The 14 things every Boy Scout troop library needs

Show me a well-read troop leader, and I’ll show you a well-run troop.

No, I’m not talking about a Senior Patrol Leader or Scoutmaster versed in Tolstoy or Twain.

I mean a leader who has read up on all things Scouting. So today, let’s do an inventory of your troop library. Is it fully stocked with the 14 Scouting essentials I list below?

Your library could be physical, or it could be virtual. Either way, a well-stocked one helps make your troop the best it can be.

1. Boy Scout Handbook

Troop-Library---1

The primary resource for Boy Scouts (and for Scout leaders who need to learn basic Scouting skills).

$12 (perfect-bound) or $17 (coil-bound) at Scout Shops and ScoutStuff.org.

2. Fieldbook

Troop-Library---2

A companion volume to the Boy Scout Handbook that covers advanced outdoor skills.

$20 (perfect-bound) or $27 (coil-bound) at Scout Shops, ScoutStuff.org or Amazon.

3. Troop Leader Guidebook (Volumes 1 and 2)

Troop-Library---3

The primary resource for Scoutmasters, assistant Scoutmasters, committee members and involved parents. Volume 1 is out now, and Volume 2 is due out this winter.

$13 at Scout Shops and ScoutStuff.org.

4. Troop Committee Guidebook

Troop-Library---4

The primary resource for troop committee members. Topics include the organization of Scouting, recruiting adult leaders, troop finances, running committee meetings and more.

$7 at Scout Shops and ScoutStuff.org.

5. Troop Program Resources

Troop-Library---5

Games, ceremonies, Scoutmaster’s minutes and more

Free, via this PDF.

6. Program Features (Volumes 1, 2 and 3)

Troop-Library---6

Complete monthly program features, including meeting plans, outing ideas and resources. I previewed these here.

$15 for Volume 1 at Scout Shops and ScoutStuff.org. Volumes 2 and 3 are expected later this year.

In the meantime, you can use the existing Program Features: Volume 1Volume 2 and Volume 3.

7. Boy Scout Requirements (current year)

Troop-Library---7

Requirements for ranks, merit badges, and special awards. Updated annually.

$6 at Scout Shops and ScoutStuff.org or available online.

8. Guide to Awards and Insignia

Troop-Library---8

A comprehensive guide to wearing uniforms and badges correctly.

$7 at Scout Shops and ScoutStuff.org or available online.

9. Guide to Advancement

Troop-Library---9

The official source for administering advancement in all Boy Scouts of America program phases. (Read about the big changes in the 2015 edition.)

$12 at Scout Shops and ScoutStuff.org or available online.

10. Guide to Safe Scouting

Troop-Library---10

The primary source for information on conducting Scouting activities in a safe and prudent manner.

Regularly updated and available online.

11. Patrol Leader Handbook

Troop-Library---11

The official guide for patrol leaders.

$12 at Scout Shops and ScoutStuff.org.

12. Senior Patrol Leader Handbook

Troop-Library---12

The official guide for senior patrol leaders and other troop-level youth leaders.

$12 at Scout Shops and ScoutStuff.org.

13. Scouting magazine

Troop-Library---13

The official magazine for Scout leaders; published five times a year.

Registered adult leaders automatically get Scouting magazine. We publish five times a year on this schedule: January-February, March-April, May-June, September-October and November-December. You can also read our stories online.

14. Boys’ Life magazine

Troop-Library---14

The BSA’s official youth magazine; published monthly.

Scouts can get Boys’ Life for just $12 a year. That’s a dollar a month! Contact your council for details.

Those who aren’t members can get Boys’ Life for just $24 a year, or $2 a month. Still a great bargain.

Subscribe here.

What’s missing?

What did I leave off the list? Let me know in the comments section below.

About Bryan Wendell 2868 Articles
Bryan Wendell, an Eagle Scout, is the founder of Bryan on Scouting and a contributing writer.