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Whack on Bubble Wrap®
To a kid who's not quite ready to drive nails, nothing feels better than whap, crackle and pop. Supply a kid-size hammer or a rubber mallet. (Hearing protection is a good idea here. This gets LOUD.)
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Screw into drywall first
Start some screws in a scrap of drywall and let the kids screw them in with a screwdriver or a kid-size cordless screwdriver. Drywall is a lot easier to screw into than wood.