My daughter is not in first grade, but our knitting really stalled last year, so she just recently completed a sachet and a scarf under the guidance of a Waldorf handwork teacher who is teaching a grades handwork class for our Waldorf home school group. I actually think perhaps our handwork stalled just for the reason that my child could start in this group this year and learn such wonderful things under such a fantastic handwork teacher!
- However, I do think first and second grade knitting can be the same sorts of projects, so here are some things I have learned and observed and want to share with you regarding knitting:
- Consider casting on for the first project yourself and letting the child just do the knit stitch first. With other projects you can cast on part of it, and your child can do part of it.
- Consider a small first project, and then a bigger project along with several smaller side projects that the child can work on when they are tired of working on said “big project”
- Know how to fix common mistakes; it is important to be able to salvage your child’s work
- Consider the social aspect of handwork and knitting; are there other children around that might like to learn to knit? Part of knitting is the friendships that form for the children.
- Do not underestimate the importance of the things leading up to knitting: seeing sheep, washing and carding wool, seeing the carded wool turned into yarn, the dyeing of yarn, finger knitting chains, making slip knots, making knitting needles.
- Know how to sew with yarn for your knitting projects.
- Have your verses and songs at the ready for knitting!
If you have a child in Kindergarten, you should be working on your knitting skills now so you can teach your child come First Grade! If your child is in the grades, please consider learning how to knit as this is an important skill for your child to learn within the framework of the Waldorf curriculum. If your child goes to school, please consider teaching knitting to your child and giving your child time to do knitting and other kinds of handwork after school or on weekends. It is very important for boys and for girls!