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Re: [ScoutRadio] Class time

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  • Phil Sohn
    The way I like to do Merit Badge clinics to to have print outs of the merit badge worksheets to give to each of the scouts. I then cover each of the topics on
    Message 1 of 9 , Feb 28, 2009
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      The way I like to do Merit Badge clinics to to have print outs of the merit badge worksheets to give to each of the scouts. I then cover each of the topics on the worksheet and have the scouts take notes on the worksheets. That way, they can show the notes they took and easily answer the MB questions. If it easiest if you cover the topics in the same order as they are on the worksheet. There are several good PowerPoint presentations that cover the MB material, but they are in a different order than the worksheets. Using this method I usually cover the radio MB in about 75 minutes if you just stick to the material required by the MB.
       
      Phil

      Sent: Friday, February 27, 2009 9:28 AM
      Subject: [ScoutRadio] Class time

      I've been asked to conduct the BSA Radio merit badge training for a
      local group of a dozen or so scouts. I've taught classes over the
      years, mostly to the military and always to adults.

      I'd like to get a feel for how many hours of class time are typically
      needed for the instructional part. I'm also wondering how appropriate
      it is to expect scouts to take on homework assignments from handouts
      that I would provide, for instance to learn the ITU Phonetic Alphabet?

    • Norm Huber
      ... Remember that a merit badge instructor is to ask no more or less than what is stated in the Requirements One must be specific in the language. Describe
      Message 2 of 9 , Feb 28, 2009
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        Edmund Leavitt wrote:
        >
        >
        > I've been asked to conduct the BSA Radio merit badge training for a
        > local group of a dozen or so scouts. I've taught classes over the
        > years, mostly to the military and always to adults.
        >
        > I'd like to get a feel for how many hours of class time are typically
        > needed for the instructional part. I'm also wondering how appropriate
        > it is to expect scouts to take on homework assignments from handouts
        > that I would provide, for instance to learn the ITU Phonetic Alphabet?

        Remember that a merit badge instructor is to ask no more or less than
        what is stated in the "Requirements" One must be specific in the
        language. Describe means to describe in the language of a scout, not
        explain or understand as an electronics student. Read the new manual
        carefully.
        Many of the merit badge days list requirements for badges that can be
        done before the class. Remember though, that if you use the outline for
        the scouts to take notes on you will have a better format that a glance
        will show whether the scout was in fact listening (Doing his Best) as
        opposed to trying to make sense of what he wrote at home.
        Using those criteria the 75 minutes Phil has mentioned is probably very
        realistic.
        If you are following the amateur radio branch, a few FS radios to hold
        conversations on would work to get the QSL's done. That solves the
        problem of finding QSO partners.
        Good luck and 73
        --
        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
        - Norm - N9ZKS - Central Illinois - E-:-)
        - Motorcyclist, Bicyclist, Ham, Scouter
        - '05 Goldwing - Yellow - Rex - 72,000 miles
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      • Stephen M. Zelenko
        Hello Edmund, First you need to be a registered merit badge councilor by the BSA for the Radio Merit Badge. Remember the requirements have changed for 2009. I
        Message 3 of 9 , Feb 28, 2009
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          Hello Edmund,
          First you need to be a registered merit badge councilor by the BSA for the Radio Merit Badge. Remember the requirements have changed for 2009.
          I find it very helpful to go to www.meritbadge.com and down load the Radio Merit Badge work sheet and give each scout a copy.  As you cover the material in class have them fill in the answers. I feel that some of the material can be technical so if the scout at least fills out the work sheet he will hopefully learn something about the badge. It is also appropriate to give home work if needed to complete a requirements. I find two 1 to 2 hr sessions work well. Remember two deep leadership. And it also helps to have a couple of hams around to help with two way radio operation.

          73s
          N3ZX

          On Feb 27, 2009, at 12:28 PM, Edmund Leavitt wrote:

          I've been asked to conduct the BSA Radio merit badge training for a
          local group of a dozen or so scouts. I've taught classes over the
          years, mostly to the military and always to adults. 

          I'd like to get a feel for how many hours of class time are typically
          needed for the instructional part. I'm also wondering how appropriate
          it is to expect scouts to take on homework assignments from handouts
          that I would provide, for instance to learn the ITU Phonetic Alphabet?




          Stephen Zelenko
          aspStation, Inc.
          4736 Penn Avenue
          Pittsburgh,  PA   15224
          PSTN: +1 412-661-6001 x204
          Mobile: 412-519-3323
          VoIP Gizmo: aspStation123 x204
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          Call Sign: N3ZX
          P
          Please do not print this e-mail
          unless absolutely necessary.

        • Gary Wilson
          ... typically ... appropriate ... Alphabet? You cannot add or subtract from the requirements, but can show off more things if you want to. It s been my
          Message 4 of 9 , Mar 1, 2009
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            --- In ScoutRadio@yahoogroups.com, "Edmund Leavitt" <ed.leavitt@...>
            wrote:
            > I'd like to get a feel for how many hours of class time are
            typically
            > needed for the instructional part. I'm also wondering how
            appropriate
            > it is to expect scouts to take on homework assignments from handouts
            > that I would provide, for instance to learn the ITU Phonetic
            Alphabet?

            You cannot add or subtract from the requirements, but can show off
            more things if you want to. It's been my experience that Radio Merit
            Badge (using the Amateur Radio option) can be thoroughly taught in
            about 3 hours, including making sure that each Scout can demonstate
            individualy that they've met all the requirements.

            Lesson plans and Powerpoints to do this are available at

            http://k2gw.tripod.com/radiomeritbadge/

            You then need to add the time for each Scout to complete a ten minute
            QSO on an Amateur Radio. Note that this can be as simple as Amateur
            HT's simplex across the room if need be. It can also be "simulated"
            if
            need be, but that takes most of the fun out of it for the boys.

            73

            Gary, K2GW
          • Bill Stewart - New email address
            Depending on how much time you have or want to spend, you can also do a Technician Class License class. Venturing Crew 80 (my crew) does one over 4 Saturdays
            Message 5 of 9 , Mar 1, 2009
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              Depending on how much time you have or want to spend, you can also do a Technician Class License class.
              Venturing Crew 80 (my crew) does one over 4 Saturdays in January and early February. When the kids finish they can then sit for their
              FCC license and get their blue cards signed off. The way we do the class, if those who sit for the class and do exactly
              as we tell them in terms of study between classes they WILL pass their license test. We have generally had a 95 - 100
              per cent pass rate. Our Crew station is always available for QSO's and they usually get their QSO's done.

              73,

              Bill Stewart, W2BSA

              Gary Wilson wrote:

              --- In ScoutRadio@yahoogro ups.com, "Edmund Leavitt" <ed.leavitt@ ...>
              wrote:
              > I'd like to get a feel for how many hours of class time are
              typically
              > needed for the instructional part. I'm also wondering how
              appropriate
              > it is to expect scouts to take on homework assignments from handouts
              > that I would provide, for instance to learn the ITU Phonetic
              Alphabet?

              You cannot add or subtract from the requirements, but can show off
              more things if you want to. It's been my experience that Radio Merit
              Badge (using the Amateur Radio option) can be thoroughly taught in
              about 3 hours, including making sure that each Scout can demonstate
              individualy that they've met all the requirements.

              Lesson plans and Powerpoints to do this are available at

              http://k2gw. tripod.com/ radiomeritbadge/

              You then need to add the time for each Scout to complete a ten minute
              QSO on an Amateur Radio. Note that this can be as simple as Amateur
              HT's simplex across the room if need be. It can also be "simulated"
              if
              need be, but that takes most of the fun out of it for the boys.

              73

              Gary, K2GW

            • Mike M
              I would caution against trying to do a technician class at the same time. I tried to do that with my son s troop, and it failed miserably. We had a couple of
              Message 6 of 9 , Mar 1, 2009
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                I would caution against trying to do a technician class at the same
                time. I tried to do that with my son's troop, and it failed
                miserably. We had a couple of boys who were interested in getting
                their licenses, but the rest of the boys were not, and I ended up
                cutting it short.

                I recommend running just a radio merit badge class, and then follow it
                up with a technician class for those who are interested in getting
                their license (maybe run by the radio club, not as a Boy Scout
                function).

                73,
                Mike, KL7MJ
              • Bill Stewart - New email address
                Mike, etal, First, this class was given by a Venturing Crew NOT a Boy Scout Troop. Second, it wasn t an issue of I m going to give this to my Boy Scout Troop
                Message 7 of 9 , Mar 1, 2009
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                  Mike, etal,
                  First, this class was given by a Venturing Crew NOT a Boy Scout Troop.
                  Second, it wasn't an issue of I'm going to give this to my Boy Scout Troop or Crew
                  because I think it's interesting. This course was advertised throughout our district
                  and council.
                  Third, the only people who took the course were people who were truly interested. This the only way
                  to teach it.

                  The one thing you don't do with something like this is ram it down folks throat. You do not
                  give this to just a unit. Where the course failed is in finding out who is truly interested in learning the material.
                  Also, I suspect that this course was given over several troop meetings meaning that it probably took
                  about 10 weeks. That doesn't work with Scouts or Crew members. They have too many other activities to
                  commit to that much time.

                  We have done this successfully for more than 15 years and we think that we have the technique for teaching
                  this pretty well locked in. The class we had this past January had 20 people in it including 2 members of a
                  special needs Troop. They ALL passed and got their licenses. All of the Scouts that had not already gotten their
                  Radio Merit badges previously got them. And the looks of pride upon successfully completing the course by the boys and
                  especially the special needs boys was very gratifying.

                  73,

                  Bill, W2BSA


                  Mike M wrote:

                  I would caution against trying to do a technician class at the same
                  time. I tried to do that with my son's troop, and it failed
                  miserably. We had a couple of boys who were interested in getting
                  their licenses, but the rest of the boys were not, and I ended up
                  cutting it short.

                  I recommend running just a radio merit badge class, and then follow it
                  up with a technician class for those who are interested in getting
                  their license (maybe run by the radio club, not as a Boy Scout
                  function).

                  73,
                  Mike, KL7MJ

                • J. Gordon Beattie, Jr., W2TTT
                  Scouters, I run Radio Merit Badge events for Troops and what I do is expect all the paperwork to be done, the lectures to be attended and the activities
                  Message 8 of 9 , Mar 8, 2009
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                    Scouters,

                    I run Radio Merit Badge events for Troops and what I do is expect all the paperwork to be done, the lectures to be attended and the activities completed with each Scout presenting their paperwork and activities one by one to me or to another Counselor on the team if there is a team doing the badge for a large group.  

                    Now we go over the requirements so there is an opportunity to get everything done correctly if the Scout is participating and engaged.  I check with unit leaders in advance for any special needs cases, and handle them with discretion in a separate context to ensure that the special needs Scout has completed the requirements.  Case in point: sometimes we need to go over the drawings and charts, on an individual basis for the special needs Scout.  This allows us to make sure that they have the time and comprehension needed to complete the requirements properly.  When other Scouts are presenting their paperwork, we first scan the work for completeness and if there is a gap, we first suggest that they go back and complete the requirements before doing to on the air work.  We also try to discern whether we need to get a remedial group together because there is a wider need to reviewing a topic due to an instructional issue.  If there is, we do that for those who so require it before proceeding with the on the air portion of their work.  By gating the on the air work with the paperwork, it gives us time to stage Scouts for their on the air experiences and modulates demand for that function.  We almost always use real on the air contacts either with other staff or with queued up Radio Amateurs outside the meeting site. 

                     

                    We do some on the air demonstrations of various modes and bands as part of the mass instructional element so that everyone knows of some of the options and how they could get on the air when their time comes.  We also have them assemble the system components of a station in small groups and take a tour of whatever antennas we have and how they are built.

                     

                    One last idea:  If you have multiple Merit Badge instructors available, break the Scouts into groups and do the Merit Badge requirements in a round robin format after a basic mass introduction, as this helps keep up their interest and reduces boredom with a particular instructor or setting.

                     

                    Hope this helps by giving everyone some creative ways to present the Radio Merit Badge.

                        

                    Thanks & 73,

                    Gordon Beattie, W2TTT

                    201.314.6964

                     


                    From: ScoutRadio@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ScoutRadio@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Edmund Leavitt
                    Sent: Friday, February 27, 2009 5:29 PM
                    To: ScoutRadio@yahoogroups.com
                    Subject: [ScoutRadio] Class time

                     

                    I've been asked to conduct the BSA Radio merit badge training for a
                    local group of a dozen or so scouts. I've taught classes over the
                    years, mostly to the military and always to adults.

                    I'd like to get a feel for how many hours of class time are typically
                    needed for the instructional part. I'm also wondering how appropriate
                    it is to expect scouts to take on homework assignments from handouts
                    that I would provide, for instance to learn the ITU Phonetic Alphabet?

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