Planning for Summer Camp

The registration for summer camp merit badges will be live starting tomorrow, so I wanted to give you a quick tutorial/overview of how earning MB’s at camp works.  The camp provides counselors for the week to work with scouts in a variety of program areas.  If you don’t finish all requirements at camp, you’ll return home with a “partial” blue card, and will need to contact a local MB Counselor to complete the remainder.

When looking at the MB schedule page 2, you’ll see that some badges are short, morning or afternoon sessions, like Chess or Geocaching.  Others are a full day and a half, like Cooking and Wilderness Survival.  While some badges can be completed at camp, many have prerequisites that need to be done at home. Many of these have long term prerequisites that could require 3 months of advanced work, which means you’ll be opening the badges with a local counselor, then finishing at camp. Be aware that some programs are limited to 14 or older, and some require First Class rank.  So, there’s a strategy to maximizing your time at summer camp:

  1. Some badges are best done at camp, with more resources available than the Troop has; Pioneering, Metal Working, Welding, Rifle Shooting, and Climbing.  If any of those are interesting, register to take at camp.
  2. If you’re working on Eagle required badges (and who isn’t??), camp is a good time to concentrate on Cooking, Emergency Prep, Environmental Science or Sustainability, Swimming or Lifesaving.
  3. Pay attention to the schedule, as some badges are only available once.  Anchor your plan around those, and fill in with others.
  4. There are two “drop in” badges; Leatherwork and Woodcarving.  You can show up at those activity areas and earn the MB in about an hour.  Use these as schedule fill ins.
  5. You also have the opportunity to work on Trail to First Class requirements; swimming, ropes, first aid, nature, hiking, camping, or swimming.  There will be a hike on Friday as well.
  6. It’s more fun to work on badges with your patrol mates, so hop on the phone and coordinate what you’ll work on together!  You can talk at tomorrow night’s troop meeting, but run the risk of the high-demand badges being full by the time you go to register.

Spend some time reviewing the information at the following links and get ready to sign up tomorrow at the program page HERE:

In the Adventure of Scouting,

Mr. Kantola

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