I spent a little time this week talking to users to try to identify how best to solve the given issues. One snag that we looked at was that curriculums and even the way that the curriculum varies wildly by year and district. As such, we're looking at breaking the solution down into a number of modules, which can then be chosen to best suit the curriculum and budget of the school. Here are (in rough terms) the modules that we're looking at:
Basic Woodworking: This cart is intended as a first experience with simple tools for younger children, or to compliment the advanced woodworking cart.
Small coping saws
Small hand drills
Glue guns and wood glues
Rulers and set squares
Cart integrates either a compound miter saw or a scroll saw
Advanced Woodworking: A more advanced woodworking cart for later years.
More complex tools
Power drills + bits
Cart integrates band saw
Support: Provides the support equiptment for a variety of activities.
Clamps and vices
Cart integrates vacuum
Electronics: Tools for simple circuit building for science and tech classes.
Wire strippers and cutters
Advanced: Tools for more advanced classes with a knowledge of computer-assisted design tools.
This proposal was popular because it lent itself well to several different teaching goals. It allows teachers to set progression, moving classes up through the various carts, building confidence and skills as they go. It accomodates different curriculum directions, as well as different teahcer levels of confidence.
Now obviously I can't develop all of these for my major project - instead, I'd like to focus and fully develop one of them, which would produce principles that can be abstracted out to the rest of them.