SILV BULL, ETC.
Scott Dillard (scott.dillard@CHRYSALIS.ORG)
Sat, 28 May 1994 08:29:59 LCL
Here's a little "gaming methodology" history and information about
Silver Bullets, its author, and its brothers.
The history may well be wrong (if anyone knows better, please speak
up; these are word of mouth notes taken at National Camp School a couple
of years back), but it goes like this:
1880's? - Kurt Someone develops military training course for German Army
that uses the concept of "indirect learning" - using "initiative
problems" to teach officer skills.
Soon after - Program spreads to military training programs in countries
around the world.
1960's? - A group called Outward Bound takes the concept and designs
courses for laymen. I'm sure some of ya'll probably know more about
Outward Bound than I do, so I won't try to explain.
1970's? - An upper echelon Outward Bound staffer named Karl Rohnke
leaves the group to establish a "gaming methodology curriculum" for
schools (preteen, teen, and college ages). His company is called
1980's? - Boy Scouts of America starts endorsing the methodology and
calls their version of it "C.O.P.E.". This originally stands for
"Challenging Outdoor Physical Encounters", but in an attempt to get away
from the "Hoohah!" overtones is slowly being changed to
"Challenging Outdoor Personal Encounters". The BSA COPE program is
based very strongly on Project Adventure's methodologies.
All that aside, to answer Bill Hunter's question: Silver Bullets and a
few other books were written by Karl Rohnke of Project Adventure. The
three most notable (in my opinion as a Scouter) are:
Silver Bullets - Contains a good smattering of "initiative problems,
adventure games, and trust activities" and also includes some
philosophical introductions to the various sections. If you still
look on all Scouting games with eyes that haven't changed in the last
decade, get this book to start.
Cowstails and Cobras - Contains an assortment of other games and in
particular contains sections on high course elements and sample
curricula for schools. Has a deeper discussion of leadership/debriefing
skills, but wouldn't recommend buying this one until you've gotten
Silver Bullets and Bottomless Bag.
Bottomless Bag - More games than you can shake a stick at. If you
already understand the COPE gaming philosophies, then this is the book.
It contains a lot of the material from Silver Bullets and Cowstails, but
doesn't have any philosophical sections. If the "new games theories"
don't mean anything to you yet, only get it in conjunction with Silver
Bullets; otherwise, you'll end up playing a lot of games without a
purpose in mind.
Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company
4050 Westmark Drive
P.O. Box 1840
Dubuque, IA 52004-1840
1-800-228-0810 <- (the easiest way, have plastic in hand)
Silver Bullets ISBN 0-8403-5682-X 192 pages $18.50
Cowstails & Cobras ISBN 0-8403-5434-7 224 pages $18.50
Bottomless Bag ISBN 0-8403-8757-1 416 pages $32.50 (but worth it)
~ OLX 2.1 TD ~ Only one hour a week... one hour a week... one hour...
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City