How to Build a Child's Bench

Written by jonah morrissey
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A child's bench creates a special place for children to sit. You can make a bench for the children in your life as a weekend woodworking project. The bench dimensions can be adjusted to accommodate small children or older children based on your needs. The design consists of a seat, legs, cross supports and a lower shelf. You can make the bench out of any species of wood, however a hardwood is ideal since it will hold up better under the heavy use of children.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 2 1-by-12-inch by 13-inch long boards
  • 1 1-by-12-inch by 32-inch long board
  • Box of flush-trim wood screws
  • Screw gun
  • 2 1-by-3-inch by 30 ¼-inch long boards
  • Board, 1-by-12-inch, 30 ¼ inches long
  • Fine-grit sanding block
  • Wood finish
  • Paintbrush

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  1. 1

    Place the 1-by-12-by-13-inch boards parallel to each other with the outside sides 32 inches apart and the 1-by-12-inch ends flat against a work surface. These are the legs.

  2. 2

    Position the 12-by-32-inch side of the 1-by-12-by-32-inch board across the top 1-by-12-inch ends of the legs. This is the seat. The ends of the seat should be flush with the outside sides of the legs.

  3. 3

    Drive four evenly spaced flush-trim wood screws down through the top of the seat at each end into the ends of the legs with a screw gun.

  4. 4

    Insert one 1-by-3-by-30 1/4-inch board between the legs on each side with the 1-by-30 1/4-inch side flush against the underside of the bench seat. These are the cross supports.

  5. 5

    Drive two evenly spaced screws through the outside of the legs into the ends of the cross supports at each joint.

  6. 6

    Position the 1-by-12-by-30 1/4-inch board between the legs and up 3 inches from the bottom ends of the legs. This the lower shelf board.

  7. 7

    Hold the lower shelf in place and drive four evenly spaced screws through the outside sides of the legs into the 1-by-12-inch ends of the lower shelf board at each end.

  8. 8

    Sand the bench until the wood surface is smooth using a fine-grit sanding block. Gently round any of the sharp corner edges on the bench with the sanding block.

  9. 9

    Paint the bench with a wood finish of your choice. Allow the finish to dry for at least 72 hours before use.

Tips and warnings

  • Place a throw blanket or cushion on the bench seat for added comfort.
  • Wear eye protection when working with wood.

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