At a recent Court of Honor, we read the following Rank Descriptions" before calling the boys & their parents up to receive their badges and pins. The descriptions were originally written by one of our leaders so they haven't appeared anywhere before. You're welcome to copy & paste the material if it may help you out in some future ceremony:
Receiving the rank of SCOUT is an important first step on a trail where many things are learned. A boy who receives the Scout rank is starting out fresh, full of enthusiasm and ready to travel much further. He'll soon learn new skills and if he keeps going to camp, he'll learn more by watching the older Scouts the Junior Leaders. It may seem like a lifetime away but if he sticks with it and moves along, he too will, one day, reach that level. The whole trail of Scouting is ahead of him. He has made the decision to be part of a group whose members practice good citizenship, physical fitness and how to live in concert with nature
Some of the other ways to describe a Tenderfoot is to say novice or rookie,but in Scouting, the Tenderfoot Scout begins to learn to live according to the Scout Oath & Law. He takes the first steps in learning new skills like tying knots, which, if he masters, will stay with him for the rest of his life. If he was a Cub Scout or if his family goes camping often he'll start to look at the outdoor experience in a different way. He'll start thinking about the conservation of natural resourcesthe importance of doing a Good Turn EVERYDAY, some basic first aid skills to help his fellow man in ways he may not have thought of before. He may be a Tenderfoot but the learning process has speeded up and he's growing fast.
Finally made it to Second Class can the next step be far behind? The Second Class Scout is thoroughly entrenched in the system of the Troop. Things are coming a little easier now and he has possibly had the experience of several campouts. He now has a complete understanding of the Scout Motto Be Prepared. If he's enthusiastic about advancement, he has his sights set on a much bigger prize and understands what it takes to get there. He may already be involved or will soon be joining others in Junior Leader Training. He soon be attending his second summer camp and will make plans to choose his time wisely to work on Merit Badges which he knows he'll need to move along to higher ranks.
The First Class Scout is much more experienced. He may soon be called upon to be given real responsibility in a position of Leadership. He's learning more advanced skills and, without even realizing it, he's teaching younger Scouts how to pack for camp, all about teamwork and how to play fair. He's growing up and on the doorstep of his teenage years. If Scouting continues to inspire him, he'll go much further. He's thinking about advanced Merit Badges and those which are required" as he paves his own way on the trail to Scouting's highest prize.
There should be no turning back when you've reached the rank of Star. The Star Scout is counted upon by his fellow leaders, youth and adult alike, to lead by example. He may be utilized in the capacity of instructor and many hidden" talents may be slowly be coming to the surface. He is an important part of the Troop and must have served in a Troop leadership position for several months to reach this point. He is also learning about the seriousness and importance of the "service project" and understands that it's his duty to perform such tasks. He has earned at least six Merit Badges, four of which are required to attain the rank of Eagle Scout.
The Life Scout is no rookie or novice. The Life Scout is totally dedicated to the Troop and to Scouting. (In our Troop, he is fully Junior Leader Trained and may even be called upon to serve on the JLT Team either as a Staff member or presenter). He may be serving on Troop Staff and is responsible to make the program run.A tough job for one so young but definitely UP to that challenge. He has earned at least eleven Merit Badges and worked hard for them. He knows that, with focus and determination, he can hit the next target. He is relied upon by adult leaders to help plan and coordinate various tasks in the Troop. He now knows some things about the history of Scouting and sees a lot of what lies beneath the surface. If he's doing it right, he attends as many campouts as possible and takes an active role in meetings and other Troop activities. HIS Court of Honor wil belong to him and him alone.
The above was read in between each presentation. Thanks for looking it over and feel free to use it if you like.