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The coolest thing about woodworking is that kids get to bang, grasp, assemble, and so much more. This contributes to their motor learning and familiarizes them with real life projects they may encounter later in life. Below are kid-friendly woodworking spaces (we know of) in Boston.
Boston Children's Museum
Price: $1 per person on Sundays afternoons
The Boston Children's Museum has a wood working exhibit called Johnny's Workbench. It's a playful space, that allows children to explore and discover the function of hand tools. Little visitors can put on bright orange aprons and protective goggles, before standing in front of child-sized workstations. They'll get to tighten screws with a kid-friendly hand drill, and use the motions to saw a brick of wood.
The tools are not sharpened, and the screws are not loose, so it's really a super entry-level exposure to working with wood.
Johnny's Workbench is on the second floor across from the STEAM lab and next to the art lab. If you haven't had a chance to visit the museum, consider stopping by for their $1 Sundays.
Ages: Not specified
Home Depot's motto is "a place where doers get more done," so they're making sure their youngest customers start early in home repair learning. In 3 hours, kids actually build and complete projects like planters, treasure chests, planes, and even a wooden microscope. The screws are real but the wood is precut. We view this as a level up from the Children's Museum, because attendees are given instructions, glue together parts, paint their creations, and take them home. Home Depot's Kids workshops are free every 2nd Saturday of the month.
Lowe's is another home improvement store that offers the DIY classes for little builders. They call it DIY-U (short for Do-It-Yourself-University). The workshops are led by DIY-U Captains who take attendance and give each participant a red and blue apron with goggles. Kids get to work with real tools, real wood, and have real timelines. Past projects included a wood planter, pickup truck, and garden ornament. Lowe's DIY program happens once a month and they're currently running a badge program. After 12 workshops and 12 badges, attendees can win a free tool bag. Unfortunately Lowe's doesn't have any locations in Boston, but if you're up for a short drive, you can find a store within 30 minutes of the city.
The Eliot School is a maker's space dedicated to fine and applied arts. Their goal is to "inspire lifelong learning in craftsmanship and creativity." Their woodworking classes are well known and focus on larger more complex projects. The classes take place in their woodshop and are led by experienced woodworking enthusiasts.
Until next time...
Love The Journey,