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RE: [Scouter_T] Advise please

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  • Teresa Hall
    Jamie, our district ran its first WLOT (we slither the acronym into OWLS) on May 4th. Here are my thoughts as course director, plus some summary of our
    Message 1 of 6 , May 19, 2002
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      Jamie, our district ran its first WLOT (we slither the acronym into OWLS) on
      May 4th. Here are my thoughts as course director, plus some summary of our
      participant evaluations. Vulcan District has 25 packs, at least 2 of which
      are new and do not yet have Webelos and possibly not even Bears.

      We had offered the Friday night + Saturday format in the past and cancelled
      more than once for low registration (<5). In fact, no one could remember the
      last time the course had actually been taught - although one person
      confessed to taking it 10 YEARS ago. I took it on with the guarantee that
      no one would cancel the course on me despite low numbers. Given the history
      we decided to try to try the one-day. We had 18 in attendance, 16 from our
      district. We were very pleased with that response.

      We held the session concurrently with the weekend-long BS-level Outdoor
      Leader Skills training. There was room at the camp for us to have our own
      pavilion, and the trainers for many of the events were already in place for
      OLS. Virtually all of our trainers were BS rather than CS. (I had 3
      cub-only staffers.) The positives - they had some well-developed sites and
      training methods for some stuff like Rope & Knots, Woods Tools, etc. I could
      NEVER have pulled this staff together just for Web training. The Web
      leaders got to see the OLS patrols. They were a bit bemused, and the OLS
      staff were equally as puzzled by the Web leaders. I warned the OLS staff
      that "Wear your uniform" to a bunch of Cubbers in our district would pull
      out some amazing clothing but they did not believe it in advance. It was a
      good learning experience on both sides. The negatives -- Boy Scouters just
      are not as familiar with the Cub Scout program, and despite reminders in
      advance kept suggesting things that Webelos just can't do as a den - like
      canoing. It really grated on Web Leaders who WANT to do those things and
      feel constrained by those particular rules. The solution next year will be
      to add more Cub trainers and use OLS trainers in skills areas only. Will be
      easier now that the people I want to use will have taken the course - this
      year they all wanted to sign up so they could get their Knot credit. :-)

      However, there is a bigger problem. As CubBobwhite mentioned, there is a new
      OWLS format being "test-driven" at a couple of spots around the nation this
      spring. (This was on Scouts-L, by the way, in late April.) This problem may
      be addressed by the new syllabus. The problem is that OWLS current syllabus
      is very duplicative of BALOO. People who took both (almost 1/2 of attendees)
      were fairly displeased. The only substantive difference was training on four
      Activity Badges - Geology, Outdoorsman, Naturalist and Forester @ 20 minutes
      apiece. It may require the camping overnight to differentiate the two -- but
      our Webelos leaders just don't want that. (Your experience may be completely
      different, as CBW's is.) So it's a dilemma, one that I hope will be resolved
      by the new Syllabus in a year or so.

      The other Syllabus problem can be combatted with some attention paid in
      advance - but since it is very old, it uses incorrect references for almost
      **everything** - CS Leader Book, How2 Book etc. I made a careful mark-up of
      the old syllabus before I shared it with the staff, then helped them get
      current CS literature for review. The trick was, it was so old that the
      references were older than the "old" materials that I had. That is, the CSLB
      references didn't refer to the book in use prior to the November 2001
      version. So when a reference was fairly oblique it took some creative
      translation. You've obviously been at this longer than I so you may have a
      stockpile of older literature to aid in translation.

      Other details - we charged $10 each, $7 of which went for food. Since we
      have a habitual late registration problem we charged $13 for registration
      after the Saturday before the event. The only other expense was purchasing
      the outdoor code cards at 7 cents each. The photocopying was all donated --
      but we didn't have the level of resources that CubBobwhite did either!!
      (Sounded very impressive.) I bought a couple of Webelos flags but took them
      back to my pack afterwards and the pack paid for them.

      Promotion. We did a Cub Leader Basic Training session in March and promoted
      there to Webelos leader specific and Cubmaster groups. Took to April CSRT -
      but almost no one was there. Then emailed twice, once to Cubmasters, and
      once 2 weeks later to all Cub Scouters on our email files. (We did not have
      a Webelos specific list, and it would not have identified Bear leaders who
      would be moving up, anyway.) I also did personal email and a few personal
      calls to people I knew who had mentioned wanting the course. Our Service
      Area headquarters with excellent Scout Shop is in our District
      geographically -- posted it on the bulletin board there. Our problem is
      baseball season - a huge percentage of the Webelos play baseball (some
      soccer) and lots of the leaders are also coaches.

      Finally, I put my email and phone number on EVERYTHING, including on every
      email that goes out even if it's sent by our DE instead of me. I did not
      have a single attendee I wasn't expecting (a big deal in our district)
      although several contacted me for the first time w/in 48 hours of event.

      That's all I can think of. Our trainees were complimentary despite the
      overlap with BALOO. They especially liked the opportunity to network, and
      they did a lot of that. Oh yes, the 1-day syllabus had too much downtime
      around suppertime. My group became restive at that point.

      Good luck, and let me know if you need anything else!
      Teresa Hall
      Pack 321 CC, Hoover AL
      Vulcan District Cub Training Coordinator
      Greater AL Council
    • Scouter Chuck
      Teresa Hall wrote, among other things... [snip] ... [snip] ... [snip] Actually, I think the idea is a good one. Use your resources -- where have we hear
      Message 2 of 6 , May 20, 2002
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        Teresa Hall wrote, among other things...

        [snip]
        > We held the session concurrently with the weekend-long BS-level
        > Outdoor Leader Skills training. There was room at the camp for
        > us to have our own pavilion, and the trainers for many of the
        > events were already in place for OLS. Virtually all of our
        > trainers were BS rather than CS. (I had 3 cub-only staffers.)
        > The positives - they had some well-developed sites and training
        > methods for some stuff like Rope & Knots, Woods Tools, etc. I
        > could NEVER have pulled this staff together just for Web
        > training.

        [snip]

        > good learning experience on both sides. The negatives -- Boy
        > Scouters just are not as familiar with the Cub Scout program, and
        > despite reminders in advance kept suggesting things that Webelos
        > just can't do as a den - like canoing. It really grated on Web
        > Leaders who WANT to do those things and feel constrained by those
        > particular rules. The solution next year will be to add more Cub
        > trainers and use OLS trainers in skills areas only. Will be
        > easier now that the people I want to use will have taken the
        > course - this year they all wanted to sign up so they could get
        > their Knot credit. :-)
        [snip]

        Actually, I think the idea is a good one. "Use your resources" --
        where have we hear that one before?

        As far as the program differences leading to problems with what the
        Webelos can and cannot do, I think a word to the WDLs who are
        enrolled to the effect that "You may hear about things during this
        course that are not allowed the Webelos or Cubs. Keep in mind that
        most of the trainers here are from the Boy Scouts, and may not be
        familiar with the Webelos or Cub Scout programs" Would suffice.

        Remember, every Cub leader that you bring in for the training is
        going to duplicate some protion of what a Boy Scout leader is
        already doing there.

        YiS,

        Chuck Bramlet -- Phoenix, Az. --- mailto:antelope95@...
        I "used to be" an Antelope! WEM-10-95 Member DNRC
        Firebird District Committee Member at Large -- Grand Canyon Council
        -------------------------------------------------------------------
        "The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing"
        -- Stephen R. Covey
        -------------------------------------------------------------------
      • Ken Todd
        Jamie, With 47 Packs, I don t see any reason that you cannot run a successful WLOT Course. You need to be aware that the course is being rewritten. By now a
        Message 3 of 6 , May 20, 2002
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          Jamie,

          With 47 Packs, I don't see any reason that you cannot run a successful
          WLOT Course. You need to be aware that the course is being rewritten.
          By now a couple of pilots should have been executed. The current goal
          is to present the course at the National Meeting in June. Shortly
          thereafter we should be receiving the new syllabus and get an idea of
          how to execute the course. It is my understanding that the course is
          designed to be run by a District.

          I would suggest that you contact your Council Training Chair to
          determine what your Council's plans are for implementing the updated
          course. Each Council's plans may be slightly different, so I do not
          want to suggest you contradict them without knowing what they are.

          Keep up the good work.

          Yours in Scouting,
          Ken Todd, Dist Training Chairman
          NE-CS-59 Beaver

          --- scouter_t@yahoogroups.com wrote:
          Message: 3
          Date: Sun, 19 May 2002 16:19:49 -0400
          From: JNDunnMN@...
          Subject: Advise please

          ... Our Boy Scout trainers are offering IOLS next fall, and have
          offered to share facilities with us....

          YiS,
          Jamie Dunn

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        • Kris Swank
          Hi Jamie, We ran an OWL (Outdoor Webelos Leader Training) in April and had a blast! Until this year my Council ran this but attendance from my district was
          Message 4 of 6 , May 21, 2002
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            Hi Jamie,

            We ran an OWL (Outdoor Webelos Leader Training) in April and had a
            blast! Until this year my Council ran this but attendance from my
            district was light. We had 15 people attend and 5 Adult Staff and 2
            Venturers as Youth Staff. the fee was $25.00 and included 3 meals,
            Cracker Barrell, a large handout and a tshirt. We made the t-shirts with
            iron on sheets printed on the computer. Everyone seemed to have a great
            time and we had a number of folks who had conflicts and want another one
            which we have scheduled for August.

            YIS,
            Kris Swank
            OT District Training Chair
            East Texas Area Council
            Winnsboro TX
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