We prepare our Scouts not just for a life of tests, but the tests of life
Our Scouts develop self-confidence and self-esteem through development of resourcefulness
Resourcefulness and ability to lead oneself is an important part of leadership
The Scout Programs of Adventure Scouts USA believe in the development of whole persons. Our Scouts develop the ability to take unrelated pieces of information and combine them with information they have previously acquired. Our Scouts develop creative and critical thinking skills that enable them to adapt their techniques once they receive new information. Our Scouts use these techniques to develop ever-changing solutions to situations they encounter today and in the future.
We Prepare Ourselves Not Just for a Life of Tests, But for the Tests of Life
Instead of just acquiring basic skills and just being able to pass a test, our Scouts acquire the ability to think and adapt which are uniquely valuable skills. As part of our Scout Programs, our Scouts develop into self-sufficient adults who live happy, healthy lives.
The French word “Bricoleur” embodies the concept of a person who can get things done. They can succeed with or without the correct equipment. Bricoleur has become an important word in the business community for someone who can achieve and get the job done. We instill in our Scouts the ability to use the resources they have access to in order to accomplish their goals. That is the attribute of resourcefulness.
Mathematician Seymour Papert often used the term “bricoleur” to describe the style of learning in which the learner makes connections between knowledge they already have and newly acquired information. Bricoleurs are comfortable with unfamiliar concepts. They figure things out by trying. They work with the information until they understand it in their own way. In French it technically means “jack of all trades”, but it also refers to a resourceful person who can get things done in any field of study. We want our Scouts to be able to thrive in any situation and to know how to take care of themselves.
The Importance of Resourcefulness
Resourcefulness is difficult to measure. It could not easily be posed as a question on a test, and yet we have all seen people who are remarkably resourceful. If an item they need is not available, they make another one work. If a bicycle tire blows out, they know how to fix it. If their compass breaks, they navigate by the stars.
Resourceful people position themselves for future success because they know not only how to survive, but how to thrive even when circumstances in life do not go their way. The resourceful person is not the one throwing up their hands and screaming when something goes wrong. A resourceful person is the one finding a way to solve the problem.
We view our Scouts as whole people and provide them challenging activities purposely intended to appear straight forward, although they are not. The ability to anticipate and react, by combining previously acquired information and skills with new unrelated ideas, allows those with this capability to achieve more than others. Consequently, our Scout Programs encourage the development of this ability.
Our Scouts are Resourceful Today and Tomorrow
As a society, we often mistake
nly presume resourcefulness is an attribute of the past. Clearly, our ancestors were remarkably resourceful people. If a wagon wheel broke for the American pioneers during their journey across the frontier, they had to rely on themselves to fix it or find some other way to push on. Although the world is more complex, we continue to instill in our Scouts the quality of resourcefulness. Resourcefulness has helped the modern world find solutions to problems we face.
How We Develop Resourcefulness in our Scouts
Confidence and self-esteem are developed when our Scouts know they can handle any situation because they have developed the attribute of resourcefulness and have confidence in their action. That is one of the reasons why we promote true proficiency in outdoor skills and first aid. Our Scouts have the confidence to act with certainty, which helps them to be of service to themselves and others. That is also why we require our Scouts to demonstrate periodically and at regular intervals that they are still proficient in the first aid and outdoor skills they acquire through our Scout Programs.
We give our Scouts a card when they have achieved true proficiency in first aid, stating that they are in fact proficient. However, a card saying they have a certain skill is not essential to their lives; having those skills and being able to use them when necessary. That is why we require they demonstrate their proficiency again and again, to ensure they can resourcefully act with certainty when necessary.
Developing the attribute of resourcefulness is just another way we contribute to the development of our Scouts as whole people and help them achieve success. Our Scouts know how to help themselves and are therefore in a better position to help others.