World’s shortest, worst teepee

April 29, 2018


Spring has sprung and that means that the sprinklers are on at the CDC. I have written some emails to see if someone can program them to come on in the evenings instead of the mornings. When they go off at 5 a.m., they flood the toddler sandbox and make much of the area into mud. (We have a playground committee that is addressing these problems, but it’s going to be a while.)

I’ve tried several things while we’ve been in the building. A regular tarp just sinks in and collects water. We’ve put a small picnic table on the sand, draped it with a tarp and weighed it all down with rocks, but that takes a lot of time. I’ve tried putting the top of a beach umbrella down but that is unwieldy and impossible. I needed…..a teepee.

“Its construction should be exceedingly simple!

I bought some PVC and a 4′ by 15′ tarp. I was hoping to get all my panels out of it but I forgot that I’d have to allow for material at the seams to hold the poles.


I folded the tarp into thirds, set it out to make my measurements and cuts, and immediately got some ‘help’.


Then, more help.


I didn’t have five full panels, but with some patching, it all worked out. It looks very Frankenstein-y but I only had a handful of scraps with this thing was said and done.


Before the last panel went on, we had some quality control testing.


Here it is in its native habitat. It looks spotty because I was spraying it with waterproofing spray in 30-mile-an-hour gusts on-site. I stuck a rock on top for proof of concept. It is not a teepee to play in, it is just to keep the sprinkler water out.


Somebody remind me to remove it in the morning, ok?

About Lauren

Lauren Sommerer is a preschool teacher who likes to build prototypes, grow cats, cook things once, save money, reduce, reuse and recycle.

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2 Responses to “World’s shortest, worst teepee”

  1. Deborah Said on:

    Remove the teepee.


  2. Brad Said on:

    Ha! I like the help you got.


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