High School Auto Projectsby Roz Zurko
The first introduction to auto mechanics and auto body most young people have is high school auto shop. The projects start out simple with students learning things that every car owner should know. The more advanced projects take place as the students work their way up through the grades. Auto shop is where the future mechanics are born, so give them projects that will hold their interest while bestowing pride in a job well done.
Community Service for Charity
The students can restore an older classic car as a community service project. A donated car, such as an older Mustang, Corvette or even a Volkswagen Beetle, would make a raffle prize for a charity in your community once the students have restored it. This project can include students from all the high school grades, with the freshmen doing the simpler restoring all the way through to the seniors who work on the harder parts of the project. Auto body and auto mechanic classes can work together on bringing an old car back to life.
Proper installation of brakes is a project that can incorporate safety training in this lesson. Examples of brakes not properly installed along with a lesson on the dangers of letting the brake pads get too worn down will be a good foundation for freshman on which to build their auto mechanic career.
Gas Tank Safety
The safe installation of a gas tank and the dangers of trying to fix a leaking one is another project for the students. Everyone knows that gas is flammable, but many do not understand the fumes left in a gas tank can be just as lethal for combustion.
Community Service Ding and Scratch Clinic
The students in the auto body classes can have a "ding" clinic as a community service for their town or city. Small dents can be pulled out and dings fixed to help the townspeople. The simple scratches and little nicks can be smoothed over, saving the vehicle owners the big expense they would pay to have this done at an autobody shop. Use a donation box for money the school can use to buy more supplies.
Airbag installation is another project that will be useful to know when fixing a car after a collision.
Community Service for Senior Citizens
A community service project that the students can participate in is a week of a car clinic that will check senior citizens cars for safety. Brakes, tires, oil, steering fluids and all the other safety checks that should be done routinely for a car. Senior citizens may not have the money to get this done as often as they should.
Alternator trouble shooting and installation is a common occurrence for a mechanic in the working world. This is a project that will get them ready for the working world in car mechanics.
Starter problems are another project. Rebuilding and replacing a starter is something the students will need to know if they go on in the automotive field.
Community Project for People with Disabilities
A community service project of installing the special instruments on a car for people with disabilities is something your students can take on. This will not only be beneficial for the students to learn mechanically, but they will also learn how good it feels to give to the community.
Roz Zurko is a full time freelance writer who lives in Westfield, Massachusetts. She has been writing for 22 years and is published on several internet literary sites and in The Westfield Evening News. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from The University of New Haven and Westfield State College.