Life’s Lessons for a Boy Scout

By | April 21, 2021

[April 21, 2021]  Just this past weekend, our local Boy Scout troop had a “day camp” where we spent time having fun and learning valuable skills.  These skills are the very type needed to succeed as a responsible young man.  Speaking with the boys, I learned something about their weekend I would like to share.

  1. Songs are a builder of esprit de corps. Singing is not a talent we all possess, but when everyone sings to their fullest, it makes us feel good, makes us smile, and shows we are part of a team.
  2. Friendship means someone cares. Scouting friends are often friends for life.  They are there when you need them.  Our boys have learned that when the going gets tough, they can rely on a buddy from scouting to help them.  We are never too busy to stop what we are doing to help.
  3. How to build a fire. There must be some primal desire to start fires, as all our boys jump at any opportunity to build the largest bonfire they can manage.  We teach them how to do so safely, and we teach them tricks to keep a fire going to keep them warm and cook their food.
  4. How to cook a meal. Young boys and girls today are rarely taught how to plan, resource properly, and cook a meal.  They admit that doing so is relatively easy with some early thought into what they like.  The meal also provides a time where they get to know one another better.
  5. How to keep themselves clean and avoid bug bites. Personal hygiene is emphasized, and we teach them the specifics of doing so.  They learn that little things make a difference.  For example, they know that even a tiny cut can get infected and ruin your day.
  6. Leading and Teaching can be fun. Leadership skills are crucial.  We show them “how” to lead and “what” to look for in good leadership.  We also teach them to teach.  Every scout is required to demonstrate some skill like fire building, wood carving, knot tying, etc.
  7. Being a better man. Boy Scouts, at its core, is preparing young boys to be responsible men.  They learn how to be better family members, how to help their community, and what values are most important.  Lots of examples are given, and we speak to them about what they are doing and why.

Regardless of the rank a scout obtains, many skills are taught in the Boy Scouts that push us to be good citizens.  We teach character.  And we teach what character means, its value, and plenty of ways to be a man of character.  This starts with ethics.

Author: Douglas R. Satterfield

Hello. I'm Doug and I provide at least one article every day on some leadership topic. I welcome comments and also guests who would like to write an article. Thanks for reading my blog.

16 thoughts on “Life’s Lessons for a Boy Scout

  1. Pink Cloud

    I learned a lot as a Boy Scout. It’s the best young boy’s organization out there. Beats the pants of the Girl Scouts.

    Reply
    1. Army Captain

      Ha….. I will agree with that. Symbolically speaking, of course. I learned much of the skills I needed while in the US Army. While others spent energy learning how to build a fire or tie knots, I was learning about the more sophisticated part of leadership. That put me way ahead of my peers.

      Reply
  2. Rev. Michael Cain

    Gen. Satterfield, once again you’ve surprised me with a practical article that stirred some old memories of my childhood. Others have said the same but I wanted to thank you for it. Growing up in New York City was a great time. Today, not so good. But we kids had good times there.

    Reply
  3. Wilson Cox

    Fun article, takes me back to my boyhood. Thanks. Gen. Satterfield.
    😊😊😊😊😊

    Reply
    1. Pooch T.

      Wilson, I was thinking the same thing. I only remember having “fun.” But I got a lot more out of scouting than having fun with my friends, I gained an appreciation for camping out and that not all things would go my way (I got bit by plenty of bugs) and not all things were comfortable (sleeping in a tent only goes so far). Today’s youth are a bunch of spoiled children lead by a bunch of spoiled adults. I’ll be none of them were in scouting.

      Reply
      1. Sean Matthews, Jr.

        It is possible to have fun while learning. That shows the teacher is actually effective.

        Reply
  4. KenFBrown

    “Being a better man.” That’s what scouting is about and they teach this by showing the boys how to have fun while doing it.

    Reply
  5. Audrey

    Excellent list of attributes that we should all know. I noticed that you spoke of boys and men and did not write of girls and women. I know the boy scouts now accept girls. I have pondered whether they are learning the same skills that our boys are learning or are they just using the boy scouts as a vehicle to flex their supposed moral superiority.

    Reply
  6. Army Captain

    I have discovered in my time in the US Army that those men who come into the service with a background in scouting (or just have some basic skills dealing with the outdoors) make a much better soldier than those from other walks of life. I wonder what that means actually? Simple answer. They are better people because they are grounded in ethical behavior.

    Reply
    1. Mr. T.J. Asper

      Interesting Army Captain, but not surprising. I too have found that those young folks who learn the difference between bad and good, are much better at everything. I speak from experience as a High School teacher.

      Reply
      1. Otto Z. Zuckermann

        Mr Asper, you are probably one of the more practical teachers. However, I must respectfully note that teachers did not afford themselves well during the pandemic. They were generally cowards in their actions.

        Reply
      2. Silly Man

        Thanks Mr. A. We don’t teach the ability to distinguish betw/ bad and good any more, we just teach slogans of good and bad.

        Reply
  7. McStompie

    If only, if only, if only we all had learned such basic skills, the more we could grow as an adult.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.