Re: A question of supervision (WOSM)
Kirk Barley (kbarley@EROLS.COM)
Wed, 6 Nov 1996 13:17:39 -0800
The answer is "it depends." Here are some general comments that may or
may not apply. I'm not reading too much in to your story, they are from
my experience, not your situation.
As Scouters we are all rule oriented. The one thing that drives boys
and adults out of Scoutting is our tendency to overemphasise "the rule"
and to forget that each Unit has its own plan and way of doing things.
The quiet, counselling, consultive approach taught in Wood Badge works
the best for not raising hackles while geting the point across.
Safety is important and immediate action should be taken when required.
It sounds like you took the correct action stopping the boys with the
I have found that it is always difficult to deal with Webelos parents in
a Boy Scout context because they have a different program, doing for
instead of watching them do. They are not wrong, the programs are just
different, appropriate for the developmental level of the boys. Again
the consultative method, taking the time to explain the differences in
the programs, the safety rules and why they exist and do you want a cup
of coffee while we talk about how great Scout Master Fundamentals will
be when you join the troop works great. It's not hard to impress
Webelos parents; Boy Scout leaders usually have had more and richer
experiences and training in a program that the Webelos boys aspire to
join. Use this to your advantage, hook them into your program early,
don't feed the image that we are rigid and superior.
Each Troop has its own method's of discipline, but I have found that the
PLC to be the best, they are far harsher than most adults and better at
making sure that the terms of their decision are carried out. Let them
decide how to handle a breach like the ax situation that you describe.
Scouters do not punish, there is very little that requires harsh
immediate correction; the quiet, guiding, counselling method, away in
time and space from the incident, that emphaisies the positieve is by
far the best.
Hope that this adds to the converstaion.
MCB Quantico VA
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City