I don't believe I should be the one to teach welding. I don't have much formal education, not even a high school diploma, especially in welding. But what I do bring to the table is an attitude about making things.
Here's what I'm thinking about for the curriculum. Based upon personal experience I would like to have the kids start off with rectangular frames made from 1/4" by 1" bar stock. The frame should be thirty six by forty two inches. We'll refer to it as a gate frame.
Then I'll have them make up some bending tools using angle iron and pieces of pipe. That will be followed with them doing their own thing bending pieces of bar stock to fill the gate frame. The pieces of bar stock will be cut too short for them to make straight up and down pickets.
Attached is a picture of a gate I made for an aunt and uncle. We were visiting and they needed a gate. All I had on the truck was some pieces of bar stock left over from a job. So to fill up the gate I had to bend and weld what I had at hand.
The gate was still too short. I asked them and their neighbor what I could do to fill in the spot above the gate. "Put a hat on it" the neighbor suggested.
"A hat?" I asked.
"Yup", he said. "make a cowboy hat."
"How would I do that?"
"I think an eight on its side with an upside down U on top would do it", he said.
What do you think? Would it work with the kids?