A Parent’s Guide

to the 

Life To Eagle


  • How to help your child earn their Eagle Scout Rank.

  • Things that help.

  • Things that don’t help.

  • Guaranteeing his success.

  • How to help them join that top 2% of their peers nationwide who will earn the Eagle rank.


One of the most important things you can do is to provide encouragement.  Many young men and women get discouraged, while others get distracted.  They may feel pressure from their peers that Scouting isn't "cool".  You can encourage them, and remind them that earning the Eagle Scout rank will have more long-term significance throughout their life than almost anything else they do as a youth.  They must make the decision to reach for this accomplishment, but your support and encouragement often makes the biggest difference.  Help them set deadlines, timelines, goals, and waypoints so that they do not run out of time to complete the process.

 Life to Eagle Seminar

You and your Scout should attend the annual Life to Eagle Seminar together.  You will hear the same things they do, and can help them absorb all the information presented.  This seminar covers all seven requirements, and concentrates on the planning and carrying out the Eagle Scout Service Project.  Attendance will save many hours of work and frustration.  Be sure they visit the Eagle Scout information web site at www.eaglescout.itgo.com and downloaded the Chester County Council Eagle Scout Handbook and the Eagle Scout Service Project Workbook before the seminar.  This web site has information and links that will be helpful throughout the process.

Finding a Project

When your Scout is ready to find a project, help them evaluate ideas in light of their skills and interests.  Whatever they choose to do, they will have to teach a group of youth how to carry out the project.  If they have worked with tools all their life, a construction project might be a good choice.  If they are a computer expert, they might consider using those skills.  If they have a green thumb, a landscaping project might be the best choice.  Suggest they talk to other Eagle Scouts, visit the Eagle Scout Information web at www.eaglescout.itgo.com site for ideas, and talk with their Scout leaders.  The restrictions on what makes an acceptable Eagle project are detailed in the Eagle Scout Service Project Workbook.  If your Scout has a question, have them contact the District Advancement Chair.

Learning the Skills Needed to Carry Out the Project

Your Scout may need to learn new skills.  You can help your Scout find people who can help them learn these skills.  Remember that they will need to understand these skills well enough to teach others while leading the project.  You may have skills and information that they need.  Other Scout leaders or parents may be able to help them out.  In some cases your Scout may need to contact a professional for help.  The library and the internet are always good sources of information, from basic construction to landscaping and horticulture to designing events for younger children.

Writing the Proposal and Plan

Once your Scout has decided on a project, and learned the skills to plan, develop, and lead the project, they need to write up the project in the Workbook.  They need to write this.  Writing up the details is an important step in the planning and demonstrating to themself and others that they is ready to lead the project.  You can help with proofreading, spelling, formatting, and editing.  Make sure they follow the instructions carefully.

Reviewing the Proposal and Plan

Your Scout should be able to tell to you, step by step, what the others working on the project will be doing.  They will be leading the project.  The others working with them probably will know much less about how to carry out the project than they do.  You can take them through the project step by step.  Ask questions such as: “On the first day of your project you are at your site, you have a pile of materials and tools, and a group of youth ready to work.  What do you tell them to do?”  “How should they do it (remember these are youth, not skilled craftsmen)?”  “What next?”  And so forth through the entire project to completion.  Ask, “when you go to buy the materials, exactly what materials, types, sizes, and quantities will you buy?”  All these details should be laid out fully in the Workbook Project Final Plan.  This detail planning is the most valuable preparation to guarantee that they will be successful in leading the project. Their project Coach will help them with this preparation. Emcourage them to take full advantage of this valuable resource.

Carrying Out the Project

You and other adults in the troop should have very little to do while your Scout is actually carrying out the project.  Scout policies require two adults to be present during a Scouting event.  Be careful not to take over running the project.  You may need to be involved with transportation.  Only adults can operate dangerous tools and machinery.  Beyond these few specific activities, the most helpful thing you can do is to bring a lawn chair and a good book.  Stay close enough that you can be reached in an emergency, but far enough away that they (and their workers) will not be tempted to turn to you with questions that your Scout needs to answer.

Writing the Report

Here again, you can help with encouragement, review, and ideas for improvement.  Help them to be sure they have covered all the sections listed in the Workbook under “Project Report”.  Remind your Scout that this report is a key piece in demonstrating that they should be one of that top 2%.  It should be the kind of report they would turn in at school for a year long project with the expectation of receiving an A+ grade.  For most of the Board of Review members, this is the only exposure they have to your Scout's project and the basis for approving the project as carried out.


While your Scout and the troop are planning the Eagle Court of Honor, work with them to help make this event have the importance and lasting significance to your Scout that is appropriate for the accomplishment they have achieved.  If your Scout is not sure what they want, they can talk to other Scouts and troops about what they have done for an Eagle court of honor.  For more ideas, they can also go the Eagle Scout Information web site at www.eaglescout.itgo.com for ideas.

Links to Pages Around This Web Site


If you have comments or questions about this website, send me an e-mail.

This web site is a work-in-progress.  If you find any mistakes, links that don't work, typos, or other inaccuracies, please let me know.  If you have any suggestions of additional material that would be helpful to Scouts in earning their Eagle rank, I would always appreciate your input (Tom@Stalnaker.com).

Web site last updated 11/3/2022