We’ve often heard it said that our children lead too sheltered a life in these modern times. Fifty years ago children were busy climbing trees, making makeshift dens, swinging on dodgy looking rope swings and making go-karts out of old pram wheels and bits of wood picked up from the garden shed.
Today all kids seem to know is how to use the tractor beam to defeat the enemy on Lego Star Wars. Practical skills are all but obsolete which many adults even struggling to put up wallpaper or do simple DIY tasks such as changing a plug.
Skills that were once passed on from grandparents to parents to children are now being lost as we become reliant on modern technology and whereas once you would have made your own bird house, now you would just head for the nearest supermarket to buy one ready-made.
Children aren’t allowed anywhere near a saw and hammer for fear of what they might do to themselves – or the furniture! And vital DIY skills aren’t being passed on because parents have forgotten themselves how to do many of those once vital household tasks.
Let’s be honest here, how long is it since you picked up a hammer and nails for anything other than hanging the Christmas lights with?
Well now one major DIY store is hoping to set that straight with a range of DIY skills classes aimed solely at kids.
In the Kids Can Do It classes run by selected B&Q stores around the country, children from the age of 7 are let loose with saws, hammers, drills etc to make their own magazine store boxes, bird feeders, mug trees, key holders or domino games which they can then take home with them. The classes last an hour and are supervised by trained B&Q staff.
It’s just one initiative that aims to take the fear out of DIY and prove to kids (and more importantly their parents) that children will not automatically saw their own fingers off or hammer nails into their toes. Children are actually quite adept at these tasks and usually approach them with great gusto!
And if there isn’t a participating store near you, kids can still get involved with kits which come with full instructions.
There are also a number of simple DIY books for kids that are bound to keep them fully occupied during the holidays! Before you know it, the kids will be putting up shelves and laying out the decking in the garden!
Why not give them their very own tool boxes and bits of old wood and see what they come up with?
The thrill of making something with your own hands is not to be underestimated and even if it does turn out to be wonky or the wood has split, the important thing is that they’ve had a go and discovered how these tools actually work. And that’s got to be better than helping Mario get those stupid coins!