Adventures in Virtual Merit Badges
Virtual Merit Badges
are opportunities for Scouts to work on merit badges with registered counselors skilled in the field of study. Virtual merit badge sessions take place in three ways (virtual platforms) within our event:
- Zoom / Google Meet sessions - Weekly Zoom / Meet sessions that meet once or twice to cover requirements during the virtual sessions. Some requirements submissions may be emailed to the merit badge counselor with the parent (or second adult) CC'ed in.
- Zoom / Google Meet -to- Google Classroom - Initial contact of expectations in fulfilling requirements then moving to a drop box for requirement submissions.
- Appointment Buddies - 2-3 Scouts (Buddies) meet at a set time with Counselor using either: speakerphone, Zoom / Google Hangouts or parent's Facebook video chat.
Please be aware: Google Classrooms are only accessible through a gmail account with one email per person. (Means siblings cannot share one email between the themselves in the same Google Classroom.) Most Scouts cannot utilize their school email outside of their school arena as many school have that avenue blocked for their student's safety.
Merit badge registration costs are: $5 per session.
Required Read for EVERYONE (Scouts, Parents, Leaders and Counselors & etc.):
Please read the following as you will be responsible for the information inside:
1. Welcome Letter.
2. Virtual Merit Badge Guidelines as it applies to your roles in Scouting. (Scouts, Parents, Leaders --or-- Counselors)
3. Important excerpts from the Guide to Advancements - 2019, No 33088
4. Youth Protection Policies in Digital Communication
Merit Badge Sessions being offered: (NO REFUNDS!)
Please be aware class size varies between 2 - 10 Scouts with MAX at 10 Scouts for our council.
This keeps the quality of the BSA Merit Badge Program and ensures the Merit Badge Counselors are able to give attentions to each Scouts' projects and fulfillment of all requirements. Counselors must know that every Scout --actually and personally-- completed the requirements 'as stated', no more, no less.
Time Zone: Seneca Waterways Council is on Eastern Daylight Savings Time (EDT), not Eastern Standard Time (EST) because we sprung ahead 1 hour in March so please check your time zone information very carefully.
FYI... After you register, ALWAYS check your email for the registration receipt and the invites. Read them carefully!
New adds - 4.7.2020 at 3:00 pm -- Best to check daily as there are always new adds.
Waitlist - PLEASE fill out your registration fully in the event you are contacted at a later date. You will not be charged for being on the waitlist, yet offered the first option of sign up if a seat opens up or another session is added.
Bugling - Appointment Based Merit Badge - This PDF explains the prerequisites for this merit badge, along with how appointments are done.
Please be sure to check this page regularly for updates as new virtual merit badge sessions will be added.
Merit Badge Pamphlets:
Be aware that troop libraries have out-dated pamphlets, yet are still useable in learning about the merit badge.
For the most current and up-to-date requirements, go to the BSA’s official merit badges page as you will find troop libraries merit badge pamphlets and outdated merit badge requirements online. It is nice to have the merit badge pamphlet, however it is not required.
Merit Badge Worksheets:
Worksheet can be found at this link: http://usscouts.org/mb/mbbooks.asp
1. Scroll to the merit badge name you want and click it.
2. On the new page, scroll down under the requirements and select either WORD or PDF version.
3. Right click to a new window.
4. Download to your computer using 'SAVE AS' to a location where you can find it.
5. Open the file on your computer that you 'save as' in #4 above.
Other Virtual Opportunities to Check Out:
(click the names to take you to their awards page.)
Scouts, protect yourself by Be Prepared in having the current Cyber Chip for your age before you venture into the virtual world of merit badges!
Take a peek into the world of International Scouting and try to connect to a Troop in another country with the help of your adult leaders!
JOTI (Jamboree on the Internet) and Messengers of Peace are another great programs to check out!
There are 3 different awards: Presidential Active Lifestyle Award (PALA), BeMedWise, and SCOUTStong Healthy Unit. The PALA award is great to work with while doing the Personal Fitness merit badge.
One of Scouting's rarest, most prestigious honors is what BSA writer Michael Freeman says about the Hornaday Award: https://scoutingmagazine.org/2018/04/hornaday-award-scoutings-rarest-prestigious-honors/
The fundamental purpose of the Hornaday Awards program is to encourage and increase public awareness about natural resource conservation. The following merit badges count toward Hornadays' badge or medals:
|Environmental Science||Landscape Architecture|
|Fish & Wildlife Management||Mammal Study|
|Public Health||Nuclear Science|
|Soil & Water Conservation||Oceanography|
|Bird Study||Plant Science|
|Fishing||Pulp and Paper|
|Fly-Fishing||Reptile & Amphibian Study|
STEM - Nova & Supernova Awards:
STEM is part of an initiative the Boy Scouts of America has taken on to encourage the natural curiosity of youth members and their sense of wonder about these fields: Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics. Worksheets for Nova & Supernova <-click here
The following merit badges are approved for use in earning the Supernova Award. (Be aware that merit badges cannot be used twice in the 10 themed topics offered.)
|Animal Science||Environmental Science||Plant Science|
|Architecture||Fish & Wildlife Management||Pulp and Paper|
|Automotive Maintenance||Game Design||Reptile & Amphibian Study|
|Bird Study||Geocaching||Scuba Diving|
|Chemistry||Geology||Signs, Signals, & Codes|
|Composite Materials||Insect Study||Soil & Water Conservation|
|Digital Technology||Mammal Study||Surveying|
|Electricity||Mining in Society||Veterinary Medicine|
Religious Emblems and Duty to God
Reach out to your pastor, minister, clergy or folks in your houses of worship and see if someone is willing to do your Religious Emblem virtually. Share the information with us and we will post it here for others to see so they can join in with you. If they want to but do not know how and where to get the materials, email us and we will help you get going! (Our contact information is in the contact box below.)
FOLKS, PLEASE SHARE any you know within our SWC council: contacts, links, and activity pages. For many, this might be a huge need with one's worship home being under lockdown because they fit the category of 50 or more gathered together.
Direct Connections for Religious Emblems:
Catholic - Mark Capellazzi
Interfaith - Paula Popper
Virtual Religious Activity Pages:
Religious Emblem Classes:
Interfaith - Doing God & Church - April 6 to May 6, 2020 with 6 dates to choose from, being offered by Paula Popper. (Click the link to sign up.) Please be aware this is for those in SWC Council only.
Wisdom Woods on Other Councils Virtual Opportunities:
Please be aware of the following as you explore the internet for virtual merit badge opportunities:
- Safety - Does the Google Classroom list TWO teachers? There is a feature that allows for one-on-one class that is against BSA'a Youth Protection Policies. Make sure is it s parent email being used in these cases or skip this offering!
- Class size -- Do NOT short change your Scout's Scouting experience of the Merit Badge Program as Lord Baden-Powell intended it. Class size should be MAX between 3 to 12 Scouts in a session in the virtual arena so your Scout gets the BEST!
- Parent participation -- Please help in Two Deep Leadership by being present at all times during sessions. You as the parent might learn something too and what you heard might give you and your Scout(s) something new to share and discussion in the crazy world of 'cabin fever' COVID-19.
But on the flip side: Parents, please do NOT do anything a Scout CAN do for themselves. Encourage and empower and let your Scout do and fail if it happens. Failure is an opportunity to learn through reflection. This is also a time to teach skills like making a phone call. For many Scouts, making a phone is becoming a lost art (skill), yet is a skill they will need to Be Prepared. For Life. So please empower your Scouts with skills to Be Prepared. For Life!
Other Councils Virtual Opportunities:
Wisdom Woods from a Wise Owl - Before you sign up, check class size. In the Virtual Merit Badge arena, you want your Scout to get the BEST experience that mirrors doing them in person. Virtual Class Sizes can be 12 MAX, but preferred is 8 - 10!
Why? According to the Guide to Advancements, Counselors must know that every Scout—actually and personally—completed the merit badge requirements.
Opportunities for Fulfilling Merit Badge Requirements:
Citizenship in the Community / Communication - Board Meetings:
Town of Brighton - Town Board Meeting
Williamson Central School - School Board Meeting
Are you a Merit Badge Counselor wanting to help?
Please let us know through our interest survey here:
Virtual MBC Recruitment
Please be aware, for our event we only use registered counselors. Ask me how to get your registered too! (Email Ursula using the contact box.)
Adventure, Games and More for Troops & Scouts:
Adventure Bingo - Thank you Seneca Waterways Massawepie Camps
Scout Rank 30 Day Challenge - Thank you Iowa's Hawkeye Area Council- Samantha Mensinger
Tenderfoot 30 Day Challenge - Thank you Iowa's Hawkeye Area Council- Samantha Mensinger
Second Class 30 Day Challenge - Thank you Iowa's Hawkeye Area Council- Samantha Mensinger
First Class 30 Day Challenge - broken link but this is the source
30 Day Merit Badge Challenge - Thank you Iowa Hawkeye Area Council's Samantha Mensinger
ScoutSHARE.org - A Wood Badge Ticket from Scoutmaster Dave of Troop 167 within our Council. -- THANK YOU!
LearnScoutsBSA.com - Another resource like ScoutSHARE from Scoutmaster Tony on Indiana's Troop 199. -- THANK YOU!
Merit Badge Videos - A great collection of videos to assist you in your work on merit badges.
The Merits of At-Home Scouting (PDF) - Oklahoma's Last Frontier Council put together an extensive listing of what different councils are offering with their direct. link
Friday 05-15-2020 6:30 PM ET to
Friday 05-29-2020 8:30 PM ET Past
American Cultures (PP-2) - Eagle Flight
Monday 05-18-2020 10:00 AM ET to
Monday 06-01-2020 12:00 PM ET Past
Citizenship in the Community (PP.1) - Eagle Flight
Wednesday 05-20-2020 10:00 AM ET to
Wednesday 06-03-2020 12:00 PM ET Past
Personal Management (PP.2) - Eagle Flight
Wednesday 05-27-2020 10:00 AM ET to
Wednesday 06-10-2020 12:00 PM ET Past
Albert & Nick Cohen
Saturday 05-30-2020 10:00 AM ET to
Saturday 06-06-2020 11:30 AM ET Past