Tinkering School

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Session G - Day 1 - And Then There Were Twenty

Tinkering School Staff2 Comments

After the campers arrive and get settled into their yurts, we circle up to begin our session, where everyone introduces themselves with their name, their spirit tool and pronouns. Following that, we go over the three rules (plus the secret sixth rule) of Tinkering School.

Lily remembers our fruit-flavored Rule 2 from last year, and shares with the group.                                                                                                                                     

Lily remembers our fruit-flavored Rule 2 from last year, and shares with the group.                                                                                                                                     

This summer we've been trying out a relic of past summers - the elusive sixth rule of Tinkering School. The purpose of rule six is to avoid any unpleasant topics; for example, regaling the table over dinner with a story of your latest injury might not be appetizing to everyone. In such a case, invoking rule six should put a stop to all conversation until a better time can be found. 

This summer we've been trying out a relic of past summers - the elusive sixth rule of Tinkering School. The purpose of rule six is to avoid any unpleasant topics; for example, regaling the table over dinner with a story of your latest injury might not be appetizing to everyone. In such a case, invoking rule six should put a stop to all conversation until a better time can be found. 

After going over the rules and expectations of camp, we head up the hill to our build site for Tool Training. 

The first stop in Tool Training is the chopsaw, where Kaitlyn shows the group how to turn a large piece of wood into a smaller one. 

Mia takes a turn on the chopsaw under the supervision of Collaborators Kaitlyn and Carles.

Mia takes a turn on the chopsaw under the supervision of Collaborators Kaitlyn and Carles.

Next comes clamp training. Kevin demonstrates how an orange "twisty clamp" can be used to hold something while working on it. 

As the group learns, our blue "squeezy clamps" trade the strength of their orange counterparts for speed. They are great for holding something in place quickly, but won't generate the same amount of grippiness that you would get from a "twisty clamp."

As the group learns, our blue "squeezy clamps" trade the strength of their orange counterparts for speed. They are great for holding something in place quickly, but won't generate the same amount of grippiness that you would get from a "twisty clamp."

Finally, the campers learn to use the tool that will spend the most time in their hands - the driver. The vast majority of this week will be spent using screws to fasten our projects together, so we make sure to spend a lot of time mastering the driver's intricacies. 

Sayuri walks the group through the settings on the driver, and explains how to make a hole, put a screw in, and how to remove it. 

Sayuri walks the group through the settings on the driver, and explains how to make a hole, put a screw in, and how to remove it. 

Over at drill practice, Caroline shows how to make a strong screw joint. Hint - The key is in the triangles. 

Over at drill practice, Caroline shows how to make a strong screw joint. Hint - The key is in the triangles. 

To conclude our training, Caroline walks us through the local flora. Poison Oak and Hemlock should be avoided, while blackberries are a great snack on your way up the hill. 

Caroline uses a sprig of Poison Oak to emphatically discourage anyone from touching it. 

Caroline uses a sprig of Poison Oak to emphatically discourage anyone from touching it. 

Having finished Tool Training, we head down the hill for dinner. Afterwards, Caroline and Kaitlyn demonstrate what to do if you see the mountain lion that's been hanging around our neighborhood. Parents, worry not, as the cat hasn't been seen in over a week, and the large number of humans living at camp has moved its migration path. 

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