Re: summer camp
Wed, 24 Jun 1992 17:54:56 -0400
"Foley, Mary Lee" <SYSMLF%UOFT01.BITNET@ricevm1.rice.edu> writes:
> I recently offered to go to summer camp with my son's troop. Of
> course, my offer was accepted. Now, I need to know what is expected
> of me once I get there. Will I just hang around to fulfill the
> adult-to-boy ratio or will I participate in activities? I'm not sure
> how much information I'll get from the scoutmaster ahead of time; I'm
> planning on cornering him as soon as possible to find out.
Your job will be similar to that of a Cub den leader at Day Camp (but
much easier in many ways): The troop adult and youth leadership is
responsible for maintaining the troop's operation and discipline. Many
adults come to camp with the misconception that they are there to "just
hang around to fulfill the adult-to-boy ratio" and take it easy. The
camp staff is there to support a troop's program - not to run it for
them. The summer camp staff will expect you to deal with homesick
Scouts, missing wallets, and Scouts away from the campsite after Taps.
You should discuss with the Scoutmaster what he expects from you, and
how your troop deals with these and other such problems.
You should plan to participate in troop and camp-wide activities (troop
swim, retreat, campfires, etc). You can also take advantage of the
various program areas you mentioned. But keep in mind that the camp is
there for the Scouts. I do not think it is appropriate for a Scout to
wait in line at the rifle range while an adult is shooting.
Adults do ocaisonally drop in on a Merit Badge counseling session, but
be aware that doing so often can be mildly disruptive. This is - in my
opinion - NOT the time to be an active participant. Just watch and
listen to what is going on. If you happen to be knowledgable in the
subject area being discussed, keep your thoughts and comments to
yourself during the session unless you are specifically asked by the
counselor. If you think there is a problem with what is said, discuss
it with the counselor PRIVATELY later. One or two "that's not right"
comments will destroy the counselors credibility for the rest of the
Be aware that your son needs time to be alone with his friends. It
wouldn't hurt to ask him what he thinks about you going - especially if
he has been to camp before. He can "show you the ropes".
> take a "refresher" first aid course before I go. (That's a bit of a
> joke - the last course I had was 20-25 years ago and I don't know
Some camps teach and certify CPR during the week. Here's your chance
if there's an extra spot in the class.
> Our camp has programs for all water-based badges, rifle shooting,
> and more. I don't yet know what "more" includes.
It may be more helpful to you to go on the camp tour than to attent a
Scoutmasters' meeting on Sunday. (In our camp, the two events are
scheduled at the same time.) The tour will let you know what is going
on in camp, and the safety rules you need to know at each area. This
will be important for you personally, but it will also be important
information for you to have to be able to assist your Scouts in planning
> My questions:
> 1. Should I take my uniform (tan shirt etc., not yellow) or just
> jeans/t-shirts? I'm in a quandary here because I'm not registered
> with the troop, but have been asked to participate in troop
> activities with uniform recommended (e.g. board of review.)
You are a Scouter, and this is a Scouting event. The full uniform
(invariably referred to as "Class A") is worn in the evening for dinner
and retreat. In some camps, Class A is also worn at flag raising and
breakfast. The rest of the day, the "Class B" uniform is worn by the
staff and some Scouts. (The CLASS B uniform is generally considered to
be the same as the CLASS A (full) uniform, except that a Scouting
related casual shirt (T-shirt or Golf shirt) replaces the dress shirt.
Set the positive example for the Scouts - wear the uniform all day.
> 2. Can anyone point me to reading material or explain what I might
> be expected to do? A week of reading books would be nice, but I
> don't really think that's why I'm going.
Ask your Scoutmaster for a copy of the camp leader's guide. It will have
information about almost everything that will go on in camp.
Hope this helps. Enjoy your week at camp.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City