Board games and basic bases

This covers 2 weeks of scout meetings, have been a busy boy again!

Our first night after the Christmas holidays was a board games night. It's not very often that the sprogs would be able to get a group together to play some board games... at least that is what I found, so I used to always enjoy the opportunity.

So we asked the sprogs to bring along a board game and they could have a laid back evening playing them.

It would also give us leaders an opportunity to get a couple of plans together, even if it was just when we would be able to get together to do a proper program planning.

Fairly simple yes...?

what could possibly go wrong...?

By now I should realise that seemingly simple nights never quite work out. A couple of the sprogs decided that they didn't want to play board games, they wanted ball games... or to listen to their ipods.

So of course I gave them a simple choice... take part in the program that we put on; which was just board games after all, it wasn't as if we were making them do drill or something like that; or they could do some washing up for us, cleaning out some of the camping equipment.

Given that about 15mins later they were still sat off to the side doing nothing, they were put to some use. Who would have thought that they would have picked washing up over games?

Fast forward a week

*imagines pages pealing off a calender

This week didn't exactly get off to a brilliant start. It started with one of my scouts leaving, not up to explorers like I would have liked... but to leave scouting entirely.

It wasn't exactly a surprise, he'd grown out of it... it happens.

... but he is the 5th since the summer that has left in such a way. And yes I realise that most Scouts won't actually move up to Explorers, rather they grow out of it.

I understand that.

It makes sense.

Doesn't stop me thinking that I'm doing something wrong tho.

I keep trying to put on activities that they would like. Mixing simple fun evenings (like board games the week before), adventurous activities (like kayaking) and scouting stuff (like the cultural stuff and scouting skills etc). Trying to keep things mixed while sticking with the principals of scouting. And hopefully you would agree from what you've seen on this blog that I keep it varied.

I'm obviously still on a learning curve.

It wasn't that long ago that I was an Assistant Cub Leader, and I've been trying to adjust my approach for the different ages ranges... and for a while I was getting away with it. But I think more adjusting may be needed.

And then the scouts go and surprise me again!

Just when I am thinking that I must be the worst scout leader on the planet, and have the smallest troop in the UK (I only have about 8 sprogs now), and that frankly I'm a failure and should just retire for the sake of the children (oh please won't someone please think of the children).... just when I have all that running through my head, the scouts pull it out the bag.

One of the most peaceful and enthusiastic nights I've had in a while.

We put on some basic skills bases, just to jog there memory. Knots, pioneering, recovery position and bandages. And even tho we were covering the basics, they all seamed to enjoy it, and the all paid attention.

I really don't understand these sprogs sometimes! (How did my leaders manage it when I was in scouts?!)

Oh, and to the one that left...

Thank you!

It takes some courage to admit that you're no longer enjoying something. I hope that you enjoy whatever you go onto do next, where ever it may be. You were actually a really good scout, and I am sorry to see you go... I'm just sorry I couldn't be the leader that you deserved.

If ever you wish to come back, then you're more than welcome.


Dougie said...

Don't be so hard on yourself lad! Like you say yourself, people grow out of it. Most of them will, it's a fact of life and at the end of the day, preparing kids for the rest of the world is a very large part of what Scouting is all about. That they have grown out of it is not to be considered a failure on your part.

Forgive me if I'm wrong, but don't cub groups tend to be larger than Scout groups? And don't they in turn tend to be larger than Explorer groups?

While Cubs are young enough to do what their parents tell them to, scouts are old enough to make their own minds up about these things in their own time. Seems to me like a perfectly natural and healthy thing to lose a few along the way.

Chin up lad.