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Building a wooden tree planter

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Building a wooden tree planter, getting familiar with hand tools, painting the finished.


Timber: 32mm x 32mm wood for corner posts, 4 x 450mm lengths (for each corner), batten 3 x 400mm lengths needed for each 4 sides and the base (15 lengths needed altogether), decking 6 x 400mm lengths needed for each 4 sides and base.

Hand Tools: Tape measure, hand saw, claw hammer, electric drill with small wood bit and countersink bit, cordless screwdriver, paint brushes, safety goggles, gloves

Other items: Screws (crosshead preferably), Nails, Short 20mm or 25mm clouts, paint (exterior non toxic)


Safety is important, always get the chilren to wear safety equipment, goggles and gloves. Let the children try with the tools, but always stay in control of the tools. If they are drilling or using the cordless, keep an adult hand on the tool.

Each child takes turns to measure and then cut the timber to length. Then each gets a go at drilling and then countersinking the holes for screws.

The holes need to be in the corner posts to attach the 3 cross pieces to each side. they need to be at the same height on each side. The base peices require the cross pieces to be drilled so that they can be joined.

The children then take turns with the cordless screwdriver, joining the peices together.

Then taking turns again the children drill the decking to cover the sides, they will be nailed through these holes onto the cross pieces. Drilling them prevents the wood from splitting. Then they can nail on the decking.

The planters are ready to be painted, it must be alover inside and out.

The planters will need a lining before anything is planted, this must be able to allow water through.


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