On behalf of North Star District Mini-Marathon Chair, Greg Jacoby:
Based on the success of our involvement last year, Troop 174 and all other scouts from the Crossroads Council have been asked to increase the presence of the Boy Scouts at the 500 Festival.
We have been asked to staff water station number 17 at the Mini-Marathon on May 6. It is the water station just before the end of the race, and is located on the IUPUI campus making it very easy to get to and park.
This activity is open to all Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, Webelos and their Families.
Please consider volunteering – sign up by April 25!
We need 60 people (30 per shift) to come help, one early morning from 6:30 to 10:30 and one late morning 10:00 to 1:30. You can sign up for one or boththe shifts.
If you are interested in getting involved, please:
- Send an email to me (Greg Jacoby) at email@example.com and let me know what shift you will be working and who will be attending.
- Go the Mini Marathon web site and sign up, using these instructions:
- Log onto our Pit Station Volunteer Website (<== link);
- Click on the Register Now button;
- Click on the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon Pit Station Volunteer (Select button);
- Look for the “Boy Scouts” box (if you see a plus sign, click on that to expand the box);
- Click in the small box next to where it tells you how many openings are left, it should show a check mark;
- The Next button should turn Green, now click on that;
- Create an Account (or sign in with a previous account if you are a returning volunteer);
- From there you can complete your volunteer registration. Please register all that will be attending.
Scouts must wear their CLASS A SHIRTS at the Water Station.
Thanks for your help and as always feel free to contact me [email firstname.lastname@example.org / phone 317-828-6230] if you have any questions. You may also contact 500 Festival Volunteer Intern, Mannah Mace [email email@example.com / phone 317-614-6113]; or Program Manager, Erika Miller [email firstname.lastname@example.org ].
Yours in Scouting,
Please see links below for exciting camping and training opportunities – these are roughly in date order:
National Youth Leadership Training (several dates)
Wood Badge (Adult Leadership training) (several dates)
2018 Voyageur Canoe Training (several dates)
Indianapolis Indians game and Campout at Victory Field (May 11)
Cub Scout Fishing Derby at Camp Kikthawenund (May 12)
Leave No Trace Master Education Course 2018 (Aug 17-19 and Sep 13-16)
Boy Scouts Brickyard 400 Weekend Campout (Sept. 8 – 9)
Citizenship in the Nation MB Workshop (several dates)
We are in need of at least four adult volunteers to serve as Unit Trainers (at least two apiece from Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts, respectively).
A Unit Trainer is responsible for ensuring that the adults in the units have completed required BSA Youth Protection training, making training opportunities available, and maintain proper training records, as well as occasional one-off duties. The MeritBadge.Org site has a good overview of responsibilities and qualifications at this link: Unit Training Chair.
Please email District Program Chair Mark Pishon at email@example.com with volunteer nominee names by Saturday, March 31, 2018.
Thank you for considering, and for your continued commitment to our Scouts’ adult leadership development!
We’re watching the weather carefully but as of right now it doesn’t look to be enough to warrant cancelling the District Pinewood Derby, we’re a go!
We’ll continue to keep an eye on the situation but unless you hear otherwise by tomorrow 24-March @8:00 am (updates will be posted on the website & Facebook page if any should be needed) see you @ the Derby tomorrow.
For more Derby details see our March 7 post.
Looking forward to a great 2018 North Star District Pinewood Derby!
It’s that time of year again! Let’s start thinking about how we can grow our units to their full potential. Does this include inviting girls into our units? Does this include recruiting from multiple schools or starting new units in some areas? Your District Executive, Jessica Hofman would like to start having these conversations with you, as well as start developing a membership plan for the Fall. Please schedule a time with Jessica over the next two months to sit down and dive into membership logistics before back to school season sneaks up on us.
What: Membership Planning Meeting
Who: Cub Packs! Cubmaster/Committee Chairman/unit membership coordinator
Where: At a committee meeting, over lunch, or whenever is convenient!
When: At a convenient time before May
How to Schedule: Email Jessica at firstname.lastname@example.org
What: Spring Recruitment Planning
Who: Cub Packs! Cubmaster/Committee Chairman/Unit Membership Coordinator
Where: Let’s develop a plan!
When: Before Summer, let’s get new youth to camp!
How to Schedule: Email Jessica at email@example.com
North Star is actively searching for those that share Jessica’s passion for growing Scouting. If you’d like to join the membership team for the North Star District and help out at a District level with membership planning and execution, please reach out!
Subtitle: Or the Roar of the Crowd versus the Eagle Court of Honor.
I offered my thoughts on the differences between sports’ lessons on team work and personal development versus scouting in those same domains.
I was watching Professor Jordan Peterson, whom I have introduced before. In his fifth lecture on Maps and Meaning, he has an interesting side discussion on the dopamine effects on the brain for positive reinforcement. Yes, he is lecturing on Pinochio, and very funny in the process.
In the segment I am highlighting, the professor suggests that striving toward a vision or major goal in life is crucial for finding meaning in life (23:30). In one part of his analysis, he analyzes why athletes can have an injured thumb or sprained ankle and continue to play. Yet, the athlete is in excruciating pain once the competition is over. He attributes this mind over matter to the focus of a goal-oriented mind. In this case, the goal is winning the game, whether regular season, post-season, or championship game is not discussed. Implicit in the point, based on his later analysis, is the notion that the athlete is probably seeking a longer-term goal, as he defines it. (Championship trophy, college recruitment, all-time record, etc.)
The professor suggests that long-term goals are crucial for finding meaning in life (as opposed to the grander “meaning of life”) and personal satisfaction.* The professor hypothesizes that a person feels a dopamine (i.e., good feeling) response from the brain when a significant step toward a self-identifed, valued, larger goal is accomplished. Each step that moves the progress toward the long-term goal foward compounds the dopamine response. Then brain starts to associate accomplishing the long-term goal as a source of good feelings. Absent the longer-range goal, the person has a random spike in dopamine that does little to incentivize future behavior. It is important that the person have dopamine spikes often enough and systematically enough to engage this personal satisfaction.
From the Council Training Committee meeting this week comes this news:
Contrary to past BSA program design, all Cub Scouts — not just Webelos — may participate in paddle sports as a pack or den; previously, they could only do so at district or council events. And, of course, Cub Scouts may continue to participate in swimming as a pack or den activity.
The Cub Scouting team worked with the Aquatics and Health and Safety committees to relax the council- or district-only requirements for paddle sports. But as adult leaders, you still must make sure that the points of Safe Swim Defense and Safety Afloat are incorporated, including training and staying within the BSA’s aquatics framework.
The new Cub Scout program includes one aquatics-related adventure for each rank, but you’ll notice they’re all elective, not required. That means Cub Scouts who aren’t interested in water activities are fine to stay on dry land.
Safe Swim Defense: Any time you take Scouts swimming, even if you’re going to a council event or local pool where lifeguards are present, you still need leaders trained in Safe Swim Defense.
- You can take Safe Swim Defense online at scouting.org. (Click My Dashboard, then Training.)
- You always need at least one leader trained in Safe Swim Defense — even if you’re somewhere that provides lifeguards.
- When lifeguards are notpresent, you need additional rescue personnel trained in Safe Swim Defense.
- Swim tests are not optional. A key part of BSA aquatics is knowing one’s limits.
- Safe Swim Defense training is good for two years.
Safety Afloat: You are permitted to take Cub Scouts boating as a pack or den. (Previously you could only go boating with your Cub Scouts at district or council events.) But any time you take Cub Scouts boating, you need at least one leader with Safety Afloat training taken within the previous two years. At least one adult leader must be trained in first aid and CPR as well.
- You can take Safety Afloat training online at scouting.org. (Click My Dashboard, then Training.)
- For Cub Scout boating activities, the ratio of trained adults, staff members or guides to participants must be at least one to five. (For Boy Scouts, it’s one to 10.)
- Cub Scouts must know how to swim to try paddle sports.
- All participants must wear properly fitted, U.S. Coast Guard-approved life jackets.
- Any swimming done in conjunction with the activity afloat should operate using Safe Swim Defense.
(Scuba: Cub Scouts aren’t permitted to do scuba.)
PLEAS NOTE: Tiger Cubs, Cub Scouts, and Webelos Scouts may complete requirements in a family, den, pack, school, or community environment. Tiger Cubs must work with their parents or adult partners. Parents and partners do not earn loops or pins.
As I have noted before, my latest obsession is Professor Jordan Peterson. His recent book, 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, is a tour de force in offering a way to live a good life. This is not the normal self-help book. This is the work of a deep philosophical thinker, practicing psychologicology research professor, practicing clinical psychologist, and practicing lecturing professor. He thinks about people, studies psychology, uses psychology, and teaches about people and psychology. For example, he understands that knowing what the rules of life and being able to follow them are not the same thing. It takes practice to be an actively moral person.
To that end, his fifth rule is “Do Not Let your Children Do Anything that Makes You Dislike Them.” He opens the chapter this way,
RECENTLY, I WATCHED A THREE-YEAR-OLD boy trail his mother and father slowly through a crowded airport. He was screaming violently at five-second intervals— and, more important, he was doing it voluntarily. He wasn’t at the end of his tether. As a parent, I could tell from the tone. He was irritating his parents and hundreds of other people to gain attention. Maybe he needed something. But that was no way to get it, and his parents should have let him know that. You might object that “perhaps they were worn out, and jet-lagged, after a long trip.” But thirty seconds of carefully directed problem-solving would have brought the shameful episode to a halt. More thoughtful parents would not have let someone they truly cared for become the object of a crowd’s contempt.
Peterson, Jordan B.. 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos (Kindle Locations 2377-2383). Random House of Canada. Kindle Edition. In the chapter he goes on to explain that making a child welcome in the world-at-large is a big job for parents. If the parents like the child, because the child is well-behaved, when the child visits others’ homes or places of business, adults will greet the child warmly. This warm reception will make the child more likely to be well-behaved. Well-behaved kids tend to have an easier time making friends their own age. They are happier and more connected socially. Since we are social animals, this is important.
In the Washington Post, from last year that I have been meaning to write about, a fascinating article about emotional isssues that kids in college are facing. The focus of the article that the title suggest the emphasis is on women’s college sports. The content is far broader, even though the persons interviewed are women’s college coaches and affiliate personnel.
One strong passage caught my eye.
Talk to coaches, and they will tell you they believe their players are harder to teach, and to reach, and that disciplining is beginning to feel professionally dangerous. Not even U-Conn.’s virtuoso coach, Geno Auriemma, is immune to this feeling, about which he delivered a soliloquy at the Final Four.
“Recruiting enthusiastic kids is harder than it’s ever been,” he said. “. . . They haven’t even figured out which foot to use as a pivot foot and they’re going to act like they’re really good players. You see it all the time.”
Some of the aspects emphasized apply equally well to scouters working with scouts.
It doesn’t take a social psychologist to perceive that at least some of today’s coach-player strain results from the misunderstanding of what the job of a coach is, and how it’s different from that of a parent. This is a distinction that admittedly can get murky. The coach-player relationship has odd complexities and semi-intimacies, yet a critical distance too. It’s not like any other bond or power structure. Parents may seek to smooth a path, but coaches have to point out the hard road to be traversed, and it’s not their job to find the shortcuts. Coaches can’t afford to feel sorry for players; they are there to stop them from feeling sorry for themselves.
Coaches are not substitute parents; they’re the people parents send their children to for a strange alchemical balance of toughening yet safekeeping, dream facilitating yet discipline and reality check. The vast majority of what a coach teaches is not how to succeed but how to shoulder unwanted responsibility and deal with unfairness and diminished role playing, because without those acceptances success is impossible.
Here is a key conclusion.
The bottom line is that coaches have a truly delicate job ahead of them with iGens. They must find a way to establish themselves as firm allies of players who are more easily wounded than ever before yet demand they earn praise through genuine accomplishment.
From this article we can draw a couple key conclusions:
- In our role as scouters, we can help prepare our scouts, boys and girls, for their college experience. We can teach them to deal with “unwanted responsibility” such as cleaning up after dinner or cleaning the latrine and with “unfairness” such as being assigned camp tasks too many times when others have not had their rotation.
- We can be the “toughening yet safekeeping, dream facilitating yet discipline and reality check” that is parents to provide for their own kids.
- We can be “firm allies” of scouts “who are more easily wounded than ever before yet demand they earn praise through genuine accomplishiment” such as rank advancement, BSA Life Guard training, mile swim patch, or high adventure.
What is “IYOS”? It is the “Ideal Year in Scouting.” It is the way for the Crossroads of America Council to tell you what the Best Practices for units will be in the next 12-18 months. What camping opportunities and activities are coming up. When deadlines for summer camp are. When rechartering will take place. When popcorn sales will begin and end. How unit budgets should be developed. How big summer events can be paid for.
Council is in the process of rebuilding the website dedicated to IYOS. Make sure to stop in regularly and monitor the progress. Hopefully you will learn something every time you stop in. We expect the 2018-2019 district calendars to be added in the next couple of weeks.