The Basics of Merit Badge Work:

-Talk over plans for the merit badge with the Scoutmaster. Ask him/her to sign a merit badge card.

-Read the merit badge pamphlet for the particular badge to become more familiar with it.

-Ask the Scoutmaster for a list of approved counselors. Call the one who lives closest and make an appointment.

-You must have another person with you at each meeting with a merit badge counselor. This person can be another Scout, your parents or guardian, a brother or sister, a relative, or a friend.

-Be on time for the appointment. Take along the merit badge card, a notebook, paper and pencil and any other materials that might be needed. Wear the Scout uniform, of course, and be neat and clean in appearance.

-Be attentive to the information the counselor offers. Take notes on what needs to be done. Be sure everything is clear. Set a time for the next appointment to save a phone call. Note the date and time on the note pad.

-Then, begin the actual work on the merit badge. Call the counselor if anything is not clear.

-When the work on the badge is complete, go for the second appointment. Be ready to pass off the badge or get more information, if that is needed. Merit badge counselors will be impressed if all materials are in a file folder or notebook and if it’s obvious that some significant work has been done by the Scout.

-Be sure the merit badge card is ready to be signed if the badge is to be completed at this second appointment.

-If the work is passed off satisfactorily, the counselor will sign the merit badge card, usually in two places. The cards have a tear-off section that the counselor keeps with his or her records.

-The card is then returned to the Scoutmaster for recording in the Troop records and should finally be given to the person in charge of advancement for the troop. The card also has a tear-off section that allows a boy to keep a record of the badge in his home files. Our troop returns those sections to the boys at Court of Honor ceremonies.

-It’s important for the Scout to have a record of each badge he earns. Once in a blue moon, both the counselor and the people on the troop committee may misplace their information on the badge. The only verification that the merit badge work has been done may be the Scout’s information. This kind of record-keeping may save a Scout from having to repeat a badge.

-For the detailed requirements on all the merit badges, see our current Troop Librarian, who has all of the current merit badge books.