People leaving, and competition
Thu, 2 May 1991 13:47:49 CDT
From: Troye Kauffman Bitnet: AEZTROY@UICVMC
(217) 244-6322 Internet: firstname.lastname@example.org
1. I hope that all of the people leaving ths list can make it back sometime;
especically Chris and Don, who have given so much to the list.
2. Competition: I think competition can be an over-emphasized part of the
program. I thing that competition can be an important tool in motivating
people, but has a strong potential for causing hard feelings between people,
and for overshadowing the true purpose of an activity.
I believe that Scouts should teach youth (and adults) to be the best that they
can be, but not to be better than somebody else. Trying to be better than
- implies that others are inferior, and
- establishes a sense of self-esteem that is based on "being on top".
Trying to be the best that one can:
- helps people adapt to non-successes (if one can't be the President, maybe
a Senator would be OK.)
- Makes it easier for people to learn (and excel in) new skills (since
people are rarely the best in something that they first try.)
Also, consider the types of official recognition built into the Scouting
program. Almost without exception, awards and recognition are given for
individual and group accomplishments, and not for being "the best". As
many people can win as put forth the effort.
A solution to a situation where people quibble about the conditions of a
competition is to remove the emphasis on the competition. Make the premier
award attainable at a camporee one that can be earned by any person or group
who meets the requirements (such as merit badges, special patches,
honor troops, National Historic Trails award, etc.)
But don't forget to have a competition, because as one old-timer told me,
"you CAN'T have a camporee without a competition!" Schedule some competitive
events such as a cook-off, or a tug-a-war, and present some "peripheral"
awards. But DON'T make them the crux of the camporee.
My council has adopted this idea at summer camp and in some recent camporees,
and has had some success with it.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City