Re: Advice on changing troops.
Steve Tobin (srtobin@MMM.COM)
Mon, 25 Jul 1994 13:12:11 -0500
> Yesterday, he confided in me that after he gets his Eagle he plans to
> transfer to a troop that has more older scouts and is engaged in more
> "advanced" Scouting activities (e.g. backpacking, longer trips, etc).
> I have rather mixed feelings about this.
> I'm encouraged that he plans
> to get more out of Scouting. So many boys just snatch up their Eagle
> and are never seen again, that some Scouts believe that when you make
> Eagle you have to "get out." On the other hand, I feel that he should
I'm starting to get this attitude also, now that the older scouts are in the
15 yr. old range. The problem is not with cutting out on the troop, but they
don't like being 'ties down' with leadership resaponsiblities.
They are Life rank now, so when we had their Eagle orientation we talked
about this, emphasizing that we expected that they would continue, at some
level, in the troop after they got the Eagle rank.
First of all, for our part as adult leaders, the camping and
other outdoor activities is not what scouting is all about.
But ther is no need to get into that here (cheers from the peanut gallery).
It's not like the opportunity for these activities
dissapear when a boy reaches 18, either.
Second, I think this is a natural part of growing up. Given our choice,
I think most of use would prefer the grasshopper role instead of the ant.
Responsibility is a learned trait, one that all too many adults have not
learned these days. They are out to get everything they can, and return
nothing. (oops! slipped into old fogey mode. sorry)
The idea we emphasised was the obligation to provide leadership to those who
follow us down the path through life. There are several aspects to this, also:
the obligation to return what was given us, the benefit personally from
learning how to lead others, the sense of satisfaction that comes from service
to others, the moral obligation to help others, etc. We tried to point out
that life as an adult is a balance between doing the fun things, and fulfilling
certain obligations. As a society, or troop, the good things can't exist
unless the members are willing to work towards them and return more than they
took out. There are already too many people that exist to just 'take as much
as they can get' out of things.
In return we have venture activities for the older scouts. So far this seems
to have had an positive effect, but learning is a process, not
a 'hit by lightening' change, so we keep working on it without getting too
oppressive about it. Of course, it helps that they are all real good kids,
I still get this 'hanging out with the little dweebs' line yet. I like
to remind them it's good thing someone hung around with them when THEY were
"the dweebs" or they never would have gotten where they are. How soon they
Steve Tobin, SM Internet: email@example.com
Eagle Class of '65 OA Ordeal >>>>==========>
Troop 39 Cannon River District
Cannon Falls, MN Gamehaven Council (Southeastern Minnesota)
Member: * Minnesotans for Global Warming *
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