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The Contender
Con (against)
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Should High Schools offer Home Ec and Shop classes to Junior/Senior students

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/27/2016 Category: Education
Updated: 8 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 506 times Debate No: 85648
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (1)




Students should be taught how to work with tools and cook instead of how to take tests. Some students today don't even know how to read cursive...bring back Old School and get rid of Common Core crap


Hello, I will be debating against the idea that high schools should offer home Ec and Woodshop classes to juniors/seniors. While I do agree that Common Core is bad, Home Ec and Woodshop classes are no longer useful in today's society, where technology is the center of life. The point of school in general to train young people to prepare for the job market. The job market of today is controlled by companies specializing in technology. Today, the United States is facing a lack of people interested in the STEM field, slowing economical and technological growth. Skills in technology is becoming increasingly important. Classes like Computer Science and different types of Mathematics should be offered, not Home Ec and Woodshop classes. Although learning to cook and build things is important in life, it will not help you get a stable job in today's modern society where it is important to have the knowledge to utilize modern technology, like computers. Woodshop and Home Ec classes are simply obsolete, which is why it shouldn't be offered in high school, a time period in your life where you are preparing to go to college to find a job. Thanks for your time.
Debate Round No. 1


Hey, thanks for taking this one. Good to hear from you. Pleasantries aside, to quote...Not so fast my friend...I didn't say anything about doing away with the technology courses (except perhaps tech kids how to interact with each other without using their phone). But you must admit that we have a generation of folks who seem to have a hard time spelling, if u no what I mean...they know more about acronyms than using real words...SMH, ICWYDT, ICYMI, LOL, LMAO, etc. While it is very cool, it doesn't seem to be very impressive.
Also, while advocating the Shop and Home Ec classes be optional, a student does learn things there other than how to operate a saw or cook an egg. There is a lot of math involved in both carpentry and cooking...mis-measruing in either creates something entirely different than what you started with.
I have two sons-in-law, neither of who can do anything around the house. One just hires someone to come in and put up a child gate when they had children...the other has decided to let me teach him a few things and does do things around the home now. Both very smart is a lawyer and one is doctor of Physical Therapy, but not so smart in everyday living.
So, while technology classes are VERY important for today's society, there is a large deficit in people who can work with their hands that needs to be closed.
Who knows....perhaps we all may need that skill at some point.


Cooking is a skill that does not require the classroom. Think about it, do you remember much about what you learned in Home Ec or Woodshop? I took Home Ec one year ago, (Because I took a tech class elective prior semester), and they gave us every single step to cook the food, which reduced the chances of mis-measuring. Also, we never sewed much because the starter kit to make an apron was 80% of the work already given to us. Aside from my experiences, I believe Home Ec is not effective in teaching you life skills like sewing and cooking.

Woodshop also is not necessary in high school. Most of what you learn in Woodshop requires the usage of expensive machinery that many people will never use outside of the classroom, like a band saw. Although it does have slightly more importance than Home Ec, it's still is not really applicable in daily life, whereas classes like computer science (due to large job market) and mathematics, are ever more present in daily life.

Another point against Home Ec and Woodshop is that the internet makes those classes obsolete. Why waste a semester of school to learn how to cook, when you can just go on YouTube? One might say the same thing about Computer Science. However, Computer Science gives you tools that many people would pay for, such as creating a website. Most website creation help requires paying money, whereas cooking is common knowledge. Same could be said about Woodshop. Pro stated "One just hires someone to come in and put up a child gate". While I do agree it's not necessary to call someone to put up the gate, websites like YouTube could provide a tutorial giving the steps to build a children's gate. Also, people won't knowingly use their prior knowledge in Woodshop to put up a child gate. Here is a perfect example of a video tutorial:

Pro stated, "So, while technology classes are VERY important for today's society, there is a large deficit in people who can work with their hands that needs to be closed."
I disagree with this statement in terms of the job market. According to the McKinsey Global Institute, between 90-95 million unskilled workers will no longer be needed by 2020. There is no deficit of unskilled laborers, and in fact, we are facing a lack of people interested in STEM.
Pro also stated, " to quote...Not so fast my friend...I didn't say anything about doing away with the technology courses" I didn't accuse you of wanting to get rid of technology courses. I simply stated that Home Ec and Woodshop are not needed in today's technologically-oriented job market. Thank you for your time.

Debate Round No. 2


Ahh...I understand now that I 'looked around'. Perhaps when you reach the job market and are on you own you might realize that common knowledge of basic skill such as how to change a light switch, or a light a cabinet door that doesn't close completely, or a door hinge that squeeks, etc.

Of course you might get into a well paying job, with those tech skills you are going to acquire, but not everyone will be able to do that. Not everyone leans toward the tech side. Some people don't have the apptitude that you seem to have. Should they be denied that opportunity to learn those skills just because someone doesn't think they are necessary?

If you took Shop, as you say, then you didn't learn as you should have....probably since it wasn't tech enough. As for those "expensive machines" you talk about...I do happen to have some of them in my garage and I use them.

And the argument that you didn't learn how to measure in Home Ec since they gave it to you step by step, again, you didn't take the opportunity to expand on that and learn from just took the steps and did what you had to do to pass. Taking a recipe for6 and have to adjust for 2 or for 14 calls for more math than you are wanting to admit.

Again, there is room for both and Tech Courses are important...and everyone should be required to have one or two courses so that they are familiar with the technology out today...but Shop and Home Ec should be available for those who want to study that.

Thank you for the argument and I hope that you agree that there IS a place for Shop and Home Ec in today's schools.


I have new additional points I will like to add against Home Ec and Woodshop being offered for juniors and seniors in highschool.

Point 1: There is a severe lack of interest in Home Ec and Woodshop. Today's generation is more interested in technology than cooking, which to many people is more of a chore rather than a hobby. In today's fast-paced society, many people don't have enough time to cook food or fix things. According to Rasmussen Reports, 58% of Americans eat fast food at least once a week, implying a decreasing trend of home cooking. Also, many young Americans are losing interest in DIY projects because they feel it's too much work. Due to a combined lack of interest in cooking and DIY, there's little interest in technology-oriented high schoolers, (90% of adolescents use computers ), to take Home Ec and Woodshop.

Point 2: Ready made food, fast food, the internet, and ready made clothes, have decreased the importance of Home Ec and Woodshop. The advent of ready-made food has decreased the need to know how to cook. The closest many people have gotten to truly cooking, is putting their ready made food in the microwave. According to United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service, food consumption outside of the home has increased by 17.2% from 1970 to 2012.
Similar issue with ready made clothes. It decreases the necessity of people to know how to sew. And if you do rip your clothes, you can simply go to the store and buy new clothes for a cheap price, in a society where annual wages are increasing. As I previously stated in Round 2, the internet decreases the importance of Home Ec and Woodshop classes.

Pro stated, "And the argument that you didn't learn how to measure in Home Ec since they gave it to you step by step, again, you didn't take the opportunity to expand on that and learn from just took the steps and did what you had to do to pass."
This provides another reason as to why Home Ec and Woodshop is ineffective in gaining knowledge.
Point 3: More students care more about getting a good grade than learning. Do you think people will remember from class, how to sew or make things out wood many years after taking the course? I think not. The grading system has effectively eliminated the student's desire to learn new skills, for the sake of going to a better college (by getting a good GPA), instead of exploring and expanding upon that skill. This is especially true for juniors and seniors, who are preparing to go to college.

Pro stated, "Should they be denied that opportunity to learn those skills just because someone doesn't think they are necessary?" Point 1 answers this question. To clarify, that doesn't mean I hate the idea of Home Ec and Woodshop, but that it's simply obsolete in today's society, teaching skills that isn't truly learned in the classroom. Think about it, when you cook food, do you knowingly utilize all the skills you learned from Home Ec? Overall, this issue about my generation's lack of basic skills like cooking, won't be solved by taking classes. The only way I can currently think of to solve this predicament, is for the government and other organizations to continue advocating against eating out, drinking soda, and other bad things people do frequently.

Overall Points supporting Con:

Not useful in a technologically-oriented society
Lack of interest in Home Ec and Woodshop classes among students (Ex: people love computers, just not building it)
We won't gain much knowledge from these classes (Students care more about grades than knowledge. Knowledge you learn in these classes aren't really applied anywhere else in other classes, whereas Math and Computer Science is)
Knowledge you learn in these classes are irrelevant in the Job Market (which is one of the main reasons of going to school)
Woodshop knowledge can't really be applied much in daily life (machinery you use in Woodshop is extremely pricey)
Internet (I can easily search up how to cook, sew, and how to build ________)
Obsolete class. Lack of interest in STEM has caused many schools to focus more on science and tech classes, rather than Home Ec and Woodshop. STEM courses are very important for the US to grow economically and technologically.
Fast/Ready to Eat foods have decreased the importance of knowing how to cook.
Ready made clothes have decreased the importance of knowing how to sew. Can be bought at a cheap price as well.

Thank you for this interesting debate.

Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by Whistle203 8 months ago
Although I'm an honors student, top of my class and I 'specialize' in the sciences, math, literature and two additional languages, I really have to say that I disagree with the con/against debater for some particular reasons. Since this debate is not completed yet, I will state them if they are not already stated in the debate when it is completed.
Posted by ViceRegent 8 months ago
Government schools should be abolished. What they teach is irrelevant.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by RainbowDash52 8 months ago
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Total points awarded:02 
Reasons for voting decision: pro states shop class is useful con states that those jobs are in decline pro states even so they are still useful outside of a career con states that shop class uses tools most people won't ever own pro states STEM jobs aren't for everyone, and some still need shop class con states people don't even remember the things they learned from shop class Con states home ec won't help you get a job pro states home ec should be available for those who want it arguments are tied, since arguments and rebuttals seem matched. sources Pro used no sources Con backed up his arguments with sources, including the huffington post article showing low skilled jobs are in decline, which he used to show home ec is becoming obsolete Con gets sources