The Pathfinder staff need to have a clear understanding of their commitment and objectives to be reached during the Pathfinder year. The general aim is to help meet the growing spiritual, emotional, physical, creative and social needs of the Pathfinders in a balanced program. There is the specific aim of leading the Pathfinders through a course of study toward final recognition at an Investiture service.
The Pathfinder year is based on a 10-12 month calendar. During this time the club will need to hold regular meetings, outreach, special events and club camps. The following are links to examples of a yearly program.
The calendar needs to be approved by the local church board for insurance and risk management purposes before the start of the year’s program and should include conference events. Any calendar changes after the initial approval must also be approved by the local church board. Check with your local conference Youth Director for dates relative to the conference events, such as Fair, Camporee, Expedition and Rally.
Suggested activities to supplement the curriculum program may include:
There is a recommended minimum supervision ratio of 1:10. Please check your local National Parks for bushwalking ratios and maximum group sizes.
|Activities||Recommended Qualification Certificates|
|Hikes||Avondale College Short Course: Bushwalking Guide Controlled Environment|
|Animal and bird observation field trips.|
|Visiting a state or national park.|
|Parent or Pathfinder banquet.|
|Visit an observatory.
|Wilderness survival camping trip or general overnight camping trip||Avondale College Short Course: Base Camping|
|Overnight hiking trip.||Avondale College Short Course: Bushwalking Guide Uncontrolled|
|Boat trip or excursion to lake or aquatic activities.||Relevant industry standard qualification. Example: Avondale College Short Course: Canoeing/Guide Flat Water|
|Abseiling (1:5 ratio?)||Relevant industry standard qualification. Example: Avondale College Short Course: Abseiling Guide Single Pitch|
|Incursions or excursions in conjunction with an Honour.|
Promoting a balanced program
The local conference youth ministries office may operate a yearly scoring plan that has a variety of requirements that highlight basic Pathfinder activities and lead to a balanced program. Awards are presented to each club at the conference Fair or Rally. Refer to your local conference for scoring criteria
The Pathfinder can complete the class requirements only if regular meetings are conducted. These meetings are conducted according to the needs of the local club. Many of the requirements may be covered in a camping situation, around the campfire, for morning and evening worship, church service, and Sabbath afternoon programs etc. For clubs who like to camp, more club and unit campouts can be scheduled in the yearly calendar.
A few samples. You should include an Opening ceremony, worship, activities. The remainder will depend on the curriculum that you are running.
Other clubs may like to use one of the two models suggested. It is possible for a club to swap from model to model each year and also during the year. For example, a club may prefer Model A in winter when there are long evenings available, and Model B when sunset is late or daylight savings leaves little time in the evenings. The club can use Model A the first weekend each month, and Model B the third weekend of the month. All these choices, and more are yours.
Model A. This is conducted in one three-hour sessions with opening and closing ceremonies, marching, games, curriculum and craft, all integrated into one program. Here is a sample program, showing the basic structure. You may vary this without limit to suit your situation and add variety to your program.
|15||Opening ceremony – flags, prayer, inspections|
|10||Drill (club or unit)|
|30||Classwork/pursuits (indoor or outdoor activity)|
|30||Games or Fair practice|
|30||Classwork/pursuits (indoor or outdoor activity)|
|5||Announcements and benediction|
Model B. This is a three-hour program, but it is conducted in two separate segments:
Segment 1: One hour of Pathfindering, which may be on Sabbath, featuring fellowship and curriculum activities.
Segment 2: Two hours of Pathfindering, including marching, games, curriculum, craft, and opening and closing ceremonies.
Following is a sample program, showing the basic structure. You may vary this without limit to suit your situation and add variety to your programs.
|Segment 1 – 1 hour||Segment 2 – 2 hours|
|10||Opening ceremony||10||Opening ceremony|
|10||Object lesson/ quiz||15||Devotional/ guest|
|30||Curriculum||15||Games/ Fair Practice|
|3||Announcements/ benediction||40||Honours/ hobbies/ crafts|
|10||Closing ceremony/ benediction|
Annual Pathfinder Events
Pathfinder Induction Service.
A Pathfinder membership Induction Ceremony is a great way to admit new juniors, teens, or adult staff to membership in the local club. This should be a dignified, simple, brief and impressive occasion that will inspire the Pathfinder candidates with the high ideals of the Pathfinder organisation. An Induction ceremony using candles may be used by clubs to impress upon the candidates the seriousness and responsibility of becoming a Pathfinder. It is great to do it involving the Pathfinder parents at the beginning of the Pathfinder Year.
The Pathfinder Day is designated by the General Conference as one Sabbath when the local club provides a report of the impact of the local Pathfinder club ministry and a thank you to the local church for their support of this evangelistic program. The program is generally organised and presented by the Pathfinder Club. In the Global church calendar, the date is in September but the local church with the Pathfinder Club can plan for this event.
Pathfinder Investiture Service
This special service is when the Pathfinders are rewarded for completing the requirements for Pathfinder Classes that they have been working on during the year. The day is programmed by the Local club with the Regional District Director. It is another opportunity to showcase the club to the local church.
The following planning guide is an example how Pathfinder staff can use available resources in planning the details for the club program.
|ACTIVITY||COMMITTEE ACTION (DROP DOWN MENU)||SOURCE MATERIAL|
|Opening Ceremony||Decide the formation of the Pathfinders for parade; position and duties for each staff member during parade.||Drill and Marching, and Flag Ceremonies.|
|Marching (in the lead up to special occasions like Fair or Camporee)||Elect marching instructor and his/her assistant.||Ceremonies, Drill and Marching procedures.|
|Worships||Elect a club chaplain or vote on a worship duty list, making a staff member responsible for this segment.||People who may take devotionals are: staff members, church pastors, school teachers, conference leaders, missionaries, Pathfinders etc.|
|Curriculum Requirements||Carefully select class teachers. They carry responsibility of leading the Pathfinders to Investiture and to God.||See Curriculums
|Games/Fair Practise||Nominate a staff member to be responsible for recreational activities; games, camping, Fair practice, hiking, picnics etc.||1) Church library
2) Adventist Book Centre
3) Local Library
Check with local and state authorities for regulations as to camping, hiking and picnic areas.
|Hobbies/ Honours/ crafts||One way of doing this is to ascertain the number of skilled craft people in your church. Plan a survey with your Pathfinders to determine their choice of crafts/Honours/hobbies. Elect one of your staff to be responsible for coordinator and staffing these activities.||All Honour requirements are listed here. Hands-on learning rather than reading from the answer guide provides more engaging activities.
Arts and craft centres, libraries, internet etc will have books and ideas and supplies.
|Closing ceremony||As for Opening Ceremony||Drill and Marching, and Flag Ceremonies.|
The following areas must be attended to by the end of the first quarter of the Pathfinder year.
- Club participation in Leadership training – Master Guide, PLA, PSA . and Avondale outdoor short courses.
- Use current Pathfinder curriculum manuals (i.e. this site)
- Have Working with Children’s Checks for all staff over 18 years of age.
- Produce a yearly program, and give a copy to your district director and church board.
- Draw up a budget (including proposed fund-raising campaigns).
- Allocate counsellors and Pathfinders to classes/units.
- Order curriculum materials from your local conference or Adventist Book Centre – e.g. journals, class cards, report forms, book club selections.
- Update equipment list, do any maintenance and replacement as necessary including annual testing and tagging of electronic equipment.
- Update insurance on equipment with your local church.
- Provide numbers of Pathfinders and staff to the local conference for insurance cover.
- Order Passports for new Pathfinders (optional).
- Plan an induction for any new Pathfinders and staff
- Set Investiture dates in conjunction with your District Director.