When Pinterest first hit the internet (and you needed AN INVITATION to join!), I stumbled upon the idea of water walls. A water wall is essentially a structure that allows kids to move tubs/cups/funnels/tubes/etc. around to direct water down the front of the wall. Kids can change the flow by moving the various part. It is fantastic for fine motor skills (nuts and bolts) as well as problem solving (how to get the water to flow from point A to point B).
I immediately e-mailed my husband (even though he was sitting in bed next to me) with the subject line "Mama wants". A couple of weeks later, he remembered that we had a piece of leftover stockade fencing from our Wild West 4th of July party and he set to work making Mama happy. He cut the tops off of the existing fence and drilled holes every few inches. He then drilled holes in dollar store pails, horns, cups & funnels. We found some aquarium tubing to add to the fun and then stocked up on nuts and bolts so that the kids could move things around as needed. Because the fence was so high, we needed some way for the kiddos to get to the top, so he added stairs to the back side.
Soon thereafter a few moms and myself held a "Splash" camp for our kids. Each day had a water-themed project. The end of the week was our fun day and I was able to debut my new water wall:
My thoughts on the whole Water Wall concept? Loved it! The kids loved it... until it was abandoned in favor of something else. Eventually it rotted away until the wall was repurposed as something else (I think it is now in our veggie garden). Because we already had the stockade fence, the entire project cost us less than $20. If you're a safety freak, this probably is not the project for you. The likelihood that the kids could topple it over loomed large in my mind. There were a couple of splinters, but overall it was a huge hit. Thumbs up all around!