Saturday, November 30, 2013

Important changes... as proposed in 1909...

The following is from Robert Keable Row, The Educational Meaning of Manual Arts and Industries, 1909:
Changes in social, economic and industrial conditions have eliminated any activities in the way of manual arts and industries from the home. These have important educational values and the lack in the home must be supplied by the school. So far as the pupils are concerned this is easy, because they want it. Countless thousands of boys and girls leave school early because they tire of book lessons. These would remain in school and do all necessary academic work, if only they had a chance to do other things that seem to them more worth while...

The significance of this movement cannot now be estimated. With a saner curriculum of the elementary school, more interesting and attractive to the pupils, it should be easy to keep nearly all children in school regularly until they complete the elementary course. Beyond the elementary school the work should gradually take on a distinctly vocational aim for the majority of students. Besides studying literature and history for culture, the boys and girls should be learning to do with intelligence and skill the very things they will probably have to do all their lives. The work in science, for example, should relate directly to cooking, to agriculture, to typical manufacturing processes...

The plan of course, will eliminate much of the alleged cultural material from the high school and college courses these students take, but it will relate the work in science, mathematics, etc., much more intimately to the actual life interests of these students. Things will not be studied for the recitation, for the examination, or for the credits, but for their use in the practical affairs in which the student is engaged.
Today I will be selling my work at the Fall Art Fair in Eureka Springs. So if you want to spend a black Saturday shopping for holiday gifts instead of making beautiful and useful things yourself, come on down.

Make, fix and create..


  1. Great quote from that book. Here in Buffalo it was "Shop Local Saturday," with neighborhood commercial areas promoting locally owned stores and crafts. It was great to see people out buying.


  2. I like the shop small movement. It is a good idea and could be the next stop on doing away with the middle man and just makng things ourselves.

    Jean and I attended the UU fellowship while in Madison that Frank Lloyd Wright designed. They had a crafts show going on in the FLW designed chapel, that reminded me of the small craft show your UU fellowship has had.

    Are you doing that again this year?

  3. The craft show at the UU Church is the 14th. It seems like I'll be the only woodworker, which is sad. But the variety of crafts is great, and I hope people will like my more or less practical things.

    From what I could see, Shop Local Saturday was a hit. Independent local stores on our commercial streets were busy. Maybe something is building.