Scout Radio, now what?
- Scouts, I'm looking for ideas. Say I have 8 cub
scouts with Walkie Talkies (probably FRS). Now what do we do? THis is
new territory for me, because my background as a HAM has no experience
with 8 eight year olds on the radio looking for a way to play! We have
not done this in HAM radio before.
Of course We all know the use of radio in the big-adventure and public
service environments. But what I am asking now, is how to use them in
a one hour den meeting where you can't let them any further away than
a typical school playground? IE, you give them a brief lesson and intro
to radio, and then say... Now lets go play with them....
Here are some thoughts:
FIELD TRIPS: When you go somewhere, always hand out radios to each car
before you leave, and let boys be the car-to-car communicators.
RADIO NET: If your den is locally compact (some are), hand out radios
one meeting and schedule a non-meeting night for a "net". Den leader
may need to think HARD about where to position himself that night to
make sure he is central and on HIGH ground to be able to talk to all
boys. Have a phone and list of all phone numbers. Call anyone who
forgot to check in. Be prepared to ask them to go upstairs, or outside
or in a high corner of their yard to hear everyone (or just anyone).
If there are one or two boys that are distant, plan on someone as a
relay, or even consider letting him PHONE in and you use a phone patch
to couple him in to the other boys. Prepare a map and let each boy
plot where the others are.
GEOGRAPHY: (this wont work for cubs, but maybe later for older scouts).
You get a large several mile area in rugged terrain that stretches the
range limits of your radios. Sketch a map. THen send them out to
"outposts". Some on a hill, a valley, a basement and a top floor.
Have them report their progress and then write down who they hear. Let
the Hill guy relay as needed. Lesson: Range and Height
CAPTURE THE FLAG? This is more like what I am after, but a problem is
that with single channel FRS radios both teams hear each other.
Hummh.... Maybe that is the fun of it. Divide up in teams, and make
up separate "secret" codes for say North, S, E and W. Have a map of
the playground area with N,S,E,W clearly marked. But now what?
URBAN RESCUE? Some dens meet in BIG churches with huge buildings and
grounds and mazes of rooms and hallways. Equip boys with maps of the
grounds and rooms... Now what?
ROBOTS? Have two teams on each end of a field. Select a "robot"
and a communicator from each. Blindfold the robot and let communicator
direct him to "capture" (non violently) the other teams robot. Rotate
through so each boy plays each role. Hummh... I like this one.
REPAIR NITE? Buy a handful of 9volt batteries. Ask boys to bring in
their kiddie-walkie-talkies. Debug/fix what you can. They will be
both on 27 and 49 MHz and different channels? Group them. Do range
checks (take an FRS radio too for comparison)?
I'm not trying to convey the entire experience of Radio in just one
meeting, but I am trying to come up with discreet re-producible
meeting or activity material. I welcome any complete ideas.
Sorry to the APRSsig. I will move this over to SCOUTRADIO@...
once I collect any fresh ideas from this group.
de WB4APR. Bob