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Does the SPL Always Lead on a Campout?

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#21 Stosh


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Posted 02 May 2016 - 03:43 PM

Why would the older scouts want to change from having the adult do all the work to a system where they would be expected to work.  It's kinda like getting dumped off welfare, of course they aren't going to like the change.


Going from not being expected to grow up to all of a sudden now make the announcement that I have to mature?  Not in the cards for most of the older boys.

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#22 SSScout


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Posted 02 May 2016 - 09:56 PM

Welcome to the virtual cracker barrel, Doakley. 

It will be hard to change an "easy" Troop.  Easy, as in it's "easy" to let the adults do it.

Check with your Council and District folks. Commissioners, etc.   Is there a NAYLT  course available for your boys?   You can ask about that in your WB course, too. 

! What a ticket....

When you are the SM, Officially,   get together with your CC and COR and talk to them about your vision of what a Scout Troop should be.   Get their support. 

Then, talk to the Council and District Training folks (assuming you have some. You did take SLS and IOLS, yes? ) and ask about the Troop Boy Leader Training course that YOU can give your PLs and SPL.   It should be available to you thru the Council.   That is how you make the boys BELIEVE that they can do what you are asking, allowing them to do.  

One of my favorite anecdotes concerns the PLC I sat in on one time.  The newby SPL was mulling over the calendar the SM had suggested and the PLs were looking at.  The SM kept asking "what do YOU think?"  Finally, the SPL said, incredulously, "you mean, I can make THAT decision?"  The SM said "DUH...." and the meeting progressed .  It was a good troop for the next year.  

So:    Take your training, train your Scouts,  lead by example,  go to Round Table,   ignore your own Scoutson (as appropriate) and  gently remind your other adult leaders that "No Adult should Do What A Scout Can Do."

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#23 Hedgehog


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Posted 05 May 2016 - 06:26 AM

Our Troop functions similarly with ad hoc patrols for campouts.  Typically, the patrol leaders or assistant patrol leaders end up leading the patrols, but their members are shuffled.  We have around 50 guys but pull around 20 for campouts.  Before I arrived, the troop was very much adult led and troop method.  Started by having each patrol cook for itself.  Then having them pack their own gear.  Then having them decide on their own activities on outings.  At the same time, we took the adults and put them in the next campsite.  That's taken three years.


What folks have said about the older scouts and parents is absolutely correct.  Start change with the bottom up.  Preach boy-led to the younger boys and their parents.  In the three years I've been there, the SM and I have it so that there is pretty much no institutional reccolection of not being boy-led on campouts.  The adults have been taught to just stand around when the boys are packing the gear.  The SPL communicates with the PLs making sure everything is done.  The APLs help the PLs thereby learning what needs to be done.


My next goal is permanent patrols with the boys picking their patrols.  It is like Galleo saying the earth revolves around the sun.  The SMs have always assigned the patrols on an annual basis.  Probably why the patrol names are always "A Patrol", "B Patrol" etc.  I had a major victory when a second year scout asked if they could form their own patrols for a campout... as the ASM in charge of the outdoor program I said "give it a try!"  They formed two perfect patrols.  Trying to get that to happen for summer camp.  Maybe I can sell it as, "let's give it a try... the adults can always rearrange the patrols if necessary..." :D


As for the permanent patrols, I'm going to give it a shot next year, but it may not catch hold until I become SM the following year and have the help of a thoroughly indoctrinated SPL.

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#24 Krampus


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Posted 05 May 2016 - 07:18 AM

I have an interesting problem. We elected a new SPL in March. Unfortunately he's moving this summer with 3 months left in his term. My ASPLs are all chomping at the bit to be SPL.


At the PLC I left them to decide how to resolve the issue. I was expecting them to come up with a contrived rotation allowing each one to take a chance at leading. Why? They are close friends and likely didn't want to step on one another. I figured they'd construct a method to share power until the election in September.


Instead, after about a 5 minute discussion of several ideas, they rested on having a new election. They figured that, despite what they might individually want....or want as a leadership group, ultimately the power resided with the troop to elect the SPL. They went further to recommend that the SPL leaving be given a leadership project while he's finding a new troop so he doesn't lose any time toward his POR.  :eek:


I love the feeling you get when you realize you weren't even needed in a meeting. :D

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