This woodworking tips card is called Make Something for a Child. When you make things for kids, you get to build new and different projects, solve new problems, and in the end make a child very happy. You will never feel as good about something that you made as when you give it to a child. Here is how to get started:
Make Something For a Child
Every woodworking project that you do will advance your skills, and help you reach your goals. For a child, the goal is to have fun. This is a great opportunity to give back, and make a child’s day by making them a toy.
You will never feel the same level of excitement and grattitude as when you make something for a kid. The way that they explode with excitement makes you feel proud to be a woodworker.
Having made many things for many people, I can without a doubt say that I have never felt as appreciated as a woodworker as when I make things for kids.
When you are making wooden toys, it’s different from other woodworking projects because of the end user. Kids using the toys will do something for your woodworking skills and abilities that you may not see right away until you start. The benefit to making toys for you is…
Making Toys Means Solving Unique Problems
The benefit to you as the woodworker is that you get to learn how to solve new problems. For example, what kind of finish are you going to use on the toys? Most kids eat their toys, so it needs to be safe. What kind of wood are you going to use? Some woods are toxic, and can cause severe allergic reactions. Have you considered that?
Making toys and making things for kids opens up a whole list of new woodworking challenges that you may not have to consider at all when you are making your normal projects. This is a good thing, because difficulty causes growth.
When you are forced to think about the project, come up with solutions, and test out your ideas, you grow as a woodworker. Making the same thing every day does not provide nearly the benefit of flexing your woodworking muscles and solving problems.
Fun Toys and Projects For Kids
There are many things that you can make for kids. I recommend that you start out with a good book, and go from there. If you are interested in a particular style of toy, or tiny furniture, there are many resources out there to discover.
Some woodworkers like making toys that are played with. These stimulate the senses and encourage kids to use their imagination. When you hand over a toy, most of the time you will get a bigger reaction than handing over a tiny chair.
Other makers enjoy building usable items for kids. These can be tiny tables and chairs for their snacks and play time. They can also be wooden props, or a kitchen set. Usable items like this tend to last longer due to their size, and are a larger project than a small toy.
Think About Donating
Some woodworkers don’t have their own kids, and they run out of friends with kids pretty quickly. In a case like this, look around for somewhere that you can donate. There are plenty of places that will gladly accept your wooden creations and make lots of kids happy for you.
Some of the best places are children’s hospitals, organizations for underprivileged kids, or holiday time groups that collect and give toys to local families that are having a hard time buying the toys themselves.
You may not directly see the benefit that the toys are responsible for, but you will still be helping people and making kids happy. Especially around the holidays, something as simple as a wooden toy for a small child can make all the difference in their world.
Additional Information About Westfarthing Woodworks
While I publish the overwhelming majority of my woodworking content for free, I also have several books available as well. You can see them on my Available Books Page, and they cover several different woodworking disciplines.
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