Learning Skills Through Projects

Men in my family have built things for generations.

My grandfather was a master of collecting items from a junkyard and turning them into useable products. I have an uncle who is a master carpenter and his work is stunning. My father has been a construction worker for over 40 years and can build anything from scratch.

I’ll admit that my building skills are nowhere near theirs, but I can appreciate the value of building things with my own hands. It is a value that I’ve worked to instill in my own kids.

When my son was five years old, I asked him to help my friend and I install a play system in the backyard. He gladly accepted the challenge. While he didn’t have the coordination, strength or technical skills to handle many of the tasks, I was glad to have him by my side as we worked. He handed us tools, carried materials, and fetched us water when we grew thirsty. I even let him tighten a few of the bolts. After we finished constructing the play set, my son’s face beamed with pride because he had contributed to the effort.

“Can I play on it now?” he asked.

“Of course you can,” I replied. “After all of your hard work, you deserve it.” (read the rest of the article on my blog at Goldfish Smiles).

Stay Strong,




Question: What’s the biggest DIY project you and your family have worked on?





About author

Frederick J. Goodall

Frederick J. Goodall is the founder of Mocha Dad - a parenting website focused on fatherhood. He is passionate about parenting and helping men to be great dads, husbands, and role models. You can contact him at or on Twitter at

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