Study Patrol




Search  Inquiry Net

Back ] Home ] Up ] Next ]

Service for Others
Study Patrol
Method Chart

Scout Books

Site Contents

By Lord Baden-Powell

ats023.jpg (111433 bytes)
B-P's Model of Scouting Methods

Where there are a number of candidates living in the same town or district, it is suggested they might form themselves into a Study Patrol.  It is very desirable to get an experienced Scoutmaster, where possible, to act as Leader.

Commissioners and Scoutmasters might do good work by collecting a number of young men from among their friends and explaining the scheme to them with the view to forming such a Patrol. 

Roughly, one night a week for four weeks might be given to each of the five subjects specified below.  Principles could be taught by an informal lecture with questions and discussion for about an hour, followed by practical work for another hour.  Where circumstances permit, a week-end camp will give the best opportunity for training, and each Patrol should try to arrange one at the end of each four weeks.  If the weather is too bad for the first month or two, the use of some Scout Hall or other building at the seaside or in the country might be obtained.

List of Subjects for Study


I. Boy Training and the need of it.



See Preface and Chapter X of Scouting for Boys, Hints on How to start a Troop. See also The Wolf Cub Handbook, and The Rover pamphlet.

II. Character Training.


The Scout Law, Woodcraft, Camping, Chivalry, Happiness and Enjoyment of Life, Observation, Scouting Games, Seamanship.

III. Physical Health and Development.


Physical Exercises and Reasons for each, Health-giving Habits, Games, Sanitation, Prevention of Disease, Temperance and Continence, Smoking, Self-Control.
IV. Self-Improvement for making a Career. Handicrafts, Work for Badges, Thrift, Citizenship, Dangers of Drink, Gambling, Impurity.
V. Service for Others (Chivalry and self-sacrifice the basis of Religion.) Helpfulness, First Aid, Accidents, Life Saving, Fire Brigade, Missioners, Patriotism.


Subject I: How to Train the Boy


Study and Practice

Ist Week: Present County Council Education. Visit Primary and Secondary Schools.
Watch methods of teaching.
Visit Technical Schools.
Visit Evening Continuation Schools.
Visit a Training Ship.
2nd Week: Public School Life. Visit one of the great Public Schools, and watch the method of study, the organization of games and athletics, the voluntary intelligence training by debating societies, laboratories, etc., fagging.
3rd Week: Environment.  Visit the slums.
Study the home life and environment of boys outside the school; the attractions, e.g., cinema, football, cheap literature, etc.  How to counteract or to utilize these.
4th Week: Administrative Discipline Visit, if possible, Scout Headquarters to see how the Movement is administered.  Also the administration offices of any big organization: look into its discipline, routine, and methods.
Weekend If possible, camp with a Patrol or Troop of boys.  Study each boy in turn.  Find his individual bent and all about his environment.  Plan to yourself how to develop the good in these or what to substitute in order to drive out the bad in them.





Instruction Details

Ist Week: Scout Promise and Law. Ceremony of enrolling a Scout.  Practical examples of teaching and impressing the Scout Law.
2nd Week: Map reading. Nature study. Observation and deduction. Finding way by map.  Noticing landmarks.  Estimating heights and distances.  Tracking.
3rd Week: Educational value of camping. Camp pitching. Camp games.
4th Week: Camp management, catering, financing, and discipline. Signalling. Signal fires.  Despatch running.  Whistle calls.
Weekend Camp. Tramp out, finding way by map.  Noticing landmarks, pitch tent, cook food, salute flag, camp prayers.  Practise instruction learnt during previous four weeks.




Study & Practice


1st Week: Self-Control.
     (a) Temperance.
     (b) Continence.


Food-gluttony, its reasons and results.  Evils of drink, smoking, gambling, etc.  How they start, what they lead to, how to prevent incontience, how it starts, its bad effects, ways of overcoming it. How to advise boys.
Games and Practices: Walk the plank. Rifle shooting. Mid-day rest for growing boys.
2nd Week: Physical Development. COURSE OF ANATOMY.
The six physical exercises for Scouts, their reasons and correct practice. Practise and make records of Scout's pace for !/2 mile, 100 yards running, high jump, throwing cricket ball, as standard tests for Scouts.
How to weigh and measure boys. Scout drill.  Quarter-staff play with staves.   Boxing. Wrestling. "Spotty face" for eyes. Testing for colour-blindness.   Sense of smell.  Blindfold training in locating oneself, etc.
Deep breathing and how to teach it correctly.  Fidgetiness a sign of growth.   Correct amount of exercise, sleep, and food for boy. 
Internal organs and their working.  Food values. 
Practise cooking.
Also above exercises.
4th Week: Hygiene and  Sanitation. Ventilation and light, reasons and methods.  Microbes, what they are, how conveyed. (Convey disease to teeth, etc.)  Bath or dry rub. Cleanli- ness of hands, nails, etc.
Care of teeth, eyes, nose-breathing. Practise missioner's work.  
Weekend Camp Practise the chief items of above and camp games tending to health and physical development, such as rowing, paper-chase, athletic sports, basket-ball, baseball, football, cleanliness in tents.
Cleanliness in cooking arrangements, refuse pits, latrines, etc.
Practise wholesome camp cookery. Camp hospital.
Drying frames for wet clothes, etc.



Theoretical Aim

Instruction in Detail


5th Week: Ready obedience. Using wits and hands.


Trek cart drill. Fire drill.  Boat drill (rowing and sailing).


6th Week: Good temper.  Cheeriness.  Keenness. Football and other team games (e.g. whale hunting), involving good temper, discipline, patience, sticking to the rules and playing for one's side and not for oneself.
7th Week: Pioneering leading to hobbies. Resourcefulness. Use of axe. Camp expedients. Camp loom. Model bridge building. Real bridge building, Improvising bridges, huts, tools, etc., out of materials available on the spot.
8th Week: Hobbies leading to handicrafts. Exhibitions of articles made by Scouts.



Working up for Badge. Examination in the different crafts and trades in Technical or Evening Schools. How to apprentice boys. Use of Labour Bureaus and Employment Agencies. Conditions of service in Civil, Naval, Military, and Post Office, etc.


A trek cart to carry equipment.  Cut your own wood for fires.  Make your own bed with camp loom and other camp expedients.  Camp fire yarns on theories.   Practise details.  Camp games.



Subject V: Service to Others


Study and Practice


Duty to God and neighbor.
Duty to King and country.




Practice good turns.
Church parade--how arranged and carried out in camp.
Nature study by observation-walks, or visits to museums, including plants, birds, animals, reptiles.
Star study.
Special police duty.
Marksmanship for pro- tection of women and children.



Training for Missioner's Badge in first aid, nursing, sanitation, diet, and other details.
Training for Pathfinder's Badge.
Practice of Missioner's Service.
Individual preparedness; also Organisation of Troops in Patrols for different duties connected with accidents, e.g. holding back crowd, bringing help, rescuing, applying first-aid, am- bulance work, etc., for such accidents as fire, drowning, runaway horses, suicides, wrecks, panics, gas poisoning, electric shock, aero- plane fall, etc.
Practice with rocket apparatus, fire-escape, hose, runaway horse, saving life in water, on railway, etc.
Fair play.
Further practice of foregoing.
Games involving fairness and adherence to rules (Losers to applaud winners).
Patrol Leaders' Conferences.
Debating society; and
Trial by jury to insure hearing both sides and then making up minds with fairness.
Weekend Camp On Saturday further practice of third and fourth weeks as above.
On Sunday practice of first and second weeks as above.


The following are sample questions such as an examiner could put to candidates for Scoutmasters' Diplomas, or students could put to themselves on the different subjects of study given above.

(Questions to be Answered by Candidates)

I. How to Train the Boy

I. What would you consider three of the main difficulties of the present system of school education, and how can Scouting be applied to help the schoolmaster in remedying it?

2. What, from personal observation, do you consider are the chief characteristics of a "working boy " ?

3. Mention any "Blind Alley" occupation with which you are personally acquainted, or about which you have information.  Suggest how Scouting could be applied to remedy its evils.

4. I have two letters criticising the book, Scouting for Boys. One says it is too full of subjects, that a learner cannot possibly take up all of them, and, therefore, the book is confusing. The other says he has tried the training, but has got through it all, and wants a further book with more subjects in it. State what you consider the functions of the book, and give from your point of view any suggestions as to how it would better fulfil its functions.

5. What do we mean by a "bad environment for boys," and how can Scouting be applied to counteract it?

6. What do you consider is the greatest factor for success in training boys, and outline how this is to be obtained?


I. What do you consider to be the difference between "Education" and "Instruction"?

2. What is your view of Military Drill as a means of training boys in character? State briefly its advantages and disadvantages.

3. What are the objects, advantages, or disadvantages of the Patrol System, that is, having Patrols as units in the Troops under full control of their Patrol Leaders?

4. How do you start to teach a boy tracking? What is the object of teaching him?

5. Which Scout Badges do you consider best calculated to develop "character" in the boy?

6. Draw up a program for a day's work in Camp, particularly for the purpose of training the boys in, character. Give your reasons for the different practices selected.


1. Can you suggest any better body exercises for boys than the six given in Scouting for Boys?  If so, please describe them briefly and give reasons. If satisfied with those in the book, state why you consider them the best.

2. How would you put the matter of sex-knowledge to an average boy of twelve assuming the parents desired you to do so? Give a brief outline showing how you would explain it, and what advice you would give on, the subject of impurity.  State whether your reply is based on actual experience of teaching boys or on theory.

3. In selecting a site for a camp, what points would you chiefly bear in mind?

4. What food diet would you recommend for a camp of poor-class Scouts? Give reasons for your selection, and estimate quantities and cost for twenty boys for one week.

5. How does the work for a Missioner's Badge help a boy to be healthy?

6. It has been suggested that the Scout Movement might give valuable help in the physical development and health of the boys of the nation if it started a regular physical system.  For this purpose it has been proposed to institute an "Athletes" Badge in three classes, viz.:

First-class: Boys who are up to the average standard of their age in various details of physical development and who can swim.

Second-class: Boys who are similarly up to the standard, but who cannot swim.

Third-class: Boys who fail to pass the tests for second-class, but come up to a modified standard.

Can you suggest the best practical method for carrying out this scheme, taking into consideration such points as-

(a) The time, knowledge, apparatus, etc., avaiable to the average Scoutmaster.

(b) The attractiveness to the boy, such as to induce every boy to go in for it.

(c) The nature of points on which the boys could best be treated?


1. What technical training is available in your neighbourhood for a Scout desirous of becoming a joiner (or any other kind of artisan)?  What would you do in the way of starting him in his trade career?

2. Give a rough outline of the chief forms of employment of a profitable character in your neighbourhood which are suitable for Scouts.  In the case of some one specific calling, give the conditions, such as length of hours, average wages, prospects, etc.

3. What motto would you give the Scout as one to follow in order to be successful in a business career?  Give an outline of the points you would impress upon him, using the motto as your text.

4. In what way can Scoutmasters and schoolmasters collaborate with a view to setting boys working for definite careers?

5. In what way can Scoutmasters use the Local Bmployment Bureau on behalf of their boys?

6. Criticise the regulations for any one of the Proficiency Badges that concerns a boy's career, and suggest any alterations that seem desirable to you with a regard to making this badge more useful or popular.


1. Assuming that a Scoutmaster may desire to leave the spiritual training of his boys to their pastors and parents, which Scouting activities can he best employ as a practical training that will be complementary to the religious instruction given by them?

2. Selfishness has been outlined as a prevailing vice in, our nation.  Can you show examples of this and suggest any methods for eradicating it among boys? Do not necessarily adhere to the illustrations given in this book.

3. Suggest points in which Scouts could be prepared for assisting in the defence of the country in case of invasion without involving actual military training.

4. Outline a lesson for a Scoutmaster to give such as would tend to develop a boy's self-reverence, continence, and self-respect.

5. State what you consider the chief points of value in organising your Senior Scouts.

6. Suggest any ideas for training or for keeping up the interest of Old Scouts in Scouting. [N.B.-By the term "Senior Scout" is meant a youth who is still a Scout in a Troop, but is growing up -say between sixteen and twenty.  By the term "Old Scout " is meant one who has left his Troop either on account of age, or because of work, change of location, or other reason which prevents him continuing in his Troop.]


This series of weekend camps is being held, partly to encourage Scoutmasters in running their Troops on the Patrol system, partly to enable them to exchange ideas, and therefore to put new life into their Troops, but chiefly to establish Study Patrols, as suggested by the Chief Scout. It will be noticed that each camp is based on some part of Scouting for Boys, and also on one of the articles by the Chief for training Scoutmasters.


The dates for the Camp will be- May 16th and 17th. June 27th and 28th. July 11th and 12th.July 18th and 19th.


Camp will be open at 2 p.m. on Saturday and be struck at 10 a.m. on Monday. Patrols will be able to leave on Sunday night, if desirous.


On Saturday afternoon there will be practical work, and in the evening there will be practical work followed by a Camp-fire yarn.

On Sunday morning there will be a flag-post parade and service.

On Sunday afternoon there will be addresses on the Saturday's work-treating rather of the moral aspect-followed by practical displays on those points on which Scoutmasters have asked questions the previous night.  On Sunday night there will be an open discussion on Scouting.


1st Sunday, "Character training."

2nd Sunday, "Employment."

3d Sunday, "The body."

4th Sunday, "Training the boys."


Associations may send Patrols of five.  As the Camp will be run entirely on the Patrol system, single Scoutmasters cannot be accepted.  It is immaterial whether these Patrols or circles consist of Scoutmasters, Assistant Scoutmasters, Instructors, or potential Officers.

Associations may send as many Patrols as they wish.

Applications to attend must be sent to the London Office, through Association Secretaries.



This will be announced later, when it is more certain that the Scheme will be supported.  It will be somewhere in or near London.


Each weekend will be run by a different man, as no one man is both competent and available to teach all the proposed subjects.  The speakers will not be announced until I know the amount of support I may expect.


No smoking will be allowed in Camp, except round the Campfire at night. Scouting for Boys, pages 193, 194-


No drinks will be allowed in Camp, except such as are made by the Patrols in Camp. Scouting for Boys, pages 195, 196.


All orders, as far as possible, will be given by whistle signals.  Scouting for Boys, p. 82.
Bugles will not be used.


Before attending, every Scoutmaster should read up for:

1st weekend: Scouting for Boys, Chaps. 2 and 5. Chief's article on "Character Training."

2nd weekend: Scouting for Boys, Chap. 3, Yarns 8 and 9. Article, "Handicrafts."

3rd weekend: Scouting for Boys, Chaps. 7 and 8. Article, "The responsibility for health."

4th weekend: Scouting for Boys, Chap. 10. Article, "Service for others."



3 P.M. - Circular rally. Enrolling a Scout. Tent pitching and camp planning.

5 P.M. - Tea in Patrol camps.

6 P.M. - Map reading. Observation and deduction. Nature study in country and in town.

7.30 P.M. - Camp-fire. Signal fires, followed by Yarn on "Scout Law" and Patrol system.


3 P.M. - Circular rally. Bridge building. Knot tying. Pioneer work.

5 P.M. - Tea in Patrol camps. 

6 P.M. - Camp expedients. Cooking.

7.30 P.M. - The rifle, and how to use it. Camp-fire. Lamp-signalling. Yarn on "Citizenship," "Employment Agencies," etc.


3 P.M. - Circular rally. Scout pace and drill. Physical exercises through games and recreational activities.

5 P.M. - Tea in Patrol camps.

6 P.M. - Anatomy. Punctuality-internal and external. Visual Training.

7.30 P.M. - Sense of smell and touch. Causes of loss of them. Yarn, "How to teach boys continence, cleanliness, anatomy."


3 P.M. - Circular rally. Accidents. Life saving.

5 P.M. - Tea in Patrol camps.

6 P.M. - First aid in practice.

7.30 P.M. - Nursing. Yarn, "How to Train a Troop."






Additional Information:

Peer- Level Topic Links:
Service for Others ] [ Study Patrol ] Method Chart ]

Parent- Level Topic Links:
Scoutmastership ] Scouting Games ] USA Traditional Handbook ] Rover Handbook ] Leader Training ] Otter Leaders' Handbook ] Timber Wolf Handbook ] PO&R Contents ] B-P's Affidavit ] AFIS Bylaws ] BSA to B-P Dictionary ] Scouting for Boys ]

The Inquiry Net Main Topic Links:
 [Outdoor Skills]  [Patrol Method [Old-School]  [Adults [Advancement]  [Ideals]  [Leadership]  [Uniforms]

Search This Site:

Search Amazon.Com:

When you place an order with Amazon.Com using the search box below, a small referral fee is returned to The Inquiry Net to help defer the expense of keeping us online.  Thank you for your consideration!



Amazon Logo



Scout Books Trading Post

Dead Bugs, Blow Guns, Sharp Knives, & Snakes:
What More Could A Boy Want?

Old School Scouting:
What to Do, and How to Do It!

To Email me, replace "(at)" below with "@"

If you have questions about one of my 2,000 pages here, you must send me the "URL" of the page!
This "URL" is sometimes called the "Address" and it is usually found in a little box near the top of your screen.  Most URLs start with the letters "http://"

The Kudu Net is a backup "mirror" of The Inquiry Net.  

2003, 2011 The Inquiry Net,  In addition to any Copyright still held by the original authors, the Scans, Optical Character Recognition, extensive Editing,  and HTML Coding on this Website are the property of the Webmaster.   My work may be used by individuals for non-commercial, non-web-based activities, such as Scouting, research, teaching, and personal use so long as this copyright statement and a URL to my material is included in the text
The purpose of this Website is to provide access  to hard to find, out-of-print documents.  Much of the content has been edited to be of practical use in today's world and is not intended as historical preservation.   I will be happy to provide scans of specific short passages in the original documents for people involved in academic research.  


Last modified: October 15, 2016.