Recycled Wood Builds Birdhouses


Ava Mason, Staff Writer

Wood Tech, known for its original projects, has put a twist on an old classic. Since mid-April, Barry Weiss, head of Wood Technology, has had his class create small bird houses out of reclaimed wood.

Weiss finds materials for the project using local resources. “I put out the word in the community if anyone is getting a new fence to contact me, and one of my students was getting a new fence, so I went over to his house and his dad gave me one of the old fence boards,” said Weiss.

“Pretty much the school gets donated a bunch of old redwood boards from old fences that people have that they’ve torn down to build new ones. So we reuse them, and Mr. Weiss calls it upcycling. And we’re reusing them, and we pull out the nails and the screws out of it, and we clean off the dirt and everything, and we use them to build our bird-houses,” said junior Emma de la Torre. “So we’re not like cutting down more trees and wasting more wood.”

Although Weiss said the project is generally fun for students, freshmen Cameron Sullivan noted one of the few downsides is preparing the wood for use. “Since the things we’re using are old, it’s harder because the wood will crack or break, which makes it harder because we have to fix it,” said Sullivan.

Weiss believes that it is a great opportunity for students to better understand the general idea of recycling. “We started this whole recycling thing at school and it just get kids used to the idea that not everything has to be brand new,” said Weiss. “A lot of stuff they have to work with is really dirty, they have to clean the wood and pull out rusty nails and stuff like that and it just gets them into the idea that not everything is brand new and shiny and everything.”

“It’s a pretty fun project and it went pretty smoothly and kids do pretty well,” said Weiss.

Weiss is eager to increase the number of students in his program. “Sign up for wood shop! Everyone should do wood shop!” he said.