BSA has created updated versions of the Troop Program features for Scouts BSA. The Pioneering program feature is available in digital format on the BSA website or can be purchased as a publication from you local Scout Shop.
The Pioneering feature teaches Scouts how to build structures and gadgets using rope, spars, creativity, and knot skills. The program feature includes some general information and some more specific ideas for meetings:
- Learn knots and lashings
- Understand how to care for ropes and spars
- Learn the rules of pioneering safety
Troop Meeting Ideas
Suggested troop meeting ideas are grouped by essential, challenging, or advanced. Here are a few you can see in the guide.
- Learn half hitches and round lashings (essential / challenging)
- Build a flag pole (advanced)
- Practice square lashings (essential / challenging)
- Practice maintaining maximum strain (advanced)
- Make a tripod (essential)
- Make a double tripod (challenging)
- Make a hand washing station (advanced)
- Learn how to tie a butterfly knot and make a rope tackle (essential)
- Learn how to build a 1-1 anchor (challenging)
- Learn how to build a 1-2-3 anchor (advanced)
- Learn how to tie a floor lashing (essential)
- Lash staves with floor lashings (challenging)
- Make a simple camp table (advanced)
Games and More
There are also several games suggested to keep things interesting at your troop meetings
- A-Frame Chariot Race
- Catch the Snapper
- Crossing the Alligator Pit
- Everyone on the Tripod
- Flagpole Race
- Ladder Building
- Lift Seat Procession
- Reactor Transporter
- Roman Chariot Race
- Scout Stave Launcher
- Self-Standing Flagpole Challenge
- Snake Race
The plan even provides Scoutmaster’s minutes and ceremonies for meetings.
Pioneering Program Troop Outing
Then there is the “Main Event” for the pioneering program feature. Once again, there are suggestions for essential, challenging, or advanced. Details and planning aids can be found in the online guide.
- Build a camp kitchen (essential)
- Build a Chippewa Kitchen and cook at a public gathering (challenging)
- Hold a Scout Engineering weekend and construct multiple gadgets (advanced)
Related Resources for Pioneering Program Feature
Find some related helps and achievements for the Pioneering Program Feature below.
Here is a really simple camp gadget I saw at a camporee a few years back. It was a simple boot scraper camp gadget for scraping the mud off of the bottom of the boots.
This is a very challenging game which combines lashing skills and teamwork. It would work well for an interpatrol activity at a meeting focused on pioneering skills.
This is a gadget which was shown to us at a recent Roundtable. It uses lashings to make a handwashing station from straight sticks and an empty gallon milk jug.
These instructions are for a pot and towel drying rack. There is a small picture of a similar gadget in the Scouts BSA handbook.
This is a traditional Scout lashings game which might date back to Baden-Powell himself. It practices Scoutcraft (lashings) as well as cooperation and problem solving. It could be worked into a pioneering program.