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Blacksmith Workshop 11-12-16

Who knew that there was a Blacksmith in Trenton?

("Trenton Makes, the World Takes")

The workshop, presented by NJAAPT member Jon Gaffin (Trenton middle school teacher), was a step back in time and technology to a smithy that has been around since the 1823 -- when Jefferson was still alive, the Declaration of Independence wasn't even 50 years old!

Alexander "Sasha" Parubchenko says he is "just a humble Blacksmith" ....no....he is so much more.   He has such an interesting life story -- he has traveled to over 70 countries, speaks several languages, has a degree in Nuclear Physics from Rutgers, served in the military, has art shows all over the world....

Sasha and his students, including Jon Gaffin  who ran the workshop, led us through the basics of processing steel to make tools and art.

Jon also talked about how the making of tools, from paleo times, has literally changed human cognition and thinking.  What are the applications of that in our teaching?

The shop has been at this location since 1823!

The newest Journeyman Blacksmith, Douglas Toledo, is currently a high school sophomore. 

You can see him at 9 years old in this video about the shop.

Here's another video about  Sasha.

You can also see Jon Gaffin (Trenton, middle school teacher)  in the videos!

From today's workshop:

Workshop video 1     Douglas Toledo

Workshop video 2     Blacksmith/student

Workshop video 3     Douglas Toledo

Workshop video 4     Jon Gaffin

And yes, that is classical music in the background -- apparently the best music to forge steel by...

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