What is a “Folk School”?

Create with your hands, your head, and your heart

 

The simplest explanation is that a folk school is a place where people can learn new skills.

Gila_River_Relocation_Center,_Rivers,_Arizona._Fred_Umade,_former_grape_farmer_from_Selma,_Californ_._._._-_NARA_-_537092Whether it’s learning hand skills like knitting, sustainability-related information like how to install solar panels, how to raise backyard chickens, or exploring parts of the region with professional guides, the Duluth Folk School will offer you the fun and engaging opportunities to learn from top-quality instructors.

There is a similar idea called “Slöjd,” which is Finnish and means ‘making crafts with your hands.’ Today in Sweden, students have classes in Slöjd every semester, from the ages of nine to fifteen, where they develop the ability to create and design self-made products out of different materials, handle hand tools and materials, and express cultural and aesthetic values. Sounds pretty cool!

Today in the United States, there are folk schools all over the country, from as far north as Alaska to as far south as Alabama. Many folk schools concentrate on teaching traditional hand-craft skills, traditional dancing and traditional music. The Duluth Folk School embraces those traditional crafts and skills, but we also want to teach people to build using the latest tools and technologies.

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