Friday, April 19, 2013

Toddlers Love this DIY Work!

Made of PVC pipe and wooden dowels, this portable box can be hung on the wall or set on the floor.
My friend has twin toddlers, a boy and a girl aged 16 months, who LOVE this box Grandpa built!  I'm not sure what to call it!?  Please send me YOUR ideas for a name :)

She saw a larger version of this box at a children's museum, and luckily her dad is handy with the saw. She spent all of $17 at a home improvement store to buy 10 feet of PVC pipe (1 1/4 inches diameter) and 3 wooden dowels (1 inch diameter, 3 feet each). 

First her dad cut the PVC into 2" pieces and glued them to each other and to a foam core backing. Then he cut the wooden dowels into 2 1/4 inch pieces.  (His circular saw was broken, so he just used a regular old hand saw.)

Next my friend sanded all of the PVC edges and dowel pieces.  Her dad finished off the box by giving it sides, a rope handle, and taping it all together with duct tape.  Viola!

You'd be surprised how captivating it can be for a toddler to empty and fill this box!  See a similar idea that uses ping pong balls in this earlier post.

We agreed that the dowels look like cork and that corks would make a fine substitute for the wood.

If you were feeling particularly feisty, I suppose you could polyurethane these puppies.


  1. I love this work, but PVC is extremely toxic. I wouldn't use it.

  2. Could you use paper towel holder/toilet roll holder instead?

    1. I love this idea and plan to duplicate it. Because I have a thrower or two in my room (kids on the Autism Spectrum), maybe I'll use foam hair rollers that fit into the tissue rolls.
      BTW, I am only going under Anonymous because I haven't yet figured out how to sign up the other ways.

  3. except this should be 10 rows by 10 columns. Montessori does math base 10 to ready a child for algebra...

  4. It's a good idea. Toddlers do like games that involve making patterns or removing and adding things to spaces or objects. I've seen a similar idea used with a game for toddlers that involved a clear plastic bottle and lots of colorful paper that they could use to fill the bottle.

  5. That's such a cool idea
    Affordable too

  6. That's a nice way to exercise their brains.