Patrol Choice Chart PDF FILE
I am often asked about how patrols are formed, who does the choosing and how the choices are made. Scouts do the choosing and one way for them to choose is using the chart above (open the PDF file to see the chart in detail).
To divide a group of Scouts into patrols each is given a slip of paper and asked to write his name at the top and circle it – then he writes the name of three Scouts he would like to have in his patrol. The senior patrol leader collects the papers and makes a chart like the one above that records each Scout’s choices.
The chart highlights Scouts who have chosen each other and shows how they are divided into three patrols. Most Scouts end up in a patrol where they have two or three friends but every Scout gets to be in a patrol with at least one other Scout he has chosen and who has chosen him back.
I populated the example chart randomly and it was fairly easy to select patrol members. The senior patrol leader will be able to use his knowledge of his Scouts (which should be kept apart and who works well together) to inform the choices he makes.
We’ve used this method many, many times with very good results. The senior patrol leader is free to adjust patrol membership in response to the Scout’s preferences or when he thinks it will solve a problem. I have found that the senior patrol leader usually knows much more than I about these issues and makes better choices than I ever could; besides it’s his responsibility in the first place.