In Henry Ford’s book, My Life and Work, he explains why the first Fordson tractors were built. They were not built for men but for women! It was during World War I and England was experiencing a severe food crisis. Most of the men were at war and the farm work with horses was difficult for the women who were at home on the farm. England came to Henry Ford and asked him to build an affordable, easy to use tractor so their women could produce the food that they needed. Up to that point, most tractors were expensive, big, heavy steam tractors that required a lot of technical knowledge to operate. Henry Ford quickly put the tractors into production, loaded them on ships and sent them to England. With the tractors, the farm women in England were able to produce the food that was needed.
This story illustrates an important principle. The right tool in the hand of a child or a person with less strength can enable them to do the work of a strong man. I have observed this over and over with our children. By giving them the right tool they were able to accomplish as much work as if they had been a man. It is important when working with children and young people to equip them with the right quality tool and train them how to properly and safely use it so that they can be productive, and at the end of the day look back with satisfaction at what they accomplished. Don’t treat them as inferior and give them inferior, frustrating tools to work with. They will get little accomplished and will not feel like helping you again. But with the right tools, together you can get much accomplished and have more fun doing it. The next time you see a tractor, remember, "Tractors are for girls!"