Woodworking is a terrific hobby for children. It's a creative, hands-on way for kids to have fun and develop fine motor skills, math knowledge and design principles. The primary concern when working with kids and wood is safety. Many of the tools used in small carpentry projects can cause injury. Making sure kids have tools that fit them is the first step in keeping them safe.
Teaching children to use safety goggles whenever they work on any type of carpentry project keeps their eyes safe and healthy and stresses the importance of woodworking safety. Goggles that fit a child's head comfortably and form a close seal around his eyes will prevent sawdust and other irritants from entering and/or injuring his vision.
Every child needs this key woodworking tool. Having a hammer that fits comfortably in the kid's hand is important. Most child-sized hammers are less than a foot long, with a narrow handle and a 4-inch wide head. These hammers are also light enough for the child to raise and lower them repetitively to drive nails into wood.
Woodworkers use saws and kids need one, too. One of the best designed handsaws for children is called a coping saw. These have thin-toothed blades and make straight cuts in the wood. They are easy to use and pull through the wood without too much effort. Using this type of saw helps a child safely develop his technique with an easy to manoeuvre tool.
Kids will need smaller sized hand clamps to hold pieces of wood in place. Spring clamps and C-clamps are easiest to manage. Children should be taught how to handle clamps carefully.
Kids will need a sanding block to work on smoothing out rough pieces of wood. Young hands will get a better result on their projects when they use blocks instead of sheets of sandpaper. Buy a block and cut it down to a smaller size that the child can handle easily. A sanding block can also be made by stapling sandpaper onto a wooden block.
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