Re: BOR Help -- to retest?
Mike Montoya (mmm@IMS.MARIPOSA.CA.US)
Mon, 11 Dec 1995 23:06:24 -0800
At 08:49 AM 12/11/95 EST, you wrote:
>However, to use a previous example about knots, what it the point of teaching
>the knots, or first aid, if we only require them to know the information
>once. For instance, the square knot is a required knot for the Scout Badge
>(Joining Requirements). From this point on, the scout can basically forget
>the knot, in regards to any type of advancement. He is not require to know
>how to type this simple knot, nor can he be asked to tie it agian, as long as
>someone signed him off for this requirement. It just doesnt' make sense to
>me. What message are we sending to these boys?
Not to make light of a very serious discussion, but this brings to mind the
old Saturday Night Live routine where Father Sarducci (sic) talked about the
requirements to get a college degree. The slant of his speech was that all
you should be required to know for the final exam was what the average
person actually retained from that class after a number of years had passed.
For example, Economics = supply and demand. To bring this around to this
discussion, although some of our scouts seemed to be blessed with great
retention, some don't seem to be strong in this characteristic.
I am a counselor for the astronomy merit badge, and when I see all the
scouts from our troop receive this merit badge after they get back from
Summer Camp ( seems to be a favorite ), I know that even though it's only
been a couple of weeks, I doubt if ANY of them can take me outside and point
out the 10 constellations, (four in the zodiac), and the eight conspicuous
stars, (five of first magnitude), that they supposedly learned in order to
get the Merit Badge.
I have been a counselor for this badge for three years and have only had one
scout come to me for this badge. All he needed to complete his partial for
this badge was this requirement. Well, when he showed up unable to do it
the first time, he went home empty-handed. Ditto for the second time. He
finally made it on the third try. Was I tough on him, requiring him to
actually know it? You bet! Was I especially tough on him because it was
the last merit badge he needed to make Eagle? You bet!
I guess what I'm trying to say is that if maybe we all tightened up our
"signing off" policies a little, less boys would make it to the BOR's
lacking the knowledge that they are supposed to have in order to advance.
Maybe workshops for those with the power of signing off the requirements.
One of the things that I have observed is that the boys who were signed off
by a lax leader tend to be lax themselves, often accepting as "good enough"
something less than what was intended when the requirements were set, basing
their judgement on their own experience.
Mike Montoya, ASM, Troop 94 firstname.lastname@example.org
"I used to be ...Faster, Lighter, & Less Gray!"
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City