When we are younger, the school offers us, different classes, to open our eyes and spark our growing interests. There are always the standard academic classes that everyone must take, but then there are the elective courses; this includes learning about music, art, theater, another language, or if we were lucky, wood shop. While most of these options are still available to our current students, woodshop has quickly disintegrated from curriculums. America’s education system has begun to adjust to fit modern needs, yet depriving schools of woodshop is not the solution. What we need more than anything is another class to express ourselves and use our hands.
Creating Something From Nothing
Companies like Amazon and Wayfair have made it incredibly easy to have great products delivered to our doors. Even IKEA has allowed getting quality furniture for a good price. While these are convenient and fast, opening a box doesn’t give the same satisfaction of making something with our hands. Being able to look back on something we made ourselves gives us gratification and a sense of pride. Plus, we can have something to show off and show our loved ones.
Accuracy is a big attribute in any professional or friendly setting. Woodshop teaches us how to measure and follow directions to complete a task accurately. Beginner classes of woodshop can bring fundamental skills like using a tape measure and correct lumber. Advanced courses build on these math skills to allow students to create their own pieces. Art classes enable us to be creative, but the creative and technical aspect has gotten lost in translation in recent years. With woodworking, technique is as important as creativity. There isn’t a class that can combine the two except for woodshop.
Being in Touch With The Past
Our ancestors are part of the generation who created with their hands. They worked with machinery and hand tools to build fine end-products that are still around to this day. While we don’t need to rely on these old ways, looking back at them can change our perspective. They worked hard on what they made, and they appreciated it for that particular reason. We need to return to a time of appreciation and acknowledgment. Woodshop teaches us that quality things take time and patience. Once we can re-identify with this tradition, we can once again take pride in our work. Woodshop can teach us that with time and commitment we can build and do anything.
Other than being a learning experience, working with our hands is just plain old fun. Woodshop is a practical yet nourishing tradition that needs to be brought back into our school systems.