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Monday, April 25, 2011

Middle School Shop Projects

Across the country school systems are struggling to keep art and shop programs. Budget cuts of arts programs are partly the cause as well as people who consider some programs obsolete. When I was in seventh grade shop was 1/3 of a life class required (along with home ec. and a language class), by the next year the seventh grade shop was replaced by a computer skills class for 1/3 of the class. A sad commentary on the changing of times. (At least in my mind.) I was one of those kids who took in both the required 7th grade class as well as the optional 8th grade class. These classes & skills are important, more important than some school officials realize & help give kids excess to skills they might not otherwise have access to.

The aluminum owl was a project from my 7th grade shop class while we were doing metal skill work. After the hot metal was poured and let to cool completely, we filed the edges to clean it up. I have memories of my  shop teacher adding aluminum cans to the melted metal, possibly using cans for the entire metal used, but I don't know or remember. Budget-wise it would have made great sense for a public school. (It hangs on my wall even now as a piece of my past.)

The scotty dog lamp was an 8th grade shop project. Often we were given an option between two projects at a time, one being harder than the other. This was the harder of one of those options, but I do not remember the other one at the time. It was a combination of wood and electric with our choice of fabric pulled over wire mesh. To turn the light on or off, you push the tail.

Don't let Middle School or High School Ssop classes be cut.

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