DIY Toddler Activity Board
I’m not exactly someone you would describe as “handy” when it comes to fixing things around the house. I think I deserve a medal if I can get something to turn on after replacing its batteries. This is why I am particularly proud of this DIY project. It’s my upcylced activity board for toddlers! It’s a great way for your little ones to practice their fine motor skills and have a lot of fun at the same time.
The first thing you’ll need is something to drill everything onto; some type of wooden board. I went to a store that specializes in selling recycled building materials and found a sturdy old cabinet door that was still in great shape. I really liked the original distressed finish on it too. Finding something used and repurposing it is usually cheaper than buying new materials, it helps saves trees, and it allows you to be more creative with your projects.
Next, you’ll need to find some things to drill into your board. I found some of my materials at the hardware store, like the chain lock and wheels pictured below, but you would be surprised at how much you can fill your board up with random things you already have around the house, but don’t use anymore. And of course, you’ll need to find the right-sized screws for each one of your little fixtures.
Here is where you’ll see the little mistake I made, and I didn’t even realize it until after after the board was drilled into the wall. The sprinkler head is upside down. Oops. Oh well, I didn’t even know how to use a drill before I started this project so it could’ve been a lot worse. I found this battery-powered LED light and keychain light in our junk drawer and they were a big hit. I also included some different locks and latches that I thought would really challenge my kids’ motor skills.
More locks and latches. I also added two tiny pipes that the kids can push marbles through and then catch with a cup when it pops back out. This was surprisingly entertaining for them and kept them busy for almost an hour the first time they figured it out! Note: This may be obvious, but if you include this on your own board, don’t show young children how it works until they’re old enough (choke hazard).
Last step: Make sure it’s screwed into the wall very securely. You definitely don’t want your kid to end up underneath this thing.
One of my favorite things about this project, is that it has so much potential to be unique; you can customize it with really anything you want. There are so many different lights, latches, locks and gadgets you can be creative with. You can also construct it with a “style” in mind. I went for the vintage-rustic look, as I often do, but I that a more modern board would look great too. Have fun with it and trust me, your kids will love it!
For more ideas on repurposing, check out my Upcycled Serving Set for Kids.
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