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    What to do when your children want to help out

    Published on 17 April 2019, Wednesday, 10:06 AM

    DIY projects around the home present several challenges, one of which is the safety of yourself and your family.

    If you've got little ones who are eager to help out, have a think about ways you can involve them while teaching them about the importance of workplace safety.

    Mark out your worksite

    If you're working with large machines like diggers or mini-loaders around your home, it's vital that you clear the area of obstacles first and mark out the area in which you're working. Use cones, stakes, banners or whatever you have on hand to map out the work zone and explain to your children that they need to stay clear of this section of the property.

    Encourage them to sit at a safe distance and watch you while you work, but let them know that entering your work zone could be dangerous for both you and them.

    Protect yourself and your kids

    When working with power tools you need to practice the safety messages you preach to your kids. Drills, saws and other tools can be very dangerous when not handled properly, so start with the basics.

    Discuss eye and ear protection with your children and give them a good overview of each tool you're using and why you've chosen that one for the job. Teach them about debris that can flick up when using high powered tools, making it important to wear safety goggles.

    If your child is going to be watching you work from a safe distance, give them their own set of child-size earmuffs to match your pair. Children have very delicate ear drums so protection is needed to dull the noise emitted by power tools.

    Don't leave them unsupervised

    If your child displays a particularly strong interest in your DIY project, that's great! It may mean when they get old enough to help you'll have an extra set of hands for your at-home jobs.

    It may also mean, however, that they are eager to try out certain tools and processes themselves. If there are jobs they can safely participate in, such as using a child-size spade to help you dig out the garden or a lightweight hammer to help put together a fence, by all means provide them with the knowledge to do so. Make sure they are always supervised in this role and they are well-versed in tool safety.

    Never leave your children unattended around your work site. They may see machines as obstacles to climb on or try to emulate your work with a power tool, potentially causing harm.

    Nathan Mills portrait image
    Nathan Mills
    Nathan is a seasoned Kennards Hire team member passionate about empowering DIYers in their projects. He loves everything DIY and brings together years of equipment and project experience to help customers get the right tools for their next job.