout that has left our Pack because he does not feel welcomed anymore. I also explained my Scouting story and why I left.
I then Challenged the boys to do one Good Turn a Week. Not a Day, but a Week. Then, our Den Chief stood up and explained how it is within a Troop. Very nicely done. Completely not scripted.
At the close, we made the circle, leaving an opening, explaining why and sang Cubscout Vespars. First verse was a Repeat After Me and then sang it again.
Tonight was a Pack meeting with a purpose. It was a tad heavy at the end, but it was needed. Boys will be boys, but we all need to be treated as we want to be treated.
As the night comes to this land,
On my promise I will stand,
I will help the pack to go,
As our pack helps me to grow.
Yes, I’ll always give goodwill,
I’ll follow my Akela still.
And before I stop to rest,
I will do my very best.
Today, in the world of Scouting I got my wife to sew on 13 patches on my new uniform. She is currently sewing on all of Elliot’s patches to his new Webelos Uniform. Oh, and yes the Cubscout Outdoor Activity Award badge will be on the correct side, compared to how I put it on the Cubscout Blue Uniform.
I twittered today that my wife is doing it for me and got a lot of Feedback about it. Feedback is a gift! So, I decided for my 200th post for this Blog that I would talk about how to Sew a patch.
Up til now, I used Badge Magic. While it’s a wonderful product and works very well it does not work on all things. Meaning the Gold/Silver Arrow points. It also leaves a sticky brown residue that is apparent when it looses it stick. All that being said, Elliot’s uniform used a lot of Badge Magic. I put them all on. I used it on my old uniform as well.
Looking at Scout Master Clarke Green’s blog I found this entry about sewing.
If you are going to sew it by hand, here is a great video by a Canadian Sea Scout!
So, boys should learn to sew. I was all ready to take Home Econ in 8th grade,when my Dad said, “It’s ok for Cooking, but what are you going to do when you have to sew a dress?” Well, that killed that. I did not progress past Wolf, so I was not required to sew my own badges. So, here I am blogging about how I cannot sew.
So, Scouts do promote Sewing. However, I can only offiically find it as Tiger Elective #18: Sew a Button. There was a thread (get it) in the Scouter Forum about wanting a Sewing Merit Badge.
I know in the twitter feedback that I got today, that one Scoutmaster tells the boys, it’s your uniform you sew it. Which, is a great philosphy. It is one that I will instill upon Elliot once he gets into Boy Scouts. Just means that I have to learn.
Which brings me to this. Classes for Dudes. No, I am not going to run off and see if I can get a a reality show to be a designer. There is one in Portland at PDX Seamtresses called Dudes can Sew.
I think sewing is a very good skill to learn and have. Your mom is not going on Wood Badge with you, so you need to learn.
So, if you do not know how to sew, it would be a great time to learn. It would also be a great go-see-it or Den Outing to take the boys to a Seamstress and have them learn how to.
Posted in #100daysofscouting, Akela, cubmaster, cubscout promise, law of the Pack, youth protection, tagged Boy Scouts of America, Cub Scout, cubscout promise, Law of the Pack, Organizations, Recreation, Scout, Scout Leader, Troop on April 24, 2011 | Leave a Comment »
I started a blog post about how a scout within the pack has decided to leave due to what I believe is related to bullying. I however could and can be wrong about this. From what I have re-read in some of the emails is that he felt like an outsider because the boys did not include him in activities, others complimented their friends and is not good in sports.
Because of this, I have reached out to the parents of the Scout letting them know that I, as Cubmaster know and am concerned about them and their Scout. While I am in charge of the program of the Pack, I am also to help guide the scouts in goodwill and support the Den Leaders. This is such a case.
We as Scouters are charged with helping those within the Cubscout Pack to help them in Character Development. Within the Cub Scout 12 Core Values, Compassion, Honesty and Respect are key. These values are reflected directly within the Boy Scout program in the Scout Law. A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent.
As shown from Scouting.org’s website:
Being kind and considerate, and showing concern for the well-being of others.
Being brave and doing what is right regardless of our fears, the difficulties, or the consequences.
Showing regard for the worth of something or someone.
However, what can Leaders and Parents do about Bullying. From the story from Scouting Magazine “The Troop Bully”. “Find the PowerPoint presentation “Bullying: Prevention and Intervention Tips for Scout Leaders and Parents” at scouting.org/filestore/ppt/bullyingprevention.ppt.” Hindsight is 20/20 and when reading the PPT, it is clear that bullying happens within the pack. But it is also apparent that there are things that “WE’ as Scout Leaders need to do within the Pack. Our Webelos and Bears recently viewed “It Happened to Me”. While that was great and we got the boys to start to understand what Youth Protection is all about, we as Scouters (in any unit too) need to look at ourselves and be aware.
Because of this incident and what I have been reading, this months Pack Meeting will still go on as planned, but will include a segment of what the Cubscout Promise and The Law of the Pack is and how we need to live it. I am hoping to only speak about it for 5 minutes or so. Call it an elongated Cubmaster’s Minute, but I will start it off with the Cubscout Promise and The Law of the Pack.
Overall, it saddens me that a boy has ended his Scouting life due to bullies.
Posted in #100daysofscouting, cubmaster, cubscouts, family, Games, scout camp, tagged Boy Scouts of America, Cub Scout, Cubmaster, New Zealand, Organizations, Recreation, Scout, Scout Leader on April 23, 2011 | Leave a Comment »
Monday is our Pack meeting and it’s the first one back since our district’s First Cub-O-Ree. I need to make a huge deal out of this, so we can make it happen again.
At the Cub-O-Ree all the boys earned:
BB Gun/Archery Beltloop.
They also earned a Butte Creek Ranch Segment. You normally get this segment if you go and ride horses at a camp. While, you have to be in 5th Grade and a Webelos II per Council rules, none of the boys will get this at this time. I have not seen any Webelos II go there and do this in our Pack. Hence, I am awarding it.
Now, many of the boys participated in a Skit (and I forget who all), my son participated in a Scout’s Own and all the boys camped overnight. Yes, even the ones who could not stay for whatever reason. “They did their best”. There was also a First Aid Station that counted towards the Readyman Pin for Webelos and for other ranks.
Overall, the boys had a great time. I have made up certificates for both the Scouts and Parents who went. Yes, everyone gets something!
Which, this all goes to a point. There are NO BAGGIES in Cubscouts. Only when cooking in a Baggie is there a Baggie. Do not ever, never, Ever hand a boy a bag of stuff and say good job now sit down. UGH! LAME LAME LAME! Put it on atlest paper and give it to them.
Now, I normally do not hand out awards or patches. I did last year for the Wolves as Cubmaster. I stopped when my wife said I wasn’t the Den Leader. So, now I only hand out Pack based awards. Summertime Pack, Quality Unit and others. Because this was a pack activity within a District function, I am doing it.
One other great thing from this weekend is that one of the Tiger Dads emailed me stating he was going to turn in an Adult Application so he can help out with the Committee and Pack as needed. I am very thrilled! He is also a Sea Scout from New Zealand, so I am really happy about all that.
My overall point in this post, award and make the boys special as much as possible. However, you must award and make the parents special too!
Posted in #100daysofscouting, Akela, cubmaster, tagged BoyScouts, Cub Scout, Philmont Training Center, Recreation, Scout, Scout Leader, Search and rescue, Wilderness First Aid, Wood Badge on April 22, 2011 | 2 Comments »
Today on my twitter feed erupted a lively back and forth about the Philmont Leadership Challenge. This is between myself, Arlen Ward, Phil Peck and the new guy Michael Forner. I had no clue as to what it is. I thought it was a Patrol Leaders Conference at Philmont. Ok, so why would a bunch of Cubscout Leaders wanna go to that? I get the Philmont attraction, but….
As the tweeting went on between a couple of Beavers and……Bob Whites… it got serious. I was supposed to go to Philmont this summer with the family for “Strictly for Cubmasters”. That did not pan out once I took on the position of Troop Guide for this Spring’s Wood Badge course. I think that I would have met up with Arlen if I had gone.
That being the case, this course looks pretty interesting. While I am just getting my head around what this is all about and what you actually do, it looks like it’s ALL outside with a lot more practical work than sit on your butt and listen. As it states on the website “There is no classroom work in this course! The Philmont Leadership Challenge (PLC) is built around a series of modules emphasizing advanced outdoor skills, including COPE, Wilderness First Aid, Advanced GPS use, and Search and Rescue Techniques. “ If that is the case, that is very cool. My question is: Do we get certified in Wilderness First Aid as well?
My two or three obstacles are/will be: Time off from Work. Getting permission from my wife and finally getting physically fit for this ordeal. So, we will see. I will be starting the physical part this weekend and after I put down these Girl Scout Thin Mints.
The only other obstacle is that our self appointed Patrol Leader Arlen has already started the ball rolling saying that we are going next year. Ok, Mr Patrol Leader…..gotta get your Beads first! Oh, and when Phil & I fly into Denver, you better be on time to pick us up! (Michael already lives in the area).
Our Pack will be graduating about 35 boys into their next rank in June. I am in the process of finding a good all in one ceremony. I found this one from Macscouter.com. Last year, I had the parent do facepainting on the boys. It will ok. However, I think this one might be kinda cool. I will have to alter it for what will work for us. I think it will also be good to have the Den Leaders transisition over with them.
Note: This ceremony eventually has all the boys and leaders standing in front of the pack. You will need a lot of room if yours is a large pack. We wrote this one for a Pack of about 90 and needed all the school’s risers and most of the gym!
Equipment: Set of risers or a stage with broad steps leading up. Each boy needs to have his scarf and you may need extras if you have more of a rank than the one following it.
Asst. CM: Second year Webelos, please come forward and stand on the top row of the risers.
CM: Will (Read names of those receiving Bear) and their parents please come forward? You have worked long and hard to earn the rank of Bear. Soon you will be in a Webelos Den. Remember the hard work you have put in and the support of your parents. This will get you to your next step on the Cub Scout Trail. Parents will you pin the Bear badge on your sons. (they do.) Congratulations! Now will the new Bears please take your place on the second riser. Parents, you may return to your seats.
Asst. CM: Would all Bears please stand on the second riser.
CM: Will (Read names of those receiving Wolf) and their parents please come forward? You also have done a good job of working on your Wolf rank. This is the step that will enable you to proceed on the trail to Bear. Parents please pin the Wolf badge on your son. (They do.) Congratulations! Now will the new Wolves take your place on the first riser. Parents you may return to your seats.
Asst. CM: Would all the Wolves stand on the bottom riser, please.
CM: Tiger Cubs and parents, please come forward and stand on the floor in front of the Wolves. You are just starting your trip along the Scouting trail. You have searched, discovered and shared the world around you. These patches show you have graduated from the Tiger Cubs and are ready to become Bobcats. Parents, please pin this patch to your son’s shirt. (They do.) Congratulations! Parents, you may return to your seats, New Cub scouts, please remain where you are.
Asst. CM: ________ has been a leader of Den ___ for ___ years. Please come forward. (Repeat until all leaders are present.)
CM: Please accept the sincere gratitude of Pack ___ for your work with the Cubs in your den. This star may be small, but it represents many hours of your time given to Scouting. I am also giving you service stars for the boys of your den. They too have put in many hours toward their badges. Den Leaders please present these to your dens at their next meeting. Would you please stand on the floor at the ends of the risers?
Asst. CM: Tiger Cubs, for the past few months you and your family have explored all sorts of new and exciting things and places. Now it is time to move along the Cub Scout trail to the next part of the program.
Your family is important throughout your whole Scouting Experience. Support in earning each badge comes from your family as well as from your Den Leader. Your parents will help you each step of the way.
CM: On behalf of Pack ___ I would like to welcome you. You will be receiving your Wolf scarf tonight. The Wolf Scarf is gold, like the sun. It stands for joy in a job well done. Have fun as you learn the way of the Wolf Scout. Would the Wolf Scouts please pass their scarf to the New Cub Scout in front of them. (Leaders will need to provide help and a scarf for any boy who doesn’t get one from the Cub behind him.)
Asst. CM: Wolf Scouts, you have spent this year learning about Cub Scouting by earning Bobcat and Wolf. You have Done Your Best to live up to the ideals of Cub Scouting.
CM: Tonight you will receive your Bear neckerchief. The Bear neckerchief is blue. Blue stands for truth, loyalty, and obedience. You must learn to obey before you can expect others to obey you. The blue neckerchief stands for obedience to the Law of the Pack. On behalf of Pack ___ I congratulate you. Would the Bear Scouts please pass their scarves to the Cub Scout in front of you. (Again Leaders assist.)
Asst. CM: Bear Scouts, tonight you start the Webelos trail. The Webelos Den has one big purpose. That’s to prepare you for Boy Scouting. You will work on very exciting activity badges, learning things that may lead you to lifelong hobbies or professions. At the same time, you will study Boy Scout requirements so you will be ready to become Boy Scouts.
CM: Each of your parents has helped you along the Cub Scout trail this far. It is important now that your parents continue to stay with you in your Webelos den. We will soon have the pleasure, we know, of seeing you presented the Webelos badge. Again on behalf of Pack ___ I congratulate you. Would the New Boy Scouts please pass their scarf to the New Webelos Scout in front of them. (Leaders assist.)
Asst. CM: Would the rest of the Webelos please come forward? Please fill in any open spot on the risers. I would like to recognize the hard work each of these boys has done this year. Each boy has lived up to the Cub Scout motto, DO Your Best, in each activity badge earned. Each boy has also been working to fulfill the Scout motto of Be Prepared by working on the Boy Scout requirements.
CM: The entire Scouting program runs on the volunteers who help teach our sons the principles of Scouting. Without them, there is no program. Would the Den Leaders, Webelos Den Leaders, their assistants, the Den Leader Coach, Tiger Cub Coach, Committee Chair and all members of the Committee please step forward? Parents please give these people a Big round of applause as they return to their seats. Would the Scouts now please return to their seats.