When we moved into our trailer, getting Little G to sleep in a new place was quite the task. We’ve always been a casual co-sleeping family, and though he no longer falls asleep with us, Little G often comes to bed with us at some point in the early morning. However, upon moving he was completely opposed to the idea of his new bed and insisted on sleeping in our bed all night, every night. This wouldn’t be a problem except that the little guy is the ultimate bed hog and blanket kicker and I require just a bit of sleep without him in my bed to feel rested.
Simultaneously, our little guy was showing an interest in the pulley system at a playground we visit occasionally. He spent long periods of time running down the stairs to fill a bag with a random assortment of things so he could attach it to the pulley, run back up the stairs, and pull the bag up to himself.
I put two and two together and decided I would use this new found interest as a way of convincing Little G to give his new bunk a try. We spent a bit of time reading about pulleys together, and after a bit of research and brainstorming — mostly me thinking outloud and the little guy ignoring me for more interesting things — we (read I) decided building a true pulley was not something we wanted to do due to lack of supplies and the temporary nature of our project. We did, however, build a pretty sweet system for Little G to get his toys up to his bunk, and better yet, convinced him to spend some time in his bed.
The system we rigged up lived it’s life and ended up ready for the recycle bin after about 2 months. It did it’s job though, and got our little man back into his bed at night. It was also a super fun project, entertaining toy, and a great way to introduce our preschooler to simple machines.
Our rig was made using a shipping tube (a wrapping paper tube would also work), some ribbon we had leftover from some costumes I had mad the month before, and a basket that was usually used to hold toy tools. You can see how we put it all together in the picture. If you wanted to make a true pulley I am sure you could modify the project and do just that.