Shop is Not a Four-Letter Word | Edutopia

Last Tuesday the students in my School and Society class had a conversation about whether or not they felt like attending college was a choice. Most of them come from privileged backgrounds, with college-educated parents, and not going to college simply wasn't a part of their culture. We'll talk a lot about expectations within cultures in that class, and I'm sure those discussions will include ideas and topics they've never had to think about before. I'm hoping the college decision is a good place to start that process.

The conversation also led to talking about the value of vocational classes. In short, I'm pro-vocational, and I dislike the "college-prep-or-you're-a-failure" culture in many schools. While I didn't take any shop classes in high school (music was my primary elective), I learned a lot through helping my father, a trained mechanic and all-around handy guy. I've fixed appliances and engines, built a garage, shingled roofs, and learned a lot of other valuable skills that I wouldn't trade for college-prep knowledge.