Thursday, October 11, 2012

Homemade Tree Blocks Tutorial

One of the last activities I wanted done was to make some 'tree blocks' for our children to play with.
We had done this several years ago for Corbyn's first birthday and now he is six, we some how managed to lose some of the blocks.
As we had access to lots of trees on our property I was keen to do this project again before we moved. In fact we did on our second last day of being in Tassie.
So how do you make tree blocks for children to play with at home like those lovely expensive ones you can buy? We made at least double this amount of blocks in various sizes. Although we did buy Rogan this tree house some years ago and they children play with both the tree blocks and tree house. However I do think they use the tree blocks more often than the tree house.
So back to the making of tree blocks.
First select some branches to use of various widths and lengths to use.

Then randomly,well that is our method, you can measure and mark if you want, cut the branches with a drop saw.
Of course you can use a hand saw but you don't get as even a cut or as smooth a finish in my opinion. If a handsaw is all you have (as we did for a few of ours initially the first time we attempted this)  then use what you have.
Please note:  Saxon did use safety glasses for the cutting with the drop saw but took them off for this posed photo!!
As some of our branches were thicker through we were only able to cut partially through and then we carefully lifted the saw up and moved it along. Then we completed the cut with the handsaw.
Here you can see the lengths we used on this piece of branch. The wood we used was wattle as we had already had to cut it down for the removalist truck to come up our driveway, but we have used gum and Tasmanian Blackwood before too.
It was most  satisfying to see our little stack of tree blocks drop to the verandah. This outdoor stool made a great saw horse as the saw could fit right through the gaps in the seat.
Yep those are the safety glasses and yes that is our most talented son.
Continue on with this process until you have a selection you are happy with. I like those ones with the branch coming off the end and the slight tear in the bark.
The next stage of course is sanding and polishing.

Dare I admit that we actually nave never done this as we love the rough look and the drop saw as I said does give a lovely finish anyway  But for anyone who is a purist you then sand and then polish with beeswax polish for a completed look.

Our children have had hours of play time with these blocks and you can often see them in my blog posts with the children's creativity.

In fact here is one from last night that Rogan made of various structures from Lord of the Rings:
I  hope you enjoy making your own tree blocks as much as we have!!

Blessings to you and your homes,


Tree Service Asheville said...

Very cool home project!! My father had always tried to get me into doing alot of wood chopping and such work during the winter and autumn way back in the day. Wood made projects can give you such an accomplished feeling knowing you made something from bare nature :)

God bless, and keep building!

-Tony Salmeron

Erin said...

very inspiring!

Bridgit's Bell said...

I enjoyed this post. I have cuts of wood I use for seasonal display still even though I no longer teach.

Annette said...

How wonderful to have such an excellent helper!
Thanks for sharing on Waldorf Wednesday. Hope to see you back this week!

Joy said...

I've always wondered how these were made. We have plenty of limbs, so I should try to make some!

Thank you so much for linking to Artful Tuesdays!

Joyful Mama said...

nice. linking from artful tuesday and nursing at the keyboard too.


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