For These Kids, Making Toys is an Entryway to Woodworking
A few weeks ago I posted a video of Miguel Gomez Ibanez, president of North Bennet Street School, discussing the importance of hand skills in education. Doug Stowe, frequent contributor to Fine Woodworking and award-winning boxmaker and furniture maker, eagerly joined the discussion.
Doug is actively involved in spreading the gift of hand skills to children at the Clear Spring School in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. The program, called Wisdom of the Hands, was initiated by Doug, and its goal is to design woodworking projects that “integrate and support other areas of study, such as geography, economics, history, biology, ecology, literature, and math.” Classroom teachers work with the woodworking instructors in coming up with projects.
This video shows students making toy horses. It’s refreshing and energizing to hear the excitement in the kids’ voices as they craft the toy pieces. And it’s great to see woodworking being taught to such young kids. Rock on, Doug!
RESOURCES: Woodworking For Kids
Noted woodworker, author, and educator Doug Stowe produced a series of articles and woodworking project plans aimed at the youngest potential beneficiaries of this philosophy of woodworking as education. Read his article Woodworking for Kids for a comprehensive discussion of the sloyd system, and download his thoughtfully developed Kid’s Woodworking Project Plans so you can introduce a young person to woodworking.