Posts by Michael Freeman

Should you end your Scout meeting on a fun note or a reflective one?

Every unit meeting has a beginning and an end, often with a lot of raucous and exciting activities in between. As a leader, you’ve probably planned or helped plan quite a few, and have realized that scheduling can provide much-needed structure. That structure allows for moments of team-building, reflection and instruction. A prime time for these…

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Youth elections aren’t immune to drama

Many youth leaders in Scouts, Venturing and Sea Scouts are chosen by their peers. It’s a great exercise in civics. However, like with any election, one side can be left disappointed with the results.  Let’s examine this scenario: Star Scout Adam and First Class Scout Timothy are running for patrol leader. Adam is the current…

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Do you need to match your uniform to specific meetings?

You’re going to your daughter’s den meeting at 5:30 p.m., and your son’s troop meeting is at 7 p.m. You’ll have to drive straight there from the den meeting — and your uniform is covered in Cub Scout patches. Correct uniforming is important, but obviously, you’re not going to break out the fabric scissors, needle and…

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How do you counsel a youth leader struggling to gain respect?

It’s the third day of summer camp, and everything has been going swimmingly. That is, until Patrol Leader Xavier notices a few of the younger Scouts tossing trash into the fire pit. He looks around the campsite and notices their gear has been carelessly strewn around, too. He approaches them and instructs the Scouts not…

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When he needed surgery, Scouting helped ease his mind

Last December, Mike Landis (right) started experiencing numbness in his face and down his left arm. Concerned, he saw his doctor, who referred him to a specialist in Salem, Va. After an MRI, the specialist urged Landis to have surgery immediately. He had a ruptured disc in his neck that was pressing on a nerve. “This would…

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Encourage your Scouts to answer the call to bugle

It’s a classic summer camp sound: the rousing wake-up call of “Reveille” played on a bugle. It was once practically considered a standard piece of Scout equipment; the 1911 Handbook suggested every patrol have a bugle. They are perfect for communicating a message in a large area instead of straining your vocal cords by yelling. Outside…

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Powder Horn in Paradise: Scouters take training course in Hawaii

Scuba diving in enchanting aquamarine waters, sailing in a bay adorned with a lush mountainous backdrop, savoring a delicious fish and rice dinner cooked in leaves and bamboo. Sounds like a great vacation, right? It also sounds like Powder Horn at Hawaii’s Aloha Council. In March, the council hosted 48 Scouts and Scouters from Hawaii and…

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