Playroom Spotlight: The Brighter Busy Board
My husband made this busy board for our daughter on her first birthday. She LOVED it! There are many examples of busy boards on Pinterest, but here is the process he used.
He bought a half-inch thick piece of project board from Lowes so that it would be easy to attach things to it, and he had Lowes cut the board to fit the space in the playroom. (I used a remaining part of the board he purchased for my felt board.) He bought lots of little things from the hardware store with moving parts, but he made sure they were all safe for little fingers. Next, he laid all the pieces out on the board, but before he attached them, he sanded, primed, and painted the board a bright gender neutral color. Then he screwed in all of the pieces using a mix of mounting hardware that came with the pieces and screws that we had on hand.
He tried to combine objects that would be idea for a variety of different levels of dexterity. Having some pieces like a springy doorstop that make funny sounds add a lot of interest. Since we used a thick, heavy board we decided to use two strong screws to bolt it to the wall for safety. The whole project took about 4-5 hours including painting.
Here is a list of the type of objects he used: door bell, swing-bar lock, sliding window sash lock, door lever, cabinet latch, chest handle, rocker switch, traditional light switch, rocker switch cover, traditional light switch cover, door hinge, deadbolt, chain lock, door knocker, barrel bolt, combination lock with eye bolt, sillcock valve, spring door stop, swivel hasp, zipper, velcro straps. He used a staple gun to attach the velcro and zipper.
Brighter Tips from my husband: If you have to buy screws to attach anything make sure that they will fit through the holes and try to find screws that match the metal of what you are screwing into to avoid corrosion. If the screws are so long that they stick out the back of the board you can cut them with bolt cutters.
Our daughter has played with it many different ways since she received it. It's highly versatile and adaptable to your child. They will play with it for years!