As big supporters of education as well as self-directed learning, we were fascinated by a post from psychotherapist Dr. Kristi Pikiewicz over on SparkFun which provides anecdotal evidence that soldering may provide a benefit in children's therapy. As well as learning an undeniably useful life skill, Dr. Kristi suggests that the concentration required during the soldering process can help children with emotional and behavioural difficulties achieve a feeling of focused calm difficult to achieve any other way - and, once achieved, stand a better chance of being able to reach that state again in the future without the aid of an iron and some solder. It's a terrific idea, and one of which we'd be interested to hear other experiences if any of you have found similar benefits from introducing younger makers to the art of soldering.
If you’ve ever done a soldering kit (SparkFun or another), you know that it’s impossible to get anything done without steady hands and a pinpoint focus on the tiny parts in each step. Deeply involved in a soldering kit, I’ve seen tricky clients find a level of focus that I’ve been unable to help them reach in any other way.