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Merit Badge Worksheets


Best Answer CNYScouter , 25 May 2017 - 05:57 AM

BSA discourages use of unofficial merit badge worksheets

https://blog.scoutin...dge-worksheets/

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#21 robert12

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Posted 26 May 2017 - 10:00 AM

From the G2A,

 

7.0.4.8 Unofficial Worksheets and Learning Aids
Worksheets and other materials that may be of assistance in earning merit badges are available from a variety of places including unofficial sources on the Internet and even troop libraries. Use of these aids is permissible as long as the materials can be correlated with the current requirements that Scouts must fulfill. Completing “worksheets” may suffice where a requirement calls for something in writing, but this would not work for a requirement where the Scout must discuss, tell, show, or demonstrate, etc. Note that Scouts shall not be required to use these learning aids in order to complete a merit badge.


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#22 SSScout

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Posted 26 May 2017 - 07:30 PM

Mzkelly  Welcome to the forums.  

And thank you, Robert12, nice catch...

 

"Et tu,  Scoutmaster?"

 

I knew we had seen this sort of thing before.   "search function is your friend"....    go to   http://scouter.com/i...ost-blue-cards/    on another browser page and come back here to rant some more  :happy:

 

The Scout needs :  1)  a caring, knowledgeable MBCounselor.  

2) to follow the instructions on the Blue Card (one part to the MBCounselor, one to the Troop, one part to the Scout ). 

3) The name of the Troop's Advancement Chair/secretary/registrar.  

4) As the Scout progresses  in Scouting, he needs to record EVERYTHING in his BSManual. Dates, names, places. And keep that manual safe.   I knew a Scout who had TWO BSManuals:  One in his desk at home, one in his hike haversack.   He also had a baseball card plastic page three ring binder to keep all the MBCards and Training Cards etc.  He was glad he had these records when he had to appeal his Eagle application.  

5)  Not a bad idea to periodically check the Troop's records against the Scout's, against the Council's (Troop does utilize the internet registration, yes? )  

6)  Buy the MBBook.  It is a good (nay, excellent) source of information about the topic.  It makes a good Middle School curriculum for homeschooling . If  Scout  READS it, he will probably not need any "worksheet".  All the "answers" are there, in the MBBook (surprise !) .   Even Bugling and music ! 

 

See you on the trail....


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#23 TAHAWK

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Posted 26 May 2017 - 11:10 PM

Some of these unofficial worksheets are misleading as to the actual requirements. 


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#24 Spiney Norman

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 07:57 AM

As a MB counselor I used to rely heavily on those worksheets. I never required them but would steer scouts to get hold of and use them. It seemed a way to help them get the requirements done quicker and with less fuss. Full disclosure I am a counselor for Family Life, Communications and Personal Management. The subject matter can be pretty dry and some of it does seem like schoolwork. What I found  over time is that their mastery of the subject matter began to slip until it almost became a fill in the blank type situation.

 

I've since changed my focus, required that the scout get hold of the MB pamphlet, READ IT, and fulfill the requirements as written, i.e. discuss, write, show. I have also challenged the scouts to "Wow" me and they have. I guess it all comes down to expectations. Perhaps before I was just looking for completion rather than mastery. The worksheets certainly are a good teaching aid , but by no means are they a complete package to a scout completing a merit badge.

Ken


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#25 Col. Flagg

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 08:04 AM

Reading the pamphlet should always be mandatory. BSA writes them for a reason. ;)

 

For folks who cannot afford $4.99 a pop, you can find pdfs online.


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#26 TAHAWK

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 08:58 AM

Considering the quality of some of the pamphlets, it would seem BSA writes them for 499 reasons.


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#27 fred johnson

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 12:07 PM

For folks who cannot afford $4.99 a pop, you can find pdfs online.

 

Really ?   Seriously ?


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#28 Col. Flagg

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 01:29 PM

Really ?   Seriously ?

 

Yes. I found nearly 90 pdfs of the MB pamphlets online. One guy scanned a ton of them and keeps them on a Google drive. If you know where and how to look, you can find them. Now, not all badges and not the latest requirements, but the info in the books rarely change all that drastically.

 

Here's one troop I found just doing a quick search.


Edited by Col. Flagg, 23 June 2017 - 01:30 PM.

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#29 CalicoPenn

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 02:47 PM

Reading the pamphlet should always be mandatory. BSA writes them for a reason. ;)

 

For folks who cannot afford $4.99 a pop, you can find pdfs online.

 

Isn't that what the Troop Library and Troop Librarian is for?  To be a source for those $4.99 merit badge books?  A Troop doesn't have to have a complete set of them - but it would be helpful to have at least 5 of each of the required merit badge books.  If a Scout wants to try out a badge that doesn't have a book in the library, we will  purchase a copy the next time someone goes out to the Scout Service Center for the library.  Not all of the books in the library were purchased by the Troop - we've had a lot of Scouts buy a merit badge book at Summer Camp because they've decided to take a badge at the last minute and don't have access to the library or they forgot to check the book out from the library and they will donate them to the Troop when they are done with it.  We don't purchase merit badge books at summer camp if we have copies in the Troop library back home (if it's a badge that the Troop doesn't have in the Troop library, the SM will buy it out of the summer camp petty cash fund - and yes, the library inventory is available at camp).

 

A couple of our Scoutmasters have even told the Scouts that when they request a blue card, they have to check the merit badge book out of the library first and have it with them when they request it - They got it that, like you say, reading the merit badge book should be mandatory - the Scout may not read it, but he can't say he never had the opportunity to do so.


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#30 Col. Flagg

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 03:02 PM

Some troops may not have troop libraries. PDFs are another option.


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#31 Fehler

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 03:30 PM

So is shoplifting.


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#32 clemlaw

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 07:44 PM

When my son did Game Design merit badge, we didn't have a copy of the book and wanted to start reading it.  Lo and behold, we found a bootleg PDF of it online, and he did read most of it online.  We did buy a copy, but it was a matter of having time to read it.

 

One of the ironic parts of it was that he read from a bootleg copy the importance of intellectual property.  It's possible that I might have "forgotten" to go buy a copy, but reading the section about intellectual property was enough to guilt me into remembering.

 

IMHO, the books are too expensive, and they ought to be made available online for free or a much more reasonable price.  For some merit badges, the book is important.  For others, I don't think there's much reason to have a scout read it.  For example, I'm not sure what one would get out of reading the Swimming merit badge book.


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#33 Stosh

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 09:54 PM

One would think that if BSA got out of Luddite Mode they could "sell" the MB books through a paid download process.  Without the glossy expensive printing costs, they could cut the cost, include worksheets, and have the latest-and-greatest version of the booklet available in real time.  It they had 5 minutes they could call up the Kindle people and see how nifty this works. 


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Stosh

 

There's a reason why I don't always answer the phone, doorbell or comments on forums.  :)


#34 DuctTape

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Posted 24 June 2017 - 08:25 AM

One would think that if BSA got out of Luddite Mode they could "sell" the MB books through a paid download process.  Without the glossy expensive printing costs, they could cut the cost, include worksheets, and have the latest-and-greatest version of the booklet available in real time.  It they had 5 minutes they could call up the Kindle people and see how nifty this works.


Or an app with the pamphlets accessible that way. The new electronic pamphlets could include tutorial videos, or links to access the video via youtube which could then generate ad revenue. Lots of ways to make them 21st century.
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#35 qwazse

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Posted 24 June 2017 - 10:48 AM

Or an app with the pamphlets accessible that way. The new electronic pamphlets could include tutorial videos, or links to access the video via youtube which could then generate ad revenue. Lots of ways to make them 21st century.


I wonder what the sales figures are on BSAs online MBPs (https://blog.scoutin...ook-now-kindle/)
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#36 RememberSchiff

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Posted 24 June 2017 - 10:49 AM

Or an app with the pamphlets accessible that way. The new electronic pamphlets could include tutorial videos, or links to access the video via youtube which could then generate ad revenue. Lots of ways to make them 21st century.

Plus push notifications that MB requirements have changed or corrections have been made to pamphlet.  Green too.


Edited by RememberSchiff, 24 June 2017 - 10:51 AM.

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#37 qwazse

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Posted 24 June 2017 - 01:59 PM

double post

Edited by qwazse, 24 June 2017 - 02:01 PM.

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#38 Back Pack

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Posted 24 June 2017 - 02:47 PM

I wonder what the sales figures are on BSAs online MBPs (https://blog.scoutin...ook-now-kindle/)


It's in the annual report.
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#39 qwazse

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Posted 24 June 2017 - 06:37 PM

It's in the annual report.

Okay, maybe I'm too impatient. But I didn't see anywhere in the 2016 Annual Report about online MB publication sales.

While we're talking about ease of use, why does any BSA online literature have to be in .pdf format?

ASCII text with jpeg images. HTML formatting with minimum style settings. That way the user could choose his own font. Downloads would be insanely fast. The sales model could be direct for pennies via national scoutshop accounts - not unlike magazine subscriptions ... bypassing the resellers.
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#40 Back Pack

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Posted 24 June 2017 - 07:17 PM

All docs are likely in a desktop publishing or word processing format to begin with. You could port all Merit badge books in to a common portal, searchable, low storage and bandwidth format.

BSA won't because they want money and can't resist shines objects (the current interactive books).
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