The Senior Scout Badge scheme offers a challenge to Senior Scouts that they have not encountered in the Troop. This is where the Senior Scoutmaster can really excel and truly take the OUT out of scOUTing.
With such a wide range of subjects to choose from, planning a program can be quite difficult, if each choose a different badge to arrive at the same conclusion.
There is no set structure, as with the 1st and Second Class. To obtain the ultimate award a choice of subjects is given with a few obligatory badges added.
Most of the badges included in the award structure are demanding and require an element of patience, enthusiasm, and most of all guidance from leaders. Planning should be done by the Seniors themselves under the watchful eye of their leader.
Encourage natural leadership to develop within the Patrol, with each Senior Scout putting his/her ideas into the 'planning' stages. There can be fun and many challenges in the planning stages of an activity, which can be as good as taking part in the activity itself. Much can be learned in the Troop room which can be put into practice before the planned activity takes place.
A Suggested Evenings Program
An overnight expedition/camp.
1. Set up and cook a meal for your Patrol.
2. Study the weather forecast for tomorrow from information already collected and give an accurate assessment (The weather for the following day should be logged every two hours). Compare this log with the assessment the next week.
3. Pitch your tent on the floor of the troop room without Pegs.
Each of the above activities entail either a practical skill which needs to be learned, or a skill of an informative nature.
Do not discourage adventurous activities -- try to meet the Seniors' needs by finding a person or organization that is either experienced or capable of teaching or having the Scouts partake in their chosen activity. Some examples: Water Sports, Photography, Lifesaving, Windsurfing, Gun Clubs, Army Cadets, Gliding Clubs.
An idea for inclusion into your week-end camp.
A Night Hike
Planned hikes are commonplace to Seniors after their time in the Scouts, but unexpected hikes are quite a different matter and do add spice to the activity. During the day, have each patrol draw up a survival bag for inclusion in their hiking kit. Items should include, First Aid Kit, Sleeping Bag, survival ("space") bag, torch, matches etc.
A hike should be already planned with the starting point a distance away from the site, the walking time being estimated for a time of about 8 hours from the start to the camp site.
Transport the Patrol to the starting point. (only you should be aware of its location). It is a good idea to travel in an obscure direction, so that villages etc. seen on the way cannot give any clues as to where they are going. Upon arrival, give only the briefest information.
Give each Patrol a map and compass, followed by the instruction. "FIND OUT WHERE YOU ARE, PLOT A COURSE TO THE CAMP SITE, AND BE THERE FOR BREAKFAST IN THE MORNING".
Now the whole context of map reading and compass work changes. See how they react next morning to a new challenge of map reading and navigating at night.
The most important thing after any exercise or activity that has required planning is to have a de-briefing. From a well organized de-briefing you will learn a lot, and the Seniors will also.
To add some interest to your night hike, why not include some incidents at pre-determined map references. These can range from short incidents involving scouting type skills, to a surprise incident like a mock automobile accident. One stop could always include a brew of tea or soup. The challenge to leaders is endless in the Senior Section. Use imagination and expand on what you already know. The Scouts will rise to it, and enjoy their Senior Scouting.
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Last modified: August 20, 2012.