In all well-organized and purposeful camps for boys, three rules are considered absolutely essential for the safety and welfare of the campers. These rules are:
1. No fire-arms, air-rifles or explosives of any kind allowed.
2. No one of the party shall enter the water for swimming or bathing, except during the designated period.
3. No tobacco used in any form.
Every boy going to camp agrees, in signing his application, to observe whatever rules are decided upon as best for the welfare of all. Boys should be trusted and expected to do as the majority think best. There should be a happy understanding and mutual confidence existing which should make a long list of rules unnecessary. When the boys arrive in camp, the director should outline and explain the purpose and policy of the camp in kind, but unmistakable terms.
A camp of a dozen boys and their school teacher, in the White Mountains, was operated for three delightful weeks, upon the following “agreement,” which all the boys and their leader signed.
We, the members of Camp Bejoyful, do hereby subscribe cheerfully to the following rules and regulations and will be governed by them while we are members of this camp.
We further agree to pay any penalty the other members of the camp may think fit to impose upon us for breaking these rules or resolutions.
We will not lose our tempers.
We will not use any language we would not use in the presence of ladies.
We will not tell stories we would not tell or want told to our sisters.
We will perform cheerfully any duties our Camp Master asks us to perform.
We will at all times respect the rights and feelings of others.
We will remember that the command to “Remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy,” is obligatory at all times and in all places.
The motto of this camp shall be “Noblesse oblige.”
Unless the camp is conducted under the auspices of the Boys’ Brigade or some military organization, where boys prefer the military discipline, it is unwise to introduce it in a camp for boys. The type of discipline to be used will depend upon the type of leader. Some camps are controlled by the use of a whistle. When the attention of the boys is desired, the leader blows a shrill blast of the whistle and the boys immediately respond by absolute silence and await the announcement or whatever the leader or director desires to say to them. Never blow the whistle unless necessary. Secure first the attention of the boys if you want their interest. Camp boys become accustomed to continuous blowing of the whistle in the same manner that city boys become used to the noise of the street-car gong. Blow your whistle and wait. Cause for a second blast should be considered serious.