Teaching kids to knit

PeterMark's picture

The local elementary school called and asked me if I could come in and teach a group of 2nd graders (7 and 8 year olds) how to knit. So far 3 kids are signed up (2 boys and a girl). The group will be max'd out at 6. The classroom teacher is providing worsted weight yarn and size 8 or 9 needles. Last time I did this, the teacher came over to "help." The problem with her help is that she's a thrower and I'm a picker. I'm ready this time though, as I've been working on throwing all morning, and I think I've got the hang of it enough to show a bunch of kids how to do it. It's kind of fun to be trying something so new and yet so basic, but I can't see myself switching for good. I can't wait to see how things go with the kids this afternoon. Here goes nothin'!



Being really isolated in my knowledge...what is the difference?

PeterMark's picture

It involves which hand holds the yarn. The distinction is also referred to as "Continental" (or 'picking' holding the yarn in the left hand) or "English" (or 'throwing,' holding the yarn in the right hand). I found a great explanation in Knitting with Balls p. 17.


Good for you. I taught a knitting class as part of the afterschool scheme at the school where I taught in New York.
Schools here in London are interested but no offers yet.
Enjoy it. It's very rewarding teaching children. One of my students had her first piece framed & it's in her bedroom!

Knit away, knit away

"They say best men are moulded out of faults; and, for the most, become much more the better for being a little bad." William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure

BuduR's picture

I'm a thrower, but not a proper thrower, I run the yarn behind my neck for tension, and basically grab it with my thumb and middle finger when I throw it. I've been working on continental style. but that's not going well so far.

MWK's Token Estrogen-American

All my class are learning to knit. A few of them are keen enough, outside of knitting time, to knit using pencils (usually during some other unrelated lesson). I ought to tell them not to, to get on with their mathematics or whatever, but I'm so pleased to see knitting carrying on that I effect not to notice...

Thanks for the explanation...continental I like...but have not taught myself yet.

teejtc's picture

Many years ago, I spent a year as an exchange student in Germany attending a Waldorf School, and while I was in high school, it is my understanding that all the Rudulf Steiner-based schools teach knitting within the first year or two. They (rightly!) suggest that knitting helps develop necessary attention to eye-hand coordination, artistry, fiber awareness, etc.

Cool huh?!

Now, if only a Waldorf school would open up close enough for me to send my daughter there in a couple of years.

Oh, and I forgot, the book entitled "The first book of knitting for children" looks like a cool resource in that respect; I haven't gotten it yet but certainly will in the next few years.


Grace and peace,