Spending my early years growing up in a city, prior to moving to the farm, my first experiences with the outdoors and outdoor living began with cub and boy scouts. I remember the first time I learned knots, shot a bow, fired a rifle, or went on my first father son camp out. I loved scouting because it taught me practical skills and gave me the feeling of belonging to something larger than myself.
I’m putting this information up as consideration for your own children, or if you are scouting age then it is good consideration for you. The entire family can participate, not only in learning but by providing adult supervision on camping trips or becoming registered merit badge instructors that can teach the youth and scouting leaders what you’ve learned. Your children will have a drive to belong to something, so make whatever they belong to worthwhile and annoyable.
Scouting (or the Scout Movement) is a movement that aims to support young people in their physical, mental and spiritual development, that they may play constructive roles in society, with a strong focus on the outdoors and survival skills. During the first half of the 20th century, the movement grew to encompass three major age groups for boys (Cub Scout, Boy Scout, Rover Scout) and, in 1910, a new organization, Girl Guides, was created for girls (Brownie Guide, Girl Guide and Girl Scout, Ranger Guide). It is one of several worldwide youth organizations.
In 1906 and 1907 Robert Baden-Powell, a lieutenant general in the British Army, wrote a book for boys about reconnaissance and scouting. Baden-Powell wrote Scouting for Boys (London, 1908), based on his earlier books about military scouting, with influence and support of Frederick Russell Burnham (Chief of Scouts in British Africa), Ernest Thompson Seton of the Woodcraft Indians, William Alexander Smith of the Boys’ Brigade, and his publisher Pearson. In the summer of 1907 Baden-Powell held a camp on Brownsea Island in England to test ideas for his book. This camp and the publication of Scouting for Boys are generally regarded as the start of the Scout movement.
The movement employs the Scout method, a program of informal education with an emphasis on practical outdoor activities, including camping, woodcraft, aquatics, hiking, backpacking, and sports. Another widely recognized movement characteristic is the Scout uniform, by intent hiding all differences of social standing in a country and making for equality, with neckerchief and campaign hat or comparable headwear. Distinctive uniform insignia include the fleur-de-lis and the trefoil, as well as badges and other patches.
The two largest umbrella organizations are the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM), for boys-only and co-educational organizations, and the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), primarily for girls-only organizations but also accepting co-educational organizations. The year 2007 marked the centenary of Scouting world wide, and member organizations planned events to celebrate the occasion.
All scouting organizations vary slightly, but the Boyscouts of America has a long list of merit badges that youth can earn and learn from as they participate. Here are some of the more applicable merit badges in regards to preparedness and survival: Animal Science, Archery, Athletics, Automotive Mechanics, Backpacking, Camping, Canoeing, Climbing Communications, Cooking, Emergency Preparedness, Environmental Science, Farm Mechanics, Fire Safety, First Aid, Fish and Wildlife Management, Fishing, Fly Fishing, Forestry, Gardening, Hiking, Home Repairs, Horsemanship, Kayaking, Leatherwork, Lifesaving, Medicine, Metalwork, Nature, Orienteering, Personal Fitness, Personal Management, Pioneering, Plant Science, Radio, Rifle Shooting, Rowing, Safety, Shotgun Shooting, Signs Signals and Codes, Small Boat Sailing, Soil and Water Conservation, Sports, Surveying, Sustainability, Swimming, Welding, White Water, Wilderness Survival, Wood Carving, Woodwork.
scouting.org had this to say about the goals of their organization: The Boy Scouts of America is one of the nation’s largest and most prominent values-based youth development organizations. The BSA provides a program for young people that builds character, trains them in the responsibilities of participating citizenship, and develops personal fitness.
For over a century, the BSA has helped build the future leaders of this country by combining educational activities and lifelong values with fun. The Boy Scouts of America believes — and, through over a century of experience, knows — that helping youth is a key to building a more conscientious, responsible, and productive society.