Tag Archive | "Merit Badge"

Historic Merit Badge: Pathfinding

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Historic Merit Badge: Pathfinding

Posted on 06 April 2010 by Dan

As we stated in Historic Merit Badge Program A Go (for real this time!), we are going to be taking an in-depth look at each of the four Historic Merit Badges in the next few days.  First up was Carpentry Merit Badge, then Signaling Merit Badge, then Tracking Merit Badge, and finally Pathfinding Merit Badge!

Pathfinding Merit Badge was first offered in 1911, and was discontinued in 1952. 

Original Pathfinding Merit Badge Book:
http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/Pathfinding_MBP_Historical.pdf

New Information for Pathfinding Merit Badge:
http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/historic_pathfinding_new.pdf

Pathfinding Merit Badge Requirements:

  1. In the country, know every lane, bypath, and short cut for a distance of at least two miles in every direction around the local scout headquarters; or in a city, have a general knowledge of the district within a three-mile radius of the local scout headquarters, so as to be able to guide people at any time, by day or by night.
  2. Know the population of the five principal neighboring towns, their general direction from his scout headquarters, and be able to give strangers correct directions how to reach them.
  3. If in the country, know in a two mile radius, the approximate number of horses, cattle, sheep, and pigs owned on the five neighboring farms; or, in a town, know, in a half-mile radius, the location of livery stables, garages and blacksmith shops.
  4. Know the location of the nearest meat markets, bakeries, groceries, and drug stores.
  5. Know the location of the the nearest police station, hospital, doctor, fire alarm, fire hydrant, telegraph and telephone offices, and railroad stations.
  6. Know something of the history of his place; and know the location of its principal public buildings, such as the town or city hall, post-office, schools and churches.
  7. Submit a map not necessarily drawn by himself upon which he personally has indicated as much as possible of the above information.

Related Current Merit Badges:

  • Emergency Preparedness Merit Badge
  • American Heritage

This historical merit badge will only be available during the 100th Anniversary year of Scouting. The Pathfinding merit badge counts toward rank advancement.  Requirements must be completed by Dec. 31, 2010.

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Historic Merit Badge: Tracking

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Historic Merit Badge: Tracking

Posted on 05 April 2010 by Dan

As we stated in Historic Merit Badge Program A Go (for real this time!), we are going to be taking an in-depth look at each of the four Historic Merit Badges in the next few days.  First up was Carpentry Merit Badge, then Signaling Merit Badge, and now Tracking!

Tracking Merit Badge was first offered in 1911 under the name Stalking, and was discontinued in 1952.  Stalking had one additional requirement that was not included as part of the Historic Merit Badge Program, and that was to follow the trail of  a person.  According to the Tracking Merit Badge support material, it was decided to omitt this requirement and switch the name to Tracking based on what the term stalking means in today’s language.

Original Stalking Merit Badge Book:
http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/Stalking_MBP_Historical.pdf

New Information for Tracking Merit Badge:
http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/historic_tracking_new.pdf

Tracking Merit Badge Requirements:

  1. Demonstrate by means of a [tracking] game or otherwise, ability to [track] skillfully in shelter and wind, etc., showing how to proceed noiselessly and “freeze” when occasion demands.
  2. Know and recognize the tracks of ten different kinds of animals or birds in his vicinity, three of which may be domestic.
  3. Submit satisfactory evidence that he has trailed two different kinds of wild animals or birds on ordinary ground far enough to determine the direction in which they were going, and their gait or speed. Give the names of animals or birds trailed, their direction of travel, and describe gait and speed; or submit satisfactory evidence that he has trailed six different kinds of wild animal or birds in snow, sand, dust, or mud, far enough to determine the direction they were going and their gait or speed. Give names of animals or birds, their direction of travel, and describe gait and speed.
  4. Submit evidence that he has scored at least 30 points from the following groups:
    Group (f) and 4 of the 5 groups (a), (b), (c), (d), (e) must be represented in the score of 30 and at least 7 points must be scored from (a), (b), or (c). Make clear recognizable photographs of
  5. (a) Live bird away from nest – 4 points each
  6. (b) Live woodchuck or smaller wild animal – 3 points each
  7. (c) Live wild animal larger than woodchuck – 4 points each 
  8. (d)  Live bird on nest – 3 points each
  9. (e)  Tracks of live wild animal or bird – 2 points each
    AND
  10. (f) Make satisfactory plaster cast of wild animal or bird tracks with identification imprint on back of cast – 2 points each

Related Current Merit Badges:

  • Orienteering
  • Citizenship in the Community

This historical merit badge will only be available during the 100th Anniversary year of Scouting. The Tracking merit badge counts toward rank advancement.  Requirements must be completed by Dec. 31, 2010.

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Historic Merit Badge: Signaling

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Historic Merit Badge: Signaling

Posted on 04 April 2010 by Dan

As we stated in Historic Merit Badge Program A Go (for real this time!), we are going to be taking an in-depth look at each of the four Historic Merit Badges in the next few days.  First up was Carpentry Merit Badge, now its Signaling!

Signaling Merit Badge was first offered in 1910, and was discontinued in 1992.  This Merit Badge is not an easy one session merit badge, Scouts need to have a basic grasp of Morse Code and Semaphore Code which could take a few months to learn.

Original Signaling Merit Badge Book:
http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/Signaling_MBP_Historical.pdf

New Information for Signaling Merit Badge:
http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/historic_signaling_new.pdf

Signaling Merit Badge Requirements:

  1. Make an electric buzzer outfit, wireless, blinker, or other signaling device.
  2. Send and receive in the International Morse Code, by buzzer or other sound device, a complete message of not less than 35 words, at a rate of not less than 35 letters per minute.
  3. Demonstrate an ability to send and receive a message in the International Morse Code by wigwag and by blinker or other light signaling device at the rate of not less than 20 letters per minute.
  4. Send and receive by Semaphore Code at the rate of not less than 30 letters per minute.
  5. Know the proper application of the International Morse and Semaphore Codes; when, where, and how they can be used to best advantage.
  6. Discuss briefly various other codes and methods of signaling which are in common use.

Related Current Merit Badges:

  • Wilderness Survival
  • Radio
  • Communications

This historical merit badge will only be available during the 100th Anniversary year of Scouting. The Signaling merit badge counts toward rank advancement.  Requirements must be completed by Dec. 31, 2010.

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Historic Merit Badge: Carpentry

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Historic Merit Badge: Carpentry

Posted on 03 April 2010 by Dan

As we stated in Historic Merit Badge Program A Go (for real this time!), we are going to be taking an in-depth look at each of the four Historic Merit Badges in the next few days.  First up is Carpentry Merit Madge!

Carpentry Merit Badge was first offered in 1911, and was discontinued in 1952. 

 Original Carpentry Merit Badge Book:
http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/Carpentry.pdf

New Information for Carpentry Merit Badge:
http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/historic_carpentry_new.pdf

Carpentry Merit Badge Requirements:

  1. Demonstrate the use of the rule, square, level, plumb-line, mitre, chalk-line and bevel.
  2. Demonstrate the proper way to drive, set, and clinch a nail, draw a spike with a claw-hammer, and to join two pieces of wood with screws.
  3. Show correct use of the cross-cut saw and of the rip-saw.
  4. Show how to plane the edge, end and the broad surface of a board.
  5. Demonstrate how to lay shingles.
  6. Make a simple article of furniture for practical use in the home or on the home grounds, finished in a workmanlike manner, all work to be done without assistance.

Related Current Merit Badges:

  • Woodwork Merit Badge
  • Home Repairs Merit Badge

This historical merit badge will only be available during the 100th Anniversary year of Scouting. The Carpentry merit badge counts toward rank advancement.  Requirements must be completed by Dec. 31, 2010.

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Geocaching Merit Badge Requirements

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Geocaching Merit Badge Requirements

Posted on 11 March 2010 by admin

A few Councils have started releasing the requirements for the much anticipated Geocaching Merit Badge.  This was originally discussed as GPS/GIS Merit Badge.  Keep in mind the Geocaching merit badge and pamphlet are not finalized yet, but these appear to be close to, if not, the final Geocaching Merit Badge requirements. Scouts should NOT start working on the Merit Badge until the pamphlet is available!

Geocaching Merit Badge—Revised Requirements 2/24/2010
1. Do the following:
a. Explain to your counselor the most likely hazards you may encounter while participating in geocaching activities and what you should do to anticipate, help prevent, mitigate, and respond to these hazards.
b. Discuss first aid and prevention for the types of injuries or illnesses that could occur while participating in geocaching activities, including cuts, scrapes, snakebite, insect stings, tick bites, exposure to poisonous plants, heat and cold reactions (sunburn, heatstroke, heat exhaustion, hypothermia), and dehydration.
c. Discuss how to properly plan an activity that uses GPS, including using the buddy system, sharing your plan with others, and considering the weather, route, and proper attire.

2. Discuss the following with your counselor:
a. Why you should never bury a cache.
b. How to use proper geocaching etiquette when hiding or seeking a cache, and how to properly hide a geocaches.
c. The principles of Leave No Trace as they apply to geocaching [[Front country and back country issues can be discussed in the text.]]

3. Explain the following terms used in geocaching: waypoint, log, cache, accuracy, difficulty and terrain ratings, attributes, trackable. Choose five additional terms to explain to your counselor.

4. Explain how the Global Positioning System (GPS) works. Then, using Scouting’s Teaching EDGE, demonstrate the use of a GPS unit to your counselor. Include marking and editing a waypoint, changing field functions, and changing the coordinate system in the unit.

5. Do the following:
a. Show that you know how to use a map and compass and explain why this is important for geocaching.
b. Explain the similarities and differences between GPS navigation and standard map reading skills and describe the benefits of each.
c. Explain the UTM (Universal Transverse Mercator) system and how it differs from the latitude/longitude system used for public geocaches.
d. Show how to plot a UTM waypoint on a map. Compare the accuracy to that found with a GPS unit.

6. Describe the four steps to finding your first cache to your counselor. Then mark and edit a waypoint. [[To all: After more thought, I think we can leave out any mention of geocaching.com here and just cite the Web site as the source in the text. We use this same type of reference in other mbps, such as Whitewater.]]

7. With your parent’s permission*, go to www.geocaching.com. Type in your zip code to locate public geocaches in your area. Print out information about three of those geocaches and share this with your counselor. [[Yes, details about account info can be discussed in the text. We have specific guidelines for online use—this doesn’t need to be written by MS.]]
*To fulfill this requirement, you will need to set up a free user account with www.geocaching.com. Ask your parent for permission and help before you do so.  [[Q to all: Does this wording work?]]

8. Do ONE of the following:
a. If a Cache to Eagle series exists in your council, visit at least three of the 12 locations. Describe the projects that each cache you visit highlights, and explain how the Cache to Eagle program helps share our Scouting service with the public.
b. Create a Scouting-related travel bug that promotes one of the values of Scouting. “Release” your travel bug into a public geocache and, with your parent’s permission, monitor its progress at www.geocaching.com for 30 days. Keep a log, and share this with your counselor at the end of the 30-dayperiod.
c. Set up and hide a public geocache, following all the www.geocaching.com guidelines. [[We will include those guidelines in the text.]] With your parent’s permission, follow the logs online for 30 days and share them with your counselor.
d. Explain what Cache In Trash Out (CITO) means, and describe how you have practiced CITO at public geocaches or at a CITO event. Then, either create CITO containers to leave at public caches, or host a CITO event for your unit or for the public.

9. Plan a geohunt for a youth group such as your troop or a neighboring pack, at school, or your place of worship. Choose a theme, set up a course with at least four waypoints, teach the players how to use a GPS unit, and play the game. Tell your counselor about your experience, and share the materials you used and developed for this event.

Source: Capital Area Council and Jayhawk Council.

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I find this Geocaching Merit Badge interesting for two reasons.  First, it is one of the few Merit Badges that doesn’t really introduce Scouts to a possible career.  Second, the requirements are tied into a private website that the BSA has no control over.  What happens if geocaching.com stops offering free accounts, or shuts down? 

What do you think about these Geocaching Merit Badge requirements?

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Scuba Merit Badge

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Scuba Merit Badge

Posted on 09 October 2009 by Dan

Scuba Diving Merit Badge PamphletAs we mentioned back in August, Scuba Merit Badge was approved and would be showing up later this year. Wait no longer. The details are now available. While the requirements and information have been released and will be pushed out through the Councils, it will take a little while for the merit badge pamphlet and actual badges to make there way into the supply system.

Scuba Merit Badge is not like many other BSA Merit Badges. This Badge requires an additional certification in order to recieve the badge, this means Scouts have to complete all the training requirements provided by an outside agency as well as paying for the certification and instruction. This will not be a cheap merit Badge to earn. There are additional Notes to Counselors (ie. caveats) provided in the Merit Badge pamphlet, you can see some of them and learn more about the certification requirements on USSP Scuba Merit Badge page.

Scuba Merit Badge Requirements:

1. Do the following:
a. Show that you know first aid for injuries or illnesses that could occur while scuba diving, including hypothermia, hyperventilation, squeezes, decompression illness, nitrogen narcosis, motion sickness, fatigue, overexertion, heat reactions, dehydration, injuries by aquatic life, and cuts and scrapes.
b. Identify the conditions that must exist before performing CPR on a person, and explain how to recognize such conditions. Demonstrate the proper technique for performing CPR using a training device approved by your counselor.
2. Before completing requirements 3 through 6, earn the Swimming merit badge.
3. Discuss the Scuba Diver’s Code with your merit badge counselor, and explain the importance of each guideline to a scuba diver’s safety.
4. Earn an Open Water Diver Certification from a scuba organization recognized by the Boy Scouts of America scuba policy.
5. Explain what an ecosystem is, and describe four aquatic ecosystems a diver might experience.
6. Find out about three career opportunities in the scuba industry. Pick one and find out the education, training, and experience required for this profession. Discuss this with your counselor, and explain why this profession might interest you.

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New Merit Badges for 2009 & 2010

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New Merit Badges for 2009 & 2010

Posted on 13 August 2009 by admin

Merit Badge SashThe National Council has been putting out the word to Councils about some new Merit Badges coming soon! Rumors of the majority of these being in developed starting surfacing back in March, but now they have been approved.

So far we’ve heard about the following merit badges:

Robotics merit badge approved. Requirements under development. Debut expected spring 2010.

GPS/GIS merit badge approved. Requirements under development. Debut expected early 2010.

Scouting Heritage merit badge has been approved. Requirements under development. Debut expected later this year

Scuba merit badge has been approved. Requirements under development. Debut expected late this year.

What do you think about these new merit badges?

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How to earn a Merit Badge on Your Own

Posted on 23 February 2008 by Dan

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