Saturday, 21 December 2013

How to get your kids involved in woodworking

If you're anxious to get your kids away from the TV, here are a few projects to inspire your children.

1) Harry Potter Wands
Instead of watching the movies over and over, turn or carve a wand. Help your child be the coolest kid going back to school launching their own spells... "Leviosa!" (I had to Google that one... I'm lacking on my Harry Potter trivia)
Photo courtesy of Jason Trudel


2) Hockey Table
A fun project for you and the kids providing endless entertainment! You can purchase the hardware kit from one of our favourite stores, Lee Valley. Here is a direct link to purchase the hardware for this project.
Photo courtesy of Lee Valley

3) Piano Stool
I remember the days when my parents forced me to practice piano 30mins a day. Yikes, glad that's over! Why not make it a little more enjoyable with a custom piano stool? Laser engrave their favourite cartoon/movie on the top and treat them to a play-along book to get them inspired. Here is the link to Lee Valley to purchase the kit.

Photo courtesy of Lee Valley
Example: Star Wars themed music & stool design
4) If only we could fast forward to the spring...  but since we can't, might as well embrace the snow and get some exercise with the kids. Build a sled! Some of my best memories are down at the Arboretum racing down the hills with my family. Lee Valley sells a great plan - here is the link.

5) Teach them how to make their own pen. Many schools are already offering pen turning instruction and the kids are just loving it. In less than an hour, they can make their own pen... and when school is back on, they can write their love letters to classmates in style.
Image courtesy of Mike MacMillan
6) Every kid dreams of being a music star of some sort... whether singing like Brittany Spears or rocking out like One Direction. It's time to crush those dreams and make new ones with decent role models! In the meantime, teach them how to make a simple cigar box guitar. Spice it up with a wooden neck in their favourite colour.

Yellowheart

7) If you can draw, you can burn... wood burn that is. Trace your own comic character, doodle your name, make a "keep out" sign for their bedroom... their imagination is the limit. Basswood, Maple and Birch Plywood are some good options to start with. You can purchase the wood burning pen here from Lee Valley and their imagination can lead the way. Not for the little ones - perfect for teens but keep those fingers safe! 
Image courtesy of Lee Valley


8) If your kids are like me, math homework was as bad as doing the dishes. For some reason my parents never believed me that I was allergic to those things, always ended up having to do them anyway. Lee Valley has a neat project kit that can help make their homework at least slightly more fun. Convert a cool piece(s) of wood into a clipboard for doing homework or showing off in class. Here is the direct link to the kit.
Images courtesy of Lee Valley


9) What is the best way to carve wood? Whittle by whittle. "Groan"... I thought it was funny!
Carving or whittling is a great way to entertain your kids... give them a block of wood and say GO!
For a Whittle Fun, here is a book that will keep them entertained for awhile, also available at Lee Valley.
Image courtesy of Lee Valley


10) If you are not board yet, I'll leaf with with one more tip. For the older kids who spend countless hours playing Tony Hawk, give their thumbs a break and help them build a skateboard. We've got the Baltic Birch plywood that will do the trick and the internet is filled with many DIY articles and videos for the rest.

Hope you enjoyed reading todays tips. You can probably tell we love Lee Valley so if you haven't been there yet, stop reading this and head over there now!

The "K" in KJP

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