Woodshop was a beloved class among many previous generations, but like everything, times have changed, and it has impacted the construction industry. It is rarely if ever offered anymore and generations of kids aren’t experiencing the joy of hands-on building. The ‘Young Apprentice Construction Club’, started by Jeffrey “J” Prothero at Toolbox aims to change that.
The club helps fourth and fifth graders in Fulton County learn the fundamentals in wood framing, electrical and masonry through complex projects that are entirely hands-on. The students learned how to build their own tool boxes and are currently working on creating a “Teeny Tiny Home.” They’ve learned how to read blueprints, and were taught the tried but true old adage of “measure twice, cut once.” They’ve framed and started constructing the tiny house and the next step will be the wiring. While wiring, the students will learn industry standard symbols that will become valuable as they become adults. Since a focus on safety is always fundamental, Cooper and Company joined in the effort to provide hard hats for the kids to use during their builds.
Classes are taught once a week for the entire year at all of Roswell’s six elementary schools that lead in to the two Roswell middle schools. The participating schools are Hembree Springs Elementary, Mimosa Elementary, Mountain Park Elementary, Roswell North Elementary, Sweet Apple Elementary and Vickery Mill Elementary.
The classes are equipped with volunteers, better known as Project Managers, to assist the students. The volunteers are called Project managers to familiarize the students with construction terminology. The students are paired in to a buddy system. The pair shares the same toolbox and the same binder of plans. Prothero hoped this would teach the students on how to share and work together.
Cooper and Company places a high value on helping future generations learn and understand the fundamentals of construction. Exposing kids early helps show them the tremendous potential that exists in an industry with the great variation in job experiences(opportunities).
The ‘Young Apprentice Construction Club’ is 100 percent volunteer based and they hope to expand to other parts of Georgia and the country.
For more information on Toolbox and the ‘Young Apprentice Construction Club’ please visit toolbox.life