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woodwork and real tools


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Hi do any of the Childminders on here use real tools and provide woodworking activities for the children in the setting? I have read lots of really good advice about how to set this up but it is all from nursery or school settings where the mix of ages isn't so big and I would be interested to know how other Childminders managed it? I work with an assistant so my thoughts would be that rather than leaving the tools out they would be brought out for a specific session with children who we felt were developmentally ready to use them and work with one adult whilst the other adult entertained the babies. Any thoughts or advice gratefully received, thanks.

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youngest at the moment is 10 months, then two 13month olds, one 20month old then four other children ranging from 2.5-4yrs its this older group that I was thinking off. so a similar age to your group. do you have any hints or tips for this age group?

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Get a pumpkin as soon as they are available, some golf tees and small hammers. They will love knocking them into the pumpkin. Good got hand-eye coordination, pincer grip, shoulder strength etc. it's a good place to start.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well we had a go at this this week - wonderful!

Lots of energy used up, even a windy day didn't seem to cause as much chaos as usual, and brilliant evidence for engagement and perseverance for some very unexpected children.

I do think woodwork needs to be supervised in small groups and we differentiated by using different hardnesses of wood. For my guys with really poor hand-eye coordination I used one of those 'knock the peg through' wooden toys to give their muscles the idea before letting them loose with pumpkin or nails.

We also tried golf tees into several layers of thick cardboard and that worked well.

Moving on to knocking nails into logs next week - supporting nails with pegs works but long-nosed pliers seem to be better in trials done this week with a few small people, though most are happier just to risk their fingers!

Thank you for this super inspiration.

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