Education

When tradition meets innovation: in Milan kids learn about old professions

Carpenters, goldsmiths, tailors and basket makers backed up by modern technology

When tradition meets innovation: in Milan kids learn about old professions

Claudia Astarita

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Promoted by Autostrade per l'Italia and Museo dei Bambini, a new Italian project aimed at making young children (from 6 to 13 years old) more aware about the story of the objects they see in their everyday routine.

Organized in labs, the initiative went on for a month, ending during the first week of January 2016. In this context, the promoters have interestingly combined traditional techniques of creation with very technological tools our time provides us.

As explained by the Italian daily Corriere della Sera, Daniele - interior designer managing the woodworking lab - praised the milling machine they have, which can be controlled by the computer. This combination allows greater creativity and a major precision. In Daniele's lab, children are divided into groups and organized in a sort of production chain, with several phases, i.e. cutting, drilling and polishing.  They are required to transform a piece of wood into a ruler and the participants are always enthusiastic.

Kids are finally aware of what is required to make even a small object and taking part to the making process is quite exciting for them.

Patrizia Pera - person in charge for the tailor lab - has also highlighted the great passion children show when taking part in the activities proposed in her space. In particular, participants will have to create a piece of cloth, going through the several passages, i.e. measurement, basting and trying on some models one another. She has also explained her little students that creativity and good quality are some core elements one should never neglect when making something out of nothing.

As mentioned above, other old fashioned professions to explore have been the goldsmith (having the ad hoc lab managed by Mr Oroburo) and the baskets maker, demonstrated by Pier Mario Travaglia, an Italian agronomist with a great passion for the twine technique.

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