Scouts-L Mail Archive for November of 1998: Scoutmaster Conferences
Tue, 24 Nov 1998 10:15:56 -0500
There have been a number of postings about what should and should not be
done in a SMC. Over a three year period I think I have done about 200+
SMCs for a Troop of about 55 Scouts. Every Conference was different
because every boy was different and had different needs at every
Conference. I tested skills at some conferences. I asked the Scout to
tell me his goals at every conference and some times had to work with him
to get more realistic or more productive ones. We talked about his Patrol,
the Troop, the Troop's activities, his advancement, his other interests -
whatever was needed to get a snap shot of that particular young man at that
time and to help reach the next level.
For anyone to set hard and fast rules for a SMC is ridiculous. It is more
important to look at the boy who is coming to talk with you and make the
conference a conversation with him. If you knew a Scout had finally
triumphed over the square lashing, wouldn't you make it a point to "demand"
(:)) he demonstrate it to you to show off his skill. After my first year
as SM, I required the Scouts to schedule conference a week in advance. I
needed the time to think about what we needed to cover and I wanted to make
sure that I could allow enough time to do so. Sometimes the SMC was 20
minutes, sometimes an hour - it depended on what needed to be done.
I would ask the experienced Scouters to look back at their SMCs and see if
they have found the same things I have noted. I also am asking if anyone
has questions that they have successfully used for Advancement SMCs to post
it for the group or to me directly. I am always looking for more ways to
get the Scouts to think and to shine.
BTW, my best reusable questions have been:
If there was one requirement/ Merit Badge you could make a required one,
what would it be?
If you the head of the Boy Scouts of America for one day and could make one
change, what would it be?
If you could add one activity to the Troop schedule for next year, what
would it be and how would you sell it to the other boys?
(This resulted in the canoe orienteering campout - great idea from a second
If you could identify one need in the Troop, what would it be and how would
you meet that need?
Just food for thought.
Troop 417 Scoutmaster Emeritus and ASM
Buckeye District Boy Scout RT Commissioner
Post 214 - Black Sheep OA Dance Team and Construction Crew - Advisor
Always an Eagle - EC430 Frenetic Fox
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