By Susan Cheever
Jan 30, 2016

What is the Golden Question for a Boy-led Program ?


Is this activity really boy-led or merely thoughtless default?

Scouting is a “boy-led program.” An effective boy-led program does not begin with the question, “What would you like to do?” That question does not invite the boys to take charge and plan a quality program. It authorizes them to take the easy way out. Almost every time I have heard someone ask the question, “What do you want to do?” the reply has been, “I don’t know, what do you want to do?”

I hear so many leaders say, “All my boys want to do is play basketball.” I suspect they infer that from the boys’ response to the question, “What should we do Wednesday night?”

Havasupi with Scouts

A boy-led trek, hiking 10 miles into the Grand Canyon to Havasupai , is a rewarding and amazing adventure.

Boy-led programs begin with phrases like, “Would you like to ____________?” “Would you rather _________________ or ____________________?” and “Do you think we could________________?” Questions like those open the boys’ eyes to what is possible. Then leaders can guide the boys on a voyage of discovery to determine what “small but simple” steps need to be taken so that great things can happen.

Would you like some more specific examples? Here you go:

“Would you like to go to Havasupai for our super activity this summer?”

“If you could design your own program at Camp Tifie, would you sleep at camp every night or have an outpost experience?”

“Would you rather go white water rafting in Jackson Hole or Hiking in Zion’s Park?”

Susan Cheever


Author: Susan Cheever | Utah National Parks Council Marketing Team Administrative Assistant

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