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 Post subject: Scouts
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2014 12:03 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2011 9:47 am
Posts: 173
DS in Y9 is just starting to hit that point where he doesn't want to do Scouts anymore. I would love him to continue for many obvious reasons (he has been there from the start-Beavers age 6) but was wondering whether there is merit in persuading him to continue from the angle of university applications. I understand it is a useful thing to show you have done when applying. Is this correct? Or is the D of E alone just as good for this purpose?
DS is the older of 2 children so I haven't come across this as yet.
Anyone who can shed light?
Thank you.


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 Post subject: Re: Scouts
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2014 1:06 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 08, 2011 1:25 pm
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Hi there, assuming you don't already know this, your Ds will be coming towards the end of his time in the scout section this year anyway, with Explorers the next step. They generally move to explorers shortly after 14th birthday(but many will take them at 13y 6 months. I would suggest looking into this and trying to get him to at least try it as it can be very different from scouts. Also at age 14 (again some will at 13 1/2) they can become young leaders which again gives a different experience. I couldn't comment on how this would affect university application but surely it can't be a bad thing.


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 Post subject: Re: Scouts
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2014 1:45 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 10:59 am
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My kids are all involved in Scouting, both as participants and young leaders - but they are all outdoor lovers and we spend a lot of time hiking etc as a family. All of mine have gained an enormous amount from scouting but I don't think any of them has considered it with an eye to university applications - they just enjoy it. I think if a child isn't enjoying something in Year 9 he shouldn't carry on just because it may look good some 5 years in the future. He needs to spend his spare time doing what he enjoys.


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 Post subject: Re: Scouts
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2014 2:05 pm 
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Agree with Amber regarding doing it for the love of it, but was pointing out that it may be worth hanging on for a while to see if any of the new experience change his mind


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 Post subject: Re: Scouts
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2014 2:43 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2011 9:47 am
Posts: 173
Thank you Stroudydad and Amber.
Completely agree with you both. He has always loved it and enjoyed all it has to offer but events have made him unenthusiastic to continue. I am clutching at all possible straws to stop him quitting including the uni one. He of course isn't too bothered about that being only (almost) 14, but other parents had mentioned this to be a good reason to continue.
Hopefully, he will be back to normal once he moves onto being an Explorer. I will need to find out when this is happening.


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 Post subject: Re: Scouts
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2014 3:07 pm 
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Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2014 12:39 pm
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My son also got a little bored towards the end of his time at Scouts, but Explorers is completely different. I think it's great for them to be able to participate in all the outdoor activities they have access too- with people who are experienced.


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 Post subject: Re: Scouts
PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2014 3:20 pm 
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Agree with above comments re explorers and he could also look into a stand alone D of E group.
From experience, explorers (if they also do Dof E) is a better way in that they have more group time and it's cheaper!

University personal statement needs to show some extra curricular activities but anything will do. Its much more about the subject and demonstrating an interest beyond the A level curriculum.

Doing explorers/ d of e should be about the skills they develop ( independence, responsibility, traym work, leadership...) ratherbthan UCAS. My DCs found it more useful for work experience/ placement applications than for UCAS but again these same skills can be developed in any number of ways.

Its also quite possible to pick up Explorers/ D of E after a break if he feels that would be better.

Generally I would say its one if the less important issues so a good one to let them gave free choice with :)


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 Post subject: Re: Scouts
PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2014 5:35 pm 
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I'm a Guide Leader and find that once the girls turn 13 it can sometimes be a struggle for them to stay at Guides and I know is is a similar problem with Scouts (I have lots of friends who are Scout leaders and DS is a Scout). I deal with the older girls in a different way to the younger ones to stop them getting bored, I put them in their own patrol, encourage them to do their Baden-Powell which is the highest award they can do at Guides, and help them look at what they want to do next. I have had Guides who at 14/15 have gone to Rangers, Explorers, Young Leaders, a mixture and some have even left and then come back after a break asking to become Young Leaders. My DSs Scout troop make the older boys Senior Patrol Leaders (he can't wait) where they are moving towards leadership by helping run some meetings, help out with activities and also do their own activities, which is similar to my older patrol.

A good leader should know how to stretch the older boys and guide them towards the next step. In regards to UCAS statements I know several of my previous YL's have found that the fact they have been YL has been beneficial as they have used them as part of their D of E (service) and one girl got asked about her Guiding experience in her interview at Cambridge. Also the skills they get as YLs help them out in the real world.

So if you are concerned speak to his leaders they can tell you what is on offer as the next stage or if they can stretch him that little bit more.


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 Post subject: Re: Scouts
PostPosted: Tue Sep 23, 2014 6:14 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 04, 2008 2:28 pm
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Any kind of leadership experience is obviously helpful but be please be clear that UCAS personal statements are about why you are interested in the course ( giving concrete evidence) and why you would be good at the course ( giving evidence).
A couple of sentences about extra curricular activities of some kind can be useful in demonstrating an ability to use your time widely more than anything.
Where activities/skills can be shown to have relevance to the course then naturally they have more significance.

As for Cambridge interviews please do not get the idea that they are looking for leadership, sporting skills or anything else beyond academic ability. The interviewers have a strict guidelines and a numerical mark scheme. The days of a particular college making EEE offers to elite rugby players are long gone :)

University applications are very different to job applications, where interpersonal skills etc have much more importance.

Not that I am for a second under valuing what is learned from membership of scouts/ guides and other youth organisations.


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 Post subject: Re: Scouts
PostPosted: Thu Sep 25, 2014 10:27 am 
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Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2011 9:47 am
Posts: 173
KB, Oops-I'vedoneitagain, and MedievalBabe (you sound like a brillaint leader, so true about the older ones)-thank you for your useful thoughts and experiences. Looks like Explorers is just around the corner so will persuade DS to hang in there for now as I'm sure he will love what that has to offer.
Thanks to all for your valuable advice as ever.


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