It’s still officially summer, and time to get outdoors and make the best of it! This year the children are really enjoying spending time in the back garden and having fun on their own. They’re now old enough that I don’t have to spend every minute watching them, I know that they will entertain themselves. But it does help to have a box of toys at the ready to keep them busy. One item I’ve just found in the closet to add to the box are the tin can stilts that they made last year.
Of course, tin can stilts aren’t anything earth-shattering or cutting edge. I’m sure they’ve been around as long as tin cans themselves. I remember making these as a child after seeing them on a television program. But sometimes the classics are the best.
To make our tin can stilts the children used saucy bean tins that had the pull-tab tops. Our can opener opens below the lip and thus leaves a sharp edge on the tin. This opener also takes the rim off the tin, which is where the strength of the tin come from. So we use the pull-tab tins as they work best for us.
Once the contents of the tins had been consumed and the tins washed and dried, Phil punched a hole in both sides of the tins near the still-closed side.
I found the string and carefully strung it through the holes and tied it together so that the knot would be on the inside of the tin. I did this bit because the holes and the inside lip of the tin were quite sharp for little hands.
Now it was time for the children to be creative! You could leave your tin as-is, but Tristan and Kallista like to ‘upgrade’ their creations. They added various stickers from their collections onto the sides of the tins.
The stickers weren’t sticking very well, but a layer of clear packing tape over the stickers and around the tins held them on tight.
Now it was time to try out their new, up-cycled tin can stilts! I was a little nervous for them, as I can still recall how unsteady they can feel under foot.
And Tristan doesn’t like to feel unsteady.
But he surprised me! He’s taken to using the cans frequently, and really likes to improve his stilt-walking skills with them.
Kallista had a wobble earlier this year and squashed one of the cans…..so the children thought it was a good excuse to have beans on toast for lunch and make a new stilt! And since the children have grown, we had to increase the length of the strings.
Tristan is enjoying this so much, I’m thinking we might have to make a few sets of stilts using different sized cans so he can have his choice of heights!
Have you ever used tin can stilts? Or real stilts? How did you do at them?
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