Training for Tool Safety with Students

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Forum topic by WhiskeyWaters posted 04-16-2010 06:29 AM 1396 views 0 times favorited 6 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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213 posts in 4041 days

04-16-2010 06:29 AM

Topic tags/keywords: education safety

Hey Lumberjocks -

I’m an afterschool educator in SE Texas adn I’m looking for resources/trainings I can take in order to create a safe environment for students – maybe some shop owners, ol’ shop teachers, woodworkers who run some classes, can point me in a direction?

I’m especially interesting in the middle to high school ages.

Example: assuming average level of talent/attention, shoudl a 7th grader be allowed to use a power drill? Drill press, sander, etc…?
How many kids does a crazy workshop make? Is there a sweet spot in comparison to the complexity of the project?

I’d like to hear a fellow educator’s perspective on the issue.

-- make it safe & keep the rubber side down.

6 replies so far

View lew's profile


12495 posts in 3990 days

#1 posted 04-16-2010 07:23 PM

View MrsN's profile


987 posts in 3761 days

#2 posted 04-16-2010 08:00 PM

I teach middle school technology education, I run it as a woodshop type class most of the time.
keep the group as small as you can espically to start, it will depend a lot on the group of kids and the size of the shop. My administration caps my classes at 20 and in my shop that many kids is a migraine waiting to happen. there is a sweet spot depending on the project. It combines the kids, tools and machines needed, number of tools machines, time in class, and the complexety of the project, size of the shop. . . lots of things but when it is right you will know.
Depending on your demographic, there can be many 6th and 7th grade kids who have never held a hammer, let alone even know what the rest of the tools in the shop are. these kids are sometimes really great to have in class, they will never tell you “my dad does it this way” they don’t have any bad habits.
I let most of my students use power drills, drill press, power sanders, and the bandsaw. I pay lots of attention to the bandsaw. sometimes they can use the router with lots of supervision. I have a miter saw and table saw that the kids can’t use. although the 8th graders could probably do ok with the miter saw, i am just a little nervous about it so I do a lot of pre-cutting.
My highschool kids can use anything in the shop as long as they have been safety trained on the tool.

View Eric_S's profile


1565 posts in 3430 days

#3 posted 04-16-2010 08:11 PM

Ask Ryobi, I’m sure they’ll be updating their safety manuals lol just kidding. That lawsuit BETTER get overturned.

-- - Eric Noblesville, IN

View cstrang's profile


1832 posts in 3403 days

#4 posted 04-17-2010 01:43 AM

Here are some visual aids for the workplace and education centers, some of them are able to provide a little laugh while making you more aware of your surroundings.

-- A hammer dangling from a wall will bang and sound like work when the wind blows the right way.

View Royalwoodworker's profile


31 posts in 3213 days

#5 posted 04-22-2010 03:21 AM

My H.S. studens use all the tools in our shop after completing a written test and a performance test. A lot of people dont put the time into the performance test, but when I have that kid in front of me, I can be totally sure if they know that machine or not. I teach the teh correct way to opperate the saw, body and hand position, potential problems, etc. The written test sometimes takes 2 days for some students to pass and the performance test takes me about 1-2 periods a machine. I have seen other shops where kids dont know anything about the machine they are using, heck, they cant even tell you what machine it is and that is a real problem. I take great pride in knowing that my kids will understand each machine and be safe for teh rest of thier life.

View Royalwoodworker's profile


31 posts in 3213 days

#6 posted 04-22-2010 03:23 AM

BTW, we just recieved a new saw stop and we do not use a shaper with the kids. It has also taken a great deal of effort to make sure all the machines safety fixtures are working properly. Our old band saws were bad as well and we replaced them with 2-20” Laguana band saws that are a dream to operate.

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