A Hammer, Some Nails and a Piece of Wood

Learning how to use tools builds confidence, creativity and lifelong skills that in turn, your children will teach their children.

We started with children’s safety goggles, a hammer, some 2-inch nails, a 6-inch X 4-inch piece of wood and a sander. We talked about what a great invention the sandpaper wrapped on wood was for children.

Learning how to walk safely with a hammer and making sure that the safety goggles are on securely is very important. We practiced picking up the hammer and pretending to shake someone’s hand.  “Grip the hammer, shake its hand and squeeze a little”

hammer nails and wood at child care center
boy with hammer at daycare center

We counted how many edges needed to be sanded. We looked carefully for fibers of wood that could cause splinters or slivers. We carefully sanded each edge and counted to 12 to make sure we did not miss an edge.

girl with tools at child care center
girl working with wood at child care center

It was the hardest part of the job!

Moving the wood around and around and persevering is tough work!

heart shaped piece of wood

Finally, we were ready to hammer. All it took was 10 taps. Not too high, not too hard and pinching the nail just like we pinch our nose.

heart made from nails

We hammered the nails all the way around the heart.  We learned that the heart is symmetrical.

jar full of yarn at child care center

Thank you, Miss. Pauline, for bringing all the beautiful embroidery thread to tinker hollow.

spool of yarn

Of course, we kept the black wrapping to add to our sorting collection.

girl tying yarn at daycare
young girl tyring yarn at child care center

The final step was to try to wrap the embroidery thread around the heads of the nails.  It was pretty tricky.

There were so many different colors of embroidery thread to choose from.

yarn heart at daycare

When it was finished, we painted the perimeter.

“Woodworking matters. It is more than a pastime or hobby- being a woodworker means that you know the satisfaction and pride that comes from using your hands and mind to build beautiful, functional objects, and that you’re as interested in the process as the outcome. Amid the speed and chaos of the modern world, woodworking gives us a place where we can slow down, pay attention, and take the time to do things right. Aime Ontario Fraser, Your First Workshop: A Practical Guide to What You Really Need, 2005

woodworking for kids