Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Real Practice with Toy Tools

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.
Next step:  
I pulled the Styrofoam box over and had Jake get to work. He drilled a hole in preparation for a screw. 
 Then I held the block and let him screw in the large plastic screw. He did not like to do this as much as hammering in the nails. I feel it is because of his motor skills. It is difficult to turn a screw driver and push down to get the screw into the block. This is still easier than in a piece of wood with a small screw. The important thing is that he learned how to properly use the screw driver and screw and his skills will grow with practice.
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!

Classified: Mom
I Can Teach My Child

abc button


  1. We have hammered golf tees into styrofoam (sp?), but never just plain used our tools. Cute idea!

  2. Too cute for Words!
    Love his hard had too!
    Marcia :)

  3. love your little craftsman so cute he looks as if he has a real trade there come see what I shared at http://shopannies.blogspot.com

  4. I love how engaged he looks in all the pictures! Fantastic!

  5. Love the idea of using floral foam. Will have to try this with my boys!

    Visiting from I Can Teach My Child Link Party.

  6. Neat idea to use styrofoam- I never thought about that before. Found you on the Show and Tell Hop.

  7. so fun! My daughter's preschool teacher had a block of styrofoam and some tees for the kids last year - it was a very sought after center during free play! So fun!

    Looks like your lil guy had a great time.

    Thanks for sharing this on the Sunday Showcase - hope to see you this week.



Site Meter