EDGE Planning

Like everything else, use of the EDGE method requires planning and practice to achieve excellence. The following is a guide for planning the best use of the EDGE method.


EDGE begins with Explanation- the Scout must know where the lesson is going in order to participate actively in learning. A good explanation contains not just the item to be learned, but also the answers to the basic questions when, where, why and how.

  • when and where: When and where will this skill be useful? Be specific. Be dramatic. Give them a good reason to learn!
  • why: What makes this skill unique? What is it about this knot that makes it better than all other knots for tying up a rainfly?
  • how: What are the steps you will use to teach the skill? What equipment? How long will it take?

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This step is a challenge to plan for. At this point, the Scouts are independently working their new skill, with minimal input from the Instructor. Try to come up with challenge scenario: "The first drops of rain are falling- set up a rainfly"; "You fell in the river and were carried a mile downstream. You know a road loops close to this bend in the river, due northeast. Find your directions without the compass that's now at the bottom of the river". This can help "seal" your instruction in their minds.

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A good demonstration doesn't just happen- it's mapped out in advance, to be sure that it shows easily absorbed steps, with good visual access and convenient planned stopping points. If you are demonstrating how to bandage an injury, be sure you can position yourself to give the Scouts a clear view, unobstructed by your head or hands. Plan to ask questions along the way. Ask specific questions to be sure your information is being absorbed: "What part of the bandage is supporting the sprain?" is better than "Is that clear?"

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This step requires the most focused attention, and a strong observation skill. Some Scouts will get a skill after the first demonstration, others will require you to guide their hands the first few attempts. In each case, you must find the minimum amount of assistance that allows the Scout to succeed. To prepare for this step, identify the steps in the skill that will be the most challenging, and map out a set of hints and aids that you can use, graded from least to most assistance. Plan out leading questions ("what would happen if you lined up the compass with the rose on the map?" that will help guide your pupils.

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