Bye-Bye Screen Time & Hello DIY!
Want to minimise your kids time on digital handheld devices and computer or TV screens? It’s time to keep children connected with the real world and one great and productive way to get involved is making things with a fun woodworking DIY project with papa! Go put your tool belt on, but make sure to give your little helper a hand with their tool belt, too – we’re going to make a garden box to grow veggies in!
Plan the Project
Planning helps children learn and grow. If you take time to list the steps aloud, then your little helper will feel more excited to work on it and will have a better idea of the way the project will go. Organised planning leads to an easier time communicating (always good with little kids!). Making lists and drawings helps the child visualise how the project will come together.
A garden box will help keep pests away from your vegetables and create a nice neat patch to tend. The plan involves cutting wood for the frame and we will need to add a fence or chicken wire to keep the veggies safe!
Here’s what to plan together:
- Start planning by finding a good spot for the garden.
- Use measuring tape to get an exact dimension for your garden box.
- Finally, make a drawing using these dimensions.
- Gather Resources – Gather the appropriate tools and resources to make your project a reality.
This is a good time to introduce the children to new tools. If a tool is unfamiliar to a child, take the time to show the child how the tool works. Once again, always accompany children during every step of the project. NEVER leave a child alone with power tools or sharp objects.
DIY Garden Box Resources and Tools
This DIY project is easy to assemble. The dimensions should be adjusted depending upon the size of your outdoor space. In this example, we are making a garden four-feet wide and four-feet long, providing enough room for two or three types of vegetables.
What you’ll need:
- 8 pieces of wooden 2X4, each at least 4-ft long
- 16 2 ½” or 3” screws
- 16 1/2 feet of chicken wire fencing
- Miter saw
- Tape measure
- Electric drill
- Staple gun with ½“ staples
- Wire snips
Building the Project – Be sure to teach and demonstrate safety instructions to children, such as warning the children to stay away from the moving miter saw blade.
Building the DIY Project, work together on the following steps:
- Use the tape measure and pencil to mark the wood at the appropriate length. Use a miter saw to cut the pieces that will go on the ground. The miter cut is used to join two pieces of wood at an angle as a way to provide longer stability.
- Attach the pieces of wood using the electric drill and screws. Use two screws to attach each mitered frame piece. Continue to attach the remaining 2X4s vertically at each corner of the frame.
- Use the staple gun to attach chicken wire to each of the vertical pieces of wood. Leave the end of the chicken wire unattached to give the gardeners a place to enter and leave when tending to the crops.
- Use the wire snips to remove excess chicken wire, and bend sharp wire ends back inward, like a coil.
It’s time to make the garden grow!
Plant some seeds, or if it’s too early, you and the children can make the garden look more appealing by adding a creative touch wherever possible. Try decorating the garden by posting a sign reading, “Keep the Bunnies Out!”. Be creative and have fun – your kids will love some time away from those screens!
Feature photo via zones.co.nz