Doing Shop

Liahona High School runs a notably successful ‘shop’ program for students that has consistently displayed their talented works at the Royal Agriculture & Industry show in Tongatapu. Students work with their teacher in woodwork, and body shop work in anticipation of providing students with functional skills they can apply to assist in their domestic needs and hopefully acquire monetary income.

Student works are largely funded by the school with assistance from the student’s family and friends, which is displayed either at the school annual festival or at the Agricultural show. The student’s major works are not for sale, but are functional for their own domestic needs as well as the training opportunity.

![](../../../../../../mmedia/schools/lhs/lounge.jpg?width=266 height=200 border=0 alt=“A Family Lounge” hspace=3 align=“left”> In this picture, students model a lounge suite constructed from scrounged left overs to demonstrate the effective use of skills. Looking underneath the lounge chair reveals spring work consistent with new furniture and planks of wood taken from a shipping pallet, planks that look like they came off a delivery box.

Students at the ‘97 Royal Agriculture show were proud to display their work (and getting in front of the camera was not a problem) which included coffee tables, bowls, pens, cabinets, beds, and dressing tables.

But American English often refers to shop as motor mechanics, and yes the students at Liahona High School have the opportunity to pull apart cars, learn the importance of injectors, carburetors and the jargon reserved for metal heads.

At the Royal Agricultural Show ‘97, students displayed the machinery they’ve worked with along with signage of the diagrams and specifications they regularly refer to.

There were also displays from the Art Department which consisted of a number of wonderful drawings, paintings, tapa work by students from various grades.

By providing Liahona students with mechanical, woodworking skills, Liahona is providing families the tools and means for increased self-sufficiency, improved income opportunities, and the opportunity to participate in the continuing development of Tonga.