Weekly woodwork classes begin in Fourth Grade and meet in our beautiful applied arts studio. The studio has a full collection of hand-working tools which the students will be introduced to over the years. Emphasis is placed on the construction of simple practical objects incorporating the form of the wood collected, with designs becoming increasingly difficult as the grades progress. Students start by learning about local forest species, establishing a connection to local forests and native species, and gaining an understanding about basic tree morphology as it pertains to working with wood. The students cut and split the wood, in preparation for their projects using fundamental tools such as the handsaw, chisel, gouge, rasp, carving knives and sandpaper. With these tools students learn to shape, smooth and polish wood. The underlying goal of woodwork class is to teach students patience, perseverance and to take pride in their work.
Classes begin gardening in the fall, then once the harvest is done and the garden is “put to bed” for the winter, they transition inside for woodworking lessons.
The world is a busy place and the garden provides the opportunity to take a deep breath, connect with the earth and our environment, and grow food - with all the challenges and rewards this entails! Watching worms flex and bend as the soil is turned over, munching on kale and chives, rolling oats for porridge, cleaning seeds for winter storage – these are tasks that form a connection to nature. Our Gardening Program engages students in meaningful tasks while they learn to care for the Earth and contribute to the greater community. Our students are active in all aspects of gardening: digging, mulching, composting, planting, weeding, hoeing, transplanting, seed saving, harvesting and enjoying the fruits of their labors.We take care to create a developmentally appropriate series of learning experiences that develops skills to last a lifetime.