What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that DIY encourages kids to complete skill-based, hands-on challenges that often (but not always) require materials and outside help. The challenge descriptions are deliberately brief, so check out the posts by successful DIYers or some of the third party videos for more help. For each skill area, DIY lists a few materials to have on hand but doesn’t specify when to use them. Kids may need adult support to help choose appropriate challenges, find materials, locate a work space, and supervise their progress and safety. However, DIY encourages parents to take a back seat and let kids lead. A parent dashboard tracks and sends alerts about kids’ activities on the site.
What's it about?
The homepage lists popular challenges, features a particular challenge, and shares news about who’s earned a new badge. Kids can explore topics there or go to the Skills page and browse 50 different categories of challenges. Kids have to create a profile and avatar to upload photos or videos as proof for completing challenges. If they complete three in a skill area, they earn a patch that displays online. Kids can follow other DIYers and interact with comments or by asking and answering questions.
Is it any good?
Grown up boy and girl scouts will remember doing specific tasks to earn merit badges. DIY is an online form of the same thing, made more accessible and inclusive by its large assortment of skills challenges. It engages kids with varied interests -- technology, art, comedy, the outdoors, the indoors, bugs, computers -- there’s even a Front End Dev skill for kids who like bugs in computers. Skills have a mix of challenges kids can do independently (Minecraft challenges or build an indoor fort) and others that require help from an adult (repair a bicycle tube) or a professional (use a soldering iron). In those cases, success depends on the level of involvement kids can get from adults. Still, DIY rewards any completed challenge regardless of difficulty or time to complete and kids walk away with confidence, new skills, and a nifty online patch.
Families can talk about...
Families can talk about appropriate ways to ask questions or make suggestions on others' projects and avoid hurt feelings. How should you respond to questions or suggestions from others? What are some examples of positive interactions? Which behaviors should you avoid?