Home Depot Kids Workshops are free, fun and happen monthly! This step by step guide on all the questions you have will help you experience this fun event with your children. Come, build and learn at this free event in Minnesota.
If you have not taken your kids to a Home Depot Kids Workshop, then the next opportunity is just around the corner!
Years ago, before we had children I had heard that Home Depot & Loews both did hands on workshops for kids. It was a make and take event that was held monthly and one everyone raved about them.
When we did have kids, I hesitated on bringing my daughter as I wasn’t sure what the appropriate age was. It wasn’t until she was 4 that I finally took her to her first Home Depot Kids Workshop.
She was ready, she was excited and she was willing to learn!
The downside, most kids started sooner than the age of 4 and we missed out on a few years of fun.
My oldest is now 8 and in the last 4 years we’ve gone most months during the year. As with all families, our schedules get busy, or we forget and on occasion we can’t go on certain months.
The nice thing is that if you forget, another one is just a month away!
The Home Depot Kids Workshops happen the first Saturday of every month. Right now is the time you stop reading and go get your calendar. Write this down on the first Saturday of every month so you wont forget!
If you’ve been to a Home Depot Kids Workshop then you know the drill. However if it’s your first time, as a parent you can feel anxious, nervous and a little uneasy about what you should and shouldn’t do. Don’t you worry, I’ll walk you through the entire process.
I’ve been to a few of these at different locations. And though the specific spot within each store is different, the process is the same.
As a child, there weren’t any Home Depot Kids Workshops. In fact, there weren’t any hands on workshops that taught me how to use tools. The only exposure I got to using tools was a week long school event that allowed us to choose various hands on classes to take.
One of the classes I chose was to build a birdhouse. I was introduced to hammers, wood glue and of course paint. These classes were so much fun and I wished they could last all year.
Now, thanks to Home Depot my kids can learn to use hammers, screw drivers, wood glue and tool safety all with the help of the Home Depot Staff and my husband and I. It’s moments like these that make me wish I were a kid again!
WHAT IS A HOME DEPOT KIDS WORKSHOP?
Home Depot offers a once per month hands on workshop for kids. Every month your children will be given a kit filled with all the necessary items to build a project. The project itself changes from month to month as well as year to year.
So over the course of your child’s experience with Home Depot Workshops, they should never make the same project twice. At the various tables around the room will be the tools needed to build the project. Hammers, screw drivers, protective eye wear and paint are all provided.
As a parent it is your responsibility to help your child with their project. This is not a drop off activity for your children. This is a project that you work with your child on. You will be the one teaching them how to use the hammer, how to use a screw driver and how to follow directions.
HOW MUCH DOES A HOME DEPOT KIDS WORKSHOP COST?
Thanks to the generosity of Home Depot the entire workshop is free. Home Depot will provide all the tools, kits, stickers and even aprons and achievement pins for free! All you have to do is show up!
CAN I GET MY KIT TO GO?
This question will vary based on your specific location. However for the Waite Park, Minnesota location the answer is yes and no.
Due to a very popular build it yourself Gingerbread House kit, our location ran out fairly quickly. In fact, the popularity of the Home Depot Kids Workshops have become increasingly popular and running out has become a real issue many weeks.
Because of this they now require the child to be with you to pick up a kit. So if you have a child who is ill at home, then you cannot get a kit for them. However if you have a child that comes with you to get a kit and chooses not to put it together there, then that is fine, you’ll still get your kit.
Having said that, DO NOT BRING YOUR SICK CHILD. It’s not worth it. Please keep your germs at home. 🙂
Overall the idea is one per child who is there. Generally speaking my oldest will do her kit there, while my 5 year old likes to take his home to do.
WHAT IF THEY RUN OUT?
I can say from experience that this actually does happen. In the first 4 years we participated in the Home Depot Kids Workshop this had never been an issue. However in the last year it’s happened a few times.
Our local Home Depot has requested and been granted to receive more kits than ever before each month, so the likelihood of this happening is slim.
However if they do run out, don’t worry.
If you preregister on the website that you are coming they will guarantee a kit for your children. If you do not preregister, but register when you arrive and they run out, you’ll receive an previously released kit.
Meaning, that your child will receive a kit that was featured in a previous month or year. What ever they have extra on hand. This might be something you’ve done before or something you missed out on. Either way, they’ve always had a kit of some sort for every child that has come through.
DO I HAVE TO REGISTER?
Yes. You can either preregister online or you can register when you arrive.
Preregistration guarantees your child a kit at the Waite Park / St. Cloud, Minnesota Home Depot.
If you do not preregister, you’ll have to register once you arrive. This is a quick and easy form that you will need to fill out. If you register at the event then you will receive whatever kit they have available. Meaning, if they run out of the monthly kit they’ll provide you with one from a previous month.
To my knowledge they have not run out of kits completely at an event. They have though on several occasions run out of that months kit, and supplied guests with previous months kits they had leftover.
Registering online is easy and quick and certainly doesn’t hurt to do!
WHAT DO WE NEED TO BRING?
Each child will need to bring an adult and some clothes that can get paint on them. The pain that Home Depot uses does not come out of clothing. So plan ahead and come in their favorite painting shirt!
If you’ve been before then bring your apron! If you do not have an apron or forget yours, a new one will be supplied for free!
WHAT AGES IS THIS APPROPRIATE FOR?
The website does not state an appropriate age. However the registration form recommends that this is appropriate for ages 5 – 12.
Personally, as a mother, I have to disagree. Starting at the age of 2 my kids LOVE the Home Depot workshops. Generally speaking, a 2 year old will not be able to (nor should they) use a hammer or screw driver. They can however paint and will love “helping”.
As a parent you’ll need to use your best judgement for your children on what age is best for a building project. Children of all ages are welcome, and thus far I’ve not seen them turn anyone away. So come, have fun and try something new!
ARE THERE ANY TIPS WE SHOULD KNOW BEFORE WE GO?
Paint – The paint is acrylic and does not wash out of clothing or coats. My daughter now has a permanent paint splotch on her coat arm, which is a bit embarrassing and yet it makes her common jacket easy to differentiate from the rest!
Home Depot will give your child an apron, which is great for keeping their chest and pants clean from paint. However, the arms and sleeves are likely to get smeared if not careful.
Noise – If your child has sensory issues, know that when you have a room full of 30 kids beating down on a project on top of a plastic table, its bound to get loud. The floors are concrete and there is literally nothing to help absorb the sound.
Hammers and talking create a loud and somewhat chaotic environment, depending on how many people show up at the same time you do. This the main reason my 5 year old likes to take his kit to go. The nose is just a bit too much for him.
Time – I suggest you show up sooner than later. The workshop goes from 9:00 am – 12:00 pm. If the project is popular then there is always a chance of running out. So show up early to ensure you’ll get the kit.
STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO SUCCESS:
- Hop in the car and drive to our local Home Depot.
- Walk in the front door and look for signs pointing you in the right direction. Generally speaking, the workshops happen in the back of the store by the lighting department. However there have been times the workshop has been in the garden department and the wood section. So look for signs. Ours has generally been great about pointing people in the right direction. When in doubt though, ask an associate and they will point you where to go.
- You’ll see a registration desk when you get there. Walk over to the desk and fill out a registration form if you haven’t already. If you preregistered, let them know.
- If your child does not have a Home Depot Apron or forgo theirs, they’ll be given one now.
- You’ll now be given a kit or if they have them laid out on the table, take one per child.
- Find an empty spot at a tools table. Open your kit and lay out your pieces.
- Follow the instructions on how to build the kit. If you have questions, ask your neighbors or just watch how others are putting theirs together. The registration person as well as one or two other associates should be able to also help with questions. If you do not see a specific tool needed, borrow one from another table or a neighbor.
- Once your project is put together, then clean up your area and toss out any extra pieces. Now take your project over to the painting table. Remember to roll up sleeves as the paint does not wash out.
- After you’ve painted your Home Depot Project, grab a paper towel or wet wipe and clean off your child’s hands.
- If you were not given a paper plate upon picking up your project then ask for one now. This makes carrying your wet paint project home easier and less messy.
- As you leave, stop off at the registration desk again. You’ll now be given your pin of accomplishment. If you choose to take your project home and not finish it, don’t forget to also grab a pin!
- Now is the moment of true glory. Pin your new project pin onto your apron for all to see. The more projects you do the more pins you’ll get!
WHAT DO WE DO WITH ALL OUR FINISHED PROJECTS?
The goal is to always have your child use them. If you make a rain catcher, put it outside to catch rain. If you made a birdhouse, then nail it to a tree. You get the point.
However there might be a project that you may want to share with others. Talk to your child before going about what the project will be, and what your goals for that project are.
For example if they make a bird house, is there someone special they can make the bird house for – perhaps someone with a tree if you do not have access to one. These projects make great gifts for grandparents, friends and neighbors. Be creative in what you do with them at home or who you pass them along to.
Either way, your kids will have a great time making them and will love looking at all the pins they collect remembering all the things they’ve learned to make.
The best part of the Home Depot Workshop is that it gives children a sense of pride while teaching them how to use tools in a safe manner. By teaching our children how to use basic tools we are opening their minds up to unlimited possibilities of all the things the can one day create.
If you’ve not been to a Home Depot Kids Workshop, then plan on going to the next one! Your kids will thank you and your wallet will too!