Letters: Scouting Provides Rich Experiences for Children

Dear Editor,

Last week, the Princeton community was treated to a wonderful Commonground lecture on raising resilient children by Lenore Skenazy, author of the book Free Range Kids: “A commonsense approach to parenting in these overprotective times”.

She took the opportunity to highlight the ways that modern parents can promote activities and provide environments that help kids become “smart, young, capable individuals, not invalids who needs constant attention and help.”

Scouting in Princeton is a way that parents can implement Lenore’s ideas.

Girl Scouting and Boy Scouting use progressive experiences to prepare kids for adulthood. They promote child-led experiences and provide multiple opportunities for kids to explore and engage the world around them, all the while cultivating leadership.

For example, girls in Princeton have yearly opportunities to attend camp with older girls, and learn to survive and thrive without modern amenities. Their time with their troop, both at camp and at their field trips and meeting places, enables them to bond, be in the company of other adult authority figures and contribute to both their own development and the larger community. All the while, the girls practice common sense, have opportunities to challenge their comfort zone, and learn valuable skills.

Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts provide a similarly rich experience, through which boys participate in a broad array of activities and adventures.  Through camping, hiking,  service projects and other outdoor activities, boys learn skills that will help them overcome obstacles and challenges with courage and character throughout their lives. As they grow as leaders, they learn cooperation and teamwork, as well as the importance of being active members of the community.

We hope that all parents will consider how Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts could benefit their children as they grow, experience and master the world around them. Please join us!

And if your own childhood and adulthood has equipped you with an expertise that would benefit Scouts in Princeton, please consider joining our volunteer ranks to give back to your community and positively affect the next generation.


Karen Freundlich


  1. As a former Scout, I value many of the experiences that are offered by the movement, but it’s hard to endorse the organization until it becomes fully inclusive of all kids and ditches its policy of open discrimination. I’ll be staying on the sidelines till then.

    1. It is important to realize that Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts are completely different organizations and that Girl Scouts has been and continues to be open to ANY girl!

      1. I am aware of that and I bought the cookies last fall! I also believe that many/most activists in the Boy Scouting movement in Princeton are inclusive-minded. I hope the national organization recognizes soon that Scouting is stronger when it includes all young people and sections of society.

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