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Openish Space Notes 1. Group night activities 2. Changing badgework 3. 50 things to do before you are 11¾ 4. Leadership in Woodcraft Folk – what does it mean?

Group Night Activity Ideas One of the discussions at the openish space session at Training for Leaders old was about ideas for group nights. This is a list of activities that we thought of. Activities for group nights that link to Woodcraft values:    

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Bulb planting, to introduce woodchips an elfins to the idea of sustainability, as can making leaf rubbings Co-operative games (e.g. co-operative musical chairs) Trade games (like the ones here Drama games, to think about how different people respond in different situations. For example, the thinking hats activity (Leading for the Future, page 31), where everyone has a discussion whilst taking on different roles (e.g. creative thinker, optimist, cautious thinker). Learning the creeds Making pass books of values for elfins as a group Getting elfins to come up with definitions for values such as friendship, equality etc. Making posters and collages about the Woodcraft values

It was also pointed out that there are loads of resources, session ideas and handbooks on the Woodcraft website

Changing Badgework Notes from Open Space 24.2.13 These are notes taken from discussion on badgework during the open space discussion at Training Leaders Old and New (24.2.13). As it is at the beginning of the process, some comments are quite general and there was no discussion of individual badges as there were not the resources available.

Necessity Badges were felt to be necessary as they provide enjoyment, rewards and incentives to do new activities for Young People, along with plans for sessions/terms and ideas for Leaders.

Leaders want to do badgework to avoid their group becoming a ‘dodgeball group’.

How should the new badges work? It was felt that badges should be achieved as a group, rather than individually as this be inclusive and bring the group together. All YP achieve badges together. Group work should be a focus for the new badges. Badges should concentrate on what everyone has achieved rather than be a competition. Flexibility in achievement criteria is essential. Leaders need to be able to modify the goals to be appropriate for their group. Leaders could be given a number of different criteria to choose from and participation and effort should be recognised to make the badges more inclusive. The Elfin badge, Pioneer badge and Venturer badges should remain as they are a moving symbol of leaving a group when a YP moves into the older age bracket. There was a question of whether badges are ‘too much like scouts’ and how we could counteract that. It was felt that if the process of creating badges was democratic and consultative then it would feel better to many members. It was also said that if the badges held up the Aims and Principles of Woodcraft, this would also feel better.

2 Types of Badges proposed A system in which there are two types of badges was proposed. One type would be similar to what we have now. There would be a number of activities to do to achieve the badge. There could be a number of activities given to choose from, but some essentials would always remain (knowing the envoi, knowing Folk history, etc.). The second type of badge would be more flexible. These badges would have a theme and it would be down to the YP to show they have achieved something within that theme, or down to the district/leader to decide what was needed to achieve this badge. Examples include a local community badge, where requirements would vary on where you lived, or an ‘achieving my potential’ badge where the YP showed that they had done something that was uniquely special for them (overcoming a fear etc.).

Venturer Badges It was felt that Venturer badges should be made available. These could either be ‘harder’ versions of the younger groups’ badges or unique to Venturers. Venturers gaining a badge should also show that they can then run sessions with Elfins or Pioneers on that badge. Training badges could also be made available for completing courses such as ‘Leading for the Future’ or ‘Rainbow Resources’.

Badge Month It was suggested that Woodcraft do a ‘badge month’ every year, in which all districts would be encouraged to achieve the same badge at the same time. This would mean people could talk about it at national events, it would be a yearly push for badgework and it could also mean that districts could pull together to do badgework with each other (where possible).

Badgework Committee A badgework committee could be set up to monitor the use of badges, run ‘badge month’, create (or aid with the creation of) new badges.

E-Badges It was felt it would be a good idea if each member had a space online where they could access the badges they had achieved to date, and look at what badges they would like to achieve in the future. Although a project this size could be a little ambitious, there could possibly be something like it. Resources A badgework book should be published including all the information on the new badges, once they have been agreed, which includes the criteria, suggested session plans and games for badges of all ages. A leaflet showing some of the badges along with their criteria could also be produced to show newcomers/prospective members some of what we do.

JW 24.2.13

National Trust – 50 things to do before 1 ¾ – climbing a tree, build a den, make a mud pie... Launched 2012 collaborative link to programme partnership with National Trust properties – deliver some programme activities for the public group members of the National Trust? Establish links Youth Community team of national Trust Article in the Courier to encourage groups to do outside stuff Map National Trust places against out centres and camp sites SO STICK TO THE LIST ACTION POINT(S) contact national trust to ask for 3000 copies of leaflet for next mailing sean to write article and link to website

general agreement that groups may wish to facilitate activities on the list – not a compulsory list awareness of the list list can connect with camp programme recruitment tool – if you have only done 10 join Woodcraft Folk National Trust to sponsor a badge...? NEED TO ADVERTISE WITHIN WOODCRAFT – TO PARENTS AT V-CAMP? ON THE WEBSITE,

Leadership within Woodcraft Folk, what does it mean? 

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Many different ways to be a leader + deal with the conundrum of leading in a flat organisation – no consensus. → people are different, shouldn't be a fixed “solution” Resource: “leadership Qualities in Woodcraft Folk” → is it on the website? No such thing as a pre-existing perfect leader: learn “on the job”. Reciprocal ducational relationship with young people. Whether or not you grew up in the folk, working with a more experienced leader is really useful. Need to learn to give feedbak – positive or not. → people can become stuck in their ways and defensive of their group / decisions. → it can be hard to identify what “went wrong” → makes feedback harder → close knit leadership team is vital.

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Communication is key but also tricky: working with volunteers who are also quite active people makes finding time to meet hard. Leadership structure – encourage more people to take on roles succession planning: who will take over your role when you're gone? You need people to listen to what you say but also give them a reason to do so → not necessarily a reason for each decision, but a reason to respect yoiur decisions

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if young people respect you and you respect them, then your expectations fo them hold mor weight. How to deal with parents, especially of younger kids? → create a co-operative atmosphere – working collaboratively

how to deal with rules → people need boundaries → maybe get young people to write down rules based on aims and principles → facilitative leadership → understand who your young people are and what they need

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your leadership style has to match your personality shouting shows you've lost control – ont effective leadership, can be scary for young people

Openish space notes  

notes from an open (ish) space session run at Tflon