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Thread: Flag Break / Flag Down

  1. #1
    Senior Member lakes_stu's Avatar
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    Flag Break / Flag Down

    In an attempt to improve behaviour and attention during our opening and closing ceremonies, I recently tried including a flag break and flag down in the appropriate ceremony. This really seemed to work, as the Beavers responded well to a little extra formality.

    The question is, are Beavers allowed to do this? I cant find anything in POR about it (although I only had time for a quick look) apart from referring me to a handbook about ceremonies (12.4), but having spoken to our DC about it, their opinion was simply 'Beavers dont salute the flag'. It would be a shame if this was in some way banned, as it seemed to go down very well with them.

    Any thoughts?
    All posts represent my own opinions only. In no way do they speak for anyone else, including (but not limited to) my group, district, county or HQ.

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    GSL & AESL shiftypete's Avatar
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    In general Beavers do not salute partly as originally they only had the Beaver sign and no salute to use. I can see of no rule that would stop Beavers saluting but teaching them to do it properly might be easier said than done as it is hard enough getting them to form the Scout Sign correctly.

    Peter Andrews AESL of Headingley Pirates ESU, Group Scout Leader & Webmaster of Falkoner Scout Group
    www.falkonerscouts.org.uk

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    Please note all views expressed are my own and not those of any organisation I'm associated with

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    Our Beavers do.

    Agree that it does take a little time to get the salute right but overall I think it is a good part of the evening.


    Jonathan

    GSL

    ex-Chairman
    49th Bournemouth (St. Katherines) Air Scouts
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    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lakes_stu View Post
    In an attempt to improve behaviour and attention during our opening and closing ceremonies, I recently tried including a flag break and flag down in the appropriate ceremony. This really seemed to work, as the Beavers responded well to a little extra formality.

    The question is, are Beavers allowed to do this? I cant find anything in POR about it (although I only had time for a quick look) apart from referring me to a handbook about ceremonies (12.4), but having spoken to our DC about it, their opinion was simply 'Beavers dont salute the flag'. It would be a shame if this was in some way banned, as it seemed to go down very well with them.

    Any thoughts?
    Fortunately it is not banned... our Beavers salute the flag, just like all sections in the group. At whole-group events the whole group salutes together.

    Sure their salutes aren't always perfect (at that age many struggle to get their fingers into a scout sign - the little finger pops back out!) but IMHO its the action of saluting the flag that is more important than the technical accuracy of the salute at that age.

    It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves

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    Member Doc Dish's Avatar
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    We do this too. It encourages the older Beavers to behave as the Lodge Leaders get to break and lower the flag and they know that privilege can be removed if necessary (although it hasn't been necessary yet!)

    It gets the Beavers used to taking part in the ceremonial side of things and provides a 'cool down' period at the beginning and end of the evening.
    Rikki-Tikki-Tavi (Assistant Beaver Scout Leader)
    1st Highweek Village Beaver Scout Colony



  7. #6
    Assistant Beaver Leader Keith's Avatar
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    POR was updated a few years ago to allow Beavers to salute. We use the flag in our opening and closing ceremonies, but we don't salute (not my decision).
    Keith "Hawkeye"
    (Acting) Beaver Scout Section Leader (Woodbadge)
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    My old Beavers do but my current Beavers don't - it's up to the Beaver colony.

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    ASL Kev's Avatar
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    I have only worked with Scouts but I think formal parts of the evening are very important. If it works with your Beavers it sounds great, stick with it. I imagine that anybody who tried to ban it would soon be shot down in flames.

  10. #9
    a quiver full of barbs merryweather's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lakes_stu View Post
    In an attempt to improve behaviour and attention during our opening and closing ceremonies, I recently tried including a flag break and flag down in the appropriate ceremony. This really seemed to work, as the Beavers responded well to a little extra formality.
    they often do respond well. the trick is to keep it focused and not to over-do it.

    The question is, are Beavers allowed to do this?
    yes of course they are!

    however, once again, as i am advised to say to fellow scouters, if you need to seek advice about such things as rules, policies and POR-like stuff, then please go and see your DC who will know.

    I cant find anything in POR about it (although I only had time for a quick look)
    and common sense says that you really shouldn't be having to look in POR to find such an answer!

    we really want POR to be about what makes us a member; what our structures are; what are our key policies; and how are our activities regulated so that they remain enjoyable and safe; &c.

    this sort of stuff - the 'do i need permission to scratch my backside stuff' - doesn't need to be in POR!

    (sadly) it is.

    apart from referring me to a handbook about ceremonies (12.4),
    you needed to read a little further. iirc, it's covered in 12.6 and 12.7

    but having spoken to our DC about it, their opinion was simply 'Beavers don't salute the flag'.
    and once again, having advised people to seek advice of DCs........

    (we really can't allow a nincompoop with a mop and bucket to be able to fathom POR better than some of our finest. )

    It would be a shame if this was in some way banned, as it seemed to go down very well with them.
    Keith has it spot on. iirc - why is it i can remember but our finest can't? - the rules on beavers saluting and parading were changed in sept 2009. prior to this they were not allowed to salute and parades were restricted, or rather there wasn't a ceremonial part of the beaver scout programme.

    seems like this idiot can keep up with the changes......

    Any thoughts?
    go right ahead but, as i said, keep it focused and don't over-do it.

    let's hope when someone gets around to revising POR this sort of pernickety scouting is removed and placed in a programme handbook, or some such like. there is a time for POR and a time for common sense.

    would i be fussed if beavers didn't salute or parade? no, not particularly. our programme is structured and built to the needs and wishes of young people and it ranges from 6-25, so plenty of time to introduce such ceremonial items when yp are ready.

    are yours ready? not my call; that's yours!

    (but if you really want to know about POR, go see your DC and do not rely on me.)

    hth

    TM
    Last edited by merryweather; 30-05-2014 at 11:42 PM.

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    Senior Member Walsallwizard's Avatar
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    It's your flag ceremony, your Colony, do what you want!
    Richard Fenton
    CSL 1st Hartburn Sea Scouts (Graham Mellanby's Own)
    www.hartburnseascouts.org


  12. #11
    Man in a daft hat Hatman's Avatar
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    You can use any opening ceremony you want.

    Like you, I changed ours to a formal flag break about 8 years ago. My Beavers always salute (well after a fashion anyway).

    Beavers like this sort of thing. I do flag break at the start of a meeting then flag down and prayers at the end. It works for me.

    Just do it.

    Nigel
    ABSL 1st Hoveton and Wroxham Sea Scouts
    www.hovetonandwroxhamscouts.org.uk

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    ASM (British Boy Scouts) tdjno's Avatar
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    In the BBS/BGS, beavers do not do flag break. They have the 'Tail Slap' ceremony as detailed below:

    http://bbsandbgs.org.uk/beavers.php#Ceremonies

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    Senior Member Ian Mallett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tdjno View Post
    In the BBS/BGS, beavers do not do flag break. They have the 'Tail Slap' ceremony as detailed below:

    http://bbsandbgs.org.uk/beavers.php#Ceremonies
    That's exactly the same as the Scouts Canada beaver opening ceremony.

    My group's colony has never done flag break. We have however, always done an opening and closing ceremony thats adds an element of formality to the meeting. As a change we've also done the Scouts Australia, Scouts New Zealand & Scouts Canada Joey/Kea/Beaver opening ceremonies.
    Simba (my daughter wouldn't let me be Rafiki, and now she's a Network Scout & ABSL)
    ABSL
    Birstall Scout Group
    West Yorkshire

  16. #14
    thehepples
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    We make the Scout sign as the flag is broken and then recite the Beaver promise. Great way for newbies to pick up the promise. We sometimes "sign" the promise as we learned it for our Disability Awareness badge.

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    Senior Member DonTregartha's Avatar
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    I used to tell the beavers to stand with their hands behind their back.
    Then push three fingers on their right hand into their other clenched hand with pinky and thumb wiggling free.
    then when its time to 'salute' or make the sign, they just fish them out and they are ready.
    (works for big folks too!)


    Don Tregartha
    Old Scouter
    1st Wing Scouts

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