By Seah Zhang Qi and Ryan Loh
For Saturday’s 集合 we focused on our patrol identity to strengthen the bonds within our patrol and consequentially, the troop. The Patrol Leaders had planned thoroughly for the construction of their box and flag as they knew from prior experience that a bonded and happy patrol would be efficient and listen to their patrol leaders. Patrol identity is extremely important as it determines whether a patrol can succeed. With the Sec 1s newly incorporated into the patrol, the activity was a good way to welcome them and let them feel as though they were already part of the patrol.
By now, all of the patrols had finished the construction of their boxes and were well underway to completion, with only painting left. This activity served as an opportunity for the patrols to flex their creative muscles, having to design essentially everything on their own. The activity also trained their problem-solving skills, such as altering designs to adapt to the dimensions given. As for the flags, the patrols were returned with their original patrol flags to decide whether they needed a new flagstaff. This fun activity was also a good way to ease the Sec 1 scouts into the troop and get them familiarized with their patrol members.
As the day went on, the patrols got more and more excited as the patrol boxes were finally coming to shape. Each patrol had scouts eagerly painting their boxes with vibrant colours and beautiful designs that would catch anyone’s eye. The flags had simple yet elegant designs that would give make any patrol member feel proud to be in the patrol. The scouts had paint all over their hands but were working with smiles across their faces.
Through the building and designing of the patrol items during the Jihe, the scouts were able to learn and realise the importance of having strong bonds within a patrol and many were also able to get to know each other better and get more comfortable with each other through this activity.
This activity has also strengthened their understanding of the patrol spirit giving confidence to its members, and with that confidence, the patrols and troop would become more confident and stronger. A strong patrol spirit is the basic unit of a strong, united troop. By putting the troop before patrol, patrol before self, the scouts put their troop at the top by forging a strong patrol spirit, doing their best for the troop.