Meeting Plans & Ideas: ETHICS

Ethics Information Troop Meetings Main Event

Printable PDF file of Meeting Plans and Ideas for Ethics

OBJECTIVES
This month’s activities should:

  • Introduce the definition of ethics.
  • Demonstrate how ethics affects our day-today lives.
  • Help Scouts understand how ethics guides our actions.
  • Give insight into the values of others.
  • Help Scouts determine if there is a difference between public and private ethics.

LEADERSHIP PLANNING
As a leadership team, you may want to discuss the following items when choosing ethics as your program feature during your planning meetings.

Troop Meeting Planning Form
Click above for fillable troop meeting planning form.
  • What are our group’s needs for advancement as it relates to ethics?
  • What do we want to do for our main event?
  • Do we know an expert in ethics?
  • Are there any other topics that the material can relate to?
  • Are our members mature enough to explore this topic?
  • What changes should we make to the sample meeting plans that would fit our needs better?

PREOPENING IDEAS

Preopening Ideas on Troop Program Resources

OPENING IDEAS

Opening Ideas on Troop Program Resources

GROUP INSTRUCTION IDEAS

Ethics, Values, Morals and Choice

  • Have an adult who deals with ethical issues, such as a doctor, lawyer, or religious leader, explain the definitions of ethics, values, and morals. Discuss the sources for each individual’s moral code.

The Values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law

  • Display the Scout Oath and Scout Law. Lead a discussion about what each point of the Law and Oath mean. Ask how the values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law lead to
    ethical decisions.

Applied Ethics

  • Discuss how ethics are applied in different professions. Compare and contrast ethics in sports, politics, medicine, education, journalism, etc.

The Law and Situational Ethics

  • Discuss situational ethics that take into account the particular context of an act when evaluating it ethically, rather than judging it according to absolute moral standards.
  • Discuss how laws do or don’t take situational ethics into consideration.

SKILLS INSTRUCTION IDEAS

3 Categories

Ethics, Values, Morals and Choice

  • All ThreeThe skills instruction portion of this module can consist of a single learning activity per meeting. The Essential, Challenging, and Advanced levels will be revealed in the responses given.Play “Where Do You Stand?”: Place in a line down the middle of the room signs or markers that read, “Strongly Agree,” “Agree,” “Not Sure,” “Disagree,” and “Strongly Disagree.”
    Have the entire troop begin at the “Not Sure” marker. The senior patrol leader reads a statement, and then each individual moves to the marker that represents his or her opinion.Here is a list of sample statements; add or subtract statements as appropriate:
    – Pizza is the best food ever.
    – Basketball is a dumb game.
    – You should always help others.
    – I just love spinach.
    – It is wrong to lie.
    – It is OK to steal if you are hungry.
    – Slavery is wrong.
    – Capital punishment is necessary to protect society.
    – It is OK to underpay employees.
    – Women should get paid the same amount as men.As time allows, invite patrols to discuss their answers on the more serious topics and how they reached different conclusions.

The Values of the Scout Oath and Scout Law

  • All ThreeThe skills instruction portion of this module can consist of a single learning activity per meeting. The Essential, Challenging, and Advanced levels will be revealed in the responses given.Do the first part of the “Showing Our Values” activity. The judging will occur after breakout groups meet. Projects must be completed in the time allotted. Clean up before moving to the next activity.

Applied Ethics

  • All ThreeThe skills instruction portion of this module can consist of a single learning activity per meeting. The Essential, Challenging, and Advanced levels will be revealed in the responses given. Introduce one or more of the  Venturing ethical controversies vignettes. Have each patrol discuss the chosen topic and then present their findings to the troop. As time permits, choose additional vignettes and enter into additional discussions.

The Law and Situational Ethics

  • All ThreeThe skills instruction portion of this module can consist of a single learning activity per meeting. The Essential, Challenging, and Advanced levels will be revealed in the responses given.On an easel pad, make four columns labeled “Principle,” “The Law,” “Exceptions,” and “Alternatives.” Under the first column, list a principle such as “Do not steal.” The patrols brainstorm what should go in each of the other columns: what the law says (e.g., stealing is a crime), when violating the principle might be warranted (e.g., when you’re homeless and starving), and any alternative actions that would allow the original principle to be maintained (e.g., seeking out food assistance from a charity). Go through this process for several topics. Discuss whether the laws are in line with ethical principles. Discuss whether one principle can trump another (e.g., is it OK to steal from the rich to give to the poor like Robin Hood did?) Potential topics might include:
    – Stealing
    – Cheating
    – Telling the truth
    – Giving to the poor
    – Taking land for public or private purposes
    – Withholding medical treatment
    – Paying taxes

BREAKOUT GROUP IDEAS

Getting Ready for the Main Event

  • Menu Planning (if applicable)
  • Duty Roster Planning (if applicable)
  • Patrols discuss what special items they will need for the main event.

Preparation for the meeting’s game or challenge

GAME AND CHALLENGE IDEAS

Library of Games and Challenges on Troop Program Resources

  • Balloon Bounce
    Materials: An inflated balloon for each patrol or troop team
    Method: The object is for each team to try to keep its balloon in the air the longest by hitting it back and forth between the members. A team is out when its balloon touches the floor or bursts. Players are not permitted to catch or hold a balloon, but they may redirect the flight of other teams’ balloons.
    Scoring: The team that keeps its balloon in the air the longest wins.
    Notes: After the game, discuss how different people with different opinions need to work together.

  • Showing Our Values
    Materials: A set of 3-by-5-inch cards, each of which shows one point of the Scout Law; an 11-by-17-inch (or larger) poster board for each patrol; art supplies
    Method: Prepare the cards before the game. Shuffle the cards and have each patrol choose one. Provide each patrol with a poster board and art supplies, and have them create a sign that represents the card they were given.
    Scoring: Display all the signs and have the larger group vote on which is best, most colorful, most artistic, etc.
    Notes: The exploration of values is what is important here. The art contest is just a bonus.

CLOSING IDEAS

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Ethics Information Troop Meetings Main Event

For Adult and Youth Boy Scout Leaders