Sunday, May 18, 2008

A friend of mine sent me this photo of a windmill blade, fiberglass over balsa wood. Charlie's job is to help over-sized loads like this one travel around on limited highways, and just moving these blades from one side of Little Rock to another requires very careful planning. Charlie attributes his expertise in this work to his earlier career in woodworking and furniture restoration... activities which helped develop his spatial sense. He finds it easier to visualize the scale of things because he has had hands-on opportunity to work with real objects.

The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics has long recognized the relationship between spatial sense and the ability to do math. Algebra, geometry, trigonometry and calculus are all built on the child's developed abilities for spatial visualization. You don't get it from the flat screen but from the manipulation and making of three dimensional objects. It is one of many reasons we need to put woodworking and crafts back in school.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous5:00 AM

    Good for Little Rock! We have 8 wind generators her on the shore of Lake Erie. There are no piles of dead birds as some people thought, and this is a major flyway for migratory birds. The turbines are on old industrial land that really can't be used for anything else. So our steady winds make some of our power.