Troop Program Features

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The Troop Program Features are a set of Troop Meetings and Troop Activities.
Using this program, a troop will explore dozens of merit badges and Scout Skills each year.

Wouldn't it be great to be able to choose from dozens of monthly plans that other troops have used and refined?

What if each monthly plan included sample meeting plans, activities, games, and PLC planning suggestions?

That's what the Troop Program Features are!

Your Patrol Leaders Council can pick and choose the themes that interest them. Then for each topic they can tailor their own plan from a variety of resources.

Each program is designed to let older Scouts teach newer Scouts the associated Scout Skills for Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class. Older Scouts are encouraged to continue to explore the related Merit Badges for each topic.

By using this three-year program rotation, every Scout Skill is reinforced and Scouts are introduced to almost every merit badge. Some programs such as Camping and Emergency Preparedness will probably done every year to allow new Scouts the chance to learn and to allow older Scouts the chance to refresh their knowledge as they teach these basic Scout Skills.

Although not mentioned in the Troop Program Features, the Guide to Safe Scouting applies to each of these activities and must be with you on all activities.


Contents

Yearly Program Planning

The full introduction with much more information is here: Introduction - How to Plan

"A successful troop meeting begins with advance planning. In recent research, the Boy Scouts of America determined that inadequately planned and executed troop meetings were the number one cause of boys leaving Scouting."

"Troop meetings should focus on a monthly program feature, be fast-moving, and start and end on time. The program feature should be interwoven with the program at all experience levels: the new-Scout patrol, experienced patrols, and the Venture patrol."

"Planning a troop program on an annual and a monthly basis is a new task for many leaders. Good planning and execution depend on (1) a Scoutmaster who understands the process, (2) trained youth leaders who can plan meetings and successfully execute them, (3) sufficient personnel in the form of Assistant Scoutmasters and troop committee members, and (4) parents who are knowledgeable and informed."

"Your first step in planning is to utilize the resources available to set goals for the troop. The next step is to train your youth leaders in the planning process. Then give them the responsibility and authority to plan and implement the troop program. The final step is to get your troop committee and parents to “buy in” to support this “Scout-planned” program."

"The program planning guide in chapter 8 of the Scoutmaster Handbook will guide you through the basics of planning, from doing your homework to securing parental support for your program. The monthly troop program features found in Scouting magazine are the other principal resources needed to run the program planning workshop."


Troop Program Features Volume I

Source: Troop Program Features Vol. I (last downloaded 5/7/2009)


How to Plan Troop Programs

Introduction - How to Plan - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 5 - 14 Troop Meeting Plan Form p. 14

Aquatics

Aquatics - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 15 - 23

Swimming - Lifesaving - Canoeing - Rowing - Small-Boat Sailing - Mile Swim BSA - Snorkeling BSA - BSA Lifeguard - Boardsailing BSA - 50-Miler - Safe Swim Defense - Safety Afloat
A Canoe Diagram is included

Athletics

Athletics - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 25 - 34

Tenderfoot - Athletics - Personal Fitness - Skating - Cycling - Hiking - Sports - Swimming - Water Sports
Note that although the topic suggests earning your Skiing merit badge, Skiing was replaced in the 1990's with Snow Sports.

Backpacking

Backpacking - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 35 - 44

First Class - Hiking - Camping - Cooking - Orienteering - Wilderness Survival - Outdoor Code
Although not mentioned in this topic, Backpacking is also an Backpacking merit badges.

Boating-Canoeing

Boating-Canoeing - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 45 - 54

Canoeing - Rowing - Small-Boat Sailing - Safety Afloat - Safe Swim Defense
Although not mentioned, Motorboating is also boating merit badge and canoe trips can apply towards the 50-Miler award.
This topic does include good Canoe Paddle and Canoeing Strokes diagrams.

Business

Business - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 55 - 64

Tenderfoot - Second Class - First Class - American Business - American Labor - Citizenship in the Community - Citizenship in the Nation
Although not mentioned, Entrepreneurship is how businesses are createsd.
Although the topic suggests setting up a sales campaign, it does not mention Salesmanship merit badge.
The suggested "Business" campout instead features an Orienteering race and a nature hike.

Camping

Camping - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 65 - 74

Tenderfoot - Second Class - First Class - Leave No Trace - Camping - Cooking - Hiking - Orienteering - Wilderness Survival

Citizenship

Citizenship - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 75 - 84

Tenderfoot - Second Class - First Class - Citizenship in the Community - Citizenship in the Nation - Citizenship in the World - American Cultures - American Heritage - Law
The suggested "Citizenship" campout instead features an Orienteering race abnd a nature hike.

Communications

Communications - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 85 - 94

Communications - Computers - Public Speaking
The Communications campout features semaphore flag signaling instruction!

Cooking

Cooking - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 95 - 104

Tenderfoot - Second Class - First Class - Cooking - Camping - Backpacking - Leave No Trace
Cooking Recipes, Foil Cooking, Dutch Oven Cooking

Cultural Awareness

Cultural Awareness - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 105 - 112

Citizenship in the Community - Citizenship in the Nation - Citizenship in the World - - American Heritage - Indian Lore - Genealogy
Although not mentioned in this topic, American Cultures is actually the BSA merit badge about "Cultural Awareness."

Emergency Preparedness

Emergency Preparedness - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 113 - 122

Tenderfoot - Second Class - First Class - First Aid - Emergency Preparedness - Emergency Preparedness Award

Engineering

Engineering - Troop Program Features Volume 1 pp. 123

Pioneering - Camping - Engineering


Troop Program Features Volume II

Source: Troop Program Features Vol. II (last downloaded 5/7/2009)

Environment

Environment - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 15 - 24

Second Class - First Class - Environmental Science - Insect Study - Reptile and Amphibian Study - Soil and Water Conservation - Mammal Study - Leave No Trace

First Aid

First Aid - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 25 - 33

Tenderfoot - Second Class - First Class - First Aid - Emergency Preparedness

Fishing

Fishing - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 35 - 44

Fishing - Fly Fishing

Forestry

Forestry - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 45 - 54

Second Class - Forestry - Mammal Study - Geology - Fish and Wildlife Management - Insect Study

Health Care

Health Care - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 55 - 63

Tenderfoot - Public Health - Medicine - Citizenship in the Community

High Adventure

High Adventure - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 65 - 74

High Adventure typically means backpacking, canoeing, hiking, or cycling. In this case it means Blindfold Soccer, Soccer Frisbee, etc.
Second Class - First Class - Backpacking - Hiking - Cycling - Wilderness Survival - Leave No Trace

Hiking Special

Hiking Special - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 75 - 83

Tenderfoot - Second Class - First Class - Hiking - Camping - Backpacking - Leave No Trace
Although not mentioned in this topic, the 50 Miler Award and Historic Trails are related topics.

Hobbies

Hobbies - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 85 - 94

Collections
Although not mentioned in this topic as Advancement Opportunities, the BSA does offer hobby merit badges including Coin Collecting, Stamp Collecting, Basketry, Leatherwork, Sculpture, Pottery, Genealogy, Model Design and Building, Astronomy, and Space Exploration.

Leadership

Leadership - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 95 - 104

P. 96 suggests that "Older Scouts can concentrate on the Citizenship merit badge this month." There is no such merit badge.
Star - Life - Eagle - Citizenship in the Community - American Cultures - American Heritage

Mechanics

Mechanics - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 105 - 115

Mechanics in this topic has nothing to do with being a mechanic. This topic instead refers to Pioneering and COPE-type games.
First Class - Pioneering - Includes how to make a balloon launcher.

Nature

Nature - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 117 - 126

Tenderfoot - Second Class - First Class - Nature - Soil and Water Conservation -Mammal Study - Geology - Fish and Wildlife Management - Insect Study - Leave No Trace

Orienteering

Orienteering - Troop Program Features Volume 2 pp. 127 - 136

Second Class - First Class - Orienteering

Troop Program Features Volume III

Source: Troop Program Features Vol. III (last downloaded 5/7/2009)
  • Physical Fitness
  • Pioneering
  • Public Service
  • Safety
  • Science
  • Shooting
  • Cooking
  • Tracking
  • Wilderness Survival
  • Wildlife Management
  • Winter Camping

Troop Program Resources

See: Troop Program Resources

References

MeritBadge.Org is your online Scouting University with topics ranging from Recruiting to Eagle Scout Leadership Service Projects:

See also

Boy Scout portal


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