The Scouting triangle: Remove one side, and the movement can’t function

fire-triangleYou’ve heard of a fire triangle, right? It’s the geometric illustration of the three elements a fire needs to ignite: heat, fuel and oxygen. Remove one, and the blaze goes bye-bye.

Inspired by this simple illustration, Michael Dulle created what he calls the Scouting triangle. Remove one of the three elements of the Scouting triangle, and the movement wouldn’t exist.

Dulle, a Scouter with Troop 459 out of Overland Park, Kan., shared the Scouting triangle concept with me, and it’s simple but brilliant.

The fuel is the program, the oxygen is the youth and the heat is trained adult leaders. All are essential for Scouting to function.

Find a higher-res version of the triangle that you’re free to share and more insight from Dulle after the jump.

The Scouting Triangle

By Michael Dulle, Troop 459


Fuel = Program
  • National provides program and operational guidelines
  • Councils provide support, facilities, program information and training
  • Districts provide local programs and measurement tools
  • Units implement programs and opportunities for the Scouts to achieve Scoutings mission at leadership and character development
Heat = Trained Adult Leaders
  • Register with the BSA through local council
  • Leaders complete required position-specific training
  • Organize Cub, Scout, and Venture or Varsity unit through an approved chartered organization.
  • Chartered Organization Representative is appointed
  • Chartered organization forms a unit committee
  • COR appoints unit leader and committee chair
  • Committee chair forms a committee including the treasurer and secretary
  • Unit leader develops unit Scouting program with the advice and consent of the unit committee
  • Committee chair and Scoutmaster attend the district roundtables monthly and learn about new Scouting opportunities to assist in developing their units program
  • District appoints unit commissioner to work with units
  • Unit committee develops recruiting program such as School Night for Scouting and unit recruiting nights during regularly scheduled unit meeting
Youth = Oxygen
  • Youth register with the local council through an approved unit chartered organization
  • Youth attend regularly scheduled unit meetings
  • Youth learn life skills using the EDGE method
  • Youth attend monthly campouts
  • Youth attend annual long-term camping programs
  • Youth learn leadership skills serving in various patrol, team and crew unit leadership positions
  • Youth enroll in the NYLT to gain leadership skills
  • Youth make it a practice to assist in community service projects through their unit, school, church or other community organizations
  • Youth advance in rank and responsibilities
  • Youth strive to earn the Eagle rank and/or the Venture Silver award
  • Youth age out and become young adult leaders

An outstanding overview of our outstanding program, wouldn’t you say? Thanks to Michael for sharing it with us.

Other program logos

NEW: Some commenters asked about putting BSA logos in the triangle instead of fire. Good idea! Check these out:

scouting-triangle-bsa scouting-triangle-sea-scouts scouting-triangle-venturing scouting-triangle-varsity scouting-triangle-boy-scouts scouting-triangle-cub-scouts

Scout Triangle PowerPoint

Michael Menninger has shared this PowerPoint presentation on the Scout Triangle and encourages Scouters to use it however they wish.

About Bryan Wendell 3281 Articles
Bryan Wendell, an Eagle Scout, is the founder of Bryan on Scouting and a contributing writer.