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GEC Merit Badge Madness!


Event information:

Are you looking for ways to stay in touch with Scouting while we are all staying at home?  The Golden Empire Council is supporting our current social distancing orders by helping our Scouts and others across the Nation stay busy with fun Merit Badge work.  We have opportunities that can supplement your online school activities and allow you to keep up your Scouting Spirit.

Before beginning any badges, we are strongly encouraging all Scouts to earn (or renew) their Cyber Chip before starting this process.  We want to provide the safest opprotunities for our Scouts, which will include class sizes of no more than 23 so that all faces are on the screen at once and there can be an instructor and second adult. (Zoom galley view allows for 25 screens at once).  We would encourage parents to help their Scout stay focused and engaged so they get the most out of this program.  It is our hope that these programs will make a great supplement to ongoing program efforts being made by our Troops, Crews, and Ships while avoiding in-person activities.

SESSIONS ARE OPEN TO ALL SCOUTS IN ALL COUNCILS, NATIONWIDE!

Please select the courses below that meet your interest.  We will contine to add merit badge classes as more registered Merit Badge Counselors offer their assistance.  We want to provide the highest quality courses we can and we will review every course offering before we add it to our course list.  Our goal is to give Scouts a great opportunity while maintaining the integrety of the Merit Badge offerings.

Please note that all class times are Pacific Standard Time (PST).

 

Family Life Merit Badge, 9/21 & 9/28, 7:00-8:30 PM Pacific Time

 

 

No less than 24 hours before a scheduled class, Scouts will receive information from their Merit Badge Counselor with instructions and a link for logging into their assigned class time.  Please make sure to double check your email address carefully when entering it and know that you will need your ScoutMaster or Advancement Chair's email so they can be copied on your electronic Blue Card report after the class is complete.  Remember that it is your resopnsibility to discuss any class with your ScoutMaster before registering.  Registration implies ScoutMaster approval has been gained.

Scouts will have "homework" from the classes that need to be completed before the next class session.  It will be important that any outside assignments are shared with the Merit Badge Counselor while copying another adult to maintain Youth Protection during all transactions.  

Scouts must participate in the class to receive credit.  That includes paying attention, writing down notes, answering questions and participating in polls and other things the instructor might include in their lesson plans.

Blue Cards will be provided digitally after the course is over.  All courses have a $10 fee to cover online access, doubleknot registration fees, etc.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What if all the classes are sold out?  

We will be continually adding classes to our schedule.  There will be many opportunities for Scouts to sign up for Merit Badges.  Because of our ever increasing numbers of classes offered, we will not have a wait list, but will try to offer multiples session of each Merit Badge over the entire program to give every Scout a chance at the classes they would like to take.

Can multiple Scouts use the same computer?

Yes.  Each Scout needs to be responsible for their own work and register individually so that we can keep track of their individual blue card and requirement completions.  

Do we need a camera and microphone?

It is recommended that you have a camera and microphone on the device you are using.  It is also recommended that you are able to have quiet time in the area where you are completing your class to help with your ability to participate.

What meeting platform is the Council using?

We are using the ZOOM meeting platform which can be used on computers but also has an app for smart phones and tables.  Please make sure you can access zoom before your meeting.  Practice a bit with it now.  We believe that a lot of our Scouts are already using meeting platforms now, so it should be easy to participate in our Merit Badge Madness sessions.  

How do I receive my "blue card" after the course is complete?

Once you have completed all the requirements that can be done online or virtually, your Merit Badge Counselor will upload all of your information into Doubleknot and we will send you an electronic Merit Badge for your records.  If your Merit Badge Counselor has access to Scoutbook, you can also work directly through that program for credit.

How do I register for a merit badge class that I would like to take?

Once you have permission from your ScoutMaster, just click on the name of the merit badge you would like to work on.  Please note that not all merit badges will be completed as some have work that much be completed over time or in person.  You also might be asked to have verification of work that is already completed sent to the Merit Badge Counselor.  Please discuss this with your counselor once they have made contact.  Make sure that you have an adult to help you register.  Remember to check back often for more Merit Badge options.

Can I register if I am not a Golden Empire Council Scout?

Of course.  Please make sure that you pay attention to the time zone differences.  We are in the Sacramento, California area which is Pacific Standard Time (PST).  

Where can I get a worksheet to help me keep up?

Worksheet can be found at this link:  http://usscouts.org/mb/mbbooks.asp
1. Scroll to the merit badge name you want and click it.
2. On the new page, scroll down under the requirements and select either WORD or PDF version.
3. Right click to a new window.
4. Download to your computer using 'SAVE AS' to a location where you can find it.
5. Open the file on your computer that you 'save as' in #4 above.

I am a Merit Badge Counselor and want to help.  How do I do that?

Please fill out this form and let us know your interest. https://forms.gle/prcVRDgfwPMHqNAE6  We will contact you shortly.  Thank you for your desire to help our Scouts stay occupied and engaged during these times of social distancing. 

Who do I contact for assistance?

Please send an email to meritbadge@gec-bsa.org if you have any questions.

Thank you!

GOLDEN EMPIRE COUNCIL
BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA

251 Commerce Circle
Sacramento, CA 95815

phone: (916) 929-1417

Hours of Operation:
8:30am - 5:00pm (M-F)
Closed Saturday & Sunday

River City Scout Shop

251 Commerce Circle
Sacramento, CA 95815

phone: (916) 649-1800

Hours of Operation:
9:00am - 5:00pm (M - F)
Closed for lunch 1:00 - 1:30
Closed Saturday and Sunday

NorCal Scout Shop - Chico

3881 Benatar Way, Suite D
Chico, CA 95928

phone: (530) 809-0400

Hours of Operation:
11:00am - 6:00pm (W-F)
10:00am - 2:00pm (Saturday)
Closed Sunday, Monday & Tuesday

Order of the Arrow - Amangi Nacha www.amanginacha.org