OK, I’m cheating here a bit, but an axe was a very important tool during my childhood. Without an axe to split firewood we would have had no cooked food and no heating in winter. Dad used a chainsaw to cut the logs into sections but an axe was needed to get it to a useful size. If Dad was busy with other farm tasks, when the wood ran out, Mum went out and split it with the axe herself!
A sort of cheat here too. I remember our grade 6 teacher telling us that we would be learning a new subject called algebra in high school the next year. I was quite intrigued by his explanation about using the letters “x” and “y” instead of numbers and looked forward to this interesting new challenge.