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Simple projects for an 8 year old.

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Rorschach

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Want to do a simple woodworking project with my nephew, he is 8, not very practical from what I can tell and his parents don't do anything much in the way of crafting/DIY. Bit of knitting and paper crafts but nothing with wood etc. Schools of course don't do anything these days either.

Suggestions for something I can do that won't take too long and is relatively safe.
 

Trevanion

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Some wood scraps, a half pound bag 'o nails and a small hammer and let him have at it.

Best not to over-complicate :p
 

Stanleymonkey

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Hammering nails in to spell out his name along a plank. Don't ask why but kids love that!

Funny shaped offcuts box - glue things up to make planes, ships, robots etc.

Block of balsa and stuck down sandpaper you can shape a very respectable boat.

Marble maze - stick lots of thin strips of wood onto a flat board.

Spinning top.

Moving toy - using a cam (just drill a wooden wheel off centre) Handle on front - cam on back

Let him plane the edges off something with a block plane or shave bark off branches with a spokeshave. Kids love the curly shavings it produces. Make a walking stick from a branch.

Stating the obvious - but watch out for lack of common sense. Lots of non-practical kids will reach under you while you are sawing or run their fingers along the sharp flutes of a drill bit.

Good luck - have fun
 

Turnr77

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Maybe a bird nest box, if you pre cut the pieces if you think best, let him drill entry hole on drill press and glue/ pin together and hand sand with your help.
 

thetyreman

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couple of things come to mind

make a toy with him, a car comes to mind,

spoons and spatulas would be good as well, it would teach simple shaping using a spokeshave.
 

Rorschach

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Trevanion":30kw56y8 said:
Some wood scraps, a half pound bag 'o nails and a small hammer and let him have at it.

Best not to over-complicate :p
My sister and I used to love that as a kid, an egg beater hand drill was used as well.
I did consider the same but I thought it would be nice to have something he could take home.
 

samhay

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My 6 year old likes to endlessly drill holes in things with a battery drill. Have tried an egg beater and a brace, but he struggles with these. Might be a different story when they are 8, but choose a bit that is fairly indestructible.
A bag of nails... works better if you have relatively small hammer - pin hammer if you have one for setting planes is ideal. Fairly thick nails, or at least not oval nails, as they get bent otherwise. You may have to pre-drill the holes and/or get them started.
Sawing can work if you trust them with your dovetail (or other small) saw. They may not be able to reach the vice, so improvise with clamps or possibly a bench hook.
A saw horse or similar is likely to be a better height for an 8 year old than your bench.
I would hope that in a couple of years he (my son) would be up to e.g. building a bird house, so you might have some joy there. May have to space it over a few sessions as stamina and/or attention span may not be great.
 

Inspector

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If you have a lathe you can teach him to turn pens, tops et cetera. Hardest part of that is getting safety gear to fit little heads. Make a simple platform so he is at the proper height too.

Pete
 

Bm101

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Make a bullroarer. Kids love it.
An off cut, a few small cuts, some string then whirrrrrry noise!
Here's a guide.
[youtube]3Kf_RYVt2XQ[/youtube]
 

shed9

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8 year old, woodworking?

That's easy peasy lemon stuff, make a solid skateboard. Get a set of trucks, wheels and bearings from the bay and off you go.

Lots of woodworking disciplines in there and he will likely genuinely want to see it through.
 

AJB Temple

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My first thing was making a sword. Two bits of wood. Still remember it. When mine were little I went into sword production for parties. And shields. Beat all the party bags hands down.

Give your 8 year old his/her own tools. They will always remember.

Give lots of praise. It's free, however rough the job is.
 

Quickben

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AJB Temple":3cdr422j said:
My first thing was making a sword. Two bits of wood. Still remember it. When mine were little I went into sword production for parties. And shields. Beat all the party bags hands down.

Give your 8 year old his/her own tools. They will always remember.

Give lots of praise. It's free, however rough the job is.
This.

It doesn't really matter what they make, as long as they're handling tools "like Dad" (or Uncle) and they get to keep whatever they make.

Perhaps make a miniature tool board for all of "his" tools. That way every time he comes to visit, he knows there's a part of your workshop that's his, so to speak.

EFA: apologies for being so gender specific, obviously there are plenty of ladies out there (and here in this forum) who are just as likely to be in the role described above.
 

sunnybob

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My 3 grandkids come to visit each summer holiday, last year they had my boxes of scraps to play with.
2 x 8 year and 1 x 6 year,
I was very impressed with the car they made. It had opening doors, headlamps and even a radiator! And it all went back into the boxes once they were done.

kids car.jpg


This year I have to think of something a bit more adventurous for the (soon to be) 9 year olds.
 

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memzey

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Lol! I recognise them bob but I had no idea they were so practical - must get it from Pauline :)
 

Rorschach

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Really great ideas, thanks all.

We will likely only have a few hours to complete the project so I will look through my scraps, and see what things we can make based on this thread and then hopefully give him a few choices.
I suspect a sword will win out. Might get some aluminium tape so we can make it look like metal, quicker than spray paint and more durable.
 

sunnybob

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Memzey, we have all three for the whole five weeks this year :shock: First time Millie has been allowed to stay on her own. =D> =D> =D>
Now I REALLY need to find projects for them. 8)

Rorsharch... try this one, I'm going to see if I can get them away from the pool long enough to get them to make it this time.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ylw33mSqoE
 

Rorschach

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I think table saw, mitre saw and router could be a bit advanced :lol:
 

ED65

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I'd have been well chuffed with a sword at 8, if it had been allowed by the 'rents!

Rorschach":qo69tlmn said:
Might get some aluminium tape so we can make it look like metal, quicker than spray paint and more durable.
Potential there for a sharp shard or two after it's been hit against things a few times maybe.

Would the standard silver-grey colour of duct tape be metallic enough? If not then cheap acrylic craft paints often have a silver in the range. They won't add any durability but they dry very quickly on wood, easily allowing more than two coats even if you're rushed for time at the end.
 
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