Signs, Signals and Codes Merit Badge Activity Planner
*** Activities for the Youth Lead Patrol ***
- Scouts may never add or subtract from the actual merit badge requirements
- This Planner is only a suggestion of different ideas to make working this Merit Badge both fun and easy.
- While doing the Worksheet is not a requirement for earning this badge, in many cases it can help you learn key concepts and track your progress.
A. Make Your Plan
1. Before you start- Get Basic Leadership Training:
- Patrol Leader Merit Badge Planning Guide: 10 Tips for successful Patrol Leaders, Scoutmasters and Merit Badge Counselors.
- Training: Ask your Scoutmaster - Have all youth and adult leaders in your unit completed new leader training?
2. Merit Badge Guides:
- Signs, Signals and Codes Merit Badge Requirements: MeritBadge.org guide to requirements, additional resources, activity worksheet, etc.
- Signs, Signals and Codes Merit Badge Booklet: Everything thing you need to know about Signs, Signals and Codes is right here. Get this study guide from either Amazon or your Troop Library, Merit Badge Counselor or Scoutmaster to Learn More About this Subject.
- Meet the Merit Badge Counselor: Get more ideas for cool Signs, Signals and Codes activities in your community. Some activities require his advance approval. The Scoutmaster should be able to recommend a counselor to you. Bring a buddy.
3. Sample Plan Outline: Note: This Plan is a Draft - Some dates, events and activities may change after reviewing it with your leaders. Ponder each of the sections below - what still study, where will you go, what will you do, when will you start and finish?
4. Prepare Draft of your Activity Flyer: The flyer will summarize all of your ideas on to one page in a colorful format.
B. Plan Presentation
At least one month beforehand you need to present your patrol plan for review, modifications and approval. Coming prepared with a plan of action is very important to activity success. There are many adult and youth leaders are waiting to help you out.
- Prepare rough draft of plan - purpose and calendar of events
- Prepare rough draft of event flyer - purpose, event calendar, and how to prepare.
- Carefully notate all "Prerequisites", Supplies needed, costs, homework, etc.
- Meet with the Scoutmaster and/or Troop Guide.
- Meet with the Patrol Leaders Council.
- Signs, Signals and Codes is Fun! - Patrol Presentation. 1-3 Weeks before activity start, share your plan with your patrol. They need to know what to expect. They may even Bring a Friend.
C. Study Hall
While some scouts may be adept at self-study, others may do better in a small group setting and taking notes on worksheets. You can facilitate discussion by asking them why each of the principles intruduced here would be relevant. Schedule one or more patrol meetings to work this merit badge.
- Prepare an agenda and make Assignments as needed.
- What learning materials are needed for this meeting? Who will bring them?
- Watch video, powerpoint or other online tutorial.
- Update one or more sections of the merit badge worksheet. (Ask the Merit Badge Counselor which requirements are relevant here.)
- Invite the Merit Badge Counselor to join your Study Hall.
- Plan and Prepare for the Patrol Field Trip Activities (see below).
Assign one or more requirements that the scout can do at home, perhaps as a family activity.
E. Field Trip
Meaningful Field Trips will add much to the adventure here. Consider including one or more of the following:
- Merit Badge Campout: Field Trip overnight experience can get you a lot closer to the action and to see things in a different way.
- Facility Tour: A day trip to a musuem, gallery, or factory of a related nature.
- Get Dirty Day: Setup a work station in your garage, backyard, park or other location for a truely "hands-on" experience.
- Service Project: There many organizations connected with this merit badge that could use your assistance.
- Contact the destination venue. Confirm that they can assist with the Field Trip Requirements. Reserve your Event Dates. Get Scoutmaster Assistance as necessary.
- Patrol Historian should be ready to take pictures on this activity to report back on the next troop blog, newsletter or court of honor.
F. Final Meeting
You will probably need to schedule one patrol night for a follow up meeting with your Merit Badge Counselor. He/She will use this opportunity to meet with scouts either individually are as a group to review your activities, study worksheets, knowledge and accomplishments before signing off your Merit Badge Blue Card.
- Activity Reflection: Use this meeting for scouts to ask questions and to reflect on what they gained personally from this adventure. You can also have a discussion on what future opportunities are here.
- Court of Honor Exhibit: Pictures, handiwork and other memorabilia from this adventure will make for a great presentation at the next Scout Troop Court of Honor.
G. See Also
- 9 Things to Know about Merit Badges - BoysLife.org - There are more than 135 merit badges. By earning them, you can learn about sports, crafts, science, trades, business, and future careers. Here’s how to get the most out of your merit badge experience.