The Teacher’s Hand-Book of Slöjd (1904)

The Teacher’s Hand-Book of Slöjd is cool. It was billed by someone somewhere as the most import woodworking book ever published. I doubt that’s true, but it does have several cool features. First, it described and gave the method for use of all the standard hand tools. Second, it gives a list for tools that are needed to teach woodworking. Third, being a teaching book, it focuses on pedagogy.

The first point is straightforward.

The second is also straightforward. The tools needed to teach one student (and a nice start-up list for the traditional woodworker): shooting board, 2 clamps, ruler, marking point, marking gauge, cutting gauge, a compass, square, bevel, saw-set, saw-sharpening clamps, triangular file, bow-saw, dove-tail saw, turn-saw, hand saw, tenon saw, compass saw, groove saw, axe, sloyd knife, draw knife, six firmer chisels, two mortise chisels, six gouges, spoon iron, jack plane, trying plane, smoothing plane, router plane, spokeshave, flat file, half-round file, scraper, brace with bits, bradawl, mallet, hammer, wire-cutter, flat-jawed pliers, round-jawed pliers, screwdriver, glue-pot and brush, grindstone, oilstone, oil can, sandpaper.

The third point is the really important one. Pedagogically, sloyd work was meant to teach students self-reliance, accuracy, and pride in one’s work. Working with one’s hand, carrying on a tradition, was the way to impart important practices to build virtue.

This notion is important for the church. We need to teach the young to appreciate work and tradition, practice and virtue. That’s what I thought about as I read. Any additional thoughts?

I promise to dial back the woodworking books for a while.

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