Sunday, August 30, 2020

Jefferson lap desk...

Struggling with the start of school? Welcome to the club.  Michele Goldberg wrote an interesting essay in the New York Times last week addressing the concerns that parents and teachers face. 

As a mother she considers how to handle her own situation in New York City Schools. Some schools in New York City are now planning to move their activities and lessons out of doors, a strategy that the Clear Spring School has been planning for months.

The article suggests that parents all across the US are facing pretty much the same thing during the pandemic. Do we send our children and teachers into classrooms where the pandemic may threaten the teachers and the lives of their family members? Lacking real leadership they can trust, many parents are making that decision for themselves. 

I'm in the process of making tool box kits that our Clear Spring School students can assemble whether they are in class or taking part in at-home learning. The project interests me because I've been wanting kids to have tools of their own, and I hope to begin supplying them. The first tools we'll supply are hammers, and I received a shipment of hammers last week. Fortunately at Clear Spring School our school is small, our classes are small, and we can offer greater attention to the safety of each child.

I've not been writing in the blog lately due to the amount of time I've been spending on my new book, The Wisdom of Our Hands. We started with a book size in mind consisting of between 50-60,000 words, that being a reasonable read of around 250 pages. By last count, I'm at 55,000 words but have a tremendous amount of crafting to do,  cutting some, adding just a bit, and making clear. As with many things, I feel just a bit outside my comfort zone. I keep reflecting on the needs of our society, that we move more directly toward an appreciation of each other, that we build connections, not walls.

Wish me luck.

Among woodworkers, the Jefferson Lap Desk shown in the photo is a popular subject that's written about again and again in woodworking magazines and online. Giving credit where credit is likely due, an even more beautiful duplicate of this box was made by one of Jefferson's slaves, John Hemmings, though that box was lost in a shipwreck. 

Make, fix, create, and assist others in living and learning likewise.


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