Siblings, parental involvement and discipline
Jan Mussler (mussler@SPOT.COLORADO.EDU)
Wed, 12 Aug 1998 07:55:52 -0600
Robin and all:
Siblings - Here's been my stance on siblings.
They are welcome if the parent is a helper for the meeting. I know they
are coming and I have snacks enough and crafts enough for them to
participate if they are old enough. Parents can't be as effective as
helpers with them, but if I need the help, I put up with it. Generally,
parents with siblings don't offer to help as much. It's no fun for them
either. One mom has 3 other siblings - she only helped once at my house,
but we met twice at hers for leatherworking. Siblings are no problem
My younger son (only a year younger) is always with us as we meet at our
house. Sometimes he participates, sometimes he doesn;t. I plan for him
but have had to ground him to his room when he was disruptive. The
parents understand that this is a condition for my husband and myself to
be leaders for this den.
My older son has to hang out during his brothers den meeting which meets
after school at the school. He can be a pain also. Sometimes he
participates, sometimes he finds a friend to hang out with, sometimes he
just wanders around the school (not optimal). A couple times I let him go
home with out me on the bus but his age is marginal to do that. The
parents know he's usually with me, usually supply enough snack (I tell
them I need x to cover him plus the den chief). He goes without snack if
there isn't enough.
I have nixed older siblings coming and "waiting" for younger siblings
UNLESS 1) the parent's helping 2) It's my son and I'm leading 3) the boy
is a den chief. I had one parent who wanted older son to come ("he can
help!" - it was free day care) and I told the BOY, I'd love to have him
come help, but he needed to join Boy Scouts so he could be trained as a
den chief. He asked twice more (parents didn't ask any more) but I stuck
to my guns. He wasn't enough older - he would have been one more boy.
One older brother for my younger son's den is a Boy Scout and so I worked
it out with his mom that he could be Den Chief (he's really only old
enough to be an aide). It worked ok but I didn't have quite enough time
to supervise him and teach him well. But he can help with direction.
Parental involvement - You can't MAKE them help. Some are better helpers
than others. Just give them opportunities to help, even if they end up
being "the snack person", driver for field trip, supply getter, carpool or
whatever. Praise and use the ones who really are help. Encourage them to
sign up for a Pack event. Have them cut wood at home, plan a craft even
if you lead it. I've given up on 100% participation. With my
encouragement, I am close to that but it differs from den to den and isn't
always under your control.
Discipline - Have the boys set the rules, have your talk, use the Conduct
Candle and have the parents help if the child is really a problem.
Jan Mussler, Webelos Den Leader, Pack 170
Nederland, CO - Long's Peak Council
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City