In 1890, he wrote the following about manual arts education.
"Teach the pupils to make things themselves; things which will be useful and which will be sold to admiring friends;' say the ardent advocates of this new application of an old idea.
"These people, however, although they include a good may educators of note, labor under a serious misapprehension regarding the end of manual training as it is understood by the thoughtful promoters of the so-called new Education. Indeed, it can be safely said that manual training is everywhere suffering form the almost universal misconception on the part of the p public that its end and aim is the teaching of trades, that it robs the pupil of certain hours which would otherwise be give to the common or higher branches for the sake of teaching him to 'make things' which are supposed to belong solely to the carpenter's or blacksmith's shop. But manual training proper, considered in its educational relations, must be at once and for all time separated from the idea of immediate financial, or money getting results. In other words, manual training in the public schools must be kept clear and distinct from trades schools or the teaching of trades.
"The mental education which we undertake to give our children at public cost is supposed to be equally valuable to the pupil whether he becomes a business man, manufacturer, lawyer, clergyman, physician or teacher. On the same principle the manual training which we are seeking to incorporate as a part of our public-school system is intended to benefit alike the future carpenter, machinist, blacksmith, manufacturer or general mechanical engineer; nay more, it is expected to help the boys who are to follow commercial or literary vocations just as much in rounding out their education and equipping them for life as it does the other class. For we can never 'send the whole boy to school' till we give those who are destined for the mechanical class of the world's workers a fair mental training, and also impart to those who are to make up the professional class the fundamental ideas of hand culture."
Today I've been working my way through edited chapters of my new book and beginning to write needed sidebar material. It is not as much fun as sawing and making things, but it ill help others to do so. At noon on Friday, October 25, I will give a gallery talk at the Zarrow Art Center in Tulsa, on the show of my work that will be closing on Saturday. Please join me if you are in the Tulsa area, and bring a brown bag lunch.
Make , fix and create...