Sunday, October 07, 2007

Saturday Quote

What You Learn From Building A Treehouse:

*You learned the most common sizes of lumber, 4’x8’ sheets of plywood, and 2”x4” studs; also about the sizes of nails

*You probably figured out that diagonal bracing stiffened the sructure, whether the bracing was applied at a corner or to hold up the platform or floor of the tree house.

*You learned about hinges, if you used those to attach the trap door

*You probably learned the difference between screws & nails

*You learned about ladders, if that’s how you got from one story to the next

*You learned about pulleys

*You learned that framing must strengthen openings such as windows or the trap doors

*You probably learned to slope the roof in imitation of real homes, or because you were beginnig to understand that a slope would shed rain

*You probably learned to place the framing narrow side up; you were bginning to learn about “strength of materials”, a subject taught in engineering schools.

*You learned how to cut with a handsaw

*You learned about measurement, and three-dimensional geometry

*You learned ho the size of your body relates to the world: your arms and legs to the diameter of the tree trunk; your height to the tree height; your legs to the spacing of the ladder rungs; your reach to the spacing of the tree branches; your girth to the size of thetrap door; the height from which you could safely jump,etc.

*You probably learned from your failures more than from success. Perhaps a rope broke from too much weight; a board of 2x4 pulled off because you used nails that were too small

*You learned, by practicing, one of the essential principles of engineering: you can solve any large or complex problem by breaking it down into smaller, simpler problems

Borrowed from Last Child In The Woods by Richard Louv

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