American Bushman

"If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write things worth reading or do things worth writing." —Benjamin Franklin

Monday, November 16, 2009

Scouts in the Woods

Yesterday the Tiger Scouts and their parents joined me in the woods for a hike.

We took a few minutes at the trail head discussing trail safety and each boy was assigned a Trail Buddy. Then I explained to them how, if separated from the group, the boys should just sit down and wait for us to come back for them. I assured the parents that I knew the woods backwards and forwards and could find their boys on the trail or off but it'd be easier for all of us if the pairs stayed together and didn't run off ahead or lag too far behind.

I handed out a couple of compasses to reinforce the lessons we covered on basic map and compass navigation and would randomly ask the boys to give me our bearing and to find North. We covered putting "red in the shed" to find North and how to read the bearings off the bezel. After everybody had taken a reading, I asked the boys to teach me how to do it and they did a great job.

On the hike we discussed what we were seeing and I tried to get the boys to start to see the unwritten stories. If we saw a pile of acorns we could work out the fact that there must be an oak nearby and something must have been chewing on those acorns. Following the trunk up into the branches, we looked for a squirrel nest. All that from some acorns on the ground.

I was really in my element and had a great deal of fun teaching these kids and their parents about the woods and the amazing resources we have right here in our back yard. Many families had never been there before despite the fact I could walk there in 20 minutes or so.

I hope they all walked away with some knowledge and that they had as much fun as I did.

I hope we can do it again soon.

Thanks for reading,



At 1:56 PM, Blogger sam_acw said...

That was a real good read.

At 3:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

AB, thanks for volunteering and getting involved. I have a Scout Troop of my own and I always appreciate a parent stepping up and helping out. Kudos to you sir and THANK YOU. Jeff

At 2:38 PM, Anonymous Phyllis Thornburg said...

You are a born teacher and you identify with small children very well. THIS is what you were born to do!


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