Wednesday, July 16, 2014

diy stables and barns

This is the summer of the craft (popsicle) stick! It began a few weeks ago... my daughter discovered several instructional videos on youtube for diy stables. Her growing toy horse collection definitely needs proper housing. Initially there was a lot of white glue involved, snipping sticks with scissors, and frustration for both of us. She needed a lot of help, and the directions all seemed to be very specific and over involved. Then I introduced my girl to the wonders of a hot glue gun! And the building adventure truly began... independently. I gave her tons of safety rules and tips. But while I sit beside her doing my own work, she creates without any assistance. A great feeling for everyone! What we both love about the process of glue and sticks is the unlimited possibilities. She creates her own rules and learns as she makes. Collaborations with friends were inevitable, so stable making is now a part of every playdate as well as solo time! Below are the most recent horse homes. My daughter's in on the left, her "building associate's" on the right. They both used duct tape for hinges and rainbow loom chains... for chains.
Some supplies for stable making:

  • craft sticks
  • glue sticks
  • glue gun
  • white glue
  • cardboard
  • duct tape
  • yarn
Recently Michael's sent me a very generous gift card. They must have heard that I like to make stuff! On a recent trip to town, I stocked up on summer crafting supplies. Thanks Michael's, what a wonderful surprise that both my daughter and I are putting to good use! Of course, I got more sticks... they come in every size imaginable these days. And a new glue gun! Some cork seemed like a good idea too. I'm going to set it all out this morning as an invitation to keep going!

Tips and thoughts on kids and glue guns:

  • Teaching children to use real tools gives them a sense of pride and fosters independence. 
  • Know your child's abilities and working style. My daughter is a very careful and responsible 91/2 year old... perfect time for this tool.
  • Use a small low temperature glue gun if possible. The size is just right for smaller hands, and the glue is never too hot.
  • Explain the dangers of hot glue, nonetheless, and remind them over and over about not touching the tip.
  • If a little glue touches skin, show them how to run it under cold water. With a low temp gun, this hasn't been necessary, but still a good thing to know.
  • Teach them to ALWAYS unplug when not in use.

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  1. So cool, love it!

  2. Great ideas for summer fun, love the horse collection.

  3. Reminds me of days past when my kids played with horses and wooden corrals. Fun.

  4. Love this! My daughter makes these too - our house is full of her popsicle stick creations for breyer horses! :)

  5. We always use our glue gun with a glass or two of ice water nearby for quick cooling of finger burns. Works great!