LDS Boy Scouting

Training for LDS Boy Scout Leaders


Boy Scout Program

Every Boy desearves a quality program and trained leaders who know what a quality program looks and feels like. Leaders can make it happen; but, where does a new leader start; with training and learning!

Essential Books

To insure a quality program the following resources are important references for the Scout Leader.

  • Boy Scout Handbook
  • Scoutmaster Handbook
  • The Guide to Safe Scouting
  • LDS Scouting Handbook
  • Troop Program Resource Book

Keys to a Successful Program

Maintain accurate records for each boy. There are several paper and electronic versions. It is very important to fill out the record chart for each boy and his progress so the Leader can see at a glance where each boy is in advancement.

Teach the boys to lead. Leaders should be aware of the Patrol positions necessary to operate the Patrol.

  • Patrol Leader has the responsibility for the Patrol’s activities and represents the Patrol as a member of the Patrol Leaders’ council.
  • The Assistant Patrol Leader helps the Patrol Leader and acts as the Patrol Leader when the Patrol Leader is not present.
  • Scribe is the Patrol’s secretary. He attends meetings of the Patrol Leaders and keeps a log of what was discussed. He records Troop attendance and maintains Troop advancement records.
  • Quartermaster is the supply and equipment boss. He keeps an inventory of Troop equipment and sees that it is in good condition.

Form a Patrol with no more than eight boys.

Select a Troop Guide With the assistance of the Scoutmaster and Primary President, choose a Troop Guide (usually a First Class Deacon).

Encourage Scouting Spirit Let each Patrol under the direction of the Patrol Leader choose a Patrol name, yell, song, flag, and patch.

Know the advancement requirements Become familiar with the requirements up through the 1st Class Scout. Boys can work on the requirements in any order, but they must complete all requirements for Tenderfoot to receive that award. Tenderfoot must be earned before the boy earns 2nd Class and 2nd Class rank before he earns his 1st Class rank.

Hold a Patrol Leader Council (PLC) weekly with the Leader, Troop Guide, Patrol Leader(s), and Scribe(s). The Patrol Leader is in charge of this meeting and is guided by the Leader. In PLC Meeting, Patrol Meetings and activities are planned.

Organize the calendar Know where each of the boys in the Patrol is in advancement. Gear the calendar according to what they need in order to receive their First Class before their 12PthP birthdays.

  • Make sure each boy completes the physical fitness requirements as soon as he can, because this can hold him back from receiving the Tenderfoot rank.
  • Planning the calendar should be done by the Patrol Leader Council (PLC).
  • Plan the Patrol Meetings for the next month, three months, & year.

Patrol Meetings

Include the following in the Patrol Meetings:

  • Discussion of present and upcoming events
  • Things they need to do
  • Minutes of last meeting
  • Skills taught
  • End with a fun game and a brief closing ceremony

The Scout Orientation

When a boy turns eleven years old, the SCOUT Leader, Patrol Guide, and Patrol Leader provide the boy and his parent(s) with an overview of the SCOUT program and the Patrol’s expectations. Prior to the meeting, the boy will need a Boy Scout Handbook, rope to tie a square knot, and the following assignments for parents and boys to read in the Boy Scout Handbook:

  • Boy – Pages 1 – 15 “The Adventure Begins”
  • Parents – “How to Protect Your Child from Child Abuse: A Parent’s Guide”

The orientation includes:

  • Requirements for joining the Troop (boy demonstrates the Square Knot)
  • Registration forms for the boy and parents
  • The Scout Uniform and Insignias
  • The Scouting activities and calendar of events
  • The Advancement plan to reach First Class by 12 and Eagle by 16
  • Scouting costs and fund raising expectations
  • The Faith in God requirements for eleven year old boys

The Orientation Packet Materials:

  • Boy Scout Registration Form
  • Health Record / Medical Form for the Boy Scout
  • Annual calendar of events with dates
  • Scout uniform options and costs
  • Troop Numbers and Patrol Patch
  • Boy’s position description and corresponding patch
  • Uniform guide to use when sewing patches onto uniform
  • Individual Scout Record
  • First Year Tracking Form
  • Adult Volunteer Registration Forms
  • Parent Survey that includes hobbies and interests

The boy should already have a copy of the Boy Scout Handbook that he should bring to every Patrol Meeting.

The Scout

There are marked differences in boys as they move from the 11-13 year age bracket to the 14 and over age. The LDS Church believes that there is a significant difference in the characteristics and needs of 11-year-old boys as compared to 12-13 year old boys. Thus the LDS Scouting Handbook provides several very significant modifications to the Scouting program for 11 year-old Scouts.

It is during this period of a boy’s life that he experiences puberty, or the transition from boyhood to manhood. With some boys the transition happens quickly. With others it may take a while. Lord Baden-Powell once said: “The Scoutmaster . . . must realize the needs, outlooks, and desires of the different ages of the boy’s life. He must deal with the individual boy rather than the mass.”

The age, physical size, and developmental stage of boys often don’t coincide. Despite the well-meaning but mistaken belief of some adults, children and youth are not small adults. They
understand things differently and act on things for different
reasons than adults do. When we treat children and youth as adults, they become frustrated because we don’t appear to listen to or understand them.

By understanding the characteristics and needs of the boys in the Troop, we will have more success in providing them with activities they will see as fun to participate in, and we will be able to figure out ways to use the activities as vehicles for teaching skills and values to the boys.

Road to First Class

The goal of the EYOS Patrol is to attain the rank of First Class by the time the boy turns twelve years old. With good attendance at Troop Meetings and Activities this is a very realistic goal. While the ranks of Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class are awarded in order, Scouts may work on the requirements for the three ranks simultaneously.

Scouts may also work on merit badges, but this it is not recommended that younger Scouts focus on merit badges, especially those in their first year of Scouting. First year Scouts should work on learning the skills needed for Tenderfoot through First Class. Scouts need to be aware that there are requirements regarding attending a certain number of Troop events (not including Troop or Patrol Meetings or courts of honor) for these ranks and a certain number of them include overnight camping. A Scout who actively participates in Troop events and who diligently works on skills can achieve First Class in one year.

When a Scout believes he has completed all the requirements for his next rank, he reviews it with his Scout Master or EYOS Leader who submits it to the Advancement Chairman to check the Troop’s record. It is very important to verify community service hours and attendance at Troop events other than Troop/Patrol Meetings.

Once the Scout Master or EYOS Leader and the Advancement Chairman agree that all requirements are met, the Patrol Leader/Troop Guide advises the Scout to contact the Scoutmaster for a Scoutmaster conference. These are held at a mutually convenient time, date, and place. The Scoutmaster conducts all the Scoutmaster conferences himself so he needs to meet with the Scout as soon as they are ready to avoid scheduling them a few days before a Board of Review or on the night of a Board of Review.

During the Scoutmaster Conference for Scouts working on Tenderfoot, Second
or First Class, the boys are tested on the skills or knowledge they acquired for that specific rank. As an example, a candidate for Second Class will be handed a standard USGS topographical map and a compass and be asked to explain how a compass works and to orient the map. He would have to be able to identify the various symbols used on the map. A First Class candidate will be asked to demonstrate all the lashings required for that rank. A Tenderfoot will be asked about the Ten Essentials and other requirements.

EYOS do not attend Scout Camp, even with their father. Scout Camp is an Aaronic Preisthood Activity.

Key points in attaining the rank of First Class

  • Scouts need to participate in ten Troop Activities (five for Second Class) since joining the Troop, Eeexcluding Troop Meetings. It is important to participate in as many activities as possible; many outdoor requirements can’t be done at the Troop Meetings. Also, the ten activities requirement is almost always the hardest and the last completed for First Class.
  • Three of these activities need to include camping overnight in a tent (one for each rank); it is important to take advantage of all the camping trips. Fathers come with their sons on all camping trips until the boy turns twelve years old.
  • Swimming and Orienteering requirements are hard to pass off without the Troop and it is hard for the Troop to repeat; boys are encouraged to attend when the Troop schedules these activities.
  • Cooking requirements include menu planning and food procurement, as well as functioning as the head-cook. Scouts and parents are encouraged to sign-up for a trip of their choice with the Troop Leaders.
  • Community Service is required for Second Class Rank advancement. Participation in the Eagle Projects of the older Scouts and the Troop service events is very important.
  • Plant and Animal Identification is difficult in the winter. Scouts are encouraged to pass these requirements on the Fall or Spring Nature Hike.
  • Good Attendance and Attention at Troop Meetings and activities will
    ensure that each Scout masters the skills needed to earn the rank of First Class by his birthday.


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