Woodworker and teacher Doug Stowe brings 40 years of experience and thought to his wonderful The Guide to Woodworking with Kids, a book for those who recognize that young brains learn best through hands-on activities. Valuable to both experienced and prospective instructors, Stowe’s book provides the foundation on which to build a whole program or a single project. It includes basic knowledge about hands-on instruction, as well as valuable teaching methods, effective project types, and critical tools. Built on historical examples, personal experience, and contemporary pedagogy, the book revolves around tools: workbenches, planes, toolboxes, and, maybe surprisingly, knives. At a basic level, tools teach safety and trust. At a higher level, correct tool use enhances the growth of children’s brains. Stowe hasn’t written a step-by-step recipe book. He’s provided examples and expects the instructor will pick what works for them to create a lesson plan. He also expects that the object of the instructor’s craft will become the student, not the project.
—Joe Youcha founded and directs Building To Teach, a teacher-trainer program that reintroduces the building process as a context for math instruction.
Photos: Barry NM Dima
From Fine Woodworking #291