Tuesday, May 25, 2010

More fun with wood scraps...





.... though this time the scraps are way higher in quality. I was so incredibly fortunate a year or two ago to be given several boxes of wood scraps from Little Guitar Works. I've used these pieces of wood for all sorts of things and it's amazing wood... birds eye maple, mahogany, ebony... I just used up basically the last of it for this project I did with Jack's class (and also made a bunch more to use for my camps this summer). You definitely don't need fancy wood though to do these project... I can pretty much guarantee that your kid will be fainting with excitement (if they've never sanded before) even if it's just a chunk of yellow pine or a branch you picked up off the ground... I have done this project several times and it's always adorable how excited the kids get about making the wood smooth and the amount of sawdust they create... lucky for me these kids did not disappoint. Thank God because if there's one thing I can't stand it's non-adorable kids. JUST kidding, anyway...
As you can see you can just cut up some pieces of wood and drill a hole in it. Leave the children to their sanding ( I stapled pieces of sandpaper onto blocks of wood to create a kind of sanding block for them, but it's not necessary) and then, when they've deemed their wood sufficiently soft and smooth, I have them paint it with mineral oil using a Q-tip. Wipe away the excess oil, thread a piece of leather twine or ribbon or cord through the hole, and tie a double knot, and voila... key ring. Of course it could be anything... I've had lots of kids just call it jewelry and make themselves really cool bracelets and necklaces... but project I was doing with Jack's class was classified as a Father's Day project, so the key ring and the wood and the leather twine combined to make it all sufficiently masculine.
The best part of it all was how excited Jack was to have me in his classroom. He came over and hugged me about 12 times and I kept seeing him glancing at me in this shy excited way... so cute that it doesn't even occur to him yet to be cool or to try to hide the fact that he loves his mama. And what a lucky mama I am.

4 comments:

Teacher Tom said...

This looks like a ton of fun, Kami!

We recently made our own sanding blocks. I thought it would be a good idea to let my preschoolers try out using staple guns. Not a good idea. Not only were they not strong enough to press the "trigger," even with my help the pressure we were applying would cause the whole thing to tip over, sending staples flying across the room. We wore safety glasses, but I'm glad we got out of that one without injury!

I'm very happy I found your blog. I wrote about trying another of your ideas today. Maybe we'll wind up starting a Tinkering School in Seattle!

Sherry and Donna said...

Kami what a great idea and the children look like they are having a ball ... and what a precious boy you clealry have!
Donna :) :)

Kami said...

I checked out your post about working with the aluminum cans... brilliant, Teacher Tom! Thanks so much for the mention! I feel so famous! I loved what you had your kids do with them too... what a fun project.

Yes! When you said Tinkering SChool Seattle I immediately thought, "OH! Maybe I can move to Seattle and help start that after I start this one..." but that's probably pretty impractical. I do love Seattle though (and used to live there/lived outside of there for much of my growing up years). Anyway, I do believe some folks are at least in talks to start one there... I have googled and found nothing yet, if you're curious just write Gever Tulley and I'm sure he would be happy to tell you who they are.

Kami said...

Thanks so much, Donna! Yes, he sure is a dear one.