What is Merit Badge Night and how does it work?
Troop 318 offers a Merit Badge night once in the spring and once in the fall each year. Merit Badge Counselors will sign up for selected time slots and offer 1 or 2 session on one of the merit badges for which they are a registered counselor.
These are teaching sessions. They are an excellent opportunity for the boys to get started on a merit badge, or fill in some missing gaps. Usually, the counselor works on only a few merit badge requirements. An hour is not sufficient time to complete a badge. It is not our goal to complete the badge, but to give the scout a good start. Even if both one hour sessions are dedicated to one merit badge, no merit badge can be completed in one evening; however some good progress can be made. Once we know which merit badges counselors are assigned, the scout may contact the counselor and ask what requirements he or she plans on covering, to see if this would be a good choice for him.
The boys need to be responsible for completing the requirements themselves. We teach to a group, but test individually. The boys may or may not have requirements signed off that night. This depends on the counselor, the material, and the number of boys that have signed up for the session. There may be some requirements that involve activities that need to be completed, and it is possible that those activities can be completed as a group on Merit Badge Night. Requirements that involve writing, discussing or planning will require a one-on-one meeting with a counselor for the requirement to be signed off. The Merit Badge Counselors offer education, but the boys need to pursue the completion of the requirements themselves. Simply attending will not earn the boys anything. They need to pay attention, and be able to show what they have learned. Our goal is that each scout understands every requirement in order to earn the badge
It is up to each merit badge counselor to choose what requirements are going to be covered that night. Check the Merit Badge Night emails to see if there is any homework that you need to do ahead of time. If you need one or more requirements to complete your badge, you may ask your counselor if he or she will be covering those requirements before you make your final choice.
Family members are welcome to join us at 6pm, for pizza. The cost is $5 per person. We will need adult volunteers to help with setup, collecting money, clean up, or to assist a counselor. For example, if we work on First Aid we will need adults to be injured victims, or if we work on Sculpture or Art we need extra hands with the various mediums. Lemonade will be provided. If you can, we ask families to bring a plate of cookies, brownies, cupcakes, etc.
After pizza, the counselors will each find a table or an area to set-up their station. Find your counselor and head over to that area. The first session will begin promptly at 7pm. and should end no later than 7:55. If you have a different session at 8pm, then head right over to that area so the counselor can get started. Some boys may have other activities that evening. He may even arrive at 8 p.m. to join only the second session (if it is not part of a full 2-hour session). Scouts should be prepared with merit badge cards, even if they are just starting a new session. See the Scoutmaster if you need a blank merit badge card.
PLEASE SIGN UP FOR MERIT BADGE NIGHT ON OUR TROOP WEB SITE
First there is a sign-up for registration and for your pizza order. You will then give us 4 merit badges that you would like to see offered on Merit Badge Night. We will do our best to accommodate these requests by asking Merit Badge Counselors to plan sessions for these merit badges.
Second, after the Merit Badge Counselors are in place, you will get the opportunity to choose your *two merit badges from the finalized list. If you do not choose anything, *two badges will be assigned to you. We will choose from your original four requests.
*Note: Some badges may be required to cover both sessions.
Notes on Merit Badge Night and working with a Merit Badge Counselor
- Everyone that night needs to be working on something
- You must be there for the full hour of each session.
- WORKSHEETS: Worksheets are a study guide to help the boys organize and learn the material. They are not take-home tests. If your son hands his worksheet to a Merit Badge Counselor and expects to have requirements signed off for completing the work sheet, he may be disappointed. He will need to sit down with a counselor and discuss the items. If the requirement says “write” then you write. If it says “visit” then you visit. When it says “discuss” then the scout should be prepared to talk about that requirement, without looking at the worksheet.
- No one but the scout should write on his worksheet. Parents, please refrain from doing the work for your son. The scout must do the work himself. A scout is “Trustworthy.”
- When the merit badge requirements are completed, it is the scout’s responsibility to turn in the signed blue card to the Advancement Chair, Mr. D’Attomo and Mr. Kohler.
Merit Badge Process
- Scout decides what merit badge he wants to work on
- Scout talks with Scoutmaster and request a new merit badge card
- Scout gets name of merit badge counselor for the merit badge they have decided to work on. There are lists on the web site and a poster board with a list at each of the Troop meetings
- Scout contacts Merit Badge Counselor
- Scout Meets with Merit Badge Counselor
- Scout completes requirements for the badge
- Scout requests a review with the merit badge counselor
- If the requirement/s have been completed to the satisfactory of the Merit Badge Counselor, then they sign the card.
- Once completed, the card is then to be submitted to the Advancement Chair (Mr. D’Attomo and Mr. Kohler)