Rodger Morris (rodger@FISHNET.NET)
Thu, 10 Oct 1996 06:30:51 -0700
At 11:22 AM 10/9/96 -0400, you wrote:
>There have recently been several posts regarding ideas for activities for
>Tiger Cub Dens. Remember too, to include the boys in the planning of these
>outings. Have the boy and his adult partner work together in picking and
>planning the activity. The boy learns along with with the adult, and the
>adult may find that it may not need to be as complicated an activity.
> An illustration of this happened last year. One of the dads planned an
>outing for the boys to see the printing business he works for. The day
>arrived and the boys were given the grand tour. After the tour, the Tigers
>and their adult partners stopped and reflected on what they had "discovered".
>Every one of the boys comments were not about the big presses or the printing
>business. What the Tigers thought was the neatest thing they had seen that
>morning was the employees lunch room and the
>great pop and drink machines and the candy machines!
> The old saying comes home to roost again: Keep it Simple, Make it Fun!
This principle also crops up with Boy Scouts at the oddest times and in
the oddest ways. A few months ago, I took several of the Scouts from my
troop on a tour of computer facilities at the Naval Surface Warfare Center
(NSWC), where I am employed as a computer specialist/LAN manager.
The thing my Scouts thought was the _neatest_ thing was the suction cup
handle used for removing and replacing sections of the false flooring
in the computer labs. They went nuts over it, and spent a good 20 minutes
popping up sections of he floor in various parts of the Surface Warfare
Evaluation Facility so they could see what lay underneath the false floor.
They would have done so for much longer if we hadn't had to move on to
other areas of the tour.
By contrast, they thought that things the world's largest remote controlled
warship, the "Self Defense Test Ship" and other computerized facilities
at NSWC were okay, but not really all that thrilling. What makes this
even funnier is that they all love working with computers, they all program
with HTML, and they all want to make working with computers their profession.
They are not new Boy Scouts, either. All three of them are 13 years old
and in the 8th grade in school.
Don't underestimate the potential drawing power of relatively low
tech/low complexity items in a youth program. Likewise, don't think that
just because you have several decades working with Scouts, as I do, that
you will always accurately infer the Scouts' response to an activity before
I need experiences like this from time to time to keep me mentally flexible
in my outlook on Scouting activities and to make me a bit more humble when
I start to think that I know everything worth knowing about what boys like.
Yours in Scouting,
Rodger Morris <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Scoutmaster, Troop 852 Woodbadge 416-18
Ventura County Council Philmont, 1973
Camarillo, California, USA "I used to be a Beaver..."
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City