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Wood Badge

How do I get my beads?

When you have finished working your ticket, let your troop guide know. The troop guide will talk with you a bit about it. When you're done, the troop guide will tell your course director. You can arrange the presentation for whatever event seems suitable – a training event, a court of honor or pack meeting, a Roundtable, whatever. The presentation can be most anything except the course director will not just mail the beads to you. Your course director does have the beads and other regalia for you. It is up to you to arrange a time and place, and to let the course director know well in advance.

If you need to, you can modify your ticket. The most common reason for that is that your job in Scouting changes. Also, sometimes people find that a ticket goal involves more time than it seemed, or is no longer necessary, or something. If you need to change your ticket, just call your troop guide.

What if you can't communicate with your troop guide? What if he or she fell off the edge of the earth? What you do then is, you call your course director (or anyone on the course staff). It's not a problem. Well, not for you, though things may be awkward for the troop guide who fell off the edge of the earth. If you can't reach your course director either, email woodbadge@web.seattlebsa.org.


Wearing the beads

After your beads are presented, you wear them only with the field uniform – the main "official" uniform, with the khaki or yellow or green shirt. You do not wear them with activity uniforms, t-shirts, etc. (If you are wearing the beads and then decide to take off the field uniform shirt and just wear a t-shirt that you had on under it, you can tuck the beads under the t-shirt so they don't show but don't get lost.)

You can wear the beads with the Gilwell neckerchief and woggle, or with your troop neckerchief and slide, or with no neckerchief. For formal events you would probably wear the Gilwell neckerchief and woggle.

The neckerchief and woggle are more limited. They stay together. You don't wear the neckerchief with a different slide, and you don't wear the woggle with another neckerchief. And if you wear them, you need to wear the beads too. The beads should show in front of the neckerchief.


"Woodbadge"---not.  Wood Badge is two words


Gilwell Song

The Gilwell Song is always sung in the same order by patrol, with Beavers first. You will sometimes also have Ravens, Explorers, or others. The verse for Explorer Wood Badge is quite different – see your songbook. In Chief Seattle Council, members of a patrol will link with arms around shoulders while singing their verse, then join the other patrols, so that at the end everyone is together. We do not change the song, and we don't dance with it. If there are people present who have not gone to Wood Badge, then the senior patrol leader or other appropriate person might invite them to stand and sing with a friend or family member, or to be inside the circle.

In the Gilwell Song, remember AND. We sing "I used to be a Beaver [or whatever] AND a good old Beaver too." Got it? "And."


It doesn't end

"The Gilwell scarf does not entitle you to consider yourself as a thing apart. Your Troop or District must as much as ever command your first allegiance." Baden-Powell, in the Headquarters Gazette of October 1923.

Wood Badge forever

Do it;
Do it right;
Do it right now.

Wood Badge is for the rest of your life. Work your ticket right away, of course. Try to finish within six months or maybe nine. You are allowed to take up to 18 months, but try not to take that long. You know how Scouts have to get Eagle by age 18? Well, we have till 18 (months) to finish the ticket too (but we urge you to aim to finish in six months or so).

Call your troop guide if you have problems, need to change a ticket goal, or just want to chat.

The lessons you learned at Wood Badge don't ever end. They are with you for the rest of your life.


Random bits of wisdom

"Don't let the technical outweigh the moral. Field efficiency, backwoodsmanship, camping, hiking, good turns, jamboree comradeship are all means, not the end. The end is character – character with a purpose." Baden-Powell, The Scouter magazine, March 1939.

"Stick to your Scout Promise always – even after you have ceased to be a boy – and God help you to do it." Last words of Baden-Powell's Last Message to Scouts.

Plan A is a myth.

"to seek truth, fairness, and adventure in our world." From the Venturing Oath.

"I will seek to preserve a cheerful spirit even in the midst of irksome tasks and weighty responsibilities." From the Order of the Arrow Obligation.

"The Scout Law is the foundation on which the whole of Scout training rests." Baden-Powell, Aids to Scoutmastership, World Brotherhood edition, 1944.

"True leadership is the art of changing a group from what is into what it ought to be." Jan Greene.

"It is not enough to be industrious; so are the ants. What are we industrious about?" Henry David Thoreau.

"Leadership is not about making yourself more powerful. It's about making people around you more powerful." Betty Linton.

"It is a commonly quoted saying that 'Only those can lead who have first learned to obey.' Yes, but like many truisms it has its limits. I prefer also as a leader the man who has learned to lead." Baden-Powell, Headquarters Gazette, June 1918.

You have to start from where you are.