What Lost Skills Do We Continue Teaching?

How far back should we go?

Aaron McClure
4 min readAug 13


Lost skills, manual transmission
Cool photo by Unervi González on Unsplash

As technology improves our lives, what lost skills do we need to keep? What ways of doing things are going to be around long enough to keep the effort worthwhile?

Currently the most effective theft deterrent for a car is for it have a manual transmission. The ability to drive a manual is phasing out as more modern automatic transmissions can do better at transferring power. Fewer cars are being built with manuals. So, should we still teach it?

Schools no longer teach script (cursive), so kids can’t read it either. Many schools also only have digital clocks, thus most kids can’t read analog. The people I’ve talked to regarding student abilities indicates that they also have terrible handwriting.

Logically, you will be bad at doing something you don’t have to do.

From what I’ve seen myself, school is far different. The need for actual books is lessening and the majority of the work can be done with a Google Chromebook.

Instead of knowing how to write a story outline, students are taught more about how to use Word. We used to use graph paper to work out our equations, these days that time and effort is spent learning some form of spreadsheet program.

We’ve all heard the phrase, “they used to teach shop class” or some form of it. It is true, there is a massive reduction in industrial arts. In the book “Shop Class as Soul Craft”, the author starts out right in the beginning telling you that there is a surplus of tooling for sale across the country. Tools that once belonged to schools…

Time moves on and with it we escalate away from our roots

As technology improves our lives by adding convenience, we must increase our knowledge base. With every new development, we are faced with the choice to keep knowledge of the old way or simply note that we used to do it a certain way and move on.

Computer classes used to consist of MSDOS teaching, which most now call the “back end”. These days what is taught is heavily on the front end — the visual aspect — click and drag, add or remove, etc. Coding costs extra.



Aaron McClure

Project Manager, blogger, writer. I write about the struggles of life and how to grow as a unique person. I welcome all open discussions.