Scouts accomplish Challenges as part our Personal Achievement Program
Scouts demonstrate in front of their fellow Scouts that they have accomplished the Challenge and can accomplish it again
Did and Do is evaluated with objectively and subjectively
The Scout Programs of Adventure Scouts USA have developed a unique process by which our Scouts progress through our Personal Achievement Programs. This process is called Did and Do.
Scouts establish their proficiency in the presence of others. Teams keep careful records of all Challenges earned by Scouts. Teams may keep on hand a supply of insignia demonstrating successful completion with additional quantities available by request to the National Headquarters.
As part of their Personal Achievement Program, our Scouts learn how to master a certain Challenge, a certain skill. For example, our Scouts might choose to master shooting a free throw in basketball. Different Challenges will take different amounts of time to master and as our Scouts progress, the Challenges become more difficult and comprehensive.
In their own time, our Scouts master a Challenge. In order to earn a Challenge in setting up a tent, Scouts need to learn which tent to use, where to set it up, why to set it up in a certain area, how to set it up, and how to do it quickly. A Challenge is comprehensive and representative of having mastered a skill, rather than simply being able to set up a tent once. When our Scouts feel they have truly mastered the Challenge, they present their Challenge to their fellow Scouts.
It is important for our Scouts to demonstrate their skill before their fellow Scouts. We ask that our Scouts not only learn a new skill, but also retain the information. That is why it is important for our Scouts to be able to recreate the Challenge in front of their fellow Scouts. They can honestly say, “Not only did I do this, but I can do it right now.”
The efforts of the Scouts should not solely be for the purpose of completing the task but rather to learn to jump in with both feet, and wrap themselves around exciting and real projects with consequences for themselves and the greater community. While Did and Do is in fact the test, it is truly an opportunity for the Scout to be able to demonstrate to themselves, their fellow Scouts and the greater community what they have practiced to make perfect and most importantly the skills and habits they have acquired.
Ingenuity is desired as is gaining self-confidence. We desire that the Scout clearly state their purpose, be able to convincingly and persuasively demonstrate their efforts and demonstrate that they can accomplish what they set out to do. This will require practice, persistence, organization, effort, and creative and critical thinking skills.
Fellow Scouts evaluate by taking into consideration whether the Scout can do what they said they could do, how well they can do it, if they can do it in an appropriate amount of time, and if they gave their best.
All evaluations are conducted with a non-judgmental attitude. Constructive comments are expected. Care is taken to avoid sarcasm or ridicule. It is important evaluations provide the Scout information what they can do to improve the quality of their effort.
Demonstrations are evaluated based on appearance, quality of the presentation, and whether the Scout gave their best. Feedback is immediate.
Whether the Scout can do what they said they could do and do it in an appropriate amount of time are objective criteria. It is obvious to everyone observing whether this part of the Challenge has been met.
Whether the Scout truly gave their best is a subjective criterion. Because their fellow teammates know the Scout being evaluated, they
have a good idea whether the Scout truly gave their best. The Scout presenting the Challenge is also asked whether they think they truly gave their best.
Standards of Evaluation
Standards for evaluating whether a Scout has successfully demonstrated having given their best, and the appropriate level of proficiency to earn a Challenge, are realistic. While we are determined to grant recognition only to those who meet the standards appropriate for Challenges, by keeping the standards realistic we allow those who have given their best and met the standards expected to complete the Challenge. We are less concerned, in most instances, with how long something takes to achieve than whether it has been achieved properly. Completion of a Challenge permits the Scout and all others to know the Scout has successfully demonstrated the skills necessary to complete the Challenge. We take great pride that evaluation of Challenges includes fellow Scouts as evaluators and of demonstrations by the Scouts showing each other their skills.
In an effort to motivate Scouts to put forth more than just satisfactory completion of Challenges we provide to Scouts who demonstrate superior extraordinary achievement of a Challenge additional recognition. Scouts, on their own initiative, make the choice whether they wish to demonstrate superior extraordinary achievement. They are also responsible for choosing how to demonstrate their additional efforts. Our Scouts who choose to undertake this added effort potentially have their extra efforts rewarded, and perhaps might result in additional opportunities for presenting their efforts.
Recognition of Scouts who demonstrate their superior extraordinary achievement of a Challenge should not lightly be granted. It is not a matter of how many of these awards are granted, but rather they are reserved for exactly what the name of the award is called—superior extraordinary achievement. The granting of these awards should not be confused with the concept Scouts are expected to give their best in earning a Challenge. Instead, we are recognizing superior extraordinary achievement in an effort to motivate Scouts to exceed their own expectations.
If They Do Not Complete a Challenge, our Scouts May Try Again
It is critical the Scout has clear understanding in advance what is necessary to achieve their task and what standards are expected. It is critical should the standard of excellence required not have been met, that the Scout has an understanding for what was necessary to achieve their task and what standards were expected, so they may try again. Our Scouts are encouraged to pursue new interests and acquire new skills. One of the ways we achieve this is by offering our Scouts, if they are not successful during their evaluation on their first try, the opportunity to try again
While failure is generally perceived as a negative, we welcome those opportunities when a Scout has not achieved success in an effort. These opportunities motivate our Scouts to try again and improve their abilities. We do not expect our Scouts to be perfect. People are not perfect, and neither are our Scouts. Our Scouts seek the best in others and from others. We ask of our Scouts to Give Your Best, and the Scouts ask from others that they give their best.
Completing Challenges, in addition to other requirements, lead to earning a Personal Achievement Award level. To complete Challenges, they must be demonstrated before fellow Scouts in the Did and Do portion of team meetings.
There is a Did and Do portion of team meetings in which Scouts get the opportunity to present their Challenge to their fellow Scouts. Several Challenges are going on at once and Scouts can choose which Challenge they want to evaluate. The Did and Do section of team meetings is approximately 15 minutes. For more complex Challenges, additional time is set aside. Obviously, a Challenge including launching a rocket cannot be done inside and must be done off-site. Arrangements are made so our Scouts can present their demonstrations properly.
Acquired Skills for Life
We encourage our Scouts to demonstrate they can use previously acquired skills combined with new information to complete responsibilities and previously untried tasks. We cultivate this quality in our Scouts, so it becomes routine habit. Thinking is useful for more than schoolwork. It has application to daily large and small challenges. The capability to properly assess situations is more important than recitation of fact and figures. Our Scouts always give their best. Through observation and practice, they daily achieve excellence. We encourage our Scouts to creatively and critically think using analytical fact-finding based upon the broadest number of sources on all their adventures. Our Scouts develop the skills to solve everyday situations and those more complicated that they will face i
n the future. And of course, it is most important while completing Challenges that our Scouts safely have FUN.