Tuesday, October 26, 2010

today in the woodshops...

In my home wood shop this morning, I cut and fit bridle joints for cherry doors. The sequence and accuracy was improved by my new stop block. In the photo above, you can see the other use for it... that of preventing "trapping" of cut off parts. The stop block slides to the operator's left to set up the cut, and then moves to the right so the cut off piece not interfere with the cut.

The photo below shows progress for my 7th, 8th and 9th grade students in making band sawn boxes. One of the things they just don't quite understand yet, is how closely you have to observe and check on your own work. Put on one clamp, check the alignment of parts, add another clamp and check the alignment of parts again. Then check again. No, don't walk away from it yet... They seem to believe that a lot of glue and one clamp will do the job, when what is really required is a little glue and a lot of clamps to hold things together as the glue sets. But experience is the best teacher. When they come back and ask what happened I'll try to explain things to them. In the wood shop, making real things there are no guaranteed successes and many opportunities to learn from mistakes.

4 comments:

toysmith said...

As I get older I keep gaining a deeper appreciation for the value of "making mistakes" in learning. When I was your students' age I remember believing that "good students" weren't supposed to make mistakes - they were a source of shame and embarrassment. I might still be embarrassed (slightly) at times, but now I know how to pick myself up and try again.

Anonymous said...

The kids are doing pretty well! Even when you consider their lack of experience.

Mario

Doug Stowe said...

It is good to teach things where you don't know the answers and where the teacher can model making mistakes, demonstrating to kids that things go wrong and that making mistakes is an essential part of learning. Non-laboratory classes don't do that so well. So wood shop is good for it.

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of the day one of my students cut beautiful dovetails. But they were angled the wrong way, so the box would fall apart.

Mario