Today we decided to pull out some tools that the construction workers might use. I started the activity by reading this cute story, I Love Tools by Philemon Sturges.
I then pulled out some of the same tools we read about in the book. I also had a block of Styrofoam and rectangle of floral foam wrapped in brown fabric (to look like wood), as well as 5 golf tees. I wanted Jake to have the opportunity to hammer and screw without hurting himself.
I started by showing him how to hammer properly then held the golf tee and allowed him to hammer while I held the tee for the first few hits. I then removed my hand and let him hammer the tee in the rest of the way. He absolutely loved this activity! He hammered all five tees in and was ready to pull them out and start again! He was so proud of himself!
The tees worked great as nails. They are sharp enough to get through the fabric and long enough to stick down into the floral foam. The top of the tees are wide enough for him to hit.
I pulled the Styrofoam box over and had Jake get to work. He drilled a hole in preparation for a screw.
Jake took the activity a step further by grabbing his saw and sawing the Styrofoam square. I was very impressed with this initiative. He loves "cut, cut" (sawing) and I should not have been surprised but I was. He cut right into the styrofoam. It made quite a mess but in what other way would he be able to cut using a saw? What a great experience for a 2 year old.
We both had a lot of fun with this activity and I am sure we will be spending hours upon hours 'working' on making things! After playing for about 40 minutes (yeah, 40!) Jake put the tools into his wheelbarrow and pulled out a brush to "clean-up." In the book we read the father cleaned-up by brushing away sawdust. Jake must have observed this and made a note of it because he did it without any prompting at all. It was too cute!