Little Craftsmen Day 2: 🔨HAMMER TIME🧰 Breathe . . . it will be ok!

“[It] has often strained the boundaries of my patience to facilitate my sons’ involvement. I have gritted my teeth through the inevitable fumbling of their early efforts to join us at our work. I have often wanted to push them aside. How much sooner might I return to the warmth of the house if they did not help me with the chores? How much faster could I have stacked that wood alone? How much neater would the stacks be? Or I walk past the cowshed and see the rows of bent-over siding nails and remember the day Fin and Rye spent with hammers in hand, three whacks to the wood for every one that landed on the nail itself, and I remember how I wanted to stop them, to step in and take over. ‘It’s OK,’ said Penny. ‘It’s just a shed.’ It is just a shed. It is not like this anymore . . . because slowly, over months, seasons, and years, they have developed a sense of responsibility and an understanding of how their contributions better this family and farm. Because they have learned that they are useful. And they know how good that feels.

Ben Hewitt, Home Grown

Welcome! Thanks for tuning in for Craftsman Week; raising up capable, confident kids! If you’re just joining us, here’s what you’ve missed so far:


Let’s take a whack at it!

Have you ever seen an adult try to use a hammer for the first time? It’s not a pretty sight. Hammering is one of the many hand skills that needs to be implemented and practiced throughout childhood, the earlier the better. Of course, we rarely think to hand our toddler a hammer! Our parenting culture has become so centered on safety that we inadvertently cripple our children in a more abstract way —ultimately sending them off unprepared to “adult” in the practical world. Well, today we are risking the possibility of our kids experiencing a thumb with a heartbeat for the first time. We’re hitting the practical skills nail on the head and giving our kids access to the basic tools of adulthood. And we’re even attempting to do it safely!


~HAMMER TIME (for littles under six + first timers)~

SKILL SUPPLY LIST:

  • safety goggles
  • small wooden hammer or mallet
  • golf tees
  • one of the following: cucumber, zucchini, watermelon, pumpkin, piece of Styrofoam, or cardboard box

INSTRUCTIONS:

1.) Set up a hammer station with the above supplies.

2.) Have your child put on her safety goggles, just in case. Explain that hammers hurt when hit on little fingers. Tell her that it is important to try and “hit the nail on the head.”

3.) Show your child (if right-handed) how to hold a golf tee in her left hand and hammer it with her small wooden mallet in her right hand. Reverse for left-handed children.

4.) Allow your child to hammer golf tees as long as desired. Our two-year-old was having so much fun with this yesterday that we pulled all the golf tees out when she was finished and let her do the entire activity again!


~HAMMER TIME (for kids six and up)~

*Please note: if your child has never hammered before, we strongly recommend beginning with the previous activity, even for kids as old as twelve.

SKILL SUPPLY LIST:

  • safety goggles
  • child-sized hammer or regular hammer for kids 10+
  • large nails
  • scrap wood, preferably two inches + in thickness

INSTRUCTIONS:

1.) Set up a hammer station with the above supplies.

2.) Have your child put on his safety goggles. Explain that hammers hurt when they hit your thumb! Our son hit his a few times and got a really good lesson on that fact. Hey, that’s how I learned not to hit my thumb with a hammer, and I still whack it every so often!

3.) Show your child (if right-handed) how to hold a nail in his left hand and hammer it with deliberate whacks given by his right hand. Steady the wood for your child if needed. Reverse for left-handed children.

4.) It may take your child several minutes to hammer in one nail. That’s ok! If your child starts to tire before a nail is hammered through, encourage him to keep going! In the end, your child will experience the highest level of satisfaction once he has successfully hammered at least one nail!

5.) Allow your child to hammer nails into the piece of scrap wood as long as desired. He can also practice bending nails, pulling nails out, and straightening nails.

6.) Take your child’s picture with his first hammer time success!


~OTHER TOOLS TO TINKER WITH~

  • wrench and bolts
  • screwdriver and screws
  • saw and scrap wood
  • sandpaper/electric sander and scrap wood
  • pliers and nails

Tune in tomorrow for OF LOVE AND LEATHERCRAFT!

Thanks ever so much for reading!

Love, ~Our Holistic Homeschool~

One Reply to “Little Craftsmen Day 2: 🔨HAMMER TIME🧰 Breathe . . . it will be ok!”

Leave a Reply