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Preparing for IOLS


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#1 tnmule20

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 09:14 AM

I am a Den Leader in our pack and our den is moving to Webelos I.  I thought this would be a good course to take.  I have found the IOLS booklet pdf on the net and am going over it.  Any wisdom on how to prepare would be appreciated.  I know this can be a broad range of topics but just chime in with whatever you think might help a greenhorn.

 

Thanks in advance.


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#2 Krampus

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 09:19 AM

I am a Den Leader in our pack and our den is moving to Webelos I.  I thought this would be a good course to take.  I have found the IOLS booklet pdf on the net and am going over it.  Any wisdom on how to prepare would be appreciated.  I know this can be a broad range of topics but just chime in with whatever you think might help a greenhorn.

 

Thanks in advance.

 

Really depends on how it is taught in your area and how hands-on it is. 

 

My advice to any leader is to learn what your boys will learn. For the first year Boy Scouts that's all the stuff from Scout to First Class. Learn it well and be able to explain how and why those skills are used. Use the EDGE method whenever possible.

 

Have fun with it.


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#3 tnmule20

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 10:25 AM

It is a 2 night camp.  Arrive 6pm on Friday and leave mid-day Sunday,  I hope it is hands on, I'm looking forward to learning some new stuff.


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#4 Sentinel947

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 10:29 AM

It is a 2 night camp.  Arrive 6pm on Friday and leave mid-day Sunday,  I hope it is hands on, I'm looking forward to learning some new stuff.

If it isn't hands on, they aren't doing it properly. 


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#5 perdidochas

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 10:49 AM

I am a Den Leader in our pack and our den is moving to Webelos I.  I thought this would be a good course to take.  I have found the IOLS booklet pdf on the net and am going over it.  Any wisdom on how to prepare would be appreciated.  I know this can be a broad range of topics but just chime in with whatever you think might help a greenhorn.

 

Thanks in advance.

 

It is a good course to take in your case.  Do you have any outdoor experience at camping, etc?


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#6 meyerc13

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 10:59 AM

Perdidochas asks a good question, but I will add that even if you have outdoor experience, was it as a Boy Scout or outside of Scouting?  I was a Boy Scout, and did a lot of family camping growing up.  A few years back, my family started camping again and we've camped with some friends who were never Scouts.  I've witnessed some things that made me cringe.

 

For example... starting a fire.  As a Scout, you get your tinder, kindling, etc. and start small.  As a non-Scout, apparently the method is take the biggest log you can find, and get out the blowtorch.

 

Another example, saw a Webelos leader's kid at a Webelos encampment walking around with a hatchet and thunking it into logs (while his other hand was holding the log steady about six inches from where he was chopping).  There were so many things wrong with that picture that it was clear to me that the leader had never looked at the Guide to Safe Scouting or taken the course you will be taking.  While that may be fine by your rules when you are camping with your family (although in this case I would say that what I saw would never be safe or acceptable inside or outside of Scouting), it isn't acceptable under the BSA's program and rules.

 

So, unless you were a Boy Scout growing up, the best advice I have is forget everything you've learned and go in prepared to learn the Scouting way of doing things.


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#7 T2Eagle

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 11:09 AM

Really depends on how it is taught in your area and how hands-on it is. 

 

My advice to any leader is to learn what your boys will learn. For the first year Boy Scouts that's all the stuff from Scout to First Class. Learn it well and be able to explain how and why those skills are used. Use the EDGE method whenever possible.

 

Have fun with it.

Krampus' advice is spot on.  I'll just add that my recommendation for how to "learn what your boys will learn"  is to, before the training, get a copy of the scout handbook, really familiarize with the Tenderfoot through First Class requirements, and then thoroughly read the associated pages for those requirements from the handbook.

 

Think of IOLS in terms of how you will help your scouts master these skills.


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#8 Stosh

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 12:47 PM

Perdidochas asks a good question, but I will add that even if you have outdoor experience, was it as a Boy Scout or outside of Scouting?  I was a Boy Scout, and did a lot of family camping growing up.  A few years back, my family started camping again and we've camped with some friends who were never Scouts.  I've witnessed some things that made me cringe.

 

For example... starting a fire.  As a Scout, you get your tinder, kindling, etc. and start small.  As a non-Scout, apparently the method is take the biggest log you can find, and get out the blowtorch.

 

Another example, saw a Webelos leader's kid at a Webelos encampment walking around with a hatchet and thunking it into logs (while his other hand was holding the log steady about six inches from where he was chopping).  There were so many things wrong with that picture that it was clear to me that the leader had never looked at the Guide to Safe Scouting or taken the course you will be taking.  While that may be fine by your rules when you are camping with your family (although in this case I would say that what I saw would never be safe or acceptable inside or outside of Scouting), it isn't acceptable under the BSA's program and rules.

 

So, unless you were a Boy Scout growing up, the best advice I have is forget everything you've learned and go in prepared to learn the Scouting way of doing things.

 

Starting a rocket stove is a lot different than starting a campfire.  :)  A lot easier than starting the propane stove in the winter time.  Lot quicker than a campfire.


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#9 walk in the woods

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 12:49 PM

Been a while since I worked on this but check with your training folk.  There used to be a Webelos specific version of OLS that was separate from the Boy Scout Leader IOLS.  I don't know if the former is still required for Webelos Den camping or if the latter now covers the requirements for both.

 

Beyond that, be familiar with the Tenderfoot to First Class skills as mentioned, be open minded to making some new friends, and be open to learning from your peers.


Edited by walk in the woods, 14 April 2016 - 12:56 PM.

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#10 tnmule20

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 02:39 PM

I do not have any camping experience as a Scout.  My camping experience has been car camping with the Cub Scouts for the last two years.

 

This is directly from the registration page of our IOLS, 

 

"This is not a classroom presentation, camporee or truck camping; this is a Walking OLS.  You will hit the trail to adventure carrying everything you need in your pack on your back necessary to live comfortable in the outdoors, sleep two nights in a tent you pitched, cook your meals on stoves or a fire you built and earn the rewards of being a competent camper.

Experienced instructors will give you hands-on training in the outdoor and camping skills required for Tenderfoot through First Class ranks. Learn packing and hiking techniques, map & compass skills, camp set-up, menu planning and cooking, knots & lashings, first aid, nature identification, woods tools safety, campfire programs and Leave No Trace. During this course you will use the buddy system, the EDGE and Patrol Methods."

 

Sounds interesting.


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#11 Stosh

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 02:55 PM

I remember people showing up for the Webelos outdoor training having stopped by the local Walmart and picked up a tent, sleeping bag and mess kit.  These were people who were complaining about having to take the class and sleep in a tent overnight.  The class part was okay, but they were expecting to take the boys camping and never have done it themselves.  Hopefully things are changing. yet again.  I quit teaching when the council buckled and started doing Webelos without the camping expectation.


Edited by Stosh, 14 April 2016 - 02:58 PM.

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#12 Eagledad

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 02:56 PM

Sounds like fun. I'm sure they are providing a list of the equipment you will need. As for the rest, just have fun.

 

Barry


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"Experience is the hardest teacher. It gives the test first, then the lesson."


#13 Krampus

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 05:01 PM

I'm jealous. Ours was mostly indoors (new conf center they wanted to show off). Some outdoors. Already knew the skills and would have loved to "test out". Nothing new taught or learned.

 

Sounds like the program in the OP has promise...or at very least some exercise. ;)


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#14 SSScout

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Posted 14 April 2016 - 07:48 PM

In our area, we have several choices of IOLS.  Sabbath Friendly , some with more physical "challenge" , some not so.  Depends on the head trainer.   Ask around for the reputations available.  That being said,...

 

You can take the IOLS, which is for Boy Scout Leaders, and with the advance knowledge of your Trainer, get credit for BALOO, too.   The IOLS is BALOO with more stuff. Lots more stuff.   The trainer, if he/she is knowledgeable, can give you the "Cub Philosophy" part, too, and presto!  Double credit!  BALOO and IOLS for later in your Scout career!

 

Come "Prepared" to camp.  And take notes.  And participate, not just sit back!


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#15 Sentinel947

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Posted 15 April 2016 - 07:54 AM

I'm jealous. Ours was mostly indoors (new conf center they wanted to show off). Some outdoors. Already knew the skills and would have loved to "test out". Nothing new taught or learned.

 

Sounds like the program in the OP has promise...or at very least some exercise. ;)

 

I took IOLS roughly 10 months after I earned my Eagle. I knew the instructor and so for much of the skills practice he and I split the class to teach things like knots. Good times..  :D


Edited by Sentinel947, 15 April 2016 - 07:54 AM.

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#16 qwazse

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Posted 15 April 2016 - 10:34 AM

It sounds like you're in the right frame of mind to enjoy this course. Just some words of warning:

 

Keep in mind that a given demonstration will be of what's in the book + what that person thinks is the best way to do it. So for example, a cub leader came back and busted on my tying the taught-line hitch wrongly. (Last hitch was counter-clockwise to the others going clockwise. Lays flatter and you can make pretty braids with the tag end.)

  • I said, "But, it's holding the line taught. And that's what it looked like in my book. (Minus the macrame.)"
  • She said, "That's not the BSA way. We can't sign-off on any boy who does it that way."

I'll spare you the remainder of the discussion. I later looked in Son #1's book and saw that his picture was different from the one in my handbook.

 

When I took IOLS, the instructor pointed out that different guides (and different editions of the same guide) pictured it differently. There was no difference in knot strength and function either way.

 

So, expect to learn enough to begin to enjoy yourself a mile or more away from your car. But really use the time to get to know the instructors. You'll likely see them again at roundtables and camporees.


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#17 Stosh

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Posted 15 April 2016 - 10:45 AM

Seriously?  If I tie it left over right, right over left or right over left, left over right, or the bunny comes out of the hole, runs around the tree and jumps back in the hold, everyone should know that that isn't a square knot!  It's a reef knot.  Until my boys figure out how to tie the square knot instead of the reef knot,  they'll never get beyond Scout rank in my troop. 


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#18 T2Eagle

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Posted 15 April 2016 - 12:09 PM

Seriously?  If I tie it left over right, right over left or right over left, left over right, or the bunny comes out of the hole, runs around the tree and jumps back in the hold, everyone should know that that isn't a square knot!  It's a reef knot.  Until my boys figure out how to tie the square knot instead of the reef knot,  they'll never get beyond Scout rank in my troop. 

Luckily, since it's your PLs signing off on this rather than you, they have probably long since realized the wisdom of qwazse's view and just have seen no need to bring you into it. :)


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#19 Stosh

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Posted 15 April 2016 - 01:09 PM

Luckily, since it's your PLs signing off on this rather than you, they have probably long since realized the wisdom of qwazse's view and just have seen no need to bring you into it. :)

See!  My PL's are good for something after all!  :)


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Stosh

 

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#20 Eagle94-A1

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Posted 15 April 2016 - 05:14 PM

I took IOLS roughly 10 months after I earned my Eagle. I knew the instructor and so for much of the skills practice he and I split the class to teach things like knots. Good times..  :D

 

I had a Scout teach portions of IOLS, because he had the knowledge, skills, and abilities to do it.. Great instructor. When be turned 18, the new district training chairman, who worked with the individual on the IOLS course, refused to sign him off until he completed the course. Sometimes it sucks to be the "leader's kid," having to worry about the leaders showing favoritism. ;)

 

And yes, once he completed IOLS, dad did sign him off.


Edited by Eagle94-A1, 15 April 2016 - 05:20 PM.

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