Workplace & School

Shop class in high school
While the girls had Home Ec, the boys had Wood Shop, Metal, Shop, or Auto Shop.
Shop classes in high school

Registered users can log in to post comments or submit items for the galleries.

Login Register

There are 16 comments for this item.

Posted by Scott Race at 7:28 am (PST) on Tue December 29, 2015   
Thanks for the compliment. The older of my 2 daughters is a talented artist; this is something that has appeared in both my children, and my sisters.  It seems to be in the female side of the gene pool, though her younger son is quite talented, also.  He went to the North Carolina School of Performing arts, and makes his living as a set designer.  Even with a degree, he has had to fight his way to the middle  of a very competitive field.  My daughter, who is completely self taught, can make some nice money doing commission work on line, enough to supplement her job as a clerk at Wal-Mart.  Though my parents didn't want me to become a musician, I have continued to play the instrument that has the most versatility for me;  like my daughter, I taught myself something that I was interested in, and learned to play the bass guitar with some degree of ability, and have enjoyed the artistic outlet it occassionally allows me.  I've always told both my children that it is fine to have a dream, as long as you have a way to support yourself, and anyone that may depend upon you, or, have a plan B to support plan A.
Posted by chrisbroz at 10:00 am (PST) on Mon December 28, 2015   
Excellent story, Scott.  America, it seems is bleeding folks with technical skills...older workers with these skills are retiring and/or dying and there are few replacements.  All the talk about repairing an aging infrastructure is of no use without skilled workers who know HOW to the job...and are WILLING TO WORK to get it done!!!  It's funny how some of us kinda 'stumble' into a profession we never expected to wind up in and actually love it...As I've said in previous posts, I wish I'd followed your path insteadda getting two (esentially useless - for my purposes) degrees.
Posted by Scott Race at 9:45 am (PST) on Mon December 28, 2015   
I had band in High School and the schedule for the day prohibited any vocational trainging if you had that, and put you in a fine arts program.  My Dad was a heavy equipment mechanic, and didn't want me following in his foot steps, but didn't want me to be a musician, either.  I had an apptitude for electrical work, so when I enlisted  in the navy at 17, I became and Aviation electricians Mate.  When my 4 years was up, I landed a job at the local Lear-Siegler plant, initially assembling gyroscopes for helicopters, and then took an upgrade to inspection.  That lasted 18 monts, and then the 1980's arrived, and many of us struggled to find work for some years.  I finally went to the local ITT institute in 1985, graduated with a decent 3.4, went to work in the maintenance dept. of a high end furniture factory maintaining CNC equipment.  They moved out of state starting in 1994.  During my time there, I received my Journeyman electrical license.  I found an add looking for an electrician at the convention center in town, and became employee # 10 in town for SMG, a company that manages convention centers and sports areana's.  I have been with them for a little over 21 years, and, no, I do not have a college degree, though, the classes before mine at the ITT school had their records transferred to a state that did not require humanities classes for a degree in applied science.  At some point, the State of Michigan  told them that wasn't kosher, so from then until they became accredited, all they gave was diplomas.  I have not missed a paycheck since my first with this company in November of '94.
Posted by Irishdave at 5:28 pm (PST) on Sun December 27, 2015   
I was not alowed to take any industrial Arts (shop) classes because I was in the College track well Sr year I had a free elective so I took Electronics because it involved physics (so my guidance counselor said) the ironic thing I wanted to be a shop teacher! I taught Industrial arts for 35 years.
Posted by chrisbroz at 11:31 am (PST) on Sat December 26, 2015   
Both my brothers went to Don Bosco Tech in Paterson, NJ (college prep w/tech ed)  While I went to a co-ed Diocesan HS in Wayne, NJ (college prep).  After two drgrees (BA Hist - as pre-law - and an MA Ed for teaching Social Studies, acquired after ny enlistment) in retrospect I wish I'd learned a trade or technical skill.  The old man seriously wanted the three of us boys to "Get a drgree" which he'd never gotten (and always regretted), In my experience degrees were and are over rated in many cases...in mine, I gave up on any idea of ANY post graduate study midway through my junior year and surprised myself (and friends & family) my enlisting in the Army two days after graduation in May of '71...at the time I was just beginning to realize no one had any use for a grad with a 'History degree' - it may have been a great deree for law school, but it was basically useless in real life.  After getting out of the Army in Jul '74 and attempting for nine years to re-enlist (my eyesight turned ouy to be a permanent bar to re-enlistmebt, I finally found contentment when I was hired by Sikorsky Aircraft in 1986 to work in the production control department...something that certainly did not rtequire an advanced degree!!!  Mike Rowe is right..there are many well paying, personally satisfying careers which do not require four years of study and paying off a huge mountain of personal debt afterwards.  Just my $.02 worth...
Posted by CJ at 10:57 am (PST) on Sat December 26, 2015   
@ IOfferMyBentNickel - What a difference 10 yrs make...in 1967 (I graduated in 68) No guy would even think of signing up for Home Economics and if one did... they (the school) would cross it off and and tell him to pick something else. The same held true for girls. None would think of signing up for shop or automotive and if one did they too would be told to pick something it. The amazing thing is the NO ONE whined and cried and wanted to sue for discrimination. It was what it was and you lived with it.
Posted by IOfferMyBentNickel at 7:56 pm (PST) on Fri December 25, 2015   
Now the photo of a wood & metal shop work area brings back some high school memories. I recall the entrance to the Home Economics Class (as my high school called it)  was right next door to the Industrial Arts Class. I remember shooting a quick glance as I was walking into the Industrial Arts and noticing a couple of guys with aprons on. The year was 1977. I squeaked by with a D or C average (so I earned my h.s. credit) but, looking back, I wish I had signed up for Home Ec. instead of Industrial Arts. Memories.
Posted by Duff at 11:00 am (PST) on Fri November 27, 2015   
Yup, sounds like great preparation for bachelor living.  LOL,
Posted by pmiller158 at 9:23 pm (PST) on Thu November 26, 2015   
When I went to High School they had Bachelor Living, which was Home Mec for guys. My partner and I were to make a Pineapple Upside Down Cake. I was doing the mixing of ingredients and the teacher called me over. My partner said he would finish mixing the ingredients. Got back and the cake was in the oven. Well when it was time to take the cake out we could see it did not rise. He had forgot to put in the baking soda or powder, can't remember which one it was, but anyway we have to eat what it is we made. Need less to say, the cake was a little chewy. I think we got a D. for that mess. But thanks to You Tube I do pretty good now. 
Posted by Robert Hutchison at 11:53 am (PDT) on Thu October 22, 2015   
In my day if you were a boy you went to Shop, if you were a girl you went to home economics!  In Shop I enjoyed making things but the one thing I could not do were mechanical drawings and if it were not for making things, I would have failed Shop...I got by with a D+!  I made a ping pong table and a basketball backboard which I put up in our backyard and a Montana shaped serving board!  While I liked making things it would have served me better if I would have taken Home Ec, but that was not considered appropriate for a boy and now about all I can do in the kitchen is boil water and use the microwave...  
Posted by chrisbroz at 10:52 am (PDT) on Thu October 22, 2015   
CJ...I agree...I WISH I'd learned a trade...my old man wanted me to get into the elrectronics field (he repaired TV, radios, Hi-Fis and did a great deal of warranty work for Fisher, Scott, Harmon-Kardon, etc. - today, I'd be unemployed...NO ONE repairs this stuff anymore!!!)  At the same time he wanted me to get my BA; like many of his generation, he saw a college degree as the holy grail.  (I hated electronics as a kid - I got zapped too many times and saw the old man get REALLY Zapped and wanted NO part of that).  Had no idea what to study in College nor exactly what I wanted to do - I spoke to my dad's laweyer friend and thought (as adolescents sometimes do...Hey being a lawyer would be a good jjob).  He advised me to get a good 'Liberal Arts Education' - so I majored in History which I loved and still do love...about midway through my junior year I realized I was sick of school and couldn't imagine myself doing another 3-4 years in a classroom...at that age, 3 or 4 years is a LIFETIME!!!  So when I graduated in May of '71 I had no idea what I was gonna do with either the degree or my life...my old man thought the degree was a key of gold to the future...HA!!!...I had a very low draft number (80) and a 4 year deferrment - admittedly I had some medical issues that would have kept me out anyway, but two days later on 18 May '71 I went to the Newark, NJ AFEES to take my physical (I had the POSSIBILITY of getting a teaching job at a local private HS and needed to get my draft status verified) - thank GOD it didn't materialize....at the end of that day (a Tuesday) I'd singed a 'Letter of Intent' top report to Ft Dix on 28 May and begin training (eventually) as an armor crewman...it was the decision that permanenty changed my life for the better!!!  After speniding 2 1/2 years in Germany (I wanted to stay, BTW) I retruned and got my MA Ed - the real reasin for getting the MA was foir promotion when (I thought) I would re-enlist...my BA had gotten me to the rank of E5 with less than 2 years Time-in-Service and less than 1 year Time-in-Grade...and my ability to type (learned in HS and honed in college) got me the job as the Battalion S-2 clerk - nice warm/dry office while my fellow tankers froze their asses off - I tried my hand at teaching for 2 years, realized I wassn't a disciplinarian and really wanted to be back in service...but my eyesight (poor at best) had deterriorated in the 4-5 years since I'd first enlisted( to the point where I was permanently barred ftom enlisting in ANY service...despite all my letters of reccommendation from former commanders and two (now useless) degrees - so until I wound up working for Sikorsky Aircraft in '86 - the job I loved and worked at for 14 years before being laid off in 2000 when our project (the S-76, was unceremoniously shipped to the Czech Republic) - I stocked grocery shelves, woprk bullsh*t retail jobs and did grunt work - the operative work being WORK.  I realized I shouldda gotten a TRADE insteadda two degrees....I always enjoyed working with my hands and in these days of the lack of skilled labor in the USA forcing manufacturers to find such workers outside the country.  It's IMPERATIVE that we bring back shop/vo-tech schools & classes...so many skilled labor jobs are going begging for workers and paying high wages!!!  Unfortunately society has relegated labor to a 5 letter four letter word..beneath the 'dignity' of anyone who thinks he or she has a brain.  The decline began in the 60s and has been exacerbated by societal pressure ever since.  I'm a living (at least for the nonce) example of this and have been 'preaching' or 'proseletizing' the 'Get a Trade' mantra for years...to anyone who will listen...sorry for the 'rant'
Posted by CJ at 6:21 am (PDT) on Thu October 22, 2015   
@chriscroz - You got that right! I have friends with their 2 yr AAS degree (Associate of Applied Science) degree that were steadily employed and making darn good money (Retired now) than their counter-parts with 4 year college degrees. And they were not saddled with huge school loan depts because tuition fees were A LOT lower.

A friend of mine, within a few years of graduating with a AAS in electronics was making about $60,000/year. May not sound like a lot but that was in 1985. That is equall to almost $140,000 today. 
Posted by chrisbroz at 5:25 pm (PDT) on Wed October 21, 2015   
Shop classes need to be brought back...I remember when Vo-Tech students were considered dummies because they didn't go to college...HA!!  They're the ones (who if they didn't drink or smoke themselves into oblivion) had jobs that outlasted recessions and guaranteed a paycheck (while many of their college graduate buddies stocked shelve in grocery stores or asked "Would you like FRIES with that order???" while vainly waiting to find a job commesurate with their degree in Social Studies) - IF they worked in an industry or job that was indispensible...like HVAC in warm climates or car repair, plumbing, etc...Adam from Mythbusters made much tthe same comment  a few days ago...I've been preaching that for the past 40 plus years..."The Voice of Experience"...
Posted by CJ at 11:05 am (PDT) on Tue June 2, 2015   
Good one 'fargone' LOL I had a shop teacher missing 2 on one hand and one on the other.
Posted by fargone at 11:48 am (PDT) on Thu March 13, 2014   
The standard joke was that Wood Shop was always taught by a teacher who was missing some fingers!!
Posted by GlenEllyn at 1:37 am (PDT) on Mon June 25, 2012   
In our high school the girls had to take at least one shop class.

Registered users can log in to post comments or submit items for the galleries.

Login Register



Bookmark and Share

Most people find us by word of mouse. Please share our URL,
http://www.bbemuseum.com/museum/ with your friends!
This site is brought to you using 100% recycled electrons.

Total trivia questions served: 2,070,424