Here’s the question: If you want to get your kids — or your friends’ kids — started early, do you jump in and buy real tools, or do you pick up one of the many play sets available? I can see reasoning for both directions.
Play sets obviously allow you to get the kids started at the earliest possible age; Clearly they’re going to be able to handle plastic tools long before the real ones make sense. And we see a lot to choose from these days. Pictured above is Black & Decker’s “junior power tool workshop,” which includes not only numerous kiddie-plastic power tools, but an adjustable work bench as well. Looks pretty sweet, as toy-tools go.
But real tools make sense to me, too. Sure, you’re not going to be able to hand a four-year-old a power drill (at least not unattended), but you can certainly trust them with some basic hand tools under proper supervision. And there’s something really awesome about having your own, say, hammer, when you’re four — even if you’re only allow to use it when mom or dad gets it down for you and supervises. It’s still your hammer, and you’ll likely still have it when you’re in your early 40s.
But what do you think? Play tools, real tools, or both? Let us know in comments.