Oh! My girl knitted yesterday! With me!
As obsessively as I craft, I’ve always worried that the kids would turn a blind eye and reject it all.
However… I see approximately 13 weeks of summer vacation ahead of us, which can be blissful, or excruciating, depending on my frame of mind (really, mine, not theirs). I decided that having a knitting project to pull out and work on here and there might be a good place for Emma to start, to answer the I’m bored’s. (this event was a long time coming, she IS ten, after all.) I pulled Kids Knitting off the bookshelf and together we read through casting on, simple garter stitches, pretty much keeping to the basics. Emma chose some variegated yarn, which had an added bonus of helping her see the individual stitches better.
Under the fence,
Catch the sheep,
Back we come,
Off we leap.
I’ve moved on, but I can hear her saying this over and over in the other room, sitting on the beanbag.
She’s already aiming for bigger and more complicated projects (I’ve no idea where she gets that from). She’s keeping it in one of the drawstring bags I made for her. After all, a project like this really does come down to good gear, right?
Now, I’m looking for 7 year old boy friendly how-to’s. I’m evisioning wood and power tools in my summer’s future. What do you guys have for me, any thoughts? He’s a tough one, I’ll warn you.
Stacey S.May 26, 2009 at 10:00 pm
Yeah. My daughter (7) learned how to knit over winter break this last year. She waxes and wanes. But she’s still young. I’m going to check out HULU and WARNING!!! Snow Flower and the Secret Fan is an interesting read, but definitely a roller coaster for emotions and your feet will not be the only thing ‘hurting’. Cheers to Summer.
sarahMay 26, 2009 at 10:38 pm
ahhh. how fantastic! my 10yo really enjoys knitting and decided on creating the ‘knit-along-gang’ …. friends working on projects for people in need. we’re still working on recruiting people and keeping her passion alive, she can be in and out. she’s out at the moment but i’m hoping to inspire her with some new projects soon. as for a boy….a favorite is a tree round/stump, bucket of nails and a hammer….pound away. after getting used to the hammer and nails, possiblities are endless….birdhouses, stilts, a shield….nothing he can’t do without a little help from mama and pop! have a great summer!!!!
LisaMay 26, 2009 at 11:58 pm
I taught my daughter to knit when she was 10 also. I wish I knew about the rhyme – it may have made the process easier! Snow Flower is such a fascinating read – I couldn’t put it down. As to activities for 7 year old boys – my son loved making paper airplanes at that age. Other activities I did with him involved modelling compounds such as clay and Fimo; stitching on hessian; weaving; and basic machine sewing. He loved the kids craft projects at Home Depot when we lived in USA. Despite all this his favourite creative pursuit remained building Legos:)
JurgaMay 27, 2009 at 12:50 am
Congratulations! It’s really wonderful to have the same activity together with kids 🙂 I’ve tryed to teach my girl (6 y.o.) to knit too, but maybe it’s still before time. However we can stitch together… 🙂
Mama UrchinMay 27, 2009 at 4:35 am
What about woodburning for Ian? Is he old enough for that? Also, maybe electricity? Like little switches and wires and transistors and all that stuff. I think there are books out there and even kits.
KimMay 27, 2009 at 4:52 am
I have my little guy color and cut out shapes and then I put them in a frame – will have to blog about that eventually. Like Easter eggs for easter, summer stuff for summer – when I put it on a background of pretty scrapbook paper and in a frame he’s really pleased with himself!
WendyMay 27, 2009 at 4:54 am
My son loves to just glue stuff together. He has a bin of “junk” (bottle caps, odd nuts and bolts, old mint tins and floss containers, etc) for this purpose. One of the things he loved making was a sort of metal Mr. Potato Head, but with a can as the base. He glued magnets to the bits and pieces to change them around for various robotic looks. They all store inside too. The idea is from an old family fun and I’m just remembering that I should post this.
He’s now 11 and is doing really well using the sewing machine to make softies. Ian might be just a little young to control the foot pedal the way he wants, but the key for Glenn was to tell him that a sewing machine is a power tool with a needle attached to it.
I’m blathering on here, but there’s a toy/kit called Snap Circuits that is easy to use and goes with Mama Urchin’s ideas. We’ve enjoyed ours a lot. He also has a book called Contraptions that comes with a small amount of legos and uses your own lego collection to make stuff with working parts.
Kendall MicaylaMay 27, 2009 at 4:56 am
oh yes, woodburning is a lot of fun…. but i find it a bit scary with how hot it gets. also, dremmel tools are a lot of fun! he can do a lot with all the gadgets it comes with, i love tinkering with it.
the yarn that emma is knitting with is so pretty, and that is a good point with being able to see the individual stitches, i never thought of that. i cant wait to hear what she starts on- it looks like she knits very evenly and straight… when i started everything was a mess! i know that she will enjoy it, knitting is addictive!
AnneMay 27, 2009 at 5:29 am
Check out the book, “The Buffy Porson: a car you can build and drive.” It is the perfect project for a boy! I made one for our daughter when she was about 7, but the book is written for kids to build it. The car steers and has brakes and is just generally a fun project.
graceMay 27, 2009 at 5:48 am
How old is your daughter? Mine is 6. I just placed Kids Knitting on hold at the library – maybe she and I can learn together.
blair/wisecraftMay 27, 2009 at 6:26 am
I’m sure I was Ian’s age when I did woodburning at summer camp, it was fun,
my mom actually still uses a trivet I made her. I remember that smell!
blair/wisecraftMay 27, 2009 at 6:28 am
Peter has that book from when he was a boy, thanks for the reminder to pull
blair/wisecraftMay 27, 2009 at 6:29 am
Emma is 10, but every kid is so different. If the motivation is there, I say
give it a try.
sarah s.May 27, 2009 at 7:18 am
Happy knitting! I hope my boy will try it out someday – he’s only 6 months old though, so I still have quite a wait! I loved Snow Flower – enjoy…
***abbytrysagain***May 27, 2009 at 8:32 am
That is really sweet. My Mom and I took a knitting class together (of course I was much older than Emma!) but it’s a fun thing I like to do with her.
I’m sure Emma feels the same 🙂
MargotMay 27, 2009 at 9:00 am
What about teaching Ian to knit too? My sister’s an asisstant Montessori teacher and a year or so ago taught all the kids to knit (they’re 4th-6th graders). Want to know who’s still knitting long after, and who knits the most of all? The little boys. Hands down.
StephanieMay 27, 2009 at 9:02 am
wow! that is really good! happy knitting!
kateMay 27, 2009 at 9:03 am
oh, is there anything sweeter than crafting with the kiddies? it’s the best of the best.
mamieMay 27, 2009 at 1:44 pm
you may have it in your library already but the dangerous book for boys is awesome, full of fun and engaging things to learn. it even has a little section on how to talk to girls.
Tiff@ThreePeasMay 27, 2009 at 2:14 pm
I loved it when my daughter wanted to learn to sew. Now we enjoy fabric shopping together and picking our projects for her to do.
WendiMay 27, 2009 at 5:43 pm
My little guy loves to carve. You can start him out carving soap, then move on to balsa wood later.
I’ve totally got the solution to “I’m bored!” My best friend (mom of 8) taught me this, and it truly works. Let them know at the beginning of summer that every time they say ‘I’m bored’, you’ll find something for them to do (and that it will involve house cleaning.)If you actually stick to it, you won’t hear the bored complaint much!
leslieMay 27, 2009 at 6:14 pm
oh! well this is just good. so so good!!!!
CristyMay 27, 2009 at 6:35 pm
That’s awesome! I wish I’d heard that rhyme when I was learning…
ErinMay 27, 2009 at 7:41 pm
i loved snow flower and the secret fan!
yay emma! so you recommend kids knitting? jane can knit, but doesn’t love it…i wonder if she had her own book….
and for ian – i bet stefani from blue yonder has some good resources for you.
GinaMay 27, 2009 at 9:07 pm
I bought my daughter a kids knitting kit a while back. Hoping she would soon maybe take an interest. I want to learn right along with her. But it sits unopened. I’m not pushing it. I’ll have to remember that saying when we do attempt it. 🙂
kellyiMay 28, 2009 at 3:30 am
I have bought a real tool box for my 5 year old’s birthday (I know he is way young, but one of the grown ups is always there when it is out.)
I actually blame you for this purchase, because we are building a tree house at the moment and he has wanted to use the big tools, and buying his own has been a good compromise.
We got ours from Gifted Originals: http://www.giftedoriginals.co.uk/Role_Play/junior_tool_Box/
I am sure you can get similar more locally to you 🙂
RidMay 28, 2009 at 9:52 am
My daughter (8) is still learning and she enjoy it!
emilyMay 28, 2009 at 12:19 pm
my feet hurt too when i read snowflower! how does that happen!? (and would ian do macrame?)
blair/wisecraftMay 28, 2009 at 1:22 pm
I hadn’t thought of macrame, but that could be fun for everybody! Thanks for
JenniferMay 28, 2009 at 1:50 pm
My son is very into our woodworking projects even though he is only not-yet-but-almost-five. (My husband is a carpenter, so he’s a little precocious in this area). He can very safely use a hand drill; a small, modestly-powered drill and screw gun combo; a mouse sander; and, of course, a hammer. We have made pencil holders by drilling holes in chunks of wood, a board to stretch rubber bands across (to make interesting patterns)by hammering nails in a board, and a simple garden trellis by nailing wood pieces together. Also tons of wood models. We’re pretty obsessed with those.
On another note, he’s also big into learning to tie nautical knots and we’re also learning to make some fishing tackle by tying fishing knots (the knitting reminded me…)
Kathi DMay 28, 2009 at 3:02 pm
A few years ago, on vacation in Maui, I sat on my lanai knitting and attracted the attention of an 8-year-old boy from a nearby condo. He knitted with me every day for a week, after I showed him what to do and gave him some fat needles and yarn. He was very proud of his new skill, and I sent him home with more yarn and needles.
Kathi DMay 28, 2009 at 3:07 pm
A friend came up with what I think is a genius project for her 5-year-old son. She bought a lot of PVC pipe and various fittings, and he uses it almost like big Legos, building and rebuilding structures.
suziMay 31, 2009 at 6:50 pm
I have been teaching my son, also 7, how to knit. He was motivated by knitting a really long rope – I-cord style. Pick some strong yarn and teach him how knit an i-cord. It is super easy and he gets to tie things up!
Jennifer AldermanJune 1, 2009 at 6:23 am
Our book club read Snow Flower last year, and my goodness. All I can say is to be prepared to read with a box of tissues next to you!
amishaJuly 1, 2009 at 8:50 pm
so so sweet that emma is knitting! i’m so happy for you guys. some of my best childhood memories are learning to sew and crochet and tat lace (!!) from my nani.