Methods of Scouts BSA

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The Boy Scouts of America uses eight fundamental methods in the Scouts BSA program by which the aims are achieved and which provide fun and adventure to achieve Scouting's aims. The methods are listed below in random order to emphasize the equal importance of each.

Contents

Patrol Method

Main article: Patrol
  • Each troop is made up of one or more patrols.
  • Patrols are groups of five to eight Scouts who camp, cook, play, and learn together.
  • In patrols, Scouts learn citizenship and practice basic leadership.
  • Strong patrols are essential building blocks of strong troops.
  • The patrol method gives Scouts an experience in group living and participation in citizenship.
  • Each patrol elects a leader and has its own identity.
  • The leadership changes regularly to allow different Scouts to learn and practice leadership skills.
  • The patrol method enables Scouts to discover what they're good at and work on skills that need improvement.

Ideals

Main article: Scouting Ideals

Outdoor Program

  • The Outdoor Program is an iconic part of the Scouting program.
  • Every Scout is given an opportunity to learn valuable outdoor skills.
  • Scouting is designed to take place outdoors.
  • Outdoor experiences can occur almost anywhere—from a camp to a community park.
  • Troops should strive to take part in at least one outdoor activity each month.
  • Scouts learn to use outdoor ethics principles to preserve the environment while participating in camping, hiking, and other outdoor activities.

Advancement

Main article: Scout advancement
  • Scouting provides skills to learn and goals to reach.
  • Experiential learning is the key.
  • The advancement program is designed to educate and expand the Scout's horizon.
  • Personal growth is the primary goal.
  • Advancement recognizes achievements, sets a lifelong patter of setting positive goals and reaching them and builds confidence.

Adult Association

  • Scouts learn from the example set by their adult leaders, who become positive role models for troops.
  • Scouts learn by watching adult conduct.
  • Association with adults of high character enhances the personal growth and maturity of the Scout.

Personal Growth

  • As Scouts plan their activities and progress toward their goals, they experience personal growth.
  • The Good Turn concept is a major part of personal growth.
  • Scouts also experience dramatic physical and emotional growth.
  • Scouting helps Scouts channel this change into productive endeavors.
  • Some Good Turns are big—saving a life, helping out after floods or other disasters, recycling community trash, working with their patrol on conservation projects.
  • But Good Turns are often small, thoughtful acts that affect an individual or a small group of people.
  • A Good Turn is more than simple good manners. It is a special act of kindness.

Leadership Development

  • Scouting encourages youth to learn and practice leadership skills.
  • As Scouts progress through ranks, they take on leadership positions of increasing responsibility.
  • Leadership skills are learned by doing.
  • Scouts learn about planning, organizing, and decision making.
  • Scouts learn to be effective leaders and good followers.

Uniform

Main article: Uniform
  • The Scout uniform gives youth a true sense of belonging to their patrols and troops.
  • A Scout in uniform is seen by the community as someone with good character who is prepared and helpful to others.
  • Scoutmasters in full uniform set a good example for their troops and are perceived as community leaders.
  • The uniform makes the Scout troop visible as a force for good, creating a positive youth image in the community and gives Scouts a sense of belonging.
  • Wearing the uniform shows the Scout's commitment to the aims and purposes of Scouting.

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