Troop 868 in Action

JUNIOR LEADER TRAINING (Oct, 2005)

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Troop 868 partnered with Troop 128 (Fort Knox, KY) to conduct a troop-based Junior Leader Training Course for the boy leaders from both units.  We selected Camp Rotary near Glasgow, KY as the site.

Both groups arrived on Friday evening and formed two temporary "training patrols" that each consisted of scouts from both units.  Because the emphasis of the weekend was on learning to be a better leader rather than on developing outdoor skills, we elected to sleep in the old staff cottages near the Upper Cabin and prepared most of the meals as a single large group with the adults doing much of the cooking.  We used the Lower Cabin as a classroom since it provided electricity for the audio-visual parts of the course.  After a campfire and flag retirement ceremony on Saturday night, we watched a movie in the Lower Cabin --- something that typically isn't done on Scout outings!

The joint effort worked extremely well.  Scouts from both units interacted well with each other and both groups learned different ways of doing things.  An equal number of scouts attended from both units and forming the temporary training patrols completely eliminated any "us" versus "them" competition.  Cooperation and teamwork were obvious throughout the weekend and the overall reaction of the scouts was that the course was both fun and beneficial. 

The program concluded with an in-camp worship service on Sunday morning.  Troop 128 departed just before noon; Troop 868, as is our usual practice, hung around for lunch and a couple more hours of camp exploration.  Our guys discovered several small caves in the hillside near the Upper Cabin before hiking down to the swimming and boating piers on the camp's lake.

Troop 128 Scoutmaster James Journey (front left) and T-868 Asst SM Waldo Guzman (right rear) pose with the trainees. Troop 868 SPL Tim presides at flag raising on Saturday morning for the final flying of a flag that was retired later that evening.
Troop 868 Scoutmaster Bob Meek directed the course which was only partly classroom work. The classroom wasn't nearly as cold as these scouts made it look ... and it warmed up nicely by mid-morning.
It may look like a line dance, but it's actually one patrol trying figure out a solution to one of the team building challenges. Meanwhile, out on the front porch, the other patrol is worked on a different solution to the same challenge.
And, of course, there was also time for general horseplay. Each challenge was followed by a "reflection" to review the lessons learned from that particular exercise.
Here, T-868 Scoutmaster Meek is giving directions for another challenge before turning leadership over to one of the scouts. T-128 Scoutmaster Journey joined scouts in this activity, which required "blind" scouts holding a rope to form a shape, guided by voice commands from a single "sighted" scout.
Other adult leaders from both troops also joined in.  Boys learned the importance of giving clear, specific directions. Like every other challenge activity, this one was concluded with a reflection.
It wouldn't be a real campout without "a fire that can be seen from space" ... now would it? Troop 128 Chaplain Aide Greg reads during an in-camp worship service on Sunday morning.
John, Tim, and Trey crawled into a small cave located in the hillside near the Upper Cabin. Stephen, John, Trey, and Tim explored a sleeping loft in a shelter located near the camp's waterfront.
Tim, John, and Stephen perched in the sleeping loft of the shelter. Tim, Trey, and Chris salute as John and Stephen retrieve the colors before Troop 868 departs from Camp Rotary.