The first occurrence.
And he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which YHVH has cursed. Gen 5:29
The primitive root.
Strong’s H4639, ma’aseh, a concrete noun meaning, “work,” in the sense of workmanship, a product, a property, or a transaction. It is from Strong’s H6213 עשה asah, a primitive root meaning, “to do, to make;” in a wide variety of applications. The 3-letter root is ayin + shin + hey, but the Ancient Hebrew Lexicon says that the shin was transposed from an original sin over time because of their similar sounds. So the 3-letter root is ayin + sin + hey.
ayin ע = the eye, thus watch, know, shade
sin ס = the thorn, thus grab, hate, protect
hey ה = man with upraised arms, thus look, reveal, wonder, worship, breath
The story: Man’s first work was in watching (ayin) for thorns and thistles (sin) which would seek to take over his crops.
Cursed is the ground for your sake; in toil you shall eat of it all the days of your life. Both thorns and thistles it shall bring forth for you, and you shall eat the herb of the field. In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground … Gen 3:17-19
The addition of the hey adds the element that a man’s work is in whatever his hand finds (hey, i.e., pointing out what has been discovered) to do.
Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might; for there is no work or device or knowledge or wisdom in the grave where you are going. Ecc 9:10