Human beings these days seem to have become unfamiliar with the rhythmic potentials of our own bodies. Give a kid a chisel, and he wants to drive it straight into the wood, not realizing that work is most easily accomplished through rhythmic (and thoughtful) application of force. By dividing work into smaller increments, human beings can have tremendous power. The illustration above is from Rudolfs J. Drillis "Folk Norms and Biomechanics" and shows the optimum work tempo for man. Don't expect others these days to make such observations or to make such observations of our bodies. We have reached the point of foolishness in which human labor and the productive capacities of our own bodies is a thing to be escaped rather than studied and cherished.
A poem from Two Hundred Poems for Teachers of Industrial Arts Education Compiled by William L. Hunter, 1933 tells a bit of the story
The potter stood at his daily work,Blog reader Reuben sent in this link, Why teachers should put students to work.
One patient foot on the ground;
The other with never slackening speed
Turning his swift wheel around.
Silent we stood beside him there,
Watching the restless knee,
'Til my friend said low, in pitying voice,
"How tired his foot must be!"
The potter never paused in his work,
Shaping the wondrous thing;
'Twas only a common flower pot,
But perfect in fashioning.
Slowly he raised this patient eyes,
With homely truth inspired;
"No, Marm, it isn't the foot that works,
The one that stands gets tired!"
-- Author unknown
Today in the CSS wood shop, 4th, 5th and 6th grade students enjoyed a "free" day or "creative" day in which they got to do pretty much what they wanted. It is the day in the wood shop that they love most. The high school students worked on their cigar box guitars.
Make, fix and create...