Tinkering School

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Day 3 - Progress and Playfulness

2014 Session D - JuniorsJoshua RothhaasComment

Rise and shine! Josh's ukulele strumming brings him a gathering of tinkerers outside after breakfast, who sing along and convince him to attempt to learn "The Best Day." We have "special breakfast" this morning, complete with warm waffles and sausages, equipping ourselves for a long day file with lots of progress.

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We head up to the barn to pick up where we left off on the projects. The second tower, which was built upside-down, was flipped half-way over last night during barn time, and one of the first things we did was turn it all the way up.


Portrait of a Tinkerer: Lydia using the handsaw.

P1150501 The elevator team sets up to work, re-thinking their design and gathering as a group to reset. Tuesday is great for this - Monday, we're given a chance to get used to the tools, try out things, and see what works. Tuesday gives us a chance to build on our successes, learn from our failures, and improve.

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Portrait of a Tinkerer: Megan, perched on the edge of the goat pen.


The elevator team, Joey, Emma, and Lilah, get started.


Kaiden, chop saw spinning, slices through a board. There's something powerful about cutting through wood in a single go.


The new brace for the elevator is coming along- meant to stop the ropes from interfering with the seating.


Ryker, up on make-shift scaffolding, works four feet off the ground to screw in some boards. Lots of the work today has to happen up high, so some of the first pieces we put together are "stool-like" scaffolds. These scaffolds are interesting in and of themselves as structures, and will be added to the climbing structure once they've accomplished their original purpose.


Lulu, drilling up - animated as always.


Portrait of a Tinkerer: Marco peers out from behind a beam. With a big, bandaged, thumbs up.


We head back up after lunch, and our progress makes leaps and bounds.

Makai sits on one of the scaffolds, reaching up to work on attaching diagonal braces for the top of the fort. Stabilization is the key aim of the day on the second tower- making sure it doesn't wobble at all before we attempt to climb up on it.

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The first tower's second story is beginning to come together. Almost all of the beams have been added, and the team sets to work on a "staircase" to the first floor.

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The elevator team, too, has been seeing huge amounts of progress- their triangular pieces attached, they look now to add plywood to stabilize and strengthen them

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Tekuru lends a hand painting the climbing wall - a bright, brilliant, happy yellow.

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Portrait of some Tinkerers: Dora and Tekuru, a bit crazy. In small quantities, craziness is encouraged - this bunch sure has the excited energy for it.


Your Daily Goat.

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We've been at work most of the afternoon - even goat breaks have been wearing thin. And so as a group, we head for the creek at the bottom of the the ranch - off on an adventure.

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Portrait of a walk: The discovery of a hole.

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We find a banana slug.

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Portrait of a Tinkerer: Tekuru, thrilled to be holding a lizard.

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Portrait of aforementioned lizard: Aboard a finger.

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Lulu and Megan examine it closely.

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Explorations abound.

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Today has been filled with work, pauses, work, and more play. We take moments to stop and see the chickens, rest and brush the goats. But we chug ever forward, always making progress. And so goes Tuesday.


Tuesday ends in movie night - featuring "The Incredibles." We eat popcorn, laugh, and gather together. It's wonderful.

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