Tuesday, 6 March 2012

The Easiest Way To Cover Safe Swim Defense Part A

Ok so over the years I have learned that for many Boy Scouts concepts like safe swim defense even though the rules are great still isnt the best way to teach them. Heck which adults could rattle off without referring or peeking in their training resources the exact order that the 8 points of safe swim defense are. I know personally for me it just wouldn't happen don't get me wrong I understand everything about it and I am able to teach the information its just that I prefer to do things in a slightly different order to make things easier for myself and the youth. And no this isn't bending or twisting the requirement like your not supposed to do its just a easier, faster, and more efficient way to cover the material. I know it works because I've seen Scouts after just reviewing once get all eight points across yeah there not using the exact same words but then does that really matter, for me personally that doesn't bother me because if you look around the education and training community you will see acronyms, sayings, songs, poems, or phrases to assist in the memorization of the information that is being taught. And on a final note the retention rate when teaching it in the words or order the BSA uses just doesn't seem to stick or get the concept across to the youth.

Well so before I bore you with whats the right way and the wrong way to cover and teach Safe Swim Defense(SSD) I probably should list all 8 points. For this purpose in order to show the connections between the method I use and what the BSA has come up with I should probably list the the actual order so we can clearly see the connections because at first some of the words I use won't make sense unless I straight out tell it to those people who already know SSD. I guess then that thats over with I should probably list the points, so heres the list in the order the BSA uses to show and explain SSD is:

  1. Qualified Supervision
  2. Physical Fitness
  3. Safe Area
  4. Lifeguards On Duty
  5. Lookout
  6. Ability Groups
  7. Buddy System
  8. Discipline

Ok so before you panic about what I have down remember back to the SSD training where it teaches you the sandwich principle which refers to the fact that the qualified supervision and discipline points are the bread of the sandwich also known as the two most important points or the points that form the top and the foundation of all of the 8 points of SSD. for all six points inside yes theres definitely ones that are more important than the others but truthfully when you look at it, it probably isn't that affected by the order of the interior points. So in keeping with what the Boy Scouts want us to teach to the boys we will have supervision and discipline be the first and last points with the rest being in a slightly different order. The acronym that is used is known as "Small Bad" with each of the letters referring to a certain point as outlined below:

  1. Supervision
  2. Medical
  3. Ability
  4. Lifeguards
  5. Lookout
  6. Buddies
  7. Area
  8. Discipline
For the purpose of this post I will now just match together the "small bad" list to the original list which goes as follows with the phrase in the parentheses being the original point while those without refer to the "Small Bad" point list. Now without further complications or notes heres the list:
  1. Supervision (Qualified Supervision)
  2. Medical (Physical Fitness)
  3. Ability (Ability groups)
  4. Lifeguards (Lifeguards On Duty)
  5. Lookout (Lookout)
  6. Buddies (Buddy System)
  7. Area (Safe Area)
  8. Discipline (discipline)
One other note about this is with minor modification and small adaptations to the "small bad" method of explaining SSD can be used to cover Safety Afloat but thats a topic for a different post. So for now thats what Im going to leave you with when it comes to covering Safe Swim Defense but sometime soon down the road I will take each point of SSD into a individual post with the basic definition and summary of the point and then from there I will explore the point to a deeper level in each of those posts, so people just don't think that theres a lot more to this concept than what it originally appears. This is one of the primary reasons why so many different levels of training have been put in place in order to help leaders provide the best quality aquatic program to their youth.

Remember it isn't about you its about the youth, yes you as a adult matter and deserve respect but that isn't the only party that deserves that too. Instead its truthfully about taking the time to hopefully be able to inspire just a single youth to do great things thats the most rewarding part of my position and thats i why I continue to be involved in Scouts even though I am a adult and don't have a son in the program. Scouting as is taught in the Order of the Arrow but also applies to every Scout activity or meeting is that we as adult and youth leaders should always be striving to be a better servant leader.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark West
Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1316, Troop 1616(aka 669), Troop 125
Tustumena District/ Denali District/ Eklutna District, Great Alaska Council
NSJ '05 Youth Participant NSJ '10 Subcamp 7 Youth Staff NSJ '13 Subcamp Staff
WSJ '07 Youth Participant WSJ '11 International Service Team(IST)
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Honor Big Horn Denver Area Council NYLT QM
Philmont AA '08

If you are paid to do Scouting, you are called a professional. If you are not paid to do Scouting, you are called a Volunteer. If you pay to do Scouting, then you are called a Scouter.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Total Pageviews