Norman Rockwell's Boy Scout painting

Review Part 3: A Scout Leader’s Guide to Youth Leadership

Today, I am continuing my review of A Scout Leader’s Guide to Youth Leadership Training: Working the Patrol Method. This book really addresses some of the challenges of having a boy lead troop. You can see the previous parts  of this review at

Review: General Format, Introduction, and Section 1

Review: Sections 2 and 3

Today I am reviewing Sections 4 and 5. I don’t want to give the impression that this is a difficult read. I have actually finished the book. But with trying to write a blog post every day, I have to keep the posts short and focused. And since the concepts in this book are important, I want to let you know about all of the information you will find in it.

Section 4: The Patrol Method – Building the Team

This section goes into detail about how a patrol goes from just being a group of guys to a unit which works together.  It gives a lot of real world examples which would make great Scoutmaster minutes and would capture the youth leaders attention during training sessions.

Mentioned in this section are “forming”, “storming”, “norming”, and “performing” which describe how teamwork develops. When JD came home from NYLT, this was one of the concepts he mentioned. The book gives a good explanation of the process and how it can be encouraged or disrupted.

Also in this section is advice about teaching leaders to utilize the individual strengths of the members of their patrol. Dealing with difficult Scouts – which can be very problematic – is also touched upon.

Section 5: Striving for Excellence – Doing Your Best

Section 5 is really brief. It almost seemed like an intermission in the book. Basically, it is a group of stories about motivating youth to do their personal best. The authors emphasize that what is the best effort might vary from Scout to Scout, but we should always encourage them to really get them to reach beyond what is natural or easy.

If you are interested in this book but you don’t have a copy yet, it is available on Amazon.  If you have read the book and have some thoughts on it, feel free to comment below.

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