Everyone needs a clubhouse! You can build your own backyard shelter, retreat, or clubhouse even if you have never built anything before. The clubhouse above was built in 1959 by three kids aged 8, 9 and 11, with no money or help from grownups! I know; I was the 11-year-old who took this picture. I'm sharing here what I have learned since then.
Readers of all ages are welcome to comment with their own ideas, pictures or stories.
To help you on your way, I've written a book titled "Keep Out! Build Your Own Backyard Clubhouse", which is available through bookstores or at Amazon.com . Many of the items I post here are also in the book.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

A Clubhouse of One's own

Kids need a place that they can call their own. It can be a backyard shelter, no matter how crudely built, where a couple of friends can sit in and talk, or read comic books, or (nowadays) play games and text on their phones.

If your kids (girls too!) have a desire to build some kind of fort or hideout, by all means let them. Ideally, the less you help them, the better…let them discover the process themselves. Your task could be to provide a few tools, nails, and help transporting lumber, either used or new.  Kids are surprisingly resilient; they won’t kill themselves or each other by building a clubhouse, and they will be doing something creative that will give them a deep sense of pride. Also, they won’t be crying that they’re bored, and you’ll know where they are!