Sunday, August 23, 2015

molding boxes

lovely, don't you think?
Box makers have often used various shaped moldings to make boxes, and while I'd stayed out of that game thus far, one of my students at Marc Adams School this summer was particularly interested in shaped boxes. One of the great ways to give a box an unusual shape is to alter the materials from which it is made through the use of molding cutters in the router table.

So I studied a vast array of available router bits, and came up with a pair that will work well for making tiny boxes. "But how does one cut the lid from the base?" you might ask. It is simple if you cut the stock where the separation is to fall ahead of time, and tape the parts back together, before routing the shape.

After running the stock through the process of turning it into molding, the box parts are then mitered and glued into the form of a box. The cut separating the lid from base will already have been made, and without the obvious loss of a saw kerf in its shape. In the photo above, you can see the line that will allow the lid to be lifted from the finished box. What's most important is that this will be a tiny box that my readers will love to make.

As was described by Vandewalker, the impact of Froebel's Kindergarten was enormous and instantaneous for those who had an opportunity to witness its effects on children. One young man who had been a student of Froebel had returned from Germany with his family, and that child was so precocious in his ways, that adults who met him were convinced. In response, some of the best families in America began trying to form Kindergartens, and having witnessed its positive effect, began visualizing Kindergarten as the engine that would drive societal change. Instead of  children being confined to desks for endless recitation, they were set free in activities that engaged their interests and resembled play. That it was revolutionary was not in doubt. And Froebel's Kindergarten became part of a wider movement that empowered women to vote, and to exercise greater authority in family and community life.

Perhaps of greatest interest here was Kindergarten's close association with Educational Sloyd, that Swedish and Finnish system of manual arts that recognized that the hand and brain were partners in the development of character and intellect in the whole child.

Children are best seen with tools, and heard with hammers in hand.

Make, fix, create... empower and train others to do likewise.

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