Saturday, February 13, 2016
in the seventies, eighties, nineties and on in America
The problems in the cities tend to be self-perpetuating. Work offers dignity. Work offers hope. Lack of work strips away what little of either may remain when children and their parents are faced day to day by poverty and lack of opportunity for meaningful employment.
When schools compound the problems by remaining abstract and irrelevant to the lives of their students, and only a single door (college) is proposed by those schools as the means to escape endless poverty, lack of opportunity is assiduously and perpetually assured.
Educational Sloyd proposed that all children should learn woodworking Sloyd in school, even those students aiming for academic based careers. The point was that all students needed not only to know how to do things, but also needed to develop a greater appreciation and respect for the contributions made by others. Skilled hands were considered an asset for each individual and also a means through which the whole of a nation might be lifted to its highest potential.
This is not a difficult thing to understand except for those who've become anesthetized and made complacent by success in their academic pursuits. Of absolute necessity in a successful democratic society is that all discover through the creation of useful beauty, the wisdom of their hands... even and most particularly those who imagine themselves destined for greater things.
I'm just a simple woodworker here, with no power to make changes in the world at large. So I am counting on you. If you know anyone with power in any of the major political campaigns, presidential or otherwise, I would like to have a chat with them.
We know that the single most significant cause of poor performance in school is the amount of time students and their families have spent in poverty. We need to alleviate that problem, and we need to make schooling more directly relevant to students by offering them the chance of doing real things, hands-on. Some people insist this is far too large a problem for us to even attempt to fix. I strongly disagree.
Make, fix, create, and extend a love of learning likewise.