Students work on their shed while their teacher oversees their work. Photo credit: Myriam Landreville

On the Perth campus of Algonquin College on a day in mid-March, the sounds of laughter are mixed with the sounds of construction. To the left side of the building, students hammered away on their sheds. Joking with each other as they worked, they also tossed snowballs at each other whenever the teacher looked away.

But still there was a sense of seriousness in the students. They were eager to show off their projects and explain everything they’ve learned to a visiting reporter. Such as how they built the blueprint for the sheds using a computer software. Whenever one classmate had a question, three others jumped in to help.

Throughout the first and second semester, students in the heritage carpentry and joinery program have been learning all the skills to build a house with modern and traditional techniques.

Now, their skills are being put to test. For their final project they need to build a shed they have designed themselves.

“We start with a theoretical empty lot and they can now take it from that to a completed, above code house,” aid Shawn Thomson, a professor in the program. “Foundations, floor systems, framing of walls and roof systems, hanging windows and doors, exterior and roof finishes.”

The program is hands on with Thomson overseeing the students and helping them whenever they have questions.

As the students build their sheds it is clear there is a lot of camaraderie in the program. The students laugh and joke with each other while they build precise and wooden structures.

“I really enjoy this program,” said Logan Gilchrest, a student in the program. “We get to learn the history of heritage building which is important and we also get to be outside and have the hands on experiences.”

The students’ hard work will be available to buy. The sheds are auctioned off to pay for building material.

The bidding starts at $2,000 and buyers must provide their own transportation.

To buy one of the sheds and get more information, you can visit the Algonquin College event website.