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The Kids' Building Workshop: 15 Woodworking Projects for Kids and Parents to Build Together Paperback – Jun 1 2004

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Valentine's Day for Kids and Teens

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  • The Kids' Building Workshop: 15 Woodworking Projects for Kids and Parents to Build Together
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Storey Publishing, LLC (June 1 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580174884
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580174886
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 1 x 27.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 363 g
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #215,772 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From School Library Journal

Grade 3-7 - The Robertsons and their daughters, ages 11 and 9 when this book was begun, test-built the 15 safe and fun woodworking projects illustrated here. The first section, "Setting Up Shop: Getting to Know Your Tools," includes a basic introduction to hammering, sawing, drilling, block planing, and measuring. Next, "Down to Business: Building Your Own Projects" puts these tools and techniques to work in simple, yet cleverly designed, kid-friendly projects that increase in complexity. They require competent and willing parents/adults who will work beside, guide, and help youngsters learn woodworking skills by completing the suggested projects, such as bird houses, a tool box, a cricket cage, and a stool. Clear instructions, black-and-white photos, and cutting diagrams are included for each one. The amount of detail provided increases as needed. Adults are advised to take over on dangerous, repetitive, or boring steps. Emphasis throughout is on helping the kids have fun. Some vocabulary is introduced in context, but the lack of a glossary rankled in some instances in which words were mentioned, then not illustrated until pages, or even chapters, later. Of necessity for a book of this type, matters are simplified: in the discussion of hammers, for example, there is no mention of varying claw types, head designs, variously weighted heads, or handle materials. A practical and enjoyable introduction to the subject. - Joel Shoemaker, Southeast Junior High School, Iowa City, IA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


“this is a fantastic family book that will soon have young woodworkers hammering, measuring and sawing with ease,…”

-Decorating Digest Craft & home Projects


“every project is accessible and will encourage kids of all ages to keep building.”

Central Penn Parent


“This can be a great way for parents to bond with their children while doing something educational.”




“a clever book…”

Salt Lake Tribune


“…essential woodworking skills that will last a lifetime.”

Woodshop News


“Bold Graphics and clear instructions…”

Woodshop News


“A practical and enjoyable introduction to the subject.”

School Library Journal


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa961c4b0) out of 5 stars 33 reviews
15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa9493b40) out of 5 stars Very Cool Jan. 9 2013
By Jennifer Zingalie - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was filled with really great ideas. It was easy to navigate and the instructions were easy to understand. I would say this is appropriate for kids 8 and older and are projects that require adult supervision.
23 of 32 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa9540f9c) out of 5 stars Nailing Down a Holiday Present Dec 15 2006
By MabelDodge - Published on
Format: Hardcover

A family partnership has waved a magic wand over how-to books and brought out a present not only for the holiday season, but for all year long -- "The Kids' Building Workshop: 15 Woodworking Projects for Kids & Parents to Build Together."

"We hope to share enough tips, give enough good advice, and create enough enthusiasm to allow parents and children to develop basic carpentry skills," Barbara Robertson, former director of education at the Williams College Museum of Art, said of her book.

With her husband J. Craig, an experienced carpenter, and her daughters Camille and Allegra, the family has come up with projects to help children master basic woodworking, beginning at age six with adult supervision.

"Most kids can learn to hammer at age six and our kids could use saws by age seven. Eight-year-olds can do a beautiful job with simple power tools like drills, as long as a parent is right there working with them," she said in an interview with The Sacramento Bee.

While some parents don't allow children to use tools, hoping to avoid blackened fingernails and Band-Aids, this also means that many children don't get to master the use of simple tools at a young age.

The first section of the book, "Setting up Shop: Getting to Know Your Tools," introduces beginners to basic woodworking. Robertson covers hammering to block planing, and introduces simple projects to reinforce those skills.

The second section, "Down to Business: Building Your Own Projects," offers 12 kid-friendly projects from simplest to most challenging. Burgeoning carpenters begin with string art, a project that builds nailing technique, and progress to full-size lemonade stands and puppet theaters.

The book is written in clear, precise language that is accessible to both children and adults.

Robertson's upbeat instructions are interspersed with tips addressed to parents. Robertson's daughter Camille addresses her tips to kids. There is an emphasis on safety, creativity, and experimentation.

"Everything gets nailed backward the first time. The trick is knowing how to take a nail out and start over again," Robertson says. "Mistakes are part of the learning process. Making them helps kids learn that mistakes are OK as long as you don't give up."

"The Kids' Building Workshop: 15 Woodworking Projects for Kids and Parents to Build Together" is published by Storey Kids. It is available on

Robertson directed the Williams College Museum of Art's education department for more than a decade. She coordinated hands-on workshops, community outreach programs, museum tours, and installations. Under her leadership, the museum was recognized with the 2000 Distinguished Cultural Institution Award from the Massachusetts Alliance for Arts Education for its "instructional excellence and innovative approaches to art education."
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa94ef7b0) out of 5 stars woodworking for kids Feb. 17 2007
By C. Custer - Published on
Format: Paperback
Excellent book to teach kids woodworking. Well organized so you can just have fun with them.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa957cdd4) out of 5 stars building book Jan. 8 2013
By Carol Butcher - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Book is clear for my grandson and he's only eight. Already interested in building project and getting materials. Good book
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa95a72a0) out of 5 stars Good for grandson! Jan. 21 2011
By K - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was a gift for our 11 year old grandson, and he has already built the bird house, a perfect and enjoyable project
for him to work on with us.