The Scouting program has three specific
objectives, commonly referred to as the "Aims of Scouting." They are
character development, citizenship training, and personal fitness.
The methods by which the aims are achieved are
listed below in random order to emphasize the equal importance of each.
Ideals. The ideals of Boy Scouting are spelled out in the Scout Oath, the Scout
Law, the Scout motto, and the Scout slogan. The Boy Scout measures himself
against these ideals and continually tries to improve. The goals are high, and
as he reaches for them, he has some control over what and who he becomes.
Patrols. The patrol method gives Boy Scouts an experience in group living and
participating citizenship. It places responsibility on young shoulders and
teaches boys how to accept it. The patrol method allows Scouts to interact in
small groups where members can easily relate to each other. These small groups
determine troop activities through elected representatives.
Boy Scouting is designed to take place outdoors. It is in the outdoor setting
that Scouts share responsibilities and learn to live with one another. In the
outdoors the skills and activities practiced at troop meetings come alive with
purpose. Being close to nature helps Boy Scouts gain an appreciation for the
beauty of the world around us. The outdoors is the laboratory in which Boy
Scouts learn ecology and practice conservation of nature's resources.
Boy Scouting provides a series of surmountable obstacles and steps in overcoming
them through the advancement method. The Boy Scout plans his advancement and
progresses at his own pace as he meets each challenge. The Boy Scout is rewarded
for each achievement, which helps him gain self-confidence. The steps in the
advancement system help a Boy Scout grow in self-reliance and in the ability to
Associations With Adults.
Boys learn a great deal by watching how adults conduct themselves. Scout leaders
can be positive role models for the members of the troop. In many cases a
Scoutmaster who is willing to listen to boys, encourage them, and take a sincere
interest in them can make a profound difference in their lives.
As Boy Scouts plan their activities and progress toward their goals, they
experience personal growth. The Good Turn concept is a major part of the
personal growth method of Boy Scouting. Boys grow as they participate in
community service projects and do Good Turns for others. Probably no device is
as successful in developing a basis for personal growth as the daily Good Turn.
The religious emblems program also is a large part of the personal growth
method. Frequent personal conferences with his Scoutmaster help each Boy Scout
to determine his growth toward Scouting's aims.
The Boy Scout program encourages boys to learn and practice leadership skills.
Every Boy Scout has the opportunity to participate in both shared and total
leadership situations. Understanding the concepts of leadership helps a boy
accept the leadership role of others and guides him toward the citizenship aim
Uniform. The uniform makes the Boy Scout troop visible as a force for good and
creates a positive youth image in the community. Boy Scouting is an action
program, and wearing the uniform is an action that shows each Boy Scout's
commitment to the aims and purposes of Scouting. The uniform gives the Boy Scout
identity in a world brotherhood of youth who believe in the same ideals. The
uniform is practical attire for Boy Scout activities and provides a way for Boy
Scouts to wear the badges that show what they have accomplished.