Product Reviews by Scouter Mom

In these product reviews, I share my thoughts on books, apparel, and outdoor gear. Some of these are reviews of things I’ve stumbled across on my own. Others have been sent to me or brought to my attention.

If you have a book or product which you would like me to review, please contact me.

Product Reviews: Books

Beginning Boy Scouts

The subtitle of this book is “An unofficial practical guide to Boy Scouts for parents and new leaders.” And that describes the book perfectly. If you know somebody who is new to the Scouts BSA program, then this would be a great resource to give them an overview of the program. Note that this book only covers the Scouts BSA program, not Cub Scouts or Venturing. Also the name reflects that it was written before the Boy Scout program name changed, but the information all still applies.

A Scout Leader’s Guide to Youth Leadership Training

The subtitle of this book is “Working the Patrol Method”. I am really impressed by this book. Training youth leaders and really implementing the patrol method are things which many troops struggle with. The authors give practical steps and examples of how to teach youth to lead. This book was also written before the transition from Boy Scouts to Scouts BSA, so some of the terminology might be outdated. The information is just as valid as the day it was written though.

Mini Weapons of Mass Destruction

My Scouts loved this book! It shows them how to make miniature catapults, bows, and other projectile machines out of common office supplies. This book would make a great basis for a open house or a just for a fun meeting with STEM concepts.

Getting Started in Pinewood Derby

This colorful workbook goes through all of the steps involved in building a Pinewood Derby car. My favorite thing about the book is that it is directed at Cub Scouts – who should be doing most of the work on their cars.

Developing Teen Leadership

The subtitle of this book is “A Practical Guide for Youth Group Advisors, Teachers and Parents.” It is written by Dan Appleman who has 20 years of experience working with youth. While it is not specifically geared to Scouts, it gives a lot of good ideas about working with youth leaders.

Product Reviews: Apparel

Columbia Omni Heat Jacket

A product review of the Columbia Omni Heat Mighty Light Jacket. This jacket is lightweight but warm. I liked the fit a lot. (2020 Note: Ten years later, I am still wearing this jacket. It has definitely held up. I wear it almost every day during the winter.)

Hoo-rag Bandanas, Headbands, and Masks

Hoo-rag sent me some free products to review. They sent me some bandanas, a headband, a couple of masks, and more. So here is my review and thoughts about the best way to use these. I especially like the bandanas for when I am outdoors.

Product Review: Colter Bandanas

I received some bandana product samples from Colter Co. with a request for a review. Love these! In addition to being practical and useful, these bandanas are also fun.

Product Reviews: Gear

Flowfold Optimist Mini Backpack

The nice folks at Flowfold sent me one of their Optimist Mini Backpacks for review.  This is a 10L backpack and is just the right size for a day pack. I used it over the weekend at a youth camp where the buildings were very spread out and I wanted to be able to keep a few things with me all day.

Cobrabraid 550 Paracord Bracelets

I received some Cobrabraid 550 samples to review. The bracelets I received were made of study paracord.


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