Still Scouting

Please check back. This page will contain all of the latest news and program ideas gathered by the FRC.

Council & National Messages

Scouting activities in the Five Rivers Council are suspended until May 30, 2020. Please click here for the letter from the Five Rivers Council. 

Click here for the Unit Guide to Reopening

Click here for the Virtual Alternative to Unit Meetings Guide

Due to the worldwide health crisis the Five Rivers Council has canceled Cub Scout Day Camp, Cub Scout Resident Camp and Scouts BSA Resident Camp for the 2020 Summer. Click here for a letter from the Council President.

How to stay connected

There are many ways that your Unit, Den, Patrol and Committee can stay connected during these times. Here are some resources on using them.

For questions please email Council Tech Support

Stay Informed

There many ways to stay informed

  • The Watercooler on Facebook
  • Council Website
  • Scoutbook – These are the emails that you need to log into Scoutbook to read
  • Council Webinar’s
  • Roundtables

Webinars

FRC Town Hall Meeting video from 3/30/20

Click here for training using online tools like Zoom

Click here  for training on Scoutbook for Scoutmasters for Merit Badge work and for Merit Badge Counselors using Scoutbook

Pack Activities

Taut-Line Hitch video

Earn Extra Awards – CS

Earn Extra Awards – SBSA

  • Cyber Chip: https://www.scouting.org/training/youth-protection/cyber-chip/
  • STEM Nova Awards: https://www.scouting.org/stem-nova-awards/awards/scouts-bsa/
  • Emergency Preparedness Award : https://www.scouting.org/awards/awards-central/emergency-preparedness/
  • Scout Strong: https://www.scouting.org/resources/scoutstrong/

Other Activities – may tie into other advancement

Go for a hike/walk

Cook a meal outside- Create a meal plan for the family and implement it

Pitch a tent in the yard

Make a walking stick.

Look at the stars- https://in-the-sky.org/skymap2.php

Make ice cream in a bag- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Zt1EuIEhvw

Solar s’mores- https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=396&v=vdf98mFU7bI&feature=emb_title

Bird watch – https://pa.audubon.org/birds https://ny.audubon.org/birds-0/birds-conservation-concern

Make a fort inside

Work on the 7 essential knots –  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEmQR5W4PkcSLfLV96SOH7w/featured

Lashing a camp gadget- look in our Scoutbook for ideas

Track and record the weather

Geocaching

Make a camping checklist and pack as lightweight as possible. Create a packing list for a hike, campout or summer camp

Tree ID from their bark- http://www.docs.dcnr.pa.gov/cs/groups/public/documents/document/dcnr_002216.pdf

Scavenger hunts- make one for around your house

Cleanup around your house

Virtual Scouting beltloop- http://www.narragansettbsa.org/camping-activities/virtual-scouting/72761

Make a campfire (if town regulations permit)

Make a cookie oven (cardboard, aluminum foil) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NgnlmP8LvVc

Design/plan a group campout with itinerary

Learn about first aid

Plant identification- https://gobotany.nativeplanttrust.org/simple/

Start a Stamp or Coin Collection.

Advancement

To become a merit badge Counselor you will need to fill out and submit a:

More information can be found on the Merit Badge Counselor Page

Can my unit/patrol/den conduct virtual meetings?  YES!!

With an uncertain timeline for when regular meetings will resume, the question has come up about units being able to conduct virtual meetings.  Can a unit conduct a virtual meeting?  Yes.  Before you get started though it is important that both leaders and Scouts are familiar with the BSA’s Social Media Guidelines and Scouting’s Youth Protection Guidelines and Barriers to Abuse.  It is important that all of these safeguards are followed the same as they would be in an in-person setting.  Check out this great article from Bryan on Scouting on how Scouting’s Barriers to Abuse work online.

A great first program to run might be the BSA’s Cyber Chip Program.  There are four, age-appropriate program levels and Scouts can earn a patch for completing.

So if you want to have an online meeting where do you get started?  We’ve put together this guide on what you can do.

Selecting a Meeting Platform

If you are going to meet virtually, you need to select the right platform to use.  There are many platforms that allow you to conduct virtual meetings.  There are also many that allow you to meet at no cost.  Make sure you check out the details of each platform and find the best system that works for you.  Here are a couple of that we have researched that may fit the needs of your Scouting group.  (Note: the New Birth of Freedom Council does not officially endorse a specific service, but want to provide options for units to decide what works best)

Zoom

Zoom has several different tiers of plans, but the FREE version would be great for most Scouting groups.  It includes:

  • Ability to have up to 100 people in a meeting
  • 40 minute limit on group meetings
  • Unlimited number of meetings
  • Screensharing capability
  • Options for both conference call and video chat
  • Breakout rooms for small groups

Some of the great resources from Zoom are their tools and instructional videos for anyone that has never conducted a virtual meeting.  Regardless of which system you choose, check out their resources.

Webex

Like Zoom, Webex has several different tiers of plans, but again, the FREE version might be just what you are looking for.  It includes:

  • Ability to have up to 100 people in a meeting
  • No limit on the length of your group meeting
  • Unlimited number of meetings
  • Screensharing capability
  • Options for both conference call and video chat

Free Conference Call

Free Conference Call doesn’t just offer Free Conference Calls, they also have a robust FREE Video Conference service and claim to be able to handle up to 1,000 participants.  It includes:

  • Ability to have up to 1,000 people in a meeting
  • No limit to the length of your meeting
  • Unlimited number of meetings
  • Screensharing capability
  • Options for both conference call and video chat
  • Breakout rooms for smaller groups

Skype

  • Host up to 50 people in a meeting
  • Unlimited number of meetings
  • Screensharing capability

Conducting the Meeting

Try to keep your meeting as close to the structure of a normal meeting.  There is a great example in this article.  There isn’t anything to physically set up or teardown, but you can conduct most of the rest of the meeting as normal.

Cub Scout Meeting

Before the Meeting: Make sure that you set up the meeting using your virtual platform so that all the meeting participants know how to log in.  It is a good idea to establish a Code of Conduct for the meeting to make sure that all of the Scouts and their parents know what is expected during the course of the meeting.  

Gathering:  Have a fun activity that Scouts can participate as in as they log in.

Opening:  Have Scouts recite the Pledge of Allegiance, Scout Oath and Law.  If your pack or den has something special that you regularly like a song still do it!

Activity:  This is the time that you work on the regular Scouting skills.  You may have to look at your plans to make sure that you choose activities that lend themselves to be done in front of a computer.  Make sure if it is an activity that requires supplies, make sure you communicate it before the meeting so that they have it on hand.  You may want to consider incorporating some of these activities as well.  

Closing:  Hold a fun or inspirational opening.  Some ideas are available from a number of different sources:

Closing Ceremonies

Scouting Magazine Closing Ceremonies

 

Update Training

Did you know that some of the training we take needs to be updated?  Some every year or two, others as we change positions.  Here are some to check on if you are current:

Youth Protection To take Youth Protection training go to My.Scouting.org html icon

Hazardous Weather training

Effective April 30, 2018 new direct contact leaders must complete Hazardous Weather Training to be considered position trained. https://www.scouting.org/health-and-safety/alerts/hazardous-weather-training/

So you have checked the above two courses and are current – Did you know there is a bunch of other courses in the E-Learning Center? 

E-learning

Some courses are available in the e-Learning section ofmy.scouting.org html icon. A login is required, but anyone may create a user account and view the courses. Registered members of the BSA may provide their member numbers (as part of the user profile) to receive credit.  Instructions for Accessing Online Training. word icon