Meeting 1 Meeting 2 Meeting 3 Main Event

This section of Programs that Rock is in 4 parts. Below is Part 4, the Main Event.

For increased reten­tion and mem­ber­ship growth in our units, the program we deliver needs to ROCK! One of the BSA’s main objectives is to ensure Scout leaders (both adult and youth) have fun meetings with positive outcomes. In order to consistently accomplish this, a Scout unit must plan, prepare, and then effectively present a program that is diversified, unique…and FUN—a program that ROCKS!

A “sequential approach” to Scout programming is one where gaining specific skills, and then putting them into action, pave the way towards a memorable and rewarding experience. This experience is ordinarily featured during a “main event” like an outing or special trip. During the meetings leading up to the special event, the skills and their related activities are presented in a stepwise progression and can be likened to building blocks. The goal of the “sequential approach” is to use these building blocks to provide the grounds for the Scouts to enjoy and appreciate a memorable and rewarding experience—something outstanding. In order for the Scouting program to rock, the Scout meetings leading up to this super cool main event should, in themselves, be filled with fun!

There are numerous examples of projects and experiences that are rich in rewards and create fond memories. The example we’ll use here is building a Double Tripod Chippewa Kitchen to be constructed during a front-country camping trip. How does this example qualify as something memorable and rewarding?


  1. It’s a realistic and practical pioneering project that adds convenience to various types of cooking.
  2. It’s impressive-looking.
  3. Building it yields success and engenders pride.
  4. It’s the undisputed King of Camp Gadgets, and Baden-Powell loved camp gadgets.
  5. It’s directly related to what has been humorously referred to as the “13th Point of the Scout Law”…A Scout is Hungry!

Sequential Approach—Main Event

3 LashingsChippewa SideThe Scouts are now equipped with all the lashing skills they need to build their Double Tripod Chippewa Kitchen. During their Scout meetings, they’ve already applied what they’ve learned, utilizing the same materials they’ll use to actually build the structure during their outing. More significantly, while gaining these Scout Pioneering skills, and putting them into action, they had a whole lotta fun.

Prior to the outing, in breakout groups during the preceding Scout meetings, menus were planned detailing what will be prepared on the cooking platform, over a waist-high bed of coals, on this indisputable king of all large “camp gadgets”.

Double Tripod Chippewa Kitchen: Plans, Procedure, and Materials

This sequential approach to presenting periods of instruction as building blocks, each of which can successfully stand on its own, works well within the broad spectrum of Scouting programs. Following enthusiastic instructional periods with an activity that puts what Scouts have learned into action in a manner that is involving and fun, can be applied to most any area of concentration. This is nothing new! All 48 monthly themes in the three volume collection, Program Features for Troops, Teams, and Crews endeavor to provide opportunities for similar sequential program possibilities.

Some suggestions:

  1. Always have all needed materials for periods of Group and Skills Instruction, and the Game/Challenge activity, organized and ready, beforehand.
  2. Youth and adult leaders serving as instructors and/or presenters must be thoroughly acquainted with the skill or activity, and prepared to deliver an enthusiastic, smooth-running presentation.
  3. Keep demonstrations of the skills or activity interesting and entertaining. Featuring the unexpected and adding some humor helps maintain a collective focus and contributes to the fun.

As much as possible, make Scout meetings fun with positive outcomes—each and every step of the way!

Meeting 1 Meeting 2 Meeting 3 Main Event

Back to: Planning Programs that Rock

The content of this post has not been taken from any offi­cial BSA pub­li­ca­tions.

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