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Technology Troop Program Feature

The Technology troop program feature immerses Scouts BSA in the world of modern technology and innovation. It’s designed to offer young individuals a hands-on understanding of various technological fields through a series of activities, merit badges, and real-world applications. The program encourages exploration and learning in areas such as robotics, programming, and digital technology, aiming to develop skills that are pertinent in today’s tech-centric society.

With the Technology troop program feature, Scouts have the opportunity to delve into the fascinating world of technology. They can explore topics like GPS units, cellphones, and robotics, gaining a deeper understanding of the science behind how these technologies work. Scouts can also learn about the factors necessary to make these technologies functional and compare them to older technologies like compasses.

The Technology troop program feature provides a range of group instruction ideas for meetings, catering to both younger and older Scouts. These ideas offer basic instruction for younger Scouts and more challenging activities for older Scouts, allowing them to develop their skills and knowledge in technology-related areas. Additionally, each program feature includes plans for a main event, which can be a day trip, a one-night campout, or even a weekend away. This flexibility allows Scouts BSA troops to choose activities that best fit their program and interests.

By participating in the Technology troop program feature, Scouts have the opportunity to become future leaders in STEM fields and contribute to the advancement of society. It empowers them to develop valuable skills and knowledge in technology, preparing them for the tech-driven world we live in.

About Technology

The Technology troop program feature delves into the fascinating world of technology. Technology encompasses a wide range of areas, including computers, transportation, manufacturing, communications, robotics, and more. With the permission of your parents, you can use an Internet search engine to explore topics that interest you within the realm of technology.

One interesting topic to explore is GPS units. You can learn about the science behind how GPS units work, including the satellites and signals involved. Additionally, you can explore the other factors necessary to make GPS technology functional, such as the software and mapping systems. It would also be interesting to compare GPS units to the old technology of using a compass, understanding the advantages and limitations of each.

Another intriguing area to explore is cellphones. You can delve into the science behind how cellphones work, including the transmission of signals and the components that make up a cellphone. Additionally, you can explore the other factors necessary to make cellphone technology functional, such as cellular networks and data plans. It would be fascinating to explore the development of cellphones over time and discuss potential future developments in this rapidly evolving field.

Lastly, robotics is a captivating area to explore within technology. You can learn about the science behind how robots are designed and programmed, understanding the various components and algorithms involved. It would be interesting to compare hobby robots with those used in engineering, exploring the different capabilities and applications. Additionally, you can research the availability of robotics competitions in your area, which can provide an exciting opportunity to apply your knowledge and skills.

By exploring these topics and delving into the science and functionality behind various technologies, you can gain a deeper understanding of the world of technology and its impact on society.

Group Instruction Ideas for Meetings

Group instruction for the Technology troop program feature focuses on different aspects of technology, including transportation and energy. Begin by defining technology as inventions that aid daily life and discussing how technology affects society and vice versa. Brainstorm with the group about where technology could go in the future, encouraging them to think creatively.

Next, focus on cybersafety and cyberbullying by relating them to the Scout Law. Review the principles of the Scout Law and discuss how they can be applied to online behavior. Watch one or more videos from the NetSmartz® Workshop website that address staying safe online. This will help Scouts understand the importance of being responsible digital citizens.

Moving on to smartphones, discuss the evolution of long-distance communication. Start with ancient methods like smoke signals and semaphore, then progress to more modern inventions like the telegraph, telephone, cellphone, and smartphone. Talk about the advantages and disadvantages of each technology. Additionally, address the safety risks associated with smartphone use, such as texting while driving or walking.

Finally, explore the evolution of camping technology. Have someone who has been camping for decades share their experiences and discuss how camping technology has changed over time. If possible, share information from an early Boy Scout handbook, such as a reprint of the 1911 Handbook for Boys, to demonstrate the technology early Scouts used. This will give Scouts a sense of how far technology has come and how it has impacted outdoor activities.

Skills Instruction Ideas for Meetings

In this section, we will explore different skill instruction ideas for the Technology troop program feature. These ideas are divided into three experience levels: essential, challenging, and advanced. Each level offers unique opportunities for Scouts to learn and develop their technological skills.

Essential Skills

To start, Scouts can begin working on one of the following merit badges: Automotive Maintenance, Aviation, Canoeing, Cycling, Drafting, Electricity, Energy, Farm Mechanics, Motorboating, Nuclear Science, Railroading, Small-Boat Sailing, Space Exploration, or Truck Transportation. These merit badges provide a foundation for understanding various aspects of technology and its applications.

Another essential skill is learning to use a GPS receiver. With a GPS receiver for each participant, Scouts can learn about global positioning satellites, understand how latitude and longitude are represented in GPS devices, explore the basic functions of the GPS receiver, and compare GPS usage to the usage of map and compass. This activity helps Scouts develop their navigation skills and understand the role of technology in modern-day exploration.

Exploring the evolution of the telephone is another essential skill. Scouts can be shown examples or pictures of different telephone devices throughout history, such as the hand-crank telephone, dial telephone, push-button phone, cordless phone, original cellphone (“brick phone”), flip phone, and smartphone. This activity allows Scouts to appreciate the advancements in communication technology and understand how it has shaped society.

Additionally, Scouts can use outdoor magazines, catalogs, and websites to research the technologies used in the Scout Basic Essentials and other basic camping gear. They can discuss when it’s appropriate to pay more for higher tech gear, considering factors such as durability, functionality, and personal preferences.

Challenging Skills

For Scouts looking for a more challenging skills in the Technology troop program feature, they can design and build a working model vehicle from scratch, without using a kit. This activity allows Scouts to apply their knowledge of technology and engineering principles to create a functional vehicle. Guidance can be sought from the Boy Scout Nova module, “Start Your Engines.”

Another challenging skill is learning how to program a route using multiple waypoints into a GPS receiver. This skill enhances Scouts’ navigation abilities and teaches them how to plan and execute a specific route using technology.

Using a smartphone, Scouts can demonstrate the basic functions of making a phone call, setting a calendar date, sending a text, finding an address, and checking the weather. They can also share their favorite apps within the group, fostering a discussion about the various applications of technology in everyday life.

Furthermore, Scouts can learn about the technology involved in camp stoves and camp lanterns. They can discuss the safety features required for gear that uses flammable materials and understand the importance of using reliable and safe equipment during outdoor activities.

Advanced Skills

For Scouts seeking advanced skills in the Technology troop program feature, they can start by listing energy sources currently used in transportation technology. They can then discuss alternative sources of energy and the pros and cons of using them. This activity encourages critical thinking and awareness of sustainable energy solutions.

Scouts can also learn about personal locator beacons and the difference between latitude and longitude and the Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) coordinate system. They can discuss when each system is preferable and even convert latitude and longitude coordinates into UTM coordinates. This skill enhances Scouts’ understanding of navigation and geolocation technologies.

Additionally, Scouts can explore the process of developing an app, including how apps are coded and uploaded to an app store. They can brainstorm ideas for an app that would be useful to their group, encouraging creativity and problem-solving skills.

To further challenge Scouts, they can use outdoor magazines, catalogs, and websites to find the ultimate high-tech camping gear, such as extremely light sleeping bags or camp stoves with USB ports. They can also engage in a fun activity where they come up with the most amazing or ridiculous application of technology for camping, sparking imagination and innovation.

Throughout these skill instruction ideas, Scouts will also discuss when it’s appropriate to pay more for higher tech gear, considering factors such as functionality, durability, and personal preferences.

See the meeting guide for more details.

By engaging in these skill instruction ideas, Scouts will develop a deeper understanding of technology and its applications in various fields. They will also enhance their problem-solving, critical thinking, and navigation skills, preparing them for future challenges and opportunities in the technological world.

Remember, the Technology troop program feature offers a wide range of skill instruction ideas that cater to Scouts of different experience levels and interests.

Game and Challenge Ideas

In this section, we will explore four game ideas that can be incorporated into the Technology troop program feature. These games are designed to engage Scouts and provide them with opportunities to apply their technological skills in a fun and interactive way.

Nitro Transport

For this game, each patrol will need a 16 oz can filled with water, a 1-foot-square board with nylon cords tied through the edges, and a marking pen. The objective is for the patrol to move the can of “radioactive nitro” (the can filled with water) from point A to point B without spilling any water. This can be done as a relay or as a challenge for each patrol’s best time.

Photo Scavenger Hunt

Each team will need a smartphone and a computer with Internet access. Teams will go around the meeting place and photograph a list of assigned items, actions, and concepts. They will then upload their photos to a multimedia website like Flickr, Instagram, or Facebook. The first team to upload all their photos wins.

Find What They Hid

Each team will need a GPS receiver and an object to hide. Teams will hide objects and note the GPS coordinates. They will then give those coordinates to other teams, who will try to find the hidden objects. Points will be awarded to teams that find objects and to those whose objects are found.

Tech Timeline

Each patrol will need a set of cards showing milestones in the history of technology. Teams will line up relay style and, on signal, the first player will run forward and relocate two cards to be in the correct order. The game continues until one team declares that they have put their cards in the right order. The first team to do so correctly wins.

See the meeting guide for more details.

These game ideas provide Scouts with opportunities to apply their technological skills while having fun and working together as a team. By incorporating these games into the Technology troop program feature, Scouts will further develop their problem-solving, critical thinking, and teamwork abilities.

Main Event

The main event in the Technology troop program feature offers Scouts three different ideas based on their experience level: essential, challenging, and advanced. Each of these events provides Scouts with unique opportunities to further develop their technological skills and knowledge.

Essential: Tech Field Trip

This Technology troop program feature event involves visiting a technology company or a product manufacturer to gain firsthand experience and understanding of the technology used in creating products or services. By observing and interacting with professionals in the field, Scouts can learn about the various aspects of technology and its applications in real-world settings. This field trip allows Scouts to see how technology is integrated into different industries and provides them with valuable insights into potential career paths.

Challenging: Travel Technology Up Close

This educational experience is designed to expose participants to various modes of transportation technology. Scouts will have the opportunity to identify travel opportunities on different modes of transportation such as boats, buses, planes, or trains. They will also learn about arranging transportation and tours with operators, traveling to the departure point, and possibly camping overnight. The focus of this Technology troop program feature event is to learn as much as possible about transportation operation by visiting the engine room, control cab, dispatch station, or bridge. By getting up close and personal with transportation technology, Scouts can gain a deeper understanding of how these systems work and the role of technology in the transportation industry.

Advanced: Robot Tournament

This event aims to engage Scouts in competitive robotics. Participants will need to plan, design, and construct a robot to enter into competitions that can range from basic Lego Mindstorms tournaments to complex robot melees. To prepare for this event, Scouts should research and identify robot tournaments that align with their interests and skill level. They will need to understand the official rules and entry requirements of the chosen tournament, as well as acquire the necessary parts and tools for building their robot.

Scouts are responsible for submitting entry forms by deadlines, constructing the robot to meet competition guidelines, and ensuring that every unit member contributes to the project. Travel arrangements may be required as part of the plan, as well as participation in the actual tournament, where Scouts may need to perform on-the-spot repairs. This event not only allows Scouts to showcase their technological skills but also encourages teamwork, problem-solving, and adaptability in a competitive setting.

Lego Mindstorms

The LEGO Mindstorms Robot Inventor Building Set is a fantastic way to dive into the world of robotics and programming. This set not only allows you to build and customize five unique robots but also offers an interactive way to explore technology and coding through LEGO’s intuitive programming interface. (Sponsored)

See the main event guide for more details.

By incorporating these main event ideas into the Technology troop program feature, Scouts have the opportunity to further explore and apply their technological skills. Whether it’s through a field trip to a technology company, an educational outing focused on transportation technology, or a competitive robot tournament, Scouts can gain valuable experiences and knowledge that will contribute to their personal growth and development. These main events provide Scouts with hands-on learning opportunities and foster their problem-solving, critical thinking, and teamwork abilities, all while having fun and engaging with technology in meaningful ways.

Related Advancement and Awards

The Technology troop program feature not only provides Scouts with hands-on learning experiences and opportunities to explore technology, but it also offers various advancement and award options that allow Scouts to further their knowledge and skills in this field. Here are some of the related advancements and awards that Scouts can pursue, all of which are closely tied to the Technology troop program feature.

Robotics Merit Badge Helps and Documents

Robotics Merit Badge

The Robotics Merit Badge is a perfect fit for Scouts who are interested in technology and robotics. By earning this merit badge, Scouts will delve into the world of robotics, learning about the different types of robots, their components, and how they are programmed and controlled. Through hands-on activities and projects, Scouts will gain practical experience in building and programming robots, further enhancing their technological skills. The Robotics Merit Badge aligns perfectly with the Technology troop program feature, as it allows Scouts to apply their knowledge and understanding of technology in a practical and engaging way.

Programming Merit Badge

In today’s digital age, programming is a fundamental skill that is highly sought after. The Programming Merit Badge provides Scouts with the opportunity to learn the basics of programming and coding. Scouts will explore different programming languages, understand the logic behind coding, and develop their own programs. By earning this merit badge, Scouts will not only enhance their technological skills but also develop problem-solving and critical thinking abilities. The Programming Merit Badge complements the Technology troop program feature by providing Scouts with a deeper understanding of the inner workings of technology and the ability to create their own digital solutions.

Digital Technology Merit Badge

The Digital Technology Merit Badge focuses on the digital world and how technology impacts our daily lives. Scouts will explore topics such as digital communication, digital citizenship, and digital safety. They will learn about different types of digital devices, their functions, and how to use them responsibly. By earning this merit badge, Scouts will gain a comprehensive understanding of technology and its implications, making them well-rounded digital citizens. The Digital Technology Merit Badge aligns with the Technology troop program feature by emphasizing the importance of responsible and ethical technology use.

Scouts BSA Nova and Supernova Awards

The Scouts BSA Nova and Supernova Awards are designed to encourage Scouts to explore STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields. These awards provide Scouts with the opportunity to engage in hands-on activities, experiments, and projects related to various STEM topics. By earning these awards, Scouts will not only deepen their understanding of technology but also develop critical thinking, problem-solving, and teamwork skills. The Nova and Supernova Awards perfectly complement the Technology troop program feature by offering Scouts a structured pathway to explore and excel in STEM fields.

Start Your Engines Scouts BSA Nova Award

Start Your Engines Nova Award

The Start Your Engines Nova Award focuses specifically on transportation technology. Scouts will learn about different modes of transportation, their history, and how they have evolved over time. They will explore topics such as alternative fuels, energy efficiency, and the impact of transportation on the environment. By earning this award, Scouts will gain a comprehensive understanding of transportation technology and its role in our society. The Start Your Engines Nova Award aligns perfectly with the Technology troop program feature, as it allows Scouts to delve deeper into the world of transportation technology and its technological advancements.

By incorporating these advancements and awards into the Technology troop program feature, Scouts can further their knowledge and skills in technology while earning recognition for their achievements. These opportunities not only enhance Scouts’ personal growth and development but also provide them with valuable insights into potential career paths in the ever-evolving field of technology.

Frequently Asked Questions for the Technology Troop Program Feature

What is the Technology troop program feature?

The Technology troop program feature is a specialized program designed to provide Scouts with hands-on learning experiences and opportunities to explore technology. It focuses on various aspects of technology, including robotics, programming, digital communication, and more.

How does the Technology troop program feature benefit Scouts?

The Technology troop program feature offers Scouts the chance to develop valuable skills in technology, such as problem-solving, critical thinking, and teamwork. It also exposes them to potential career paths in the ever-evolving field of technology.

Can Scouts of all ages participate in the Technology troop program feature?

Yes, Scouts BSA of all ages can participate in the Technology troop program feature. The program can be tailored to suit the age and skill level of the Scouts, ensuring that they have age-appropriate and engaging activities.

Are there any prerequisites for Scouts to participate in the Technology troop program feature?

There are no specific prerequisites for Scouts to participate in the Technology troop program feature. However, having an interest in technology and a willingness to learn and explore is beneficial.

Can Scouts earn advancements and awards through the Technology troop program feature?

Yes, Scouts can earn advancements and awards through the Technology troop program feature. There are various merit badges, such as Robotics, Programming, and Digital Technology, that align with the program feature. Additionally, Scouts can pursue the Scouts BSA Nova and Supernova Awards, which encourage exploration of STEM fields.

These frequently asked questions provide a starting point for understanding the Technology troop program feature. As Scouts and Scout leaders delve deeper into this program, they may have additional questions that can be addressed through program materials, online resources, and the guidance of experienced Scout leaders.

Get with Tech

The Technology troop program feature offers Scouts a range of opportunities to explore and develop their technological skills. From essential field trips to challenging outings focused on transportation technology, and advanced robot tournaments, Scouts can engage in hands-on learning experiences that foster problem-solving, critical thinking, and teamwork abilities.

Through a Tech Field Trip, Scouts can gain firsthand experience and understanding of technology in real-world settings, while a Travel Technology Up Close outing allows them to explore different modes of transportation and learn about their operation. The advanced level event, a Robot Tournament, not only showcases Scouts’ technological skills but also encourages teamwork and adaptability in a competitive setting.

By participating in these main events, Scouts can further their knowledge and application of technology, contributing to their personal growth and development. These experiences provide valuable insights into potential career paths and foster skills that are essential in today’s digital world.

For more information on the Technology troop program feature and how to incorporate it into your troop’s activities, visit the BSA website. Explore the various resources and guidance available to ensure a successful and engaging program for your Scouts. Embrace the power of technology and empower your Scouts to become confident and skilled digital citizens.

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