DIY Learning Tower
My son loves being at the counter more than anything. It gives him the chance to be where all the action is in the kitchen. The problem is, the stools that are at the counter are not a safe place for a kid to be. To help fix this, I decided to build him a "Learning Tower" out of some cheap material to get him up to counter level. The parts needed to make this are pretty easy to find and cheap.
- Bekvam step stool from IKEA
- 1" x 1" pine board
- 4" x .5" pine board
- .5" pine dowel
- Spray paint
- Spray lacquer
I started by measuring the height of my counters and subtracting height of the stool. This gives us the measurements for the 1" x 1" uprights. Then, I drilled a hole through the top part of two of the uprights. This hole will accept the .5" dowel that will act as a safety rail to prevent the kid from falling backwards. When putting these support on, put the worst looking side to the outside since it will be covered up in future steps. After these are all cut, remove the top of the stool and screw the uprights into the top. For a better fit, countersink the screw heads so they'll be flush underneath.
Now with the uprights in place, we can measure for our 4" x .5" boards that will be our front and side rails. How the slats overlap is up to you. I cut the side pieces to length to match the uprights, attached them with screws. Then measured the final length of the front and screwed that to the uprights.
After it was completely assembled, I filled in the screw holes with wood putty and let it dry overnight. The next day, I sanded down all the surfaces with 220 grit sand paper and applied several coats of spray paint to coat. Then applied several coats of spray lacquer to protect the paint from grubby hands and kitchen spills. After almost daily use for two years, the learning tower has held up great and still looks great.