Wednesday, May 25, 2011

celebration of the child...

The students at Clear Spring School are busy today rehearsing for their end of the school year performances in what we call, "the celebration of the child," our end of the school year program. This year, we are losing our beloved head of school, Phyllis Poe, as she retires from a distinctive record of service to the school. We are sad, but also thrilled that a well qualified replacement has been found.

I have been so saddened by the devastation brought to Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Southwest Missouri, by this tornado season. The storms have been of unusual ferocity and destructive force. At Clear Spring School, we are having a toy drive to supply toys to children who survived the Joplin tornado, that lost everything as their homes were swept away. Our hearts go out to our neighbors who have faced such loss with such courage.

I am entering my own whirlwind of sorts, though one much more positive, knock on wood, than what we've witnessed around us. I am cleaning the school wood shop, working on last minute edits of the Building Small Cabinets book, writing an article for Fine Woodworking, preparing to teach this next month with the Kansas City Woodworking Guild, and laying out cabinet parts in preparation for the production of my DVD on Building Small Cabinets that will also be published by Taunton Press. I will also be fine tuning my Wisdom of the Hands book proposal, with the much needed help of my former editor from Woodwork Magazine.

The following is from The Century Magazine, 1885:
"There is an industrial training which is neither technical nor professional, which is calculated to make better men and better citizens of the pupils, no matter what calling they many afterward follow; which affects directly, and in a most salutary manner, the mind and character of the pupil, and which will be of constant service to him through all his life, whether he be wage worker, or trader, teacher or clergyman. The training of the eye and of the hand are important and essential elements in all good education. These elements the State is bound to furnish." --Washington Gladden
Make, fix and create.

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