scouts-l Mail Archive for March of 2000: Re: Encouraging advancement without doing the work
William N. Dilla (wdilla@IASTATE.EDU
Fri Mar 03 2000 - 10:16:34 CST
Nice comments. You ARE dating yourself however, as I remember doing all
those hikes, signalling, and the rules that you had to do everything for
each rank before you did the next from when I was a Scout. But, I continue
to believe that 1st Class is very important. Not because it one of
National's research studies found that Scouts who make "1st Class in a
year" stay in longer, but because the set of rank advancements up to 1st
Class are a syllabus for a course in basic outdoor and other life skills.
Something that I didn't mention in my other note is that we reserve the
non-advancing SM conference option only for Scouts who are dragging their
feet making 1st Class. After 1st Class, then it's really up to the Scout. I
figure that we're doing a good thing keeping an older Scout involved,
whether he's advancing or not.
I also appreciate your comment that "advancement shouldn't be something
separate from other Scouting." This is a lesson I'm really working on with
our troop leaders right now. The boys seem to think that "advancement" is
something you have to set aside special time for, and that it's boring.
And, they are right if they always take the "it's time to do advancement
now" approach. I'm trying to get them to see that it can be otherwise.
We're starting to get the idea that we can integrate advancement and fun on
campouts, but the big challenge will be getting to do that in meetings!
It was nice reading what you have to say and realizing that the
"advancement problem" hasn't changed that much in Scouting over the years.