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Baloo's Bugle


February 2002 Cub Scout Roundtable Issue

Volume 8, Issue 7
March Theme

Dollars & Sense
Webelos Athlete & Engineer
  

 

 

WEBELOS

 

Webelos To Scout Transition

How The Transition Plan Helps The Boy
National Capital Area Council

Webelos to Boy Scout Transition is one of the most, if not the most important job you have as a Webelos leader.  It is your job to guide the boys through the Webelos requirements, their Arrow of Light ceremony, and on to Boy Scouts.  Transition to Boy Scouting is not that difficult a task if you plan ahead.  Planning is the key.

Many Webelos Scouts will go on into Scouting with no help at all.  But at least half of them need to know more about their opportunities for fun and adventure in the Scout troop.  That is really the purpose of the Webelos-to-Scout transition plan, to give the Webelos Scout a sampling of the troop program, troop leadership, personal advancement, a training and learning experience and an appreciation of troop organization and relationships.

You, as a Webelos leader, are the means for the boys transition to Boy Scouting.  As a leader you supply the road which the boys must travel for successful transition to a Boy Scout Troop.  If the road you provide is not well marked the boys will be fearful of what is around the next turn and they may never complete the journey.  the boys' transition involves knowledge, understanding, and communication.  Through your leadership and teamwork with other pack leaders, and with the Boy Scout Troops in your area you can supply the necessary road map for your Webelos to follow.

Preparing your Webelos to become Boy Scouts actually begins early in the first year of the Webelos program.  As Webelos the boys learn about outdoor skills, about more challenging tasks through activity badge requirements, through greater independence and leadership.  As second year Webelos your boys should be exposed to Boy Scout Troops in your area.  In their second year they should be learning the Boy Scout Oath, Motto, Slogan, Sign, Salute and Handshake.  They have been camping as a den and might have gone to a Webelos Long Term Summer Camp.  If all this has been done then  the transition has begun and the Webelos you lead are ready to visit troop meetings and camp with the Boy Scouts as guests.

The boy's Webelos badge and Arrow of Light Award reach into the requirements bordering on Scouting skills, giving him a view of Scouting advancement.  He sees boy leadership at work and senses his own potential as a junior leader.

In short, the boy's desire for troop membership is the result of this gradual change in appetite for troop oriented activities.

 

You And The Troop Leaders Work Together

When the Webelos-to-Scout transition program is used, Webelos Scouts want to join Boy Scout troops.  As a part of this program, Boy Scout leaders give you help and support, participate in the joint meetings and campouts with you, supply a den chief and a troop Webelos resource person, and establish a pack-troop relationship of a permanent basis.

Your unit commissioner can help you make a list of nearby troops, with leaders' names and phone numbers.  If a unit commissioner is not available, either the Cubmaster or the Webelos den leader will need to take the initiative to get things going.

If available, the unit commissioner can help bring together the Webelos den leader, Cubmaster and Scoutmaster for their first meeting.  If commissioner is not available, call the Scoutmaster and arrange for all to sit down together and to share your mutual needs.  It will be a time to get acquainted, define responsibilities, discuss leadership needs and make plans to recruit any needed leaders.  Set up a plan for regular communications between key leaders to keep every one interested and informed.

 

You And The Pack Leaders Work Together

The following responsibilities should be done by den and pack leaders for a smooth transition.

 

Webelos Den Leader

      Use the parent-talent survey sheets to identify potential activity badge counselors.

      Train the Webelos den chief and help him to register for and attend den chief's training.

      Recognize the Webelos den chief in front of the pack or Webelos den.

      Complete Webelos den leader training as soon as possible.

      Work with the Webelos resource person and Cubmaster to conduct effective graduation ceremonies at the pack meeting.

      Attend roundtables on a regular basis, especially any joint Webelos and Scout leaders' roundtables.

Webelos Den Chief

      Receive training from the Webelos den leader and attend den chief training.  Secure a Den Chief Handbook.

      Participate in the yearly Webelos program planning meeting.

      Be familiar with the Webelos badge and Arrow of Light Award requirements in order to assist Webelos Scouts in their advancement.

      Attend all Webelos den meetings and participate in district "Webelos Woods" activities.

      Assist with all pack (or den)/troop activities and participate at pack meetings with Webelos Scouts in skits, stunts, songs, demonstrations, etc.

      Assist with Webelos overnight campouts, showing Webelos Scouts the proper use of troop equipment.

      Secure help from troop junior leaders.

      Assist activity badge counselors at Webelos den meetings as needed.

      Represent the Webelos den to the troop and the Scouts to the Webelos den.  Explain the "patrol method" enthusiastically.

      Participate with the pack, Webelos den and troop in joint service projects.

Cubmaster

      Sit down with your unit commissioner, Scoutmaster and Webelos den leader to determine what needs to be done to improve Webelos graduations.

      Assist in planning and conducting stimulating graduation ceremonies, involving parents, the Scoutmaster, the den chief, the Webelos den leader and boy leaders from the troop.

      Conduct Webelos den induction ceremonies and Arrow of Light Award ceremonies.

      Support the Webelos den leader in pack/troop activities.

      Help establish and maintain strong pack/troop relationships.

      Encourage high advancement standards for the Webelos Scouts.

      Include Webelos den participation in pack meeting activities.

      Attend roundtables on a regular basis.  Attend any Webelos and Scout leader's roundtables with the Webelos den leader.

      Recognize the den chiefs at the pack meetings.

      Support the year-round Webelos den program.

      Help to recruit activity badge counselors from the pack.

Pack Committee

      Help recruit and support the Webelos den leader(s) and provide resources for the Webelos den.

      Promote Webelos-to-Scout transition through the chartered organizations.

      At each monthly meeting, keep informed of Webelos den progress and needs.

      Help bring families together at joint pack(or den)/troop activities.

      Promote and support strong pack/troop relationships, sharing with the troop committee the need for graduations into the troop.

      Work closely with the unit commissioner in effecting a smooth flow of boys into the troop.

Activity Badge Counselor

      Provide activity badge instruction at the Webelos den meeting.

      Be familiar with the Webelos Scout book in presenting activity badge information and certifying advancement.

      Help recruit other activity badge counselors.

      Lead field trips related to activity badges.

      Provide resources and instruction on selected activity badge.

      Hold to the time schedule for activity badge instruction.

 

Suggestions For A Successful Transition

         Sign up for and attend your district's next New Leaders Essentials Training that is specific for Boy Scout Leaders.  The course is not only for Scoutmasters.  Parents, committee members and anyone interested is welcome to attend.  This is a great way to get firsthand knowledge of how a troop works.  You can then take your knowledge back to your Webelos and get them excited.

         At every opportunity talk about Boy Scouting.

         Take your Webelos camping.  Teach them the basics about fire building, knots, camp tasks, cooking, site selection and camp rules.

         Introduce them to service projects.

         Show pride in your uniform.

         Gradually hand over den leadership to the boys.  Let them learn what it is like to have the added responsibility.

         In their second year expose the boys to as many Boy Scout Troops as you have time for.

         Create games as a form of learning the Scout oath, law, motto, and slogan.  There is nothing like a little competition to spark boys this age.

         If you were a Boy Scout, talk about your adventures and apprehensions.  Show the boys some of your old gear or pictures.

         Let the boys talk about their ideas of what Boy Scouting is, their anticipation and their fears.

 

Overview Of The Boy Scout Program

 

Like Cub Scouts, a Boy Scout Troop is structured with a chartering organization, a charter representative, a committee, and adult leaders, in the case a Scoutmaster and Assistant Scoutmasters.  The boys are divided into patrols, rather than dens, and are boy led.  The Senior Patrol Leader fills the position of the troop's boy leader.

The chartering organization provides a meeting place and helps the troop in any way it can.  The representative acts as liaison between the troop and the sponsor.  The committee insures the troop is following BSA policy, helps conduct boards of review for rank advancement, and considers the troop's means of finance.

The Scoutmaster and his/her assistants carry out the program with the boys and have the closest exposure to the troop as a whole.

The Senior Patrol Leader (SPL) not the Scoutmaster, conducts the troop meetings.  The SPL is an elected position, determined by regularly scheduled elections and voted on by the boys in the troop.  The SPL is not picked by the Scoutmaster or the committee.  Patrol leaders are also elected by the boys within each patrol.  The SPL, his assistants, and the patrol leaders comprise the Patrol Leaders' Council (PLC).  The PLC meets generally once a month to plan and review the troop's progress.  With the assistance of the Scoutmaster the PLC determines the troop's program.

The Patrol Leader conducts the individual patrol meetings with the assistance of an adult Assistant Scoutmaster.  The Patrol Leader leads the patrol in planning for campouts, other activities, Scouting skills, games, advancement, etc.

As members of a patrol the boys work as a unit, and individually.  As a unit they camp, work on patrol service projects, and carry out troop assignments together.  As individuals they work on merit badges, rank advancement and self-improvement.


 

 

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