TED Conversations

Jordan Reeves

TED-Ed Community Manager, TED Conferences


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What's one thing you wish you had learned in school?

Maybe it's not your traditional math, science, social studies, or arts and humanities class--maybe it's something different. If you could learn one lesson in school, what would it be?


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    Dec 1 2011: Old artisan skills - I wish that there was still lessons on carpentry, wood working, metal working, metal casting, joinery and anything that is hands on, physical but creative. I love to work with my hands and it is very difficult to find the time to learn how to make beautiful dove tailing in furniture. Rather than buying a new wardrobe from IKEA it would be incredible (not to mention more sustainable) to be able to restore furniture of build things from scratch. Even things such as blacksmithing and tanning have all been lost due to the industrial process that have replaced them. Most people know the different between a nice piece of handmade anything and something that has been produced by a machine. Imagine if you could create this yourself. It is an entire form of tactile creativity that has been lost. This is why I wish I had learned such things.
    • Dec 1 2011: Ben, if you are in the states, you should go to some battle reenactments in the summers. Most, if not all of the trades you speak of are alive and well there, and many of those people have year-round businesses related to their tents at the battles.

      This year at the Missinnewa battle of 1812 reenactment I spent 40 mins in a fur and leather tannery tend looking at all of the hides they had. Beautiful stuff. They made belts of people upon request. There was also a old-style gunsmith restoring and building real period muskets. Very cool stuff, and everyone was "using their hands".
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        Dec 1 2011: Thanks for the suggestion but I am a little south and east of the states in Australia. But if I even do get over there I will have to check it out.

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